4 Major Things to Consider When IG Lowers Your Self-Esteem

We'd love to meet one person who doesn't have a love-hate relationship with Instagram.

The platform gives us endless opportunities to tell our stories, connect (and reconnect) with people and build our brands. There's so much value to Instagram, and we really can't imagine our life without it.

Shutterstock: Woman with glasses in red sweater making peace sign in selfie

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But, on the flip side, like other social media avenues, IG has a major dark side—one that can really bring us down. It sets us up to compare ourselves to people, doubt ourselves and alter our senses of reality.

If you find the app brings you down more often than not, here are four major things to consider the next time Instagram lowers your self-esteem.

1. Most People Use Filters and Editing Apps

If you look at your friend group and notice your pals look "different" from the influencers you worship online, well, that's because they do. Whether these girls you idolize distort their original appearance entirely or nip, tuck and enhance a little here and there, we're going to go out on a limb here and say at least 90% of notable Instagrammers edit their photos in some way or another.

You'd be shocked to see some of these girls in their natural habitat. Just think, if you play up the airbrushing and editing, you can look fake, too! The photos you see on IG conceal acne, stretch marks, extra skin, yellow teeth, scars—you name it!

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2. The People You Envy, Envy People, Too

While it appears some of these girls are living their best, most carefree existences, trust us, they're fretting over some of the other gals on IG, too. The more invested you get in the app, the more competitive you become. Do you really think the fashion blogger with 150k followers is sitting pretty with no cares in the world? No! She's anxiously scouring the platform for other fashion bloggers in her follower range or higher. She's stressed out just like you are, wondering why she doesn't look like this, afford that or have this or that person following them.

The app isn't safe for anyone, so instead of letting it weigh on you like it does these girls, take a step back and use these influencers for inspo, but not for self-esteem-deduction.


3. It Takes a Ton of Effort to Maintain a Certain Aesthetic/IG Lifestyle

Going off of No. 2, if you think these girls are feeling as carefree as their photos lead on, you're kidding yourself. These carefully crafted images can take hours to edit (and, that's not even including the photoshoot itself).

Then there's the whole worrying about "likes" factor. While you're probably on pins and needles about a "like" from your crush, imagine your entire day revolving how many total people "heart" or comment on your post altogether. Sometimes these people have brands they need to appease—other times it's simply for the sake of the public knowing their level of "popularity." Simply put, it's a lot of pressure.

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4. You Can Mute People You Don't Want to See

Much of the time, Instagram is like a bad car accident. We know that looking at it won't do anything to improve our day (and can, in fact, worsen it), yet we just can't turn away.

If you feel triggered by a particular account, by all means, mute it. TBH, the mute option is one of the greatest social media developments of all time. This doesn't just pertain to influencers and celebrities — if you have friends whose posts irk you, mute them, too. It doesn't mean you've deleted them or that you can't still engage with their content, it simply means they won't pop up in your feed.


Do you feel like you're drowning in a sea of IG stress? Click HERE to find out how to have a healthier relationship with the app!