Here are two faux faces — glowed, slimmed and “beautified” by the blessed app du jour, Snapchat. I look much different in this photo than I do in unfiltered life. (Ever-stunning Rosie is largely unchanged.) I like the real me just fine, and think beauty is far too varied and complex a thing to be distilled down to a smoothed (and whitened, if we’re really thinking critically here) complexion and slim jaw line. But I do love this picture, despite its photoshopped pretenses, and here’s why.
That puzzle piece pose fitting her chin on my shoulder. The blur between her hair’s end and my own. Those side by side smiles under soft, easy eyes.
Do I like my filtered face? Undoubtedly. But shut off the beams of transcendent filtered light, and all the real things will remain, laid bare atop my bumps and sags, and the contented curve of my well-fed chin.