Latest news | 05 Dec 2019

Instagram & Butterfly Foundation Announce Research On Social Media’s Impact On Body Image And Create New Teen Campaign #TheWholeMe



The Butterfly Foundation is Australia’s leading organization focused on body image and eating disorders.

5 December, 2019 (SYDNEY, AUS) – Body image is one of the top concerns for young Australians, and Instagram is committed to combating the pressure to appear “perfect” online. Today in partnership with the Butterfly Foundation, we’re announcing #TheWholeMe — an empowering new campaign for teens and adults to support positive use of social media and sharing their lives in ways that feel comfortable and authentic. The campaign includes new resources, a video series, and toolkits for teens and parents.

To launch #TheWholeMe, the Butterfly Foundation are releasing new research from their 2019 ‘Insights In Body Esteem’ survey of over 5,000 Australians. Preliminary results from this survey show that:

  • For 19-30 year old respondents;

○  Almost 58% compare themselves to people on social media

○   50% wish they look like people on social media

  • In 2017, 43% of respondents were dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with their appearance. In 2019, this proportion increased with 48% of respondents reporting that they were currently dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with their appearance.
  • Participants most frequently endorsed using social media at least daily (96%) with a large majority reporting using it multiple times per day (71%.)

The full ‘Insights In Body Esteem’ report will be released by Butterfly Foundation in early 2020.

Instagram and The Butterfly Foundation are partnering to address these issues, and have created #TheWholeMe together based on expert advice. The new campaign includes two toolkits with quizzes, features, and tips to encourage conversation about body image and overcoming social comparison. There is one toolkit for teens to help them share their authentic selves rather than a “highlights reel” online, and help them to consider that other people’s posts don’t always show the full picture. There is also one toolkit for adults to help educate them on Instagram’s safety tools and how to have constructive conversations with young people about social media use.

Also launching today is a new video series, featuring a range of young Australians talking about their experiences with body image and social media. Running across Instagram and Facebook, the videos showcase four powerful stories about overcoming negative body image and how people can empower others by sharing their authentic stories on Instagram. The videos feature:

The campaign launches as part of the Butterfly Foundation’s national Christmas appeal fundraising campaign. Australians are encouraged to support their work by donating here:

“The preliminary results from our ‘Insights in Body Esteem’ survey indicate that social media plays a significant role in shaping how young people view their bodies. We know that when young people are dissatisfied with their bodies and constantly comparing themselves, they can turn to ‘quick fixes’ that could potentially develop into an eating disorder. These concerns are a top priority for Butterfly and partnering with Instagram has been an important step in addressing them. Instagram is truly leading the way in terms of making social media a safe place for young people that is less about comparison and more around meaningful connections. We’re incredibly proud of this campaign and we hope that it inspires people to use Instagram intentionally and authentically.” said Kevin Barrow, Chief Executive Officer for the Butterfly Foundation.

“We want young people to feel empowered to use Instagram in ways that feel safe and comfortable for them. We created these resources to combat any pressure people may feel to present a perfect image of their lives online, and to support their authentic expression online and on Instagram. We’re honoured to work with the Butterfly Foundation, one of Australia’s leading organizations in the fight for positive body image, and their expertise in crafting these helpful toolkits and videos has made #TheWholeMe powerful for young people and parents alike.” said Philip Chua, Public Policy Manager for Instagram Asia-Pacific.

#TheWholeMe campaign is available now at:

For media enquiries or more information:

Jeff McBride / Instagram Australia


m: 0436-651-474


Alex Cowen / The Butterfly Foundation


m: 0437-102-382