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Social-Media Scientists Uncover Creative Sexting Use for Snapchat’s Scissor Tool

Photo: ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images

We at Select All love to hear about the weird and wild ways that teenagers and young people are putting social media to use. What habits and customs are the native inhabitants of the digital world adopting? What new cultural products are they creating? What is the status of the dick pic in 2017? So, naturally, I was fascinated to hear this from a friend: “My brother told me a trick teen boys do in their sexts. They use the Snapchat cut-out tool on their dicks, and paste it on top to make their dicks look bigger.”

Snapchat’s scissor tool, which has been available since December, allows you to cut out portions of an image from a photo to create paste-able stickers. It’s good for plastering a photo of your face with tinier pictures of your face (you can make the stickers as large or as small as you like) to create whimsical, slightly narcissistic mosaics. I hadn’t thought much about using it after the initial novelty wore off … that is, I hadn’t thought much about it until my friend texted me.

My friend’s brother, a high schooler whose identity will remain a secret to protect the innocent, swears he has never done this himself, but he knows people who have. Okay? Okay. But a cursory search of Twitter appeared to reveal that others have:

Still, I had several questions. How large can one enhance a dick pic via Snapchat before it becomes painfully obvious? Do people actually fall for that? What happens if someone actually does fall for that, only to later discover they were led astray by a Snapchat, well, tool.

“He showed me how it worked and how they do it, but with my face,” my friend explained. “I literally never knew what this tool was until tonight. Teens are fucking wild!” The more I thought about it, the more sense this technique made. Snaps, at the longest, last for ten seconds. That’s hardly enough time to fully register everything going on in a given image. Particularly if you’re really feeling said image.

So you could consider this the digital dick equivalent of a particularly aggressive push-up bra. And honestly, beyond the whole nudity thing, using the scissor tool to enlarge your genitalia doesn’t feel that much different from using any number of the existing Snapchat filters, which smooth your skin, thin your face, or make you look like a very hot puppy.

However, one teen does not a trend make. I set off to find any other young dick-pic sender (or recipient) who might shed some light on this maneuver.

Sadly, upon speaking to a number of young people, it seems the dick-pic-enhancement hack is more of an urban legend than a genuine practice. “I’ve heard of [people doing] it, but only as a joke,” a male college student said. “Lmao, nah, I’ve never heard of that,” another student told me. “I wouldn’t put it past some of the guys in my grade to do that,” a different man added. “I mean, it’s honestly pretty clever, not gonna lie. Stuff like that [sexting], in general, while using Snapchat, is pretty common.” Still, this could catch on, you never know. “My friend [name redacted] is 100 percent gonna start doing this now that I asked him about it,” one source said after texting their GroupMe chat to discuss the dick-pic maneuver. “Thanks for that.”

The Creative Sexting Use for Snapchat’s Scissor Tool