Being Real


A French-originated app developed by Alexis Barreyat and Kevin Perreau was released in 2020, and was popularized in the summer of 2022. BeReal, the app in question, obtained the spotlight in the media for the sole reason that it forced the user to “be real.” With other apps such as Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok, there is an overwhelming urge to keep a presentable, beautiful, and impressive profile, which may involve using filters or image adjustments to improve external appearances.

What differentiates BeReal from these apps is that every day, there is a different allotted time to post an image. Here’s the catch – you only have a two-minute window to take the picture once you’ve opened the program. Also, the picture that is posted simultaneously uses the front camera and back camera, showing your face and whatever may be in front of the camera. If you post a BeReal on time, it will show the time that you took it at. If you miss the allotted BeReal time, you can post a late BeReal. Posting a late BeRea shows the amount of time you were late. Once you post a BeReal, it cannot be deleted; once it’s there, it’s there for good.. The app does not offer filters, face retouching, or anything of the sort. 

The app also features a “Discovery” section where users are able to see public BeReals of people they do not know. If a user does not want to be featured in the “Discovery” section, they can always change it in settings. 

Some argue that the ability to post late on BeReal defeats the purpose since it’s not actually being real, and it allows time for someone to touch themselves up and change their appearance. But in actuality, this flexibility is one of the reasons that the users continue to stay hooked. Eliminating the pressure of living a lavish, unattainable life with unhealthy standards provides a refreshing change of dynamic within the realm of social media, especially those that wish to have “perfect” lives.

BeReal has had such an influence on the media that Snapchat and Instagram both dropped a dual camera feature to copy the popular app. Tiktok also released a “TikTok Now” feature, which follows the same concept as BeReal.