Social Media Vs. Reality: The Untold Truth

By: Lydia Iseh | Published: Nov 08, 2023

With sophisticated graphics editing applications and AI-powered filters, misleading camera angles and props easier than even to create a online persona wildly different than your real life.

If you saw these digitally misleading images online would you be able to tell what’s real and what’s staged? Let’s find out. 

1. Denied by the Mist

You have decided to go on a popular trail hike in a neighboring state, or a foreign country. 

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Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

Unfortunately, the weather turns south on the day you finally decide to visit. Social media seldom leaves such disclaimers.

2. How Stories Change

This instagrammer isn’t afraid to poke fun at the fact that online travel expectations aren’t always up to par with reality. 

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source: geraldinewest_/Instagram

All your luggage and shopping never fits so nicely in one bag like it does on social media.

3. Rolling with the Tide

It is commonplace for people to try recreating some stunt, pose, or trend posted online by celebrities. In the first picture on this frame, a lady with the stature of a model is seen lying on the beach as a low tide gracefully sweeps in.

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Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

A tourist tries re-enacting the scene, and the sea almost seems to be chastising her. Unexpectedly, a rough wave rushes into her.

4. A Blue-ish Reality

There is a captivating Lake in the Philippines with crystal clear waters. Locals of Coron Lake know the best times to enjoy its serenity. In fact, we won’t be surprised if the lit pictures of the lake flooding social media were taken by some locals.

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Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

However, during peak seasons, the lake is a hub of activities, and while Coron itself retains its beauty, tourists may find it difficult to enjoy the experience—courtesy: the crowd.

5. Bring the Vacation Home

There are times when it seems impossible to take any time off. Yes, there’s a little time, but you don’t have the luxury of traveling to some far-away location.

Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

This is why some people get inventive; you find some setting up a camp tent in their garden or going for daylong hikes in the woods. This couple decided to mimic the feel of lounging in a luxury hotel by throwing their mattress on the floor and taking a full view of the city line.

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6. Row me A River

How fun it is to row along the river in beautiful greenery. However fun, it may not photograph the same way. That perfect boat angle among the lovely green leaf trees may just be a cleverly close up angle of a particular spot and some color correcting to real for comfort. 

Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

Images you may have seen online may not tell the full story, like the Hội An Basket boat tour. Also known as the Coconut boat tour in Bay May Coconut Forest, it seems to have more turbulence and people disrupting the “secluded” views more than people have let on. 

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7. Incredible People Doing Incredible Things

If you found a complete airplane fuselage at the scrap yard, what would you use it for –  a makeshift home? This couple did something similar.

Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

The airplane fuselage that now serves as a shop attracts a lot of visitors. Though the shop is not a historic site, people often come around to behold the transformation of an electric sky bird.

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8. Vacation Tip

If you have a vacation around the corner, try visiting an island with an active volcano. Don’t let social media fool you though.

Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

The likelihood that you visit one as it erupts are next to none.

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9. Laundry Madness

Have you ever tried doing laundry and looking cute at the same time?

source: geraldinewest_ / Instagram

We are hear to reveal that it’s basically impossible unless it’s fake.

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10. An Underwater Hotel

A family decided to give a particular hotel a trial while preparing for their vacation. The advertisement depicted the hotel as an underwater sanctuary.

Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

To their disappointment, it turned out to be a modest resort, barely two meters beneath the sea level, definitely not true to social media. 

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11. Alone But Not Lonely

This instagrammer seems to understand how to create that iconic couple’s shot, too bad it’s not what it seems.

source: geraldinewest_ / Instagram

Do you think she had a manikin just hanging around?

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12. The Birthday Experience

There are high expectations put on birthdays already and social media doesn’t make it any better.

source: geraldinewest_ / Instagram

Unfortunately, the perfect angle, perfect outfit and youth for eternity simple sets unrealistic goals and leaves people feeling unfulfilled behind the scenes.

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13. Spa Day

Are all these rose baths we see online even worth it? 

source: geraldinewest_ / Instagram

Sometimes a girl goes through so many lengths that a relaxing ‘Spa Day’ is more stressful than a regular monday.

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14. Viewers Discretion Advised

The heading of this slide ought to be placed on every social media post going forward. Why? There’s always more to the story than what you see.

Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

In the first picture, this couple makes it look easy. In reality it is more difficult and unsafe to try and recreate. 

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15. Tis Not the Season

We all love that perfect splash of color in a photo and finding that brilliant flower moment can be exactly what we were looking for. 

Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

But what do you do when you’ve traveled all the way around the world just to find out that the Ruyi Bridge in China is not in full bloom? A little bit of editing magic can trick even the sharpest online.

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16. Snack Attack

Are we really as put together as we seem? We think this sums it up nicely.

source: geraldinewest_ / Instagram

Who would realistically pick a single flower over a snack anyways? We take the snack any day of the week, both online and off.

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17. At Your Own Pace

We don’t know about you, but the sight of a waterfall often makes us want to undress and take a plunge. However, it is seldom an advisable option for everyone who visits a waterfall.

Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

Unfortunately, waterfalls were not designed by nature to teach people how to swim. And social media wasn’t designed to be a trip advisor.

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18. Make Up Made Up

Who do you know that can even apply mascara with a straight face? No One! Don’t let social media make you believe in anything else. 

source: geraldinewest_ / Instagram

Getting ready while fully made up, sounds made up to us.

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19. Pseudo Nature

Humans are good at replicating anything that tastes good, smells good, or looks good. In this slide, the social media picture depicts a beautiful scenery that seems worthy of being made a Windows desktop background.

Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

Unfortunately, it is the work of an architect who has mastered the skill of replicating natural land formations. We hope you don’t get disappointed if the next tourist site you visit is entirely designed by civil engineers.

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20. The Mirage of Mauritius

Mauritius is a small island that annually attracts a sizable number of tourists from around the globe. One of its highlights is the underwater waterfall.

Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

The water seems to be falling off an underwater cliff. Meanwhile, it is all an optical illusion caused by how ocean currents cause sand particles to fall down a trench in the waters. 

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21. Sleeping like A Princess

Sleeping with perfectly done hair and pink desserts by your side, sounds like a dream.

source: geraldinewest_ / Instagram

What sounds like a dream and looks like a dream, is quite probably a dream. 

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22. Brrr its Cold in Here

Those classic instagramy snow photos may get you excited but it may not be as fun as it seems.

source: the_truth_is_not_pretty / instagram

Even bundling up has it’s limits and social media doesn’t show all of the story or the cold.

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23. Pasta Party

Staying healthy is important, and part of that is indulgence from time to time. It’s an unspoken rule that social media seems to constantly reframe.

Source: the_truth_is_not_pretty / Instagram

Carrots are great but eating pasta is also cute although it may not match the “aesthetics” it shouldn’t take away from the deliciousness. 

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24. Furry Friends

They say that dog is man’s best friend and most times they would be right, but sometimes man gets dragged along. 

source: the_truth_is_not_pretty / instagram

Dogs mean well but sometimes they aren’t social media friendly behind the scenes. 

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25. Chaos in the Peace

Some of these social media posts have a way of skewing perception in everything. Imagine how nice it would be to lounge so beautifully at home without the clean up. 

Source: the_truth_is_not_pretty / Instagram

But, no. The first picture here is quite unrealistic when spending all day at home especially if you aren’t feeling well. 

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26. Legs for Days

If only life was like Pinterest and on social media it can be.

Source: the_truth_is_not_pretty / Instagram

However, when it comes to lazy days in bed, it never is as beautiful as it seems. 

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27. Fast Food, Fast Life

If only fast food was photographed as beautifully in real life as it is on Instagram.

Source: the_truth_is_not_pretty / Instagram

Those editing apps and angles can make even the messiest foods seem the most flattering. 

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28. Flower Hair

For some reason social media is as obsessed with flowers as we are with social media. 

Source: the_truth_is_not_pretty / Instagram

Unfortunately, positioning those petals perfectly seems few and far between. You may get a strained neck before you get your perfect shot. 

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29. Dance the Day Away

We all don’t know how to dance like the pros but social media sure makes it look like we do. 

Source: the_truth_is_not_pretty / Instagram

Alas, we may have just done 100s of takes and had some photobombs along the way. Our “natural” photo may not be as natural as social media has let on. 

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30. We Are Not Alone

We have come to learn that there are many people willing to live the good life, both on and off the web. To what lengths will they go?

Source: Keilys Gonzalez / Facebook

In this social media advert, you can easily edit the picture frame and edit out the surrounding people. In reality, some weirdo in the pool is likely to get some water in your meal tray. That is if the entire meal doesn’t turn over first.

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