Sometimes, it’s easy for us to forget that social media isn’t the same as reality. But it’s incredibly important to remember that what we see on our screens can often be an altered, upgraded, and airbrushed version of what’s really out there. If we realize it’s partly an illusion, we won’t feel so bad when we compare our lives to those of seemingly ‘perfect’ Instagram influencers. However, some people take photo editing several steps too far.

The “Instagram Reality” subreddit is dedicated to showing how heavily some people facetune their pictures before putting them up on social media. Whether it’s inspired by people’s insecurity or narcissism is difficult to tell. But we collected some of the best examples of fake people pics from the subreddit for you to enjoy.

So scroll down, upvote your fave Instagram photos, and leave a comment below to let us know which images you thought were the most shocking, and why you think these people tend to use too much Photoshop. Also, check out Bored Panda’s previous posts about expectations vs. reality right here, here, here, as well as here. Scroll down for our interview with the "Instagram Reality" moderators about their community and about the culture of excessive photoshop, and be sure to visit their subreddit as well.

#1

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays!

aya5810 Report

varwenea
Community Member
8 months ago

So fake it's funny.

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#2

A Body Builder I Have Since Unfollowed

A Body Builder I Have Since Unfollowed

alejas_tejas Report

varwenea
Community Member
8 months ago

Looks like a Star Wars alien.

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#3

Reflections Dont Lie

Reflections Dont Lie

shitpost90000 Report

Panda Angel
Community Member
8 months ago

LMAO what kind of photo is that!!!!

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Bored Panda talked to the "Instagram Reality" moderators about why some people go overboard with photoshopping their pictures. Here's what they had to say: "Insecurity, envy, money. Take the girl sitting next to you in Statistics who's scrolling through her latest selfie shoot and disappointingly thinks to herself, "[Damn], is that a pimple? I can't let people see that, it's embarrassing." She casually opens up FaceTune, smooths out the pimple, and boom—now there's an image she feels comfortable sharing online. Unbeknownst to her, there's a seed that's been planted in her mind now that it's as easy as using this app to change anything she finds unattractive about herself at any time, then it snowballs; from taking in just a bit of your tummy for a more slender silhouette until eventually she's landed on a waist the size of her neck."

"The light improvements are so gradual over time, she stops noticing that the waist she's creating is 1.) of course, not hers 2.) (as we often see on Instagram Reality), anatomically impossible, and 3.) that she's now set an expectation subconsciously for herself (and outwardly for anyone following her) that she needs to keep up this flawless appearance; which means sticking to the edits she's made for every photo she posts in the future. What she doesn't realize is in this process, she's simultaneously creating and constantly reinforcing her own insecurities."

#4

What The Hell

What The Hell

hrafi1 Report

glassgrassgrossgloss
Community Member
8 months ago

Looks like a scenes from sims

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#5

When U Ordered It vs. When It Arrived

When U Ordered It vs. When It Arrived

moonkid93 Report

EA
Community Member
8 months ago

Upvote for the caption

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#6

Big Difference Between The Photos Of Her At The Event And The One On Her Instagram...

Big Difference Between The Photos Of Her At The Event And The One On Her Instagram...

Rude-Transition Report

Monika Soffronow
Community Member
8 months ago

Plastic fantastic on the left, a gorgeous, real woman with real-life experience on the right.

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We were also interested to know the subreddit mods' opinion about why some people are scared of presenting themselves as they truly are. "Everyone wants to be loved and desired, everyone wants to feel that they belong. The harsh, scary truth of the matter for anyone is that the more you resemble what people around you consider universally attractive, the more likely you are to have access to those things in your life. So, you begin to think, "Well, what do I need to change about myself to fit in? How do I become more attractive?" Based on what magazine covers and many an Instagram Explore page shows you, that image is a tall, long-haired, fair skinned woman with smooth skin, a slim yet hourglass figure—oh, and don't forget, the perfect butt. In comes photo editing apps, offering you the chance to finally be her. Even if it's only online."

#7

Legend

Legend

iamalol9701 Report

Eirik Johnsbråten
Community Member
8 months ago

Not even Bane is that deformed.

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#8

Yeah, No

Yeah, No

lrdkira Report

Antonia
Community Member
8 months ago

this is really funny

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#9

When One Right Hand Isn’t Enough...

When One Right Hand Isn’t Enough...

lisaloveslashes Report

Antonia
Community Member
8 months ago

it's not the 2 right hands, that shock me... it's the friggin face 😬

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"Instagram Reality" moderators told us that the community greatly supports inclusivity: "The Instagram Reality team is a huge supporter of inclusivity. All races, body types and genders need to be fairly represented in the media. Sanity Sunday was created as a day for our subscribers to share an ad (or influencer) they've seen which support that idea as well. In the long run, the only way to reduce our obsession with self-image is to normalize those we see in the media; not just celebrating how they look, but who they are as a person."

The "Instagram Reality" subreddit was created just under two years ago. "u/Zaza9000 began to notice IG models who looked insanely different in real life. She wanted to create a platform that exposed the fakeness to people who were being fooled."

#10

I Don’t Know Where To Start ...

I Don’t Know Where To Start ...

al958 Report

Steve Barnett
Community Member
8 months ago

Even the dogs are scared

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#11

Those Abs Were Made In Ms Paint

Those Abs Were Made In Ms Paint

Merwebo2Veces Report

Bill
Community Member
8 months ago

Extra from the movie 300?

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#12

He Colored His Eyes Over His Glasses Frames

He Colored His Eyes Over His Glasses Frames

ooqpoo Report

Night Owl
Community Member
8 months ago

Is he Superman?

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It’s very easy to feel insecure in the information age. Every day, we’re bombarded by images of beautiful, successful, healthy, wealthy individuals. While this inspires some of us to aim for greatness, others can feel insecure because they realize the huge gap between their dream lives, and where they currently are.

Melody Lyons explains that having grown up in the United States, she was raised to be dissatisfied with the way she looked, which meant she felt ashamed of herself. However, she still advocates not using photo-editing apps or keeping the editing to a minimum: say, for removing a big red spot that would simply ruin the pic.

But according to her, if you start radically changing who you are in photos, you start believing that there’s something wrong with you. And that just increases any feelings of insecurity you already had. In other words—the less photoshopping you do, the more comfortable you feel being yourself. After all, nobody is perfect and never will be. Even models think they eyelashes/jawline/pinkies could look better.

#13

I’m Speechless

I’m Speechless

colderin69 Report

Samantha Lomb
Community Member
8 months ago

She amputated a leg

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#14

Shes Not Fooling Anyone With That Steering Wheel

Shes Not Fooling Anyone With That Steering Wheel

MIKE-WAZOWSKIS-COCK Report

varwenea
Community Member
8 months ago

Clearly someone who's never even seen one.

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#15

*gasp*

*gasp*

princessofawfulcourt Report

The Alchemist
Community Member
8 months ago

Its like 2 mannequins. Little disturbing

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Also, the more people there are out there who photoshop their pictures, the stronger the culture of ‘perfect’ Instagram pics. This means that there are even more individuals who feel insecure because they have to compare themselves to endless masses of photo-edited pictures.

Meanwhile, Michelle Linker told The Guardian that the pressures of social media are very real. “People are publicizing usually something really cool or fun that they’re doing, or at least they make it appear that way. I absolutely feel insecure.”

She continued: “I do feel a pressure to look particularly good. I would never post a photo that wasn’t flattering of me. I feel anxiety over how many likes I get after I post a picture. If I get two likes, I feel like, what’s wrong with me? Some people judge Instagram by deleting photos that don’t get enough likes. I wouldn’t do that, but I would definitely second-guess my intentions with posting them.”

#16

... She Very Obviously Was Not In This Photo Before She Photoshopped Herself In

... She Very Obviously Was Not In This Photo Before She Photoshopped Herself In

Bittysweens Report

CrunChewy McSandybutt
Community Member
8 months ago

Attack of the 50 ft influencer

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#17

Most Severe Case I’ve Ever Seen Tbh

Most Severe Case I’ve Ever Seen Tbh

offitat Report

Hello it Smee
Community Member
8 months ago

The real person is prettier than the anime photoshop

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#18

Whats The Point Of Photoshopping A Starbucks Logo On Your Cup..? Had A Good Laugh Bc Of It

Whats The Point Of Photoshopping A Starbucks Logo On Your Cup..? Had A Good Laugh Bc Of It

joanoa Report

varwenea
Community Member
8 months ago

Probably trying to score a sponsorship.

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Do you photoshop your pictures, dear readers? Have you ever been in a situation where you post a photo and constantly check to see how many likes it got? Share your experience with everyone in the comments.

#19

The Difference Is Day And Night, Literally

The Difference Is Day And Night, Literally

atbzrrr Report

My O My
Community Member
8 months ago

White nose tip

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#20

I Love Playing “Find The Distorted Background” Game With Everything She Posts

I Love Playing “Find The Distorted Background” Game With Everything She Posts

meowmix265 Report

EA
Community Member
8 months ago

Why does her head look so small??

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#21

Mua Posts Christmas Inspired Look, Flat Out Denies It's Photoshopped In The Comments

Mua Posts Christmas Inspired Look, Flat Out Denies It's Photoshopped In The Comments

epaj Report

Blakkur Sverrir
Community Member
8 months ago

Its not photoshop if you print it out. Put makeup on the photo and than take a picture of it

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#22

No Way Her Waist Is Real, That Shadow Has A Different Angle

No Way Her Waist Is Real, That Shadow Has A Different Angle

diveonfire Report

B
Community Member
8 months ago

I've never understood why people do this. Why would you want a huge backside or a face that looks like a duck? Just so unattractive.

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#23

Edited vs. Unedited

Edited vs. Unedited

probglum Report

Hocus Pocus
Community Member
8 months ago

I've seen worse.

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#24

Forgot To Edit The Mirror

Forgot To Edit The Mirror

SpecialRegular Report

Rae
Community Member
8 months ago

She didn't leave room for her ribs. LOL

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#25

Jesus Christ, She Even Smoothed Over Her Tongue

Jesus Christ, She Even Smoothed Over Her Tongue

wombatcheeses Report

Helen Haley
Community Member
8 months ago

Nothing about this looks ok. It's disturbingly fake.

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See Also on Bored Panda
#26

“Ugly Sweater Dinner Date! ” Dear God... I Didn’t Need To Sleep Tonight Anyway

“Ugly Sweater Dinner Date! ” Dear God... I Didn’t Need To Sleep Tonight Anyway

DeusUrsus Report

Femur!
Community Member
8 months ago

Oh, this "muricans" LOL I'm ugly and I have no problem with that, none of my pics have filters. Only when the filter is funny, only that.

ZoeIsHahaha
Community Member
8 months ago

Why muricans?

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Kathy Baylis
Community Member
8 months ago

You know, I’ve never been drop dead gorgeous, but I always liked my very animated and friendly face. I also didn’t abuse it with tons of makeup and sunbathing without lots of sunblock. Now that I’m getting older and have lines on my forehead and corners of my eyes—-from smiling!—- I would still never photoshop it, nor have I considered Botox or cosmetic surgery. At 59, I actually like looking like ME.

Amazon QT
Community Member
8 months ago

👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻

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Jim Ellington
Community Member
8 months ago

But their dreams, they aren't as empty as their conscience seems to be.

RitaGG
Community Member
8 months ago

Roger that. ;-)

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Gemma Lees
Community Member
8 months ago

They look like they're made out of plasticine.

Cenk Karaferya
Community Member
8 months ago

She's like how can I make my sugar daddy look young...

Pryjmaty
Community Member
8 months ago

All of this is too....too...

Doctor who?!
Community Member
8 months ago

Yep horrinly disturbing is it just me or us it the same eye couler man as before

Amazon QT
Community Member
8 months ago

WTF!!! People that don’t know how to edit a photo correctly SHOULDN'T be editing their own photos. *SMH*

Elizabeth Gardner
Community Member
8 months ago

oh god the eyes.....the eyes......sooooo creepy!

Amazon QT
Community Member
8 months ago

They must know the “eyes over the glasses guy“ a few photos up!!!

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Kat Khatib
Community Member
8 months ago

Those eyes. Creepy.

Toujin C'Thlu
Community Member
8 months ago

The thing that baffles me the most is that they made their eyes the same color...

Nikki Martinez
Community Member
8 months ago

the eyes... they will haunt me forever

Ari
Community Member
8 months ago

The creepy eyes are making those sweaters look good.

Vivian Ingram
Community Member
8 months ago

Just get the plastic surgery already

Shania Brown
Community Member
8 months ago

ewwww they look like they used snapchat for this

Claire Armstrong
Community Member
8 months ago

Loving the caption - fkn hilarious lol

beaulatte
Community Member
8 months ago

#nightmare

ZoeIsHahaha
Community Member
8 months ago

Best caption

BG Rey
Community Member
8 months ago

Eyeballs don’t fit right, sooo fake

Caroline Driver
Community Member
8 months ago

Those eyes! It's the Midwich Cuckoos in blue rather than gold

GachaGirl
Community Member
8 months ago

THEIR EYES ARE SCARING ME!!

Ellen Turner
Community Member
8 months ago

she's too young. she deserves better

Grace Marraffa
Community Member
8 months ago

Yea i am definitly having nightmares

Jo Choto
Community Member
8 months ago

Who are those people and why did they?

Chantel Trudelle
Community Member
8 months ago

It's just snapchat fam, calm down.

Ana M
Community Member
8 months ago

The eyes, the eyes!!!!!

Sandra Warren
Community Member
8 months ago

Her eyes are creepy as hell! Well their faces too but those freakin eyes!

Kevin Fox
Community Member
8 months ago

The sweaters aren’t the ugly part! This is so creepy

Olga wassupbrothers
Community Member
8 months ago

are they aliveeeee????

Steven Meyer
Community Member
8 months ago

What’s with the freaky eyes? I feel like they’re trying to steal my soul!

Id row
Community Member
8 months ago

Is that some kind of bizarre insta filter?

John Montgomery
Community Member
8 months ago

Is that guy one of The Doctor's (Jodie Whitaker) companions.

Waqitos
Community Member
8 months ago

Creepy people, probably monsters inside as well.

Tina Hugh
Community Member
8 months ago

What are you?

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Jjjane20
Community Member
8 months ago (edited)

I think I'm going to have bad dreams tonight.

Theory Buchannon
Community Member
8 months ago

Is that, Mr. Clean 220px-Mr_C...3c6972.png 220px-Mr_Clean_logo-5e15e9a3c6972.png

Jo Bebe
Community Member
8 months ago

I mean the first rule to being Mr. Clean is being bald

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#27

Mom Take Me Home I’m Scared

Mom Take Me Home I’m Scared

olruun Report

Hocus Pocus
Community Member
8 months ago

I think this might be apart of one of those trends where you make it look like that on purpose? Like, I've seen 'eye tutorials' on youtube where people purposely try to make their eyes look like that. Sorry if I'm wrong.

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#28

Same Girl I Posted Before, She’s Actually Nearly At 2 Million Followers And Will Block Anyone Who Claims Photoshop

Same Girl I Posted Before, She’s Actually Nearly At 2 Million Followers And Will Block Anyone Who Claims Photoshop

ElitaWins Report

My O My
Community Member
8 months ago

But she is so pretty on the left

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#29

Am I Insane Or Did He Photoshop The Exact Same Face Onto Two Different Photos

Am I Insane Or Did He Photoshop The Exact Same Face Onto Two Different Photos

lasagnaestranja Report

Gemma Lees
Community Member
8 months ago

I thought that Photoshop was supposed to make you look good, not scary af.

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#30

I'm Speechless

I'm Speechless

ashehole64 Report

Antonia
Community Member
8 months ago

what.. is he still a thing?

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Note: this post originally had 96 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.