I repeat: I’m not as cool as my Instagram makes me out to be, if it even makes me seem cool at all. Beneath the grain, scribbled electric eyeshadow, and clout goggles, I’m just another teenage girl, trying to survive years of inevitable angst. I use my phone on the toilet, bite my nails, and bloat, I’m not quite the elusive, hip girl I may seem on Instagram, perhaps just a more realistic version.
This week in my English class, we delved into a conversation about comparison, specifically to Instagram stars and models like Meredith Mickelson and Alexis Ren, who seem like untouchably flawless and successful women. And while I don’t necessarily admire them as much as the next teenage girl, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of comfort in what everyone else in my class was saying. The whole “oh she’s perfect, I hate myself,” “I wish I was her,” thing, but the funny thing is that the girls who were comparing themselves to the next were girls I once looked at and thought, “life must be so easy for them.” What was even funnier though, is that people have outwardly expressed their comparison to me: a random kid who Snapchats people while peeing, gnaws at my nails during class, and bloats after a glass of water. The whole notion of comparison, especially in the form of social media, just seems stupid to me as you compare yourself to someone who probably compares themselves to you, it’s a vicious cycle that does no good, rather harm.
While I strive for authenticity on Instagram and other forms of media, I can’t help but to curate it to my liking. No matter what, my Instagram is going to be a virtual highlight reel rather than a series of bloopers. And while I’ve grown to not care about it like I used to, I want to show the best version of myself, just like Meredith Mickelson and Alexis Ren would. Despite what my Instagram suggests about me, my skin isn’t aways clear (tip: don’t blur, just grain!) and I’m not always glowing, I’m just me, a HUMAN, not some self-romanticized version of myself.