If you hate Instagram photo filters, you’re going to hate a new app that let’s you airbrush your face to doll-like perfection.
Filters, which make everything from food to faces look — let’s face it — so much better, have become ingrained in the social media routine of taking and posting photos to various mediums.
Just check out this before and after photo I took of the Freedom Tower in New York last week. To get the photo on the right, I pushed the contrast button and used a filter called “Rise”:
Post-filter, it’s a better photo. The days of having to buy and learn expensive Photoshop software are gone. Now we have it all in the palm of our hands.
But when does this become just too much? We’re about to find out.
An app called Facetune is bringing photo-editing to a whole new level, making it easy to whiten your teeth, smooth out your wrinkles, and intensify your eyes. John Hermann of Buzzfeed dubbed it “Selfie Surgery”. Remember wondering what it would be like to look like the models on the covers of magazines? Now with a few clicks and a swipe or two, you can see for yourself.
I tried the app on a few of my lovely and willing coworkers. The photo below is of Rylan Miller, Business Insider’s Contributors Editor.
This is how it works!
Take a photo of yourself in Facetune:
Whiten teeth by swiping your finger back and forth across your mouth:
Zoom in under your eyes and swipe your finger the same way:
Then do the same to your eyes!
This is the final product (the ‘after’ shot is on the right). The differences are subtle, but they are there. I whitened her teeth. I smoothed out her skin and made it glow. And with two taps, I made her eyes pop. It took me less than two minutes. And this doesn’t even cover all you can do with Facetune…just the basics.
I tried Facetune on several of my coworkers and then asked for their reactions.
Amanda Macias (bottom right) is Business Insider’s Main Page Intern. She thought her eyes looked “beady”.
“I feel like the app made me look worse,” she said.
“[The touch up] is too obvious,” said Miller. “I would never use this on any of my photos. I look too airbrushed!”
But of course, it isn’t the mature adults that concern me when it comes to Facetune. I can’t say that at fifteen, had this kind of accessible technology existed in my world, I would have been able to dismiss it so quickly.
So I asked a group of teenage girls, all freshmen in high school, if they used any apps like Facetune to help them look better in photos beyond the basic Instagram filters. When I showed them the above photo of Miller, most all of them said they had “something on their phones that could do that”.
“I use an app like that all of the time, but if you use too many features you just look fake,” one of the girls told me, agreeing with Miller’s sentiments.
“The trick,” a girl named Sophie chimed in, “is to make it look like you didn’t Photoshop your face at all. You just want to look natural. So usually I’ll only whiten my teeth or something, and then I’ll put another filter on it in Insta[gram].”
“It’s just so easy.”