If a photo on Instagram looks too good to be true, it probably is. Even though the platform can be a wonderful and inspiring place, full of beautiful and artistic images, oftentimes it's misleading, too. Photography "tricks" and post-production dissolves the difference between real and fake. And some people try to make use of it, turning their looks into what they think society desires.

Eventually, it got so bad, a counter-movement emerged on Reddit in 2017. The community is called Instagram Reality, and it is dedicated to "exposing" these personas, trying to stop the spread of unreachable ideals and unrealistic expectations. To do so, it is posting side-by-side pics of how Instagrammers look online and in real life.

Bored Panda has already written about the subreddit (most recent articles here, here, and here), but it continues to dig out more and more... "specimens", so we gotta keep up; the pictures are getting more and more ridiculous.

#1

Found On A Dating App. I Am Genuinely Concerned

Found On A Dating App. I Am Genuinely Concerned

reddit.com Report

In 2019, Marika Tiggemann and Isabella Anderberg released a study called "Social media is not real: The effect of 'Instagram vs reality' images on women’s social comparison and body image." The research revealed that such images have the power to limit the impact social media posts have on our mental health.

As part of the study, a group of women were randomly assigned to view one of three sets of images: "Instagram vs reality" images, the 'ideal' side alone, or just the 'real' side. When women viewed either the real or comparison posts, researchers noticed that the identification or complete avoidance of the 'perfect' images as fake could "disrupt the comparison process," reducing the negative impact on body image and actually decreasing body dissatisfaction. 

#2

I Thinks She's So Beautiful Without The Photoshop. Body Dysmorphia Is Real

I Thinks She's So Beautiful Without The Photoshop. Body Dysmorphia Is Real

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Natalia
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Why? She is soooo beautiful, she doesn't need this!

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"Results suggest that the popular quote 'Comparison is the thief of joy'… has some truth to it," Renee Engeln, a professor of psychology at Northwestern University, writes for Psychology Today. "However, it seems to matter who the target of your comparison is. We may have more luck accepting our own bodies if we see more realistic and diverse representations of other bodies in our social media feeds.

"By following users who regularly challenge the frequent phoniness of Instagram posts, we can practice appreciating the diversity of human bodies and perhaps learn to appreciate our own bodies along the way."

#3

You Gotta Be Kidding Me

You Gotta Be Kidding Me

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#4

Pores You Say?

Pores You Say?

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varwenea
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

So, so fake. While they're at it, should have changed her teeth and gave the other one a real Chanel pendant. Why not do it all?

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#5

A Beautiful 51 Year Old Woman Who Doesn’t Need The Facetune

A Beautiful 51 Year Old Woman Who Doesn’t Need The Facetune

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Mimi777
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Everyone ages. It’s part of life. She’s still beautiful. And looks great for 51.

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#6

I'm No Doctor But Her Head Is Small

I'm No Doctor But Her Head Is Small

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#7

Photographer Trying To Claim That The Long Legs Are Only Due To “Angling”

Photographer Trying To Claim That The Long Legs Are Only Due To “Angling”

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#8

When The Mirror Lets You Down

When The Mirror Lets You Down

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MagicEyeMaster
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

No one would have bought her "size" even without the mirror

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#9

What Is Happening?

What Is Happening?

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#10

That Foot Said, “Mr. Stark? Don’t Feel So Good.”

That Foot Said, “Mr. Stark? Don’t Feel So Good.”

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Louchebert
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

That's no foot!! That's a pirates stump!! Foot stumpin' all over the place, what is a boy to do?

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#11

Photoshopped A Lambo Logo On Her Honda, The Blue One In The Back Also Looks Fake

Photoshopped A Lambo Logo On Her Honda, The Blue One In The Back Also Looks Fake

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#12

It’s A Helluva Drug...

It’s A Helluva Drug...

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#13

A German Reality TV Star On Instagram vs. On TV

A German Reality TV Star On Instagram vs. On TV

reddit.com Report

#14

What Is Going On Here Honestly

What Is Going On Here Honestly

reddit.com Report

#15

Rtx On

Rtx On

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Evelína Zlá
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

If he would take of his shirt in front of me and look like that.. I think I'll run away... screaming...

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#16

Original vs. What She Posted

Original vs. What She Posted

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#18

Bro..... Seriously

Bro..... Seriously

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Kosh1k
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Well, there's overzealous use of filters and photoshop (Eerily bright teeth and skin). But you can tell it's the same guy, and it doesn't slip too far into "uncanney valley" territory.

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#19

Delusion

Delusion

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Natalia
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

They even had to Photoshop a smile on his face. Poor guy!

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#20

The Only Photos She Posts Anymore Are Pictures Of Models With Her Face Photoshopped In Instead

The Only Photos She Posts Anymore Are Pictures Of Models With Her Face Photoshopped In Instead

reddit.com Report

#21

Instagram Post vs. Tagged Pic

Instagram Post vs. Tagged Pic

reddit.com Report

#22

I Genuinely Don't Understand This. She Does This All The Time. She Doesn't Even Slightly Resemble Herself

I Genuinely Don't Understand This. She Does This All The Time. She Doesn't Even Slightly Resemble Herself

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See Also on Bored Panda
#23

2 In 3 Use Photoshop

2 In 3 Use Photoshop

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Louchebert
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Yeah... but which two??? If only someone could shine a light or something...

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#24

Her Upper Body Looks Absolutely Disturbing In Her Edit

Her Upper Body Looks Absolutely Disturbing In Her Edit

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#25

I Didn't See It Until The Direct Comparison

I Didn't See It Until The Direct Comparison

reddit.com Report

#26

Her Billboard vs. A Pic From An Interview

Her Billboard vs. A Pic From An Interview

reddit.com Report

varwenea
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

If she's so fake, would you trust her with a transaction? Pass.

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#27

When You Get So Tan That Even Your Eyes Get Darker. (Summer 2018 On Left vs. Summer 2020)

When You Get So Tan That Even Your Eyes Get Darker. (Summer 2018 On Left vs. Summer 2020)

reddit.com Report

#28

Her Promo Pic On Social Media vs. Photo From Her Promo Event

Her Promo Pic On Social Media vs. Photo From Her Promo Event

reddit.com Report

Natalia
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Oh god! That's just so sad. Too many wrong messages they're getting to young people, damaging their confidence and making them believe that flaws or ageing is something wrong.

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#29

She Has 217k Followers On Insta

She Has 217k Followers On Insta

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troufaki13
Community Member
1 year ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

She was actually on Greece's Next Top Model as a plus size model and she was actually pretty good. She knows how to pose and how to make beautiful expressions with her face. But this picture on the right is just... it just isn't her. I don't understand why they're doing this. She is a beautiful girl.

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Note: this post originally had 82 images. It’s been shortened to the top 29 images based on user votes.