It’s hard to remember now, but there was a time when Instagram was an app people used to make their photos look good. A retro wash of sepia here, a studied overexposure there, and, voilà, you could fool your friends into thinking you had an artist’s eye.
That was before the advent of Snapchat. For the past few quarters, Instagram has been sprinting with its hair on fire away from the idea that a good photo is one that looks like one a professional might have taken. Its only goal, seemingly, has been to make sure anything people like doing on Snapchat they’re able to do on Instagram, whether that’s marking up photos with drawings and stickers, publishing slideshow-like “Stories” that disappear after a day, or navigating between parts of the app by swiping around randomly. As of Tuesday, the cloning is complete, with Instagram adding face filters that allow users to alter their own appearances with augmented reality overlays.