It can be difficult to share candid pictures of yourself on social media.
There’s a lot of pressure to look perfect, which is probably why a quarter of women use a filter on photos of themselves before sharing them.
According to a survey of 2,000 ladies, this figure more than doubles for women aged 24 and under, with 51% rarely uploading an unaltered photo online.
Many try to cover up aspects of their bodies that they’re not comfortable with, with some using digital distortion apps and filters to erase these blemishes.
And just 16% of those with cellulite, scars or stretch marks uploading images of these so-called “imperfections”.
Worryingly, half of participants said they receive more “likes” when they choose to hide their “flaws” instead of embracing them.
Dove, which commissioned the research, hopes the findings will encourage more women to be body confident.
It’s teamed up with celebrities, who have been sharing unfiltered pictures online.
One of these lovely ladies is mum-of-three Stacey Solomon – a TV personality who isn’t afraid to celebrate her natural look.
Stacey said: “No matter how hard society or social media tries to tell us that we are not enough, women’s bodies are incredible and should be celebrated.
“I love my stretch marks, every inch of my body is part of my story, as a woman and as a mother, I wouldn’t change an inch.”
Stacey added: “This is why I’m championing Dove’s campaign to share and celebrate my skin, stretch-marked and dimpled, to encourage other women to embrace the stories their own skin tells.
“Over the past few years, I’ve learned to embrace and love the body that I live in and I know that seeing other women’s real bodies is so empowering.
“I’m going to keep sharing images of my skin, unfiltered, and hope other women will join me.”
This focus on body positivity is necessary as a third of women described their skin as ‘blemished’, 28% said it’s ‘saggy’ – and more than one in 10 (13%) even went as far as to say it’s ‘ugly’.
Almost a quarter felt their skin would be ‘more beautiful’ without the perceived imperfections such as cellulite, scars, and stretch-marks.
And 84% of women believed social media sets unrealistic expectations of what skin should look like, according to the OnePoll survey.
As a result, 65% want to see more people posting unedited and unfiltered images of themselves, with 73% believing it would help them feel less pressure to have ‘perfect skin’.
When it comes to looking after their skin, it also emerged 39% of women prefer to use personal care products that are formulated specifically for their needs.
However, almost three quarters (73%) believe personalised skincare products are too expensive.
Nikki Comiskey from Dove, which has launched a new range of moisturising body washes to suit unique skin needs, added: “Our skin tells a story – whether that’s a childhood memory, a thirty-year friendship marked by a tattoo, motherhood, or a story of survival.
“Our stories and our skin are unique, which is why our skin deserves lasting, personalised care.”