The internet makes even the best of us temporarily cynical, but it’s also full of wholesome, soul-healing content to set the record straight. Even though social media can feel like it’s full to the brim of fakeness, bragging, and photo-editing, from time to time, people share such genuine photos of themselves, it’s like a breath of fresh air.
Many of you Pandas know r/Instagramreality, a subreddit with over a million members, as a place that calls out Instagrammers and influencers who photoshop their pics to hell and back. However, the subreddit has so-called ‘Sanity Sundays’ when redditors are encouraged to post unedited images of what real beauty looks like. What follows is a collection of these genuine posts.
After you upvote your favorite photos, be sure to scroll down to have a read what the head moderator of the subreddit had to say to Bored Panda. When you’re done with this list, you can take a look at the dark side of heavy photo-editing in our previous articles about r/Instagramreality here, here, and here.
#1 Real Hands Without Photoshop – Jewelry On Older Women
Image credits: Hardluck-Woman
#2 Saw These Two Beautiful Women Aging Gracefully! Nice To See Reality Every Once In Awhile
Image credits: regan9109
#3 Found On Athletic Clothing Brand. It’s So Refreshing To See The Representation
Image credits: Cupcakesmakemehungry
Bored Panda reached out to redditor Zaza9000, the head moderator of the r/Instagramreality subreddit, to get their take on social media use and photo-editing use during the pandemic.
According to the moderator, people are “most definitely seeking online entertainment like never before,” as many are still stuck working from home, as the Covid-19 pandemic continues. What’s more, lockdowns are returning in some form or another in some countries like Latvia and cities like Hobart in Australia. It’s natural that people isolating spend more time online and on their social media feeds.
#4 Love This Model
Image credits: orangutanjam
#5 She’s Firing Back At The Daily Mail
Image credits: morethanapounding
#6 I’ve Been Waiting For Sunday, It’s Time For More Honesty Online
Image credits: CarbonBasedBitch
“Engagement platforms like Reddit, Twitter, and Tik-Tok are our era of modern renaissance where a lot of music, DIY, entertainment, self-rediscovery, and art is being produced,” the moderator told Bored Panda that despite some of the major drawbacks of the internet, it’s still a wonderful place to let your creativity loose.
We were also interested to get Zaza9000’s opinion about how the pandemic, the lockdowns, and the constant anxiety many people have been feeling has affected social media and whether there’s been an increase or a decrease in heavily photo-edited pics. However, the moderator believes that this isn’t such an easy question to answer.
#7 Makeup Company Uses Model With Real-Life Skin
Image credits: BrownBobbies
#8 To The People On My Last Post Here That Said Cellulite Shouldn’t Be On Strong Legs
Image credits: Lvl2709
#9 It’s Not Much, But I Saw This When Browsing One Of The Biggest Online Stores. First Thought It Was A Part Of The Earring But It’s A Hearing Device. The Little Things Matter!
Image credits: teacuptrooper
In the moderator’s opinion, there’s no clear-cut answer about the effect the lockdowns have had on our likelihood to (not) photo-edit our pics. It’s possible to see things in two different ways. “That’s definitely a mixed question of yes and no,” they said.
“There has been a saying that everyone’s been gaining the ‘Quarantine 15’ and that might encourage people to edit more,” the moderator shared their thoughts, referring to the idea that a lot of people have gained some weight when they switched to a more sedentary lifestyle due to Covid-19.
“At the same time, since we’ve all been home, self-care has been a hot topic,” they noted that some people have been becoming far more genuine and open about their real looks online. They added that they’d personally encourage people to follow this path.
#10 Found This Model With Normal Teeth (Not Everyone Has Perfectly Aligned Teeth) In A Clothing Brand App
Image credits: kaymadd
#11 I Wish I Saw Models Like This When I Was Younger And Felt The Pressure To Have Hairless Arms
Image credits: IRanOutOfKitchen1
#12 The Power Of Make-Up
Image credits: been1there2done3that
Earlier, Nuno Albuquerque, the Head of Treatment at the UK Addiction Treatment Group, went into detail with Bored Panda about social media addiction.
“A person can be addicted to anything, but they are only suffering an addiction if whatever it is they are ‘using’ has taken over their lives, and that they as individuals have lost the power of choice, i.e. that they cannot, regardless of how much they want to, stop ‘using’. This is the effect that addiction has, it robs the individual of the ability to stop,” Nuno explained.
#13 First Time I’ve Seen A Plus Size Model That Isn’t Hourglass And “Thicc.” Not To Mention Keeping The Stretch Marks In!
Image credits: ZeldLurr
#14 How Refreshing To Know You Don’t Have To Have A Bubble Butt
Image credits: Queen_ona_Bean
#15 Finally A Makeup Brand Showing The Product On A Model With Acne And No Airbrushing On The Finished Pic!
Image credits: qetuosfhk1945
“Even if that individual is aware of the negative physical, psychological, or financial consequences, they still cannot stop. It is essential to not use the word ‘addiction’ flippantly; if a person is addicted, then they are in need of professional help and support,” Nuno said that nobody should use the word ‘addiction’ without understanding the seriousness of the term.
Nuno from the UKAT Group told Bored Panda that the Covid-19 lockdowns made people spend far more time online and on social media than before.
#16 It’s Nice Seeing Celebrities Have Photoshoots With Minimal Filters That Won’t Blur Their Skin Texture. I Saw This And She Looks Like Her Actual Age!
Image credits: ThornberryE
#17 It’s So Refreshing To See Unedited Stretchmarks In Fashion Posts
Image credits: yaeltheunicorn
#18 Love Her. Love The Unapologetic Real Photo
Image credits: WannabePhilosopher7
“We would say that it is more than likely that society as a whole spent more time on social media and other internet-based platforms during the Covid-19 lockdowns than before, simply because for many, their normal day to day life was turned upside down, or even stopped altogether, and so a lot of people found they had more spare time on their hands,” he noted.
“Some people turned to social media during the lockdown to stay connected with others, which is really important and actually a healthy approach to take. Where it starts to negatively affect a person is when being on social media consumes them completely, and they no longer want to be present in their actual ‘offline’ day.”
#19 This Insta-Girl Posts Pics On Both ”good” And ”bad” Days And Gives No F**k About It. I Love It
Image credits: ami_toonaive
#20 Just Browsing Online For Dresses And Very Happy To See This Real Body With Real Skin Texture On A Major High Street Retailer’s Website
Image credits: GuntyGirl
#21 Online Retailer Giving Us An Actually Average Male Body Is
Image credits: shtaph
According to the mental health expert, every individual has a unique line separating normal behavior and addiction: it all depends on our unique circumstances and personalities. The essence of the question lies in whether or not the person still has the power of choice or if they’ve lost it.
“If the person cannot undertake their regular day to day routine without being on social media or needing to get back to being on social media, as in they have potentially developed not only a psychological desire to be online but also physical urges begin as well, then there could well be an addiction there,” Nuno warned.
#22 Had To Cover Up The Username, But Love This.
Image credits: the_arctic_fox95
#23 Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Image credits: MajorOooooof
#24 The Woman In The Picture Often Posts About How People Use Angles To Appear Skinnier And To Hide Cellulite/Skin Blemishes – Found On Her Instagram
Image credits: PlasticSunMap
“An unhealthy relationship with social media could also be recognized if the individual develops mental health illness from being online, for example, feelings of anxiety or depression arising during or after being on social media. Similarly, for some people we have treated at our UK Addiction Treatment Centres, being on social media is a trigger for them to then misuse drugs or alcohol. During therapy, we address why a person drinks alcohol or misuses drugs, and for some, it is because of their unhealthy relationship with social media,” the mental health expert went into detail.
#25 This Is The First Time I’ve Seen A Jewelry Page That Doesn’t Edit Out Knuckle Hair!
Image credits: flatwoodsmonsters
#26 Don’t Be Fooled By Fake “Before & After” Posts
Image credits: cluelessnumber7
#27 Sanity Sunday – She Never Hides Her Flaws, And She Looks Flawlessly Beautiful In Her Own Confidence
Image credits: milkyberries
“The most important piece of advice we can give is to be mindful and aware; check in with yourself during and after time spent on social media, ask yourself how do you feel? Can you now switch off and get on with your day? Any negative feelings or inability to move on from being online should be a red flag.”
#28 Absolutely Stunning
Image credits: no_numbers554
#29 Unafraid To Post Unedited Or Smoothed Red Carpet Photos. Love Her So Much
Image credits: splattertaint
#30 Everyday People Looking Beautiful And So Confident!
Image credits: ednasmom
#31 A Scandinavian Online Store Has Found A True Natural Beauty To Model For Them
Image credits: miljami
#32 Popular Make Up Brand Posting Swatches On A Person With Body Hair!
Image credits: user5316
#33 Rihanna Did That
Image credits: morethanapounding
#34 Sanity Sunday: Woman Shows How Easy It Is To Transform Into An “Influencer” With Photoshop. Not Everyone You See Genuinely Looks Like The Picture On The Right
Image credits: MsLunaValentine
#35 I Loved This Model I Found While Bikini Shopping!
Image credits: tacocattacocat1
#36 Normal Eyebrow Hair. Colour Of The Eyeshadow Isnt Enhanced And The Eye Has Normal Skin Creases
Image credits: cb_91
#37 Normalize Having Organs
Image credits: BeepBoop1856
#38 Refreshing To See An Unedited Derrière
Image credits: rocknroll_barbie
#39 Our Bodies Change Over The Years, I Like How She Shows It
Image credits: chatis66
#40 As A Person With A Lower Belly Area That Sticks Out All The Time, It’s Really Refreshing To See My Body Shape On An Ad For Tights/Skirts!
Image credits: AnnieCorleone
#41 She Never Edits Her Body And She Looks Amazing
Image credits: kindrameda
#42 This Beautiful Makeup Artist I Found On Insta That Doesn’t Shop Out Her Blemishes Or Skin Texture
Image credits: PumpkinChoice
#43 Showing Us Her Healthy Body, Without Editing, And Being Proud To Wear Her Stretch Marks
Image credits: okthatsfinebut
#44 This Fitness Model Keepin It Real
Image credits: HotelIndiaFoxtrot
#45 A Close-Up Of Normal, Textured Skin. This Made Me Happy To See
Image credits: -am-i-a-butthole-
#46 She Regularly Posts Side By Side Photos Like This, And It’s So Refreshing
Image credits: keeperofthetrees
#47 Mango – Refreshing To See Older Models With No Photoshop
Image credits: holly-golightly-
#48 Realest Ig Post Ever
Image credits: nokia621
#49 Just An Outdoor Clothing Company Using A Photo Of A Woman With A Real Stomach
Image credits: aliii234
Photography – Bored Panda