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Instagram Is Removing Its 'Plastic Surgery' Filters

Instagram Is Removing Its 'Plastic Surgery' Filters

The filters will be removed amid concerns for users' mental well-being

Instagram will be removing all its filters that are 'associated with plastic surgery'.

The popular filters have been criticised by some for promoting cosmetic surgery and potentially having a detrimental effect on mental health.

Today, Spark AR Creators - the studio that approves filters for Instagram and Facebook - has announced it will be scrapping the filters that enhance users features in a way that replicates cosmetic surgery.

In a statement on Facebook, the company said: "We want Spark AR effects to be a positive experience and are re-evaluating our existing policies as they relate to well-being. While this happens, we're doing the following:

  • Removing all effects associated with plastic surgery from the Instagram Effect Gallery
  • Postponing approval of new effects associated with plastic surgery until further notice
  • Continuing to remove policy-violating effects as they are identified

"Over the coming weeks, these steps will result in increased review times and a delay in effect approvals. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause you or your team. For status updates on any effects that are in review, you can visit Spark AR Hub.

"At this time, we're not able to provide exact timing on the new policy rollout, but we'll share updates as soon as we can. We appreciate your patience as we work to maintain a healthy AR ecosystem for creators and our entire community!"

One filter - called FixMe - shows what your face would look like if it were marked up by a cosmetic surgeon... for some reason. Another heavily enhances lips while covering the face in dollar signs. Others give users more prominent cheek bones or slimmed down chins

A 2018 study published in the JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery suggested that face filters are causing something called 'Snapchat dysmorphia', with one doctor saying people 'are seeking out surgery to help them appear like the filtered versions of themselves'.

The move to ditch the filters has been praised on social media, with one person writing: "Instagram banning plastic surgery filters is such a fantastic decision. Makes me so happy to know that they are taking a controversial yet necessary step to curb more rises in body dysmorphia."

Another wrote: "Instagram banning plastic surgery filters is a responsible way to use the platform."

But not everyone was onboard, with one user arguing filters don't have the power to convince people to go under the knife.

Featured Image Credit: Instagram/Daniel Mooney

Topics: Instagram, Social Media, Technology, Plastic Surgery