Since entering the realm of #selfies I’ve discovered that they are not as random as they look. Take the instagram pic above. I got my makeup done by Daniel Alvarez of Ellis Faas cosmetics at a W Mag/GUESS party (see Marciano + W Magazine Party Featuring Ellis Faas Cosmetics). I thought to myself, wow, what a great idea for a before & after. What I didn’t anticipate was how involved it would be. It took several shots at varying angles and different lighting for a before that wasn’t too before-ish. And slightly less attempts to get an after that was as dramatic as I wanted. It took about 20 photos with several poses, different angles and countless funny looks from strangers as I walked around aiming my iPhone at myself looking for the perfect light, before I got something remotely close to what I wanted. And I still had to use the filter. #selfies are hard friggin’ work!
Since then I’ve found apps that will fix skin flaws and add makeup (see We’re Obsessed: Perfect365 App for the Perfect Selfie). They are supposed to help with this issue, but they create a whole new set of problems. There are so many options to retouch your face that you dig yourself another hole of self-criticism that gets deeper and deeper with every critique. Do I need more lipstick? Did I get every blemish? Should I lift my cheekbones? You can literally photoshop your face into another person. Gah!! I just can’t win. When did I stop being happy with a simple snapshot? Oh yeah. When I discovered #selfies.
It’s for this reason, I’m ecstatic that #selfie is the Word of the Year for 2013. Because with people like Matt Lauer and Barbara Walters reporting it on their respective programs and serious news networks like CNN and USAToday making it a feature story, it’s bound to sink faster than a lead weight in a shallow pool. My theory is that mainstreaming #selfie will have the time-tested effect of making it mundane thereby rescuing the remainders of my like-button induced sinking self-esteem.
Skeptical? Okay. Close you’re eyes. Take deep breaths. In. Out. Now picture yourself opening facebook. You’re scrolling down the newsfeed. Jim makes a sarcastic remark about a neighbor. You laugh out loud. Oh Sarah just got a new dog. So cute. Then you see your mom. She’s used her front facing iPhone camera to take a picture of herself in the park and the caption reads “enjoying the day # selfie”. Nuff said