Instagram vs Reality

Instagram is critiqued a lot for being fake. That’s when the Instagram vs reality trend entered the chat.

This trend showcases the glamorous Instagram photos side by side with a real shot from influencers and creators. It’s actually pretty funny.

The trend compares two photos side by side. For example, you might see a photo on Instagram of someone skydiving. This is the “Instagram” photo, but in reality, they actually puked right after the photo was taken. Another example is you might have taken a flat lay with nice books and candles and cups of tea, but in reality, you accidentally set your hair on fire when leaning over to take the photo.

While Instagram is definitely a highlight reel, there’s a hilarious reality behind most Instagram photos. Users love when creators share the real deal!

On another note, Instagram vs reality photos can actually be really inspiring.

We’ll share a range of photos to show you why this trend is so popular.

The Truth Behind Model Shots

Instagram is a home for many fashion influencers. People that post flawless photos of their new hair accessory or floaty dress. While these photos are nice to look at, oftentimes, they are so superficial that we never learn anything about the person in the clothes.

That’s why Chessie King is so popular on Instagram.

She has over 700,000 followers and her photos always get a lot of attention and comments.

 

Girl posing in bikini, showing flat stomach and stomach rolls too

For example, in this photo, she shows a photo of her flat stomach, but another one of when she’s just chilling and enjoying the sunshine. This is an awesome photo showcasing that even those with “Instagram bodies” have imperfections, too.

Girl posing in swimsuit next to popcorn machine

Chessie’s Instagram feed is dedicated to “breaking up your perfect feed” with these real-life images that she injects with honesty and humor. She really nails the Instagram vs reality trend.

Instagram Vs Reality Promotes Truth

Not every Instagram vs reality post is a side by side image. Sometimes it’s all in the caption.

Girl holding a bloated belly after Christmas dinner

Karina posts about the reality behind images such as these in her caption. While her feed is made up of lots of amazing images, she drops in these awesome real-life photos with inspiring captions, too. She encourages her followers to love their bodies over the Christmas period and enjoy their food, time with family and socializing.

Funny Instagram Vs Reality

Of course, this trend is full of hilarious pictures and videos on Instagram, too.

Girl picking out a drink from the fridge section of supermarket in perfect hair, makeup and clothes next to a girl stocking up on Ice cream with hair in messy bun and oversized jacket

Rianne posts outtakes and bloopers on her Instagram alongside her “perfect” photos. She started doing it to showcase that Instagram isn’t always real life and when her followers loved it, she continued the trend on her page. She claims to have “found her voice through this project”.

It’s super important for influencers to break down that fourth wall sometimes and show that it’s not always perfect in their life.

Ugly to pretty face photo

She even used a funny Instagram vs reality image when promoting her new presets. She did say she was nervous to start doing these, but her Instagram vs Reality photos are actually some of the most popular images on her feed. Her followers absolutely adore this humorous and raw side of her account and she has nearly 500,000 followers because of it.

Side by side image of girl posing with sunset and real photo of her and sunset

Showcasing Body Positivity

A lot of influencers use the Instagram vs reality trend to showcase body positivity and self-love. In fact, @saggysara‘s whole account is dedicated to Instagram vs reality images. All the girls we’ve talked about so far include these images throughout a “perfect” feed but Sara dedicates her whole account to this idea, even if it’s just in the caption.

Picture of posing in the snow vs shivering in the snow

In the caption, she admits she put on makeup and a short dress only to take a photo in the freezing cold. She posted it a few days before posting this image where she confesses that she was actually freezing. When she got home, she immediately changed into sweatpants to cozy up. She encourages her followers to remember that those they see on Instagram are choosing the best photos to share on the platform and that everyone has their own struggles going on beneath the surface.

Girl posing in bikini versus relaxing in bikini

Sara breaks down barriers on Instagram and reveals that the people you envy on the site are imperfect, too. Those that you might aspire to look like could very well be sucking in their belly, flexing or even editing their Instagram posts to look a certain way. She reveals that it’s not possible to have a flat belly 24/7. Everyone gets floated or has a little shape when they fully relax. Her account is dedicated to proving that and reminding her followers that imperfections are beautiful, too.

Instagram Vs The Sad Reality

Although there are many influencers out there that are doing their part for humanity by showcasing that Instagram is a highlight reel and therefore, they share imperfect photos, too, there is a sad reality to this trend.

Often times, influencers will post photos that they pretend are reality. This creates an impossible goal for those who follow them and look up to them. They never reveal that the photos were photoshopped or Face Tuned and therefore, leave a false impression on the world.

Kylie Jenner

For example, Kylie Jenner is a big culprit for photoshopping her images.

Kylie Jenner Instagram Photo Versus Photo from TV

Of course, Kylie Jenner looks gorgeous in both images, but these images show what looks like two completely different people. The shape of her face is different on the TV image, as well as the brightness of her blue hair.

It’s crazy how far celebrities will go to showcase the version of reality they want to world to see, even if it’s genuinely not real.

Jack Fincham

man lying on couch enjoying mcdonalds

Many people called out Jack’s terrible photoshop of his teeth whitening. It’s no secret that Jack has flawless white veneers, but his teeth don’t usually look that white. If you look through his other photos, they are white but not gleaming.

Alan Stokes

Another terrible Instagram picture that was clearly a forced reality, is this one by Alan Stokes.

Boy standing in the rain with wet clothes but dry hair

Commenters critiqued him because his t-shirt is soaked, but his hair is completely dry looking. Clearly he wanted a sexy rainswept look to showcase his chiseled body. However, he forgot to get his hair wet, too. Therefore, this Instagram look isn’t very realistic.

Maybe in a few years, Alan Stokes will jump on the Instagram vs Reality bandwagon and start sharing the behind the scenes to all his strange photos.

Fake Travelling

Girl posing on bridge in Paris

Fake traveling is another unfortunate trend on Instagram. This is when users pretend they’ve been travelling but really, they’ve just photoshopped themselves into a standard photo of the place.

In this photo, Johanna photoshopped herself into a photo of Paris. Look at her feet and you’ll realize how fake this is. While this could be deemed as art, the Instagrammer would have to explain that it is photoshop to remain credible to their audience. Johanna uploaded images like this in the hopes no one would notice. Of course, people did, and they called her out of on it. She refuses to take the images down because she believes they’re “good”. Instead, she closed the comment section of the photograph.

Of course, Instagram isn’t reality. It’s a highlight reel for most people. Of course, that is perfectly okay. The platform wouldn’t be much fun if it was full of people’s most sad moments. However, a highlight reel can still be honest. Photoshopping your face slimmer, your body more chiseled and amazing travel locations into the background of your photos does not make a highlight reel. It makes it a reel of lies.

By Beth McCallum

I'm Beth, a Scottish writer and bookworm. I'm currently agent hunting for my debut novel while running a candle business from my home. I obsess over dogs, Hamilton, chai lattes and recently, Harry Potter. I know, I'm decades late.

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