Women are speaking out against a popular new AI photo app that offers artistic transformations of real-life images – but is now being accused of ‘sexualizing’ users by slimming them down and giving them bigger breasts with ‘unrecognizable’ results.
Artificial intelligence-generated images are all the craze at the moment – and many people are using an app called Lensa AI to turn photos of themselves into animated characters, fantasy heroes, and fairy princesses, before sharing the results to Twitter and Instagram.
However, some women have claimed that the app ‘sexualized’ them by giving them ‘tiny, hourglass waists’ and big breasts, while others called it ‘triggering’ since it completely transformed their body proportions.
One woman, named Laura Wheatman Hill, a writer from Portland, Oregon, even said her AI edit left her feeling ‘lonely and anxious’ after it brought back ‘memories’ from when she was suffering from an eating disorder.
Many women have spoken out against a popular new AI photo app, after they said it made them feel self-conscious by changing their bodies to look ‘skinnier’
People are using an app called Lensa AI to turn photos of themselves into animated characters. However, some women have claimed that the app ‘sexualized’ them
One woman, named Laura Wheatman Hill even said her AI edit left her feeling ‘lonely and anxious’ after it brought back ‘memories’ from when she was suffering from an eating disorder
She claimed the AI images (seen) looked ‘nothing’ like her true self, and blasted the app for giving her a ‘tiny, hourglass waist,’ and ‘breasts that were nearly falling out of her top’
She told Insider that she was excited to give it a go, but was ‘shocked’ when the app made an ‘unrecognizable, thin, and sexualized’ version of herself.
She claimed that the AI images Lensa created for her looked ‘nothing’ like her true self, and blasted the app for ‘stretching’ her face ‘until it was unrecognizable,’ giving her a ‘tiny, hourglass waist,’ and ‘breasts that were nearly falling out of a red strapless top’ – despite her only providing images of herself that were from above the shoulder.
The writer, who said she spent ‘years obsessing over her body’ when she was younger, added that seeing the photos ‘reminded her of the days when she was lonely and anxious.’
The writer (pictured in real life), who said she spent ‘years obsessing over her body’ when she was younger, added that seeing the photos ‘reminded her of the days when she was lonely and anxious’
She also warned against letting children use the app since she feared they might ‘interpret or internalize their results.’
‘All I wanted was to see what I looked like as “cosmic,” “iridescent,” and “fantasy” characters – categories in my Lensa pack,’ she told the outlet recently.
‘Instead, I’m sent back to memories of myself at 12: lonely, hungry, anxious, and terrified.
‘In seventh grade, I was too thin, with toneless arms and a fear of eating in front of people. I spent years obsessing over my body and food.
‘I am now learning about intuitive eating and trying very hard to surround myself in my real life and social-media circles with positive role models when it comes to body image and anti-diet culture.
‘But I’m worried about how young people and people who are not in eating-disorder recovery are interpreting or internalizing their results.
‘I’m glad my kids aren’t old enough to have access to this technology but know it’s only a matter of time.’
Others have spoken against Lensa for similar reasons. Author Aubrey Gordon recently shared her results from the app (seen), and she slammed it for removing her ‘glorious double chin’
‘Lensa is really working overtime to make AI me into a thin person. What a bummer/what a bore,’ she wrote on Instagram. She is seen in real life (left) and in the Lensa AI photo (right)
Lensa charges $7.99 to create 50 AI photos based on 10 pictures that you submit. You can also pay $11.99 for 100 or $15.99 for 200. One of Aubrey’s AI images is seen above
Lensa charges $7.99 to create 50 AI photos based on 10 pictures that you submit in different categories like fairy-princess, rockstar, anime character, and fantasy. You can also pay $11.99 for 100 or $15.99 for 200.
Lauren explained that she decided to participate in the trend after noticing the AI images ‘all over her Instagram feed.’ In addition, her sister tried it out, and she said the pictures came out ‘particularly lovely.’
‘When [my] pictures came through, I was shocked,’ she recalled. ‘The first batch of photos looked like paintings and were called “stylish.”
‘Most of them looked like Jennifer Lawrence circa The Hunger Games trilogy. One, though, was particularly striking.
‘The figure was slouching in a chair, and you could see her entire torso and crossed legs.
‘Her unnaturally long, toneless arms stretched out in a diamond, mirroring her tiny, hourglass waist.
‘Her slender face looked dead serious, and her collar and chest bones stood out. Her breasts were nearly falling out of a red strapless top.
‘I look nothing like this. None of my reference photos showed more than the tops of my shoulders. None showed my collarbone.
Many people took to Twitter to slam Lensa. Some branded the AI images as ‘triggering,’ while others called out the app for making them feel self-conscious
‘Clearly, the robot overlords thought I wanted to see myself this way: model-thin, sexualized, and miserable.
‘I’m angry that this app took a photo of my face and changed its shape, stretching it until it was unrecognizable, and made up a fake body to go with it.’
Lauren explained that ‘these types of modifications seek to render people a more “socially acceptable” version of themselves,’ but added that it ‘doesn’t reflect who they actually are.’
‘Actual works of art show body diversity, thank you very much,’ she concluded. ‘While I was looking for a fantasy and did expect some augmentation, I still wanted to see myself in the end product, and I did not need to see bones sticking out in each one.’
Others have spoken against Lensa for similar reasons. Author Aubrey Gordon recently shared her results from the app, and she slammed it for removing her ‘truly glorious double chin.’
‘Lensa is really working overtime to make AI me into a thin person, despite some truly glorious double chin source material. What a bummer/what a bore,’ she wrote on Instagram.
Some people also took to Twitter, where they branded the AI images as ‘triggering’ and called out the app for making them feel self-conscious.
‘All this damn AI app did is remind me how pretty I was when I was thin,’ one person wrote.
‘I tried the Lensa app and it made me a skinny blonde with huge knockers,’ one woman, seen left in real life and right in her AI photo, tweeted
‘None of my Lensa AI photos look like me,’ said someone else. ‘I am not this skinny.’ She is pictured left in real life and right in the AI image
‘All this damn AI app did is remind me how pretty I was when I was thin,’ another person (who is seen above in her AI picture) wrote
‘I tried the Lensa app and it made me a skinny blonde with huge knockers,’ tweeted another.
‘None of the Lensa AI avatars look like me lol. I am not this skinny,’ a different user said.
Another tweet read: ‘Me: Ugh, my pictures turned out terrible! Even my selfies. I clearly haven’t slept, I’m about 15 pounds heavier than I’m comfortable, and my hair is so thin right now.
‘Lensa: Hey, there! We heard you needed MORE reasons to hate the way you look! We made you some portraits.’
‘One complaint I have about Lensa AI is it will make you skinny in some images,’ complained another person.
‘As a fat person those images really bothered me. So careful not to get triggered if you’re a fellow fatty with no interest in becoming skinny.’
‘Why did Lensa make me skinny, blue-eyed, and small-nosed? This is high-key indicative of wide-spread implicit and explicit bias in coding AIs,’ said someone else.
‘There are a few good reasons to not to engage with the Lensa app trending right now, but I wanna especially warn my fat babes that if the idea of seeing your face on thin bodies might trigger you, definitely avoid it,’ wrote a different user.
DailyMail.com has reached out to Lensa for comment.