Social Media, Beauty, and Self-Esteem: The Vicious Cycle

In today’s society, the omnipresence of social media has a substantial impact on the psychology of everybody that it touches and can have very negative implications for the self-esteems of individuals. The purpose of this dissection of our cultural values, through a compilation of survey results and reviews of scholarly literature, is to highlight the potentially damaging effects of the cyclical relationship between social media, perceptions of beauty, and self-esteem. Utilizing testimony from subjects selected at random, varieties of composite scores have been compiled (including standard deviations) by various researchers to further underscore the correlation between the three facets of our culture and sense of being. This dissection will also detail the potentially harmful effects of the unrealistic expectations created by filters and “highlight reel” social media feeds. Beauty should be an individual definition rather than a cultural mandate. The toxic and fake nature of social media perpetuates an unrealistic idea of a beautiful person—an ideal that should be stopped.