TikTok’s new filter sparks controversy over unrealistic beauty standards

"Bold Glamour" sparks controversy on TikTok.

TikTok’s new filter sparks controversy over unrealistic beauty standards
Pedro Domínguez

Pedro Domínguez

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As we previously reported, TikTok is an app that is driven by fads. From “disinfluencers” that tell you what not to buy, to things that have “low vibes”, to a filter that rejuvenates users and makes them look like teenagers again. But, in recent days, it has been another filter that has gone viral on the social network and has opened the way to controversy.


“Bold Glamour”, used over 6 million times (and climbing), is an ultra-realistic beauty filter that changes people’s facial features to make them “pretty” (from the conventional point of view, of course), simulating soft glam makeup. After becoming popular on TikTok, many users have criticized it for conveying “unrealistic” beauty standards without viewers realizing that it is the creation of software.

According to Vice, many of the people who have used this filter (with a purpose and results very similar to those of FaceApp) say they felt “humiliated” after having their face digitally altered. Some even tested it by covering their faces in various ways to see if the filter would stop working, although they were unsuccessful.


We’re entering FaceApp tt era 😬😳 #faceapp #makeupfilter #tiktokfilter #fyp

♬ Love – kouz1

What’s more, the filter has proven so effective that it was still active and working smoothly even when user @rosaura_alvrz touched her face and put her hand in front of the camera: “This is a problem. You can’t even tell it’s a filter anymore,” she said. “As someone who experienced body dysmorphia growing up, this turns my stomach; TikTok, you can’t be allowing this… It’s sickening to our youth,” she wrote in the video’s caption.


As someone who experienced body dismorphia growing up this makes me sick to my stomach; tik tok u can’t be enabling this…it’s sickening for our youth 🤮 #filters #bodydismorphia

♬ original sound – Rosaura Alvarez

And no wonder. Several studies show that, although the emotional impact on the user depends closely on their self-esteem, even those users who were generally satisfied with their physical appearance felt less confident about their appearance after using the filter.

“Filters are fun, but they are NOT reality and we shouldn’t compare ourselves to them,” Dr. Monica Kieu, a Los Angeles plastic surgeon, commented in a video. “But wow. This one is good.”


Filters are fun, but they are NOT reality and we shouldn’t be comparing ourselves to them. But wow this one is good 😳 #filter #drkieutips #beauty #skincare #boldglamour #facialplasticsurgeon

♬ original sound – Dr Monica Kieu
Pedro Domínguez

Pedro Domínguez

Publicist and audiovisual producer in love with social networks. I spend more time thinking about which videogames I will play than playing them.

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