For a little longer than a week, I only posted selfies on my Instagram feed. I'm not exactly selfie shy, but these types of photos certainly aren't the only thing to fill my feed. I happen to agree with the idea of selfies being a way to show self love, rather than a form of narcissism. Plus, how else are my followers going to know about my new dark lipstick? Even though I'm pro-selfie, I was very curious to see if posting only photos of my face would change my tune — or just make me more obsessed with that front facing camera.
Right off the bat, something seemingly simple and fun proved to be harder than I thought. I also realize there are probably people who put this much planning into their selfies all of the time. #Exhausting.
I couldn't resist using the #SelfieOnlyWeek hashtag as a way of letting my followers know that I was not quite as in love with myself as my selfie avalanche might indicate. I didn't want them to unfollow me from selfie overload!
Here's what happened, both psychologically and physically, when I spent a week posting only photos of my face.
I kicked off #SelfieOnlyWeek on a Monday with a Kylie Jenner-style mirror selfie. I had to go to a concert for work, and I dealt with a torrential downpour while having to walk a decent distance to the venue. I hadn't taken into account how the weather would impact my hair in my selfies. Seriously.
The following day, I had another show to attend.
I was easing into the selfies, and kinda liked that it gave me an excuse to show off my favorite sunglasses all the time. At this point I started to consider how many selfies I should be posting every day. Was one not enough? Was five overkill? Talk about stressful.
I also remember being annoyed because I wanted to wear layers and scarves and show off my winter layer style, but breaking in a fresh pair of Doc Martens SUCKS so I swapped them out. So the whole #OOTD element of this experiment was already being foiled.
Yeah, I was overthinking it. Every time I posted a selfie, I thought, "Am I being vain? Am I selfie-ing the most exciting parts of my life?" Wow, look at this experiment, getting in my damn head!
On Wednesday, I was having a rough day. I was regretting turning down a job opportunity and was filled with self-doubt. All this negativity made me worried for the state of my selfies. I didn't want to post a bunch of "boo hoo" or "wah wah wah" photos. So I latergrammed one selfie of my unhappy self. It was at this point that I decided I would extend my #SelfieOnlyWeek experiment.
After a low day, I decided to fully immerse into this project and knew I needed to ramp it up. I stopped crossposting the selfies to Facebook and Twitter simultaneously, deciding it was best to relegate the experiment to Insta, the unofficial selfie domain.
I absolutely wondered if my Facebook friends might be "over" all these selfies so I kept them off that feed. Then, I was internally concerned that my IG followers might be like, "Ugh! ENOUGH!" Then I had an epiphany: Why the eff did I care what my followers though? It's my Insta feed and I'll post unapologetic selfies if I want to. Go ahead, throw me an unfollow, bruh!
The mental tide turned when I realized it was somewhat fun documenting a few busy days. It was like keeping a photo journal.
While I struggled with this experiment, feeling like a social media tool, I did like how I presented myself from a fashion perspective.
At this point, I was mostly trying to figure out a way to make my selfies different for the new few days. So I brought in a dog I walk!
When posting this, I remember thinking, "Yo, RiRi would wear this oversized flannel."
On the final day of my experiment, I went selfie crazy for good measure. This was a #WorkLife selfie.
Sharing selfie space with a dog is still a selfie, IMO. I couldn't let the dogs down so I worked them into the experiment. Titan was adopted the next day, BTW.
I even took the experiment to my dog's vet appointment. At this point, I was having fun with this experiment, being natural, unplanned, and no longer thinking too hard.
Another benefit of this experiment? I learned how much more I prefer having my brows threaded. That arch is on fleek, if I don't say so myself(ie).
I also noticed how ombre my really hair is... in certain lighting. I was truly learning all sorts of things about myself.
And I experimented with different angles.
I even started combining selfies by the end.
And by the end, I was proud to show off my makeup skills.
From #OOTD to overthinking it to loving makeup selfies, this week was a whirlwind of emotions. I usually post plenty of selfies. You know, like most humans with an Insta account. But when I made the concerted effort to post selfies and only selfies, I did kinda start to feel like a narcissistic jerk. Though I eventually talked myself out of caring what other people thought, I missed the variety of photos I usually post. When there was nothing else sprinkled in between shots of my #OOTD or me attempting my version of the Ariana Grande kissyface, it felt a little egomaniacal and overly self-indulgent. Put simply, I was uncomfortable with being so selfie-ish.
So, in the future, I'm still going to stick to a solid amount of selfies. They're fun to take, and they do give a nice boost of self confidence. I'll just go back to posting just as many videos of my dogs in between.
What would it take for you to unfollow someone on social media? We discuss unfollow horror stories & more on the latest episode of Bustle's The Chat Room. Listen here:
Images: Amy Sciarretto/Instagram (24)