Some people turn to psychics and fortunetellers to read their future. And now, even our cellphones have the ability to show us our potential future selves. Well, kind of. The incredible, quickly-evolving capabilities of artificial intelligence have brought about a myriad of fun, entertaining and sometimes spooky/bizarre technologies and trends, the latest of which is the “aged” filter. Popularized by various social media platforms like TikTok, this filter allows users to catch a glimpse of what they might look like in their later years. While many people may find amusement in seeing themselves in the future, others experience a sense of panic or unease with their “realistic-looking” older appearance.
If the ”aging” filter has you in a state of anxiety, we’re here to put your mind at ease with some advice from someone who actually knows all about faces and slowing the aging process – NYC’s top facial plastic surgeon and facelift expert, Dr. Konstantin Vasyukevich.
How Accurate Is The ”Aged” Filter?
If you’ve been curious to find out how well the ”aged” filter can actually predict a person’s appearance when older, we have some good news and bad news. The bad news is that yes, you will most likely see a wrinkled, sagging “aged” version of yourself while using the filter. After all, getting older is inevitable and the filter does an impressive job of compiling and applying the typical facial aging changes to generate your ”potential” appearance. These aging changes usually include deep wrinkles, lines, skin laxity, volume loss, and sun spots. Certainly not an inspiring image for any 20 year-old TikTok user.
Now, for the good news. While the filter can, in most cases, generate a somewhat realistic-looking future you, there are several factors that come into play to diminish the accuracy of the results. One of those major factors is lighting. Anyone who has ever taken a picture knows, lighting is everything and it’s just as important when using this filter. Unflattering shadows, for example, can quickly make you look much older or exhausted.
Other factors that can affect the outcome are, for instance, that the filter cannot know if you come from a family with good genes where everyone tends to look youthful, even when older. Do you take good care of your skin, always wear sunscreen, manage stress well and avoid unhealthy habits? If so, your future self will likely look more appealing than what you may see in the filtered version. There are simply too many variables to get a truly precise idea of the future.
This brings us to the following question…..
You Saw Your Potential Future Self And Didn’t Like It. Now What?
So, you’ve braved using the ”aged” filter on yourself and didn’t like what you saw and of course, you can’t unsee it. Now what? Well, there a few choices. You can either internalize this terrible feeling and live in fear of the aging process or you can take charge of how you feel and what you can do differently from now on to improve your future self. Let’s break it down into a few points:
Shift in Perspective: Rather than dreading the older version of ourselves seen through the “aged” filter, we can reframe it as a view into the future we have yet to create. This perspective allows us to take control of our lives and make choices that promote healthy aging. Unlike previous generations, people in the modern world are much more aware of the importance of maintaining a balanced lifestyle, eating healthy, exercising, not smoking, and wearing sunscreen. We know the things we can do preventatively and can make a conscious effort to slow the aging process.
No Filter is Foolproof: Let’s not forget that the ”aged” filter is meant for entertainment. There’s a reason it went viral with thousands upon thousands of people sharing their results. It is intended to shock and captivate its users by exaggerating aging changes and making users far less attractive than they would normally look. However, it is not a reliable tool to give us a definitive conclusion about how we will look 20, 30, or 40 plus years from now. It is not an authority on the aging face as, for example, a facial plastic surgeon would be. Artificial intelligence is not infallible, and it can’t accurately show how aging affects each person’s unique face.
The Power of Now: While the future is uncertain, the present moment is a gift that we should cherish. The “aged” filter can remind us of the preciousness of time and encourage us to make the most of each day. Let’s enjoy feeling good, feeling youthful and energized right now, rather than dragging ourselves down with discouraging thoughts of what may be. Being stressed causes wrinkles! By focusing on the present and living in the moment, we can foster a sense of gratitude and contentment, making the aging process less daunting. And you never know, there are incredible new discoveries made everyday and the “fountain of youth” may be available to us sooner than we imagined.
While TikTok’s “aged” filter can offer some intriguing insights into potential facial changes we might experience as we get older, it is essential to remember that it also comes down to perspective. And we’re not talking about people who feel the appearances aren’t that important. Most of those people would not even be aware of the existence of the “aged” filter. However, for those of us who are more look-conscious and tend to obsess over any new wrinkle or line, looking at their face through the filter could certainly be a devastating experience.
If you’re in the latter category, we understand how feeling good about yourself on the inside can be so closely tied with how you feel about your outside appearance. If you do one day find yourself unhappy with what you see in the mirror (and not just in the filter), there are many things you can do about it. Not a small part of it are many surgical and non-surgical cosmetic treatments and procedures that can help to rejuvenate your face and restore your confidence. From solutions like BOTOX and fillers to surgical procedures such as facelift, the image you see in the ”aged” filter doesn’t have to become your future reality.
If you’re interested in a facelift or any other facial rejuvenation procedures, we would be happy to see you for a consultation. Please contact our Manhattan-based practice to schedule your appointment with New York’s top facial plastic surgeon and facelift expert, Konstantin Vasyukevich, MD.