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It was on this day, three years ago, that I learned that the hashtag #nofilter, which I had been using, I thought, in solidarity with other people who also speak their minds without a filter, ACTUALLY refers to beauty filters, they can make you look younger, add make-up, "tune" your face, etc.

Umm...yeah...I don't use THOSE filters either.

With increasing frequency, iPhone automatically tunes your face. A friend sent me a selfie and I said, "what is this weird filter you're using?" She said she didn't use one. I said, "well, you're gorgeous and that is NOT what your face looks like." Sure enough, selfie or portrait mode pictures were very different than if someone shot the picture from the other camera.

We are raising an entire generation who won't remember what their faces actually look like and who will be bothered by what they see in a mirror, because it won't look like their selfies in "portrait mode."

I'll keep my wrinkles and whiskers, thank you. The mole under my right eyebrow, the one on my left cheek, the acne scars on my chin. I'll keep the dark circles under my eyes, they let others know I'm having a rough time, it's like a white flag for compassion flying right there between my eyeballs and cheekbones. I'll keep my "what the fudgenucker did you just say?!" wrinkles between my eyebrows, lines of a life lived as a woman with a strong voice and a questioning brain. I am fine with the exact distance between my eyes and I don't need them to appear larger and more doe-like. In fact, I'll take the rolls on my tummy and the cottage cheese-esque dimples on my thighs, and the bingo wings on my upper arms (even though they occur at the exact same time as my strong muscles - but really...wth?). I'll keep the hair that's so grey it's white on top of my head, even the one that won't lay down with the others, the one that sticks straight up off the top of my head twisting into a question mark.

As I have aged I have learned to work on not blurting out everything I have to say, I've learned to hold onto it and twist it and bend it to have the best impact, or to be the least offensive. Sometimes I'm even successful at it. But, still, more often than not, I have #nofilter

I don't need a beauty filter to make me look less like me, and I'm not about to hold my tongue to make me sound less like me.

If you like beauty filters, that's ok with me. If you love make-up, that's ok with me, too. If you hate the way you look without filters or make-up, I'd suggest that you've been unknowingly conditioned to do so. I'd also suggest that you are beautiful in all of the ways that you are you.

If you never ever say what you mean, that's ok with me, if it's ok with you. Is it ok with you?



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