Wassup internet addicts, it’s time to get meta. There’s a brand-new budding trend all over Instagram lately and it’s been aptly titled the ‘meta selfie’. Gone are the days of retouches and VSCO filters, we’re embracing the full swing of chaos’ hammer, apparently.
The term ‘meta selfie’ was coined by the writers over at Refinery29 (R29), and refers to a specific type of selfie that uses the front camera instead of the back, and optimises the use of a mirror’s reflection for an ultra trippy and self-aware piccy.
I know what you’re thinking, ‘I could’ve just flipped my phone around all this time and been ahead of the trend’, and to that, I say, ‘yes’.
According to R29, the ‘meta selfie’ is seeing a huge burst in popularity due to its celebration of the nonchalance that’s peaked alongside everyone’s Instagram fatigue. It’s a similar story to the sudden popularity of photo dumps, meme posts and blurry-as-hell pics. We’re all tired of coming across as perfect. Vulnerability is now trendy.
“The popularisation of the meta selfie feels like a departure from the effortful and contrived content that influencer fatigue is built on,” writes Refinery29’s Maggie Zhou, and I truly could not have put it better myself.
Essentially, we’re all tired of looking perfect, especially after a global pandemic that has stripped us of our opportunities to pull off show-stopping looks amongst scenic backgrounds.
On top of this, our bodies have changed after being withheld from the world for so long, and so have our social appetites. The ‘meta selfie’, while being rather easy to take, is an embrace of the process behind taking a photo, and a simultaneous rejection of the typical edited and posed photos of ye olde Instagram days.
Here’s a nice collection of super sick ‘meta selfies’ for you to peruse. Yes, they’re fkn cool, and yes, they have an odd sense of unpolished edginess to them that really fits the Y2K aesthetic.
I tried to take a ‘meta selfie’ for myself and, although it looks easy, this shit is deceptive. You have to angle it right while looking in a mirror, and at best the end result is a Tumblr-era knockoff that reeks of cyberpunk edge. I fkn love it.
It’s quite impressive to see Instagrammers constantly evolve their trends and tactics, and who knows, if you get in quick you might be one of the first super popular ‘meta selfies’ on the internet.
Now if you’ll excuse me I have to go try this out again with every reflective surface in my house. Nobody will be more meta than me.