Concerns about the toxic effect of social media beauty trends are nothing new, but TikTok's Bold Glamour Filter has brought things to a fresh extreme. The hugely popular realistic filter allows users to radically transform their appearances, but psychologists fear that what might seem like harmless fun can have a serious impact on self-esteem, especially among younger users.
Unilever's Dove, which is already known for taking a stand on such issues with its #SpeakBeautiful, #DetoxYourFeed and #NoDigitalDistortion campaigns, is once again leading the fight back. The beauty brand's latest campaign is using the hashtag #TurnYourBack and encouraging users to do just that, uploading photos taken from behind to reject the use of the new filter, and it's another example of how Dove could have a chapter all of its own in the best branding books.
Expert Warns About Using TikToks Bold Glamour Filter #tiktok #boldGlamourfilter #InternationalWomensDay #IWD2023 @vindx #boldglamourfilter pic.twitter.com/IPHGHwi85sMarch 9, 2023
Despite all the rhetoric, it's not that often that a brand actually manages to be a force for good. Dove has been one of the most successful, and it's done it again with this new influencer-led campaign. Creators share their feelings on TikTok's Bold Glamour Filter (see how it works in the Twitter post above) and explain the damage it can do to people's perceptions and expectations of what constitutes beauty.
Dove has also released research from its own Self-Esteem Project that shows that 80 per cent of girls have used a filter to change the way they look in photos by the age of 13, and that 48 per cent of girls who distort their photos regularly have lower body esteem.
"It’s vital that we push back against these increasingly toxic beauty standards and show young girls that it’s OK to be their authentic, beautiful selves," the brand says. "We are calling on our community to join us to turn their backs to the toxic Bold Glamour filter and stand up for real beauty. Because real beauty is bold!"