This first and basic layer is what I consider essential, what actually make THE photograph.
The second layer is what I consider de boutique, or the packing, or the extra condiments to give a strong or even an other taste and to make it stand out on the vitrine. Which in photography are the special pos edition effect from Instagram for example, to look like vintage, to add flair, to make the colours fade or stronger, etc.
For me it is like food. The first layer is the chocolate cake. The second layer is the cream, strawberry and caramel stripes above it.
Some times, the cream inside the cake make it softer and strawberries inside gives an other teste, like in a Black Forest cake. It is like when a flair in a photograph plays a important element on the narrative, symbolism or even composition.
But often, cream and strawberry are above the cake. It gives an extra taste but they are not actually part of it, it won't change the texture, taste and qualities of the cake itself, despite making the cake more attractive and appealing.
Some people eat chocolate cake because they like the cream, caramel and the strawberry above it. So they will consider the cake delicious because the cream, caramel and strawberry taste was pleasing. To me, it is like judging a photograph by its Bokeh or DOF.
Some others eat chocolate cake because they like chocolate. Even if they like what is on the top of it, if the chocolate cake itself is not that tasteful they will not judge the cake good. This would be like judging a photo by its narrative, composition, framing, light and so on.
I am not saying I am against such photo effects. Often I don't care about the strawberry above the cake. It may help the image attract my eyes, but as soon as see it the first thing I look at are the first layer of composition, framing, narrative, elements and so on. I will judge the image and appreciate it based on its first layer. I may even like the second layer but I will say: "This is a beautiful Bokeh, DOF, or whatever effect it has but I don't like the photo itself".
Some times I even may enjoy the effect even if I consider the image poor. This is what I call the Popcorn Effect. I like eating popcorn but not because I think popcorn itself is good, but only because I am enjoy the salt or whatever is giving taste to it. Its is the junk photography. Not good at all but with appealing flavoring. Or in other words it don't nourish but entertain.
I am not the kind who enjoy cheap entertainment though.