I have one of those faces that isn’t exactly great for selfies, which to some is known as “not that pretty.” Luckily, there are a few tried and true tropes that have helped me in my game. The first and foremost is of course Snapchat filters. I don’t know what I did before Snapchat filters. I don’t think I took selfies. I don’t think I even looked in the mirror. Frankly, it was offensive to all parties involved, particularly me. The filters have honestly been a Godsend, so that I may send sexually suggestive pictures to suitors with the protection of a golden butterfly or a pink pig to protect my integrity. The second, of course, is Facetune. What would I do without the magnificent photoshop app that allows me to smooth my skin, brighten my eyes, and whiten my teeth so that I may present my false self to the world without fear. But before these two beautiful creations existed so that I might digitally alter the composition of my face, I had but one tool at my disposal:
The duck face.
The duck face, while appropriately mocked by the general populace was providing us with something more than merely telling the world that we enjoy pumpkin spice lattes and that our parents still pay our cell phone bills. It did something wonderful. It plumped your lips, it thinned your face, and it made your highlight pop. You could casually duck face with your girlfriends in any and every photo. It was silly. It was fun. It was sexy. And frankly, it worked. Our foremothers came and duck faced at the very first Thanksgiving, and it’s been a staple of womanhood ever since.
But unfortunately, we have in our midst something that threatens to disrupt the sanctity of the duck face and I WILL. NOT. STAND FOR IT.
Behold, ladies: the fish gape. It’s almost a duck face, but the marked difference are the wide eyes and slightly separated lips.
The fish gape was once reserved only for celebrities, socialites, and other hateable hot people, but slowly, it has crept its way into the mainstream. The fish gape, unlike its predecessor has one purpose and one purpose alone: sex. That’s fine, kind of, but it’s also fucking weird, because this photo is theoretically going out into the world to be seen by people who aren’t interested in putting a penis through that small opening you’ve left in your lips.
Your brother is going to see your fish gape. Your aunt Mildred who will still comment “you’ve grown into such a beautiful young lady,” as if almost an intentional attempt to thwart your bitchassness. And sure, that girl who hates you will see it, but also, that girl who hates you will see it. And she won’t be looking at your photo saying “look how hot she is, I hate my life now.” I’ll give you a sample of how that group text will go.
Your Enemy: *sends screenshot of your fish gape*
Friend 1: Hahahahahahhaha
Friend 2: Well, that’s a face that only a mother could love, because her father surely doesn’t.
Friend 1: What the fuck is she doing with her mouth? Why do girls do that and think they can pretend like it’s natural? She literally looks like she just sucked off the Michelin man.
Your Enemy: I mean, like, she’s pretty or whatever. But that’s like. Weird right? And do you think she got her lips done?
Friend 2: I don’t know. They might just be overlined a bunch. And maybe Facetune.
Friend 1: *Sends screenshot* Because yeah, they don’t look like that here.
Friend 2: *Sends four more screenshots where you thought you looked good*
Your Enemy: HAHAHHAAHAHAH
Friend 1: *Laughed at an image*
Friend 2: I just don’t understand why you’d want to look like you’ve been injected with cherry-flavored Jell-O. Like. It doesn’t look good. She just looks like she’s trying SO fucking hard to get noticed. Like, it’s weird. Just be normal. Smile. Life’s not that serious.
Friend 1: I’m sorry, but like. Who the fuck does she think she is? Literally ONLY models look good doing that.
Your Enemy: 300 likes, doe.
Friend 1: Whatever. Those 300 likes are all she has.
Friend 3: *Randomly “likes” and “laughs at” several comments and images
Friend 3: Sorry, I’m just reading all this now. But in conclusion, I agree. She looks like a tryhard whore.
Friend 3: *Revealing real reason she texted* Do you guys want to go to Two-Dollar Tuesdays tonight?
Listen. I’m not telling you how to live your life. I’m just telling you how you’ll be judged for it. And that that judgment is deserved. The fish gape is too much. It is tryhard. And it’s on us not to let it get out of hand. It’s on us to ensure we don’t become so used to seeing this on normal girls that we’ve lost all our sensitivity to it. It’s on us not to let the fish gape happen. And I implore you to help me fight this fight.
Mostly because I don’t look good doing it..