When it comes to filters, Instagram has always been the OG. People literally named their children after these filters, perhaps hoping that their little baby Valencia would grow up to have a selfie game that rivalled Kim K’s. But whilst Instagram was great for making your holiday paps really pop, Snapchat’s filters have always been more fun. There was a good 10 months last year when every photo I took of myself I either had animal ears or was vomming rainbows, and my world was a better place for it.
And although I loved Instagram Stories when it launched it really missed those face-changing filters… until now. Instagram, in its endless bid to beat Snapchat, has launched its own range of cute (and shamelessly similar) filters. But which ones are better? Well, let’s take a look.
The plant crown
Snapchat used to have a reallygood filter that looked basically the same as this but with more gold. As I am thoroughly of the opinion that more is more, if it was still around it would have wiped the floor in this first round. As it is, I can’t find it on my list of options and so had to go for this pink flower crown instead. I look adorable, sure, but am I covered in gold? I am not. Instagram wins.
Cute animal #1
I love koalas. Who doesn’t love koalas? They’re like living teddy bears and Harry Styles likes to cuddle them. However, there is nothing on this whole damn planet more adorable than me with Snapchat’s deer filter. The freckles! The flowers! The huge eyes! I’m so pretty. I can’t stop looking at it. Clearly, Snapchat wins.
Cute animal #2
Instagram also has a bunny filter. It’s adorable, but can it compete with Snapchat’s dog? The answer is no. It can’t. Like the little black dress or peanut butter and banana, the dog filter is a classic and it’ll take more than adorable wiggly bunny ears to take down the master.
There is no denying that Snapchat’s nerd is magnificent. I look like a cartoon character, someone Bart Simpson would be in love with but ultimately have to give up on in a story about overcoming peer pressure and rigid social groups. However, Instagram’s filter lets me look like that confused math woman meme, and it has to win purely because I’ll be able to make my own shady reaction GIFs with it.
The Flower Crown
One of the things people love about these filters is how they change your face to make you “prettier”… but what does that mean? Here, Snapchat has changed my face to make me look like an alien; my eyes are ginormous, my skin is bleached white, my already small nose has been narrowed to the point of almost invisibility. Leave my nose alone, Snapchat, it’s fine the way it is! Instagram’s flowers aren’t as pretty as Snapchat’s, but at least I can recognise my face as my own.
You know what’s more fun that pretending to be Elsa, belting out Let It Go and doing your own regal wave? Wearing a crown made out of your own face. All hail the terrifying multitude of Amys! Look into my hundreds of eyes and fear me. FEAR ME. Also, the You-Crown filter gives you banging eyeliner. Snapchat wins.
I’m sorry, I can’t write this one, I’ve been laughing at myself looking like Angry Hagrid for ten minutes now. Sure it’s fun to look glamorous, but until Instagram can get on board with the fact people actively enjoy making themselves hideous every now and then they’re always going to lose out to Snapchat with filters like these. Although Snapchat has still made my eyes bigger and lighter. It’s getting a bit weird. I think they’ve got a fetish.
The beauty filter
The classic. Instagram’s filters hadn’t been out for an hour before Zoella had publicly said how much she loves the Instagram beauty filter, and I can see why. It does exactly what Tina Fey says Photoshop should do – make you look like you, but on a really good day. When you’re casually posting selfies hoping that your crush will see them and fall in madly love with you, really that’s all that you need.
So that’s four wins for Snapchat and four for Instagram. Boringly, I think we’re going to have to accept that Snapchat and Instagram have different strengths. Whilst it’s really good that Instagram’s filters seem happier with letting you keep your own face, dare I say that they’re a bit… boring? When Snapchat wasn’t trying to make me look better by making me whiter and smoother it let me turn my face into a variety of animals, a jagged-toothed rocker, someone with an enormous mouth and a giant dancing bee. The quirkiest thing Instagram did was put a pair of glasses on me. Verdict: variety is the spice of life, but I think Snapchat is going to be hanging round for a lot longer – at least until Instagram lets us do this to ourselves: