Powerful video transforms social media cruelty into an inspiring message of self-love

Woman crying

Haters gonna gate.

In our world of bodyshaming and unrealistic beauty standards, you might not expect a hashtag campaign called #YouLookDisgusting to be a centralized conversation of inner beauty, but every now and then, the Internet likes to surprise itself.

In a video titled “You Look Disgusting,” beauty blogger Em Ford recounted a recent social media experiment: She began posting makeup-free selfies and compiled three months’ worth of comments she received. The consensus is what you’d expect from the Internet: Most of the reactions to her face were vile and ultimately demeaning.

Ford is the London-based blogger behind My Pale Skin, a lifestyle blog that offers beauty tips and makeup tutorials. On her site, she openly talks about having adult acne and dealing with self-confidence issues caused by it. She often posts before-and-after images of her face, one heavily blemished and the other artfully made up.

The viral video, which has garnered almost 8 million views in the week since being uploaded, showed an assortment of negative comments on both her plain and made-up face.

“I wanted to create a film that showed how social media can set unrealistic expectations on both women and men,” Ford explained in the video’s description. “One challenge many face today, is that as a society, we’re so used to seeing false images of perfection, and comparing ourselves to unrealistic beauty standards that It can be hard to remember the most important thing – You ARE beautiful.”

Using #YouLookDisgusting, Ford has started a conversation on social media to empower people to believe in themselves and drown out all the haters. They’re sharing before-and-after photos of their own, inspired by Ford’s bravery.

This is me. #thepowerofmakeup #youlookdisgusting

A photo posted by Josie Antonich (@josieantonich) on

(Sorry, this embed was not found.)
(Sorry, this embed was not found.)
(Sorry, this embed was not found.)

Now that’s real beauty.

Photo via My Pale Skin | Remix by Jason Reed

Jam Kotenko

Jam Kotenko

Jam Kotenko is a technology reporter and graphic designer who specializes in coverage of Instagram, Facebook, and other social media apps. Her work has been published by Digital Trends, Bustle, and Gotta Be Mobile.