Now used more than 16 million times since its launch last month, the Bold Glamor filter contours your cheekbones and jawline with a sharp yet subtle line. It also emphasizes the tip of the nose, the area under the eyebrows and the apples of the cheeks. Plus, it lifts your brows, adds shine to your lids, and creates thick, long, black lashes. It is, as the name suggests, a glamorous effect.

The aesthetics itself is impressive. However, the most surprising thing is how well it works. The filter doesn’t glitch when your face moves or when something like a wave of your hand interrupts the field of view, as filters usually do.


“You guys. That’s the problem. You can’t even tell it’s a filter,” lamented user @rosaura_alvrz as she patted her face to test the filter in a TikTok review.

Professional filter and augmented reality creator Florencia Solari says Bold Glamor likely uses machine learning, and while it’s not the first time an AI filter has made waves, she says: “The experience with these filters is very seamless and they can achieve such a convincing level of reality, it’s no wonder people are going crazy.”

And indeed people are going crazy. So how concerned should we be about this warped reality world?

First, a bit of context. For years, augmented reality filters on social media sites like Snap, Instagram, and TikTok have allowed users to easily edit their photos and videos with preset characteristics that often adhere to certain beauty standards, such as plump lips, hollow cheeks, thin noses, and wide eyes.

Beauty filters, combined with influencer culture and algorithmic amplification, have led to a rapid narrowing of beauty standards in a way that prioritizes whiteness and thinness.

Young people love to use filters (the latest figures I got from Meta show that over 600 million people have used at least one of its AR products), but there is minimal research into the effects on our mental health, identity and behaviour.

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