Instagram is saying good-bye to filters that depict cosmetic surgery.
Spark AR, the company behind the platform's filters, announced the move via Facebook last week amid growing concerns about social media's effects on body image and self-esteem.
Per Spark AR's post:
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
The company did not indicate when Instagram would begin removing plastic surgery-related filters, nor did it specify which filters would be eliminated. BuzzFeed points out that several users have theorized the ban will impact popular filters like Plastica and Bad Botox, which mimic the effects of plastic surgery.
Another possible target is FixMe, a filter that places bruises and surgery pen markings on a person's face. Daniel Mooney, the man who created the FixMe filter, told the BBC that the effects were intended to critique plastic surgery rather than glamorize it.
"My intention was not to show a 'perfect' image, as you can see in the final result. Perfection is over-rated," he said. "I can see where Instagram is coming from, but for as long as some of the most-followed accounts on Instagram are of heavily surgically 'improved' people, removing surgery filters won't really change that much."
The announcement comes amid Instagram's crack down on weight loss products or cosmetic procedures. The platform confirmed it last month that users under 18 would be blocked from viewing this kind of content, which includes ads for diet supplements and detox teas.
"We want Instagram to be a positive place for everyone that uses it," Instagram's public policy manager Emma Collins said in a statement to CNN. "... This policy is part of our ongoing work to reduce the pressure that people can sometimes feel as a result of social media."