According to a new study published by psychologists at Northwestern University, nearly every amazing selfie you see on various social media outlets have taken at least fourteen tries before nailing it.
Comparing selfies posted on Instagram with the number of similar unposted photos on the subject’s camera roll, the study’s conclusions left little room for argument that the incredibly luminous selfie you recently posted took a minimum 14 attempts to achieve.
Lead author, Lily Albreight, explains why this phenomenon is so common for women ages 0-100.
“Having a camera in the palm of your hand means if you take a picture and aren’t completely satisfied, you can try again,” explains Albreight. “And again and again until you take a good one. Or, in some cases, give up because you’ll never really be completely satisfied with how you look, okay?”
These findings bring to light a truth that behind every gorgeous selfie, there are 14 horrible pictures hiding somewhere on your phone.
“You are convincing no one that you just casually snapped that picture,” says Albreight. “Our projections are that in five years you’ll still be slightly more disappointing in person than you seem online.”
Her team also came to other startling conclusions, finding that 68% of selfie-takers spend at least 25 minutes scrolling through their album of near-identical photos trying to decide which is most suitable to share. At least 56% of women consult at least two friends before posting.
“It’s important to remember that 14 is just the average,” shares Albreight. “Some have been known to take upwards of 70 pictures of themselves before settling on one of them to post. It’s usually the first one.”