Instagram: The Good and Bad

Instagram can be a dark and dangerous place. As social media is labelled the next cocaine, our addictions are fed by scrolling through the various feeds; LadBible updates, Olivia Buckland Bowen’s house move and the many many fitness accounts we use for gym inspo (and never actually use but feel like we ought after watching videos of big bums and toned tummies). Our self esteem can plummet as we are exposed to so many amazing lives of so many celebrities, lives that we dream of but ultimately do not have.

 

As Montana Brown brings in her new swimwear company whilst working out 3 hours in the gym everyday, balancing social media posts with modelling shoots, with 8 green smoothies and Hello Fresh dinners, we are working full time, studying part time, trying to fit in runs in the morning and weigh up the cost of a pint at the pub and whether you have enough petrol to get home if you don’t fill it up today. We spend our time budgeting, applying for work experience that is usually unpaid to get the experience we need to get a paid job which is vaguely relevant to what we want to do. But, even if it isn’t, we don't mind as anything is better than working for no money and living off Aldi beans on toast. Our lives are so different to the ones that we find on insta, and this can feel daunting, like somehow we’re failing.  

 

To throw some rays of sunshine onto your insta feed, I have found two amazing accounts that work to inspire women, to make you feel normal and proud of being individual and unique and don’t add to the endless scrolling of the same stuff:

 

Chessie King

@chessiekingg

The woman of body love and confidence. She posts all her tummy rolls, her bloating, her chins, her real body is flaunted as she encourages girls to be grateful for the body they do have: for the legs that let us run, for the arms that let us hug, for the faces that let us smile. She reminds us daily that our bodies are not to be gauged but to be thanked. We need them to live, so look after them and be grateful for what they enable us to do! 

 

Elle Darby 

@elledarby_

The woman of positivity and smiles. Even on her down days, she makes sure she can see the sunshine in the rain. She promotes a ‘You Do You Boo’ mantra, meaning that we all need to do our own thing, irrelevant other peoples negative opinions. Do you, do what you love, cut the crap out of your life and have confidence in your own self. She is also brilliant for healthy relationship advice, for affordable spending sprees, and she is honest in the most hilarious way. She also reminds me of one of my best friends and inspired her to do her own Youtube! And, she has the cutest dog ever (excluding my own of course). 

 

These women prove that insta can be both a positive and loving place. Chessie and Elle don’t lie; they are honest when they're feeling down, they're honest when they need a break from social media, and they are grateful for the lives they have, understanding how lucky that they are, but they also put in the graft. They're respectable women working to spread love among other women and using instagram for the greater good. 

 

Still, it is important to remember that we mostly don’t have access to the bad parts of any social media influencer’s life. These people will also have insecurities, also have problems and issues they're confronting that we do not see. Montana Brown lost her best friend to suicide, despite her insta account looking like the perfect life, she has had her own traumas to come to terms with. In fact, she is using her influence to spread awareness of Men’s mental health. It is important to appreciate that we are all human, all people just trying to get by. Insta accounts are not real, they are work, and they focus on all the good things and remove all the negative parts of their life. We all have good and bad days, and just because we don’t see them on Instagram, doesn’t mean that they don’t exist.