Psychologists reveal what popular AI selfies secretly reveal about YOU

What does your AI selfie say about you? Psychologist reveals what the avatars sweeping Instagram reveal about your personality

  • Reality stars and influencers have been sharing their Lensa AI selfies this week
  • Psychologist Wendy Dignan says the avatars can reveal a lot about the poster
  • While one avatar suggests low self-esteem, another is seen as a ‘sexual object’
  • Read More: Have YOU already decked the halls? Psychologist reveals when you put the Christmas decorations up says a LOT about your personality

Whenever you open Instagram at the moment, you’re probably being bombarded with images of your nearest and dearest transformed into warrior princesses, cartoon superheroes or maybe even the odd 1970s flower power queen.  

In the past week, photo-editing app Lensa AI has sky-rocketed in popularity thanks to its new ‘Magic Avatars’ tool. 

The app – which is initially free to use and then offers a £6.55 monthly subscription – allows users to choose between dozens of different filters to apply to their images, which instantly transforms them into everything from an old painting or to a sci-fi hero. 

Reality stars including Married at First Sight’s Jonathan Wileman and Adrian Sanderson, Teen Mom UK’s Chloe Patton and influencer Chiara Ferragni have all been sharing their takes on the trend with their hundreds of thousands of followers too.

Psychologist Wendy Dignan has revealed what some of Lensa AI’s most popular filters reveal about the people posting them on Instagram (pictured, the different filters) 

But what does your favourite AI filter say about you? Speaking to FEMAIL, psychologist Wendy Dignan says the altered images people are posting can reveal a lot about how they see themselves. 

Commenting on the app’s sudden rise in popularity, Wendy said it allows users to highlight ‘different facets of their personality’ and present them to the world in a way they normally wouldn’t be able to.

She said: ‘It’s a bit like a modern version of a “Which Spice Girl Are You?” quiz. It’s about your identity and how you’d like to identify yourself.

‘The avatars are almost like a more advanced version of filters. You’re able to perpetuate a version of ourselves that’s aspirational but also fantasy-like.’

 ‘Low Self-Esteem’

Wendy said this chrome robot effect suggests the person posting it struggles with their self-image

This chrome robot is among the most popular avatars that have emerged from the trend – and while it might be among the more flattering filters, Wendy says it is indicative of a person who works hard but also has poor self-image.

She explained: ‘This is the total opposite of a natural-looking avatar. It’s a mask of unreality.

‘I interpret it as having a large gap between where they are now and where they’d actually like to be. It suggests someone who has unrealistic expectations and low self-esteem.’ 

‘Raw Masculinity’  

Reality star Jonathan Wileman and others who pick it wants to exude ‘raw masculinity’ with this choice of avatar

Married at First Sight star Jonathan Wileman is among the reality stars who has shared his Lensa AI selfies – including this filter, which Wendy says exudes ‘raw masculinity’.

She explained: ‘It’s set in nature and he’s partially clothed, maybe even naked. 

‘It smacks of control and power. The far off gaze says, “don’t challenge me, just adore me.”

‘Bambi Attitude’

The expert says this filter an embodiment of a ‘Bambi attitude’, suggesting to others that they need protecting

Teen Mom UK star Chloe Patton shared her favourite 10 ‘Magic Avatars’ earlier this week.

Her round-up included this digitised selfie of her surrounding by nature and wearing a pink flower crown, which the expert says appeals to more masculine types. 

Wendy said: ‘This avatar is very soft and very feminine. 

‘I call this a “Bambi” type of attitude. It screams “protect me because I’m a soft woman who needs protecting”.’ 

‘Desire for power’

In contrast, she says this filter suggests the person posting it wants to appear ‘all man’ 

Another image the Married at First sight star included in his post was this cartoon-effect portrait of him facing the camera, with his muscles on full display.

Wendy said: ‘This could be the man that the ‘Bambi attitude’ woman is looking for. 

‘He’s the protector, it screams “I’m all man”. There’s an outline of a six-pack and he’s holding a gun. It’s all about control and power.” 

‘Multi-faceted personality’

Wendy says this warrior princess avatar suggests that the poster has more to them than most people realise

Among her edit of avatars, influencer Chiara Ferragni included this medieval-inspired avatar.

According to Wendy, people who are attracted to this filter want to show that they are more ‘multi-faceted’ than others realise.

She continued: ‘This particular filter says, “I’m soft and feminine with wispy hair but I’ve also got this suit of armour so don’t mess with me”.

‘It’s someone who has or would like to have both of these sides to their personality.’

‘Serious and cultured’

Wendy says people who use this filter want to be taken seriously by their peers

In comparison to some of the cartoon-style avatars available, Wendy says this painted-effect filter attracts confident individuals who take themselves seriously and want others to do the same.

She said: ‘This is presenting a side of themselves of how they’re happy to be and this is how they broadcast themselves. 

‘It’s not distorting who they are. It’s fine art rather than a futuristic parody of who they are. They’ve made a choice to make it look like a painted image and it shows someone who wants to be taken seriously.’

‘Introspective superhero’

Wendy said this filter attracts ‘introspective people who want a superhero guise’

Combine the soft finish of this effect with the cartoon-style of illustration and Wendy says you have a person who wants to show others that they have ‘real depth’ to them.

Using Married at First Sight’s Adrian Sanderson as an example, Wendy said: ‘That gaze is introspective. He’s almost looking at his belly button!

‘He’s indicating that there’s a real depth to him. But the style also has a very superhero feel about it. 

‘Those two things in equal measures are what he wants to portray about himself. You’re an introspective person in the superhero guise.’

‘True to themselves’

People who are attracted to this ever-so-slight cartoon filter was happy and confident in who they are, according to Wendy

 Even though this avatar has a cartoon look about it, Wendy highlighted how it hasn’t changed the person’s appearance too dramatically.

This therefore indicates that they are both happy and confident in who they are.

She added: ‘For a cartoon, it’s quite realistic. It looks very accurate rather than something that’s too filtered or futuristic, which is representational of that person’s self-image.’

‘Sex Object’

Wendy says this avatar is an excuse to show people that the person is confident in their sexuality

Given the suggestive nature of the illustrated-effect, Wendy says people who gravitate towards this avatar are happy and confident in their sexuality – and aren’t afraid for people to know it. 

Wendy explained: ‘This screams Jessica Rabbit to me. It’s like you’re saying, “the main thing you need to know about me is my sexuality. 

“I identify myself as a sexual object.”‘

‘Desperate to appear creative’

The people who gravitate towards this filter want to be seen as ‘creative’ by their peers, according to the expert

With paintbrush streaks in the background and across the person’s face, Wendy says the user who picks this particular filter is trying desperately hard to appear creative.

The expert said: ‘It looks almost like a modern art portrait, it looks really artsy rather than cartoony or futuristic.

‘The background look really creative and I think anyone who is trying to look creative wants to mould an image of themselves being flexible or a big picture thinker.’

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