Love it or hate it, the selfie is here to stay. I think it’s pretty obvious which side I come down on…I’ll save my lengthy thoughts about selfies as self-affirmation for another time (you can get a taste of it in my body positivity post), and focus today on the most important part: how do you take a good one? I’m not trying to toot my own horn, but more than one friend has said I take the best selfies. Maybe that’s true, maybe it’s not, but I can without a doubt say that I’ve taken enough of them to have a few tips.
A lot of advice posts I’ve seen recommend ring lights or special apps or other doohickeys, but I don’t have time to mess around with that business. These tips are mostly for you: what you can do to increase your chances of having a selfie you’ll be proud to post. #wokeuplikethis
As with any kind of photography, good light is key. There are all sorts of wacky lighting contraptions for your phone now, but I tend to rely on good ol’ natural light whenever I can. Pretty much all my selfies are taken directly in front of the window in my living room – as a bonus, I can rest the back of my hand against the glass if I need to steady myself! (It’s possible that I’ve earned the nickname “Shakey Hands McGee.”)
Choose a focus
It can be hard to stare into the camera and just try to look cute. It helps to pick a specific accessory or feature that you’re hoping to show off. Is it your new earrings? Your impeccable winged eyeliner? A brooch? Hone in on displaying that item, and it’ll help guide how you pose.
Make some faces
When you’re thinking about selfies as serious business, it’s hard to look natural and not tense up. Remember: this is supposed to be fun, friends. A lot of people make fun of the trope of actors making crazy faces to stretch out before going on stage, but it works! Loosen up with some funny/extreme faces to help your “final product” seem more comfortable.
Change your angles
No, I’m not talking about that classic “holding your phone practically above your head and looking up into it” pose. But if you have other options than just the normal shutter button, give it a go! I can use the heart rate monitor next to my camera lens as a shutter button for selfies…which is great, cuz lord knows I’m not going to use it for anything else! I usually stick with the usual plan, but some of my unexpected favorite shots are ones I take from a new angle.
Take a lot. No, really, a lot.
The only surefire way to have a great selfie to post is to have lots of options. As a long-time viewer of America’s Next Top Model, I try to follow the wise advice of Tyra: keep moving! By moving slowly through a variety of positions and expressions, snapping along the way, I’m much more likely to have one that I’m really pleased to share. As embarrassing as it is, here’s a look at every single selfie pic I took one morning, totally unfiltered & unedited:
As you can see, it can take a lot of messing around to get around to a shot you really like.
In conclusion, with a little time and a little practice, we can all take some glam selfies! Find your light, don’t be afraid to experiment, and loosen up — it’s just a selfie, after all!