If you happen to be one of the [150 MILLION] daily, active users on Snapchat – then you’ll probably relate to the embarrassing confession I’m about to make…
I have a severe snap-induced complex. The filters have given me COMPLETELY unrealistic beauty expectations & goals for myself. I literally find myself wishing I could turn into a baby animal [yes – doe eyes, pervy, furry ears & all] or have a flower crown permanently attached to my skull [I could just get it medically stitched on, right…?]
Everything started with the infamous, tongue-slurping, puppy dog filter… it was innocent enough at first, but then – the entire female population started to realize that it transformed their face into a subtly smoother, glowier, overall PRETTIER version of the mug they were used to being greeted by in the mirror every morning.
It soon became an epidemic; girls couldn’t stay away from the pup poses & sexy slurps – it was more addictive than [I would imagine] a Starbucks unicorn frapp laced with crack is. SO, after noticing the trend, Snapchat did what ALL smart businesses do – they decided to capitalize on & appeal to the insecurities of their target market!
WHICH BRINGS US TO WHERE WE ARE NOW…
…living in a world FULL of perfect-pretty, sexy-cute-baby-animal, skin-smoothing-makeup-applying filters; with new variations released DAILY! It’s honestly overwhelming. But if you thought this whole spiel was leading up to me condemning Snapchat, or saying that we should all just learn to be happy with our *natural, non-filtered* faces…..
I did extensive *research* & spent some time pondering the [deep, mind boggling] question of, “Exactly WHAT makes each individual filter so appealing? And how can those things be recreated in real life?” With some of the filters, the answer is blatantly obvious/basic – i.e. you can literally just purchase oversized, aviator-shaped readers [that don’t actually improve your reading ability in any way, shape or form] at your local hipster shop. It’s also extremely easy to buy, or make, a *real life* flower crown [although if you constantly wear it during your day to day, non-festival-attending-life, you’ll probably get some strange looks.]
However, MOST of the [best] filters convert your face into something that just… isn’t a *real life* possibility [like a baby deer or a cartoon bunny rabbit.] Sure, the furry ears/pink nose are adorable, & part of the reason why girls overuse them… but when I actually analyzed the filters that I find myself constantly choosing; I realized it’s because they ALL have certain characteristics that I’m going to refer to as, “the pattern of pretty” or #POP [can I get a copyright??]
[Now you know the reason guys barely ever use these filters… because they DGAF about ANY of these things]
SO, HOW DO YOU ACHIEVE #POP WITHOUT AN APP?
By using the original, pre-iphone filter, obviously…
PREP: Your skin needs to be looking smooth & healthy – even without makeup on – to achieve ultimate snap filter quality IRL. It’s hard to recommend a specific cleanser just because everyones skin is SO different, but I love Kiehl’s products. After cleansing, moisturizing is going to be a HUGE key to getting the perfect filter glow. Try these products:
At night time you may want to add a serum or mask to your routine to really amp up the smoothing/anti-aging effects, try:
PRIME: After you’ve cleansed, moisturized, masked & serum-ed the fuck out of your skin, it’s time to prime it. There are tons of amazing primers out there that will keep your makeup in tact – but in order to achieve the #POP filtered look, you’re going to want a primer that’s specifically made for photos. This means finding a product that will smooth pores, blur flaws, matteify, color correct, etc…like these:
PS: You’re going to see me suggest a ton of SMASHBOX products because they literally have a full line called “PHOTO FINISH” with products that are made to optimize the filtered look.
CONCEAL: After you’ve primed, it’s time to get down to business. You’re going to use concealer to cover any blemishes, dark circles or spots – you want a product that’s hydrating [no creasing throughout the day] & will blur imperfections for a perfected complexion that still looks natural. These are amazing:
COVER: Next up – you’re going to apply foundation. Obviously, finding the correct shade for your skin tone is super important, & I always prefer to use a LIQUID form of foundation. You’ll want a high-pigment formula that will blend seamlessly & hide even the most hard-to-cover imperfections for an overall matte-finish that’s ideal for photos [if you need it, you can follow with a powder foundation in the same shade.] Try these:
CONTOUR: Ok now it’s time to contour & highlight your face to be the best [skinniest] version that it can possibly be. The *art of contouring* is really a whole other blog post in itself, so go watch a youtube tutorial on how to do it if you don’t already know. But BASICALLY; you’re going to want to use bronzer/dark shades [cream, powder or stick] in the hollows of your cheekbones [the area that’s created when you make a sucked in fishy face], around your face & on the sides of your nose. Then apply blush to the apples of your cheeks [the area you see when you smile], & highlighter on the top of your cheekbones, bridge of nose, upper lip & eyebrow bone. HIGHLIGHTER is the ultimate key for photos & creating the glowy filter look [just reference any of the Kardashians.] There are some great palettes that include everything you need all in one! Also, make sure you BLEND, BLEND, BLEND. Use these products:
LINE: For your eyes, if you want to achieve the same doe-eyed, oversized look that the snaps filters provide; you’re going to want to use a liquid liner to do a winged, cat-eye style upper lid line. The wing creates the illusion of a wider eye & fuller eyelashes. JACKPOT. You can use an under-eye brightener + faux whites eye liner [yes, that’s a real thing] on the bottom lids to create super white, glowing eyeballs just like in the filters. Use these:
LASH: Obviously, if you want to REALLY recreate the #POP, you need to throw on some false lashes – preferably mink, whispy, with less lashes on the inner eye & more on the outer eye [again creating the illusion of a much larger eye.] If you don’t feel like going to such extreme efforts [or getting glue in your cornea] – you can just layer a few great mascaras to create the same volume. Try these lashes &/or mascaras:
GLOSS: For the sake of recreating the #POP – you’re going to stick with a nude, pale pink or clear gloss that moisturizers & plumps your lips. Perhaps a little bit of sparkle to really set it off in photos. These are perfect:
SET: Alright, LAST STEP – you’re going to set the makeup in place [so all of your hard work doesn’t rub off when you take a nap] with either a loose setting powder or spray. You want something that will provide a subtle radiance, act as a veil to blur imperfections, & eliminate shine for a natural, perfected finish. Try:
SHOP A SPECIFIC FILTER
THE INTELLECTUAL, BUT SEXY WANNA-BE HIPSTER
For this filter, just grab some clear, aviator shaped reader glasses that serve no real purpose [+ a glowy eyeball & glossed lip] and perhaps a novel that you have no intentions of actually opening.
THE EVER-CHANGING CROWN OF FLOWERS, BUTTERFLIES… OR WHATEVER
This one focuses primarily on the over the top head crown, but tends to also include a VERY glimmery eye & of course, totally smooth skin.
THE HOTTEST BABY PIGLET [?] EVER CREATED
If you follow me on basically any social platform, you know that I really love this one. I’m aware that it’s annoying & obnoxious [ESPECIALLY if I record myself talking & you have to listen to it played back in that terrifying high-pitched voice.] I’m honestly still not even 100% positive what animal it is, but the pink shade of the ears leads me to baby pig – so that’s what I’m sticking with. Everything about this filter is perfect. The whispy lashes, glowing, oversized eyes, contoured/bronzed slimmed face & subtle glossed lip suck me in EVERY time. #POPPIGLET
THE CHEETAH GIRL [PART-TIME SURGEON]
Remember that Disney movie – the Cheetah Girls? I feel like this filter was inspired by it… but then when I move my head & a random surgical mask with whiskers on it appears, I become very confused. Regardless, it makes you look super attractive [because of the #POP.] This one has great lashes, a bronzed look, smooth skin & a blueish glow to the eye.
THE VARIOUS CUTE BABY ANIMALS TRYING TO READ
One of the most recent additions to the *consistent filter crew*…THIS is how you know that Snapchat KNOWS exactly what it’s doing. They decided to just combine the whole adorable-baby-animal-thing WITH hipster glasses [+ #POP] & voila: basic bitch magic. The baby bear [?] wearing oversized round readers is my personal go-to – but they all feature thick, voluminous lashes, large glowing eyes, a bronzed-contoured face & super smooth skin. Genius.
If you try hard enough, believe in yourself, & have a ton of time/money to spend at Sephora – you can ALWAYS look like a Snapchat filter! [Oh & as a side-note…the reason no one wants to use the new Instagram face filters is because they DON’T follow the #POP I described. Mark Zuckerberg, get at me.]
CHEERS & HAPPY SNAPPING!