5 Ways to Snap Stunning Selfies at Upcoming Holiday Parties

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This holiday season, you’ll want to look and feel your best as you capture memories that will be with you for years to come. Selfies are already beautiful in their simplicity and ease, but there are a few secrets to making sure you snap a stunning one every time. Here are our top tips for avoiding double chins, squinty eyes, and stiff smiles—and feeling like a supermodel (or famous Instagrammer) instead!

1. Lighting is key

Fantastic lighting can make a world of difference in photos, turning you into a glowing goddess and highlighting all your best angles and features. But you don’t need a professional lighting setup to nail that perfect selfie every time.
Consider the following tips for the best lighting for selfies:

  • Use your flash wisely and sparingly. Whenever possible, opt for natural lighting to give you a softer appearance. In low-light conditions where you need to use flash, try using an app like SnapChat that utilizes a front-facing flash. This will allow you play around with other settings to nail the right lighting, and the front-flash is typically duller than the rear camera.
  • Speaking of washing yourself out, avoid taking selfies under fluorescent lighting. Fluorescents tend to emphasize skin imperfections, make you look older, and give your appearance a pale, tired, or even sickly look. That’s because fluorescent light has a low color rendering index, so it doesn’t pick up on true colors.
  • Consider purchasing a selfie light. These products range in price and size—and chances are your favorite YouTuber or beauty Instagrammer is using them. Fans of ring lights or clip-on selfie lights proclaim that they can help hide blemishes and beautifully light the face for a subtle glow. For parties, look for an option that fits in your favorite clutch purse and can be quickly attached to your cell phone when inspiration strikes.
  • If the sun is out during a holiday parade or afternoon gathering, make sure it’s behind you—and block it with your head for a nice halo effect rather than being eclipsed by it. If the sun is directly shining on your face, it will wash out your skin and you may find yourself squinting, which will impact your facial expression and highlight any fine lines and wrinkles.

2. Think about what’s in the background

When arriving at an event, scope out the scene and see if there is some choice decor that will be the perfect background for you and your besties (or a new crush) to snap a selfie together.

  • Simple backgrounds are often best, but don’t be afraid of some sparkle. If there happens to be tinsel, garlands, strings of lights, a foil door curtain, or a Christmas tree in the house, they can make for a great selfie background. A colorful wall or pretty drapes can also be a perfect way to set off your face. Avoid backgrounds such as cabinets or bookshelves—they’ll distract from the focus of the photo, which should be you!
  • Wait for the crowds to clear. If you have a spot for a photo in mind, keep an eye out for when the area clears. You don’t need random arms or someone’s hors d’oeuvres plate photobombing your selfie. Another option is to arrive fairly early and snap a few pics with your host or hostess before things are really hopping.
  • Beware of reflective surfaces. If it’s after sundown and you’re using a flash, avoid having mirrors or a dark window behind you—it’s a bummer to have a reflected flash take over your photo. Even when you’re not using a flash, it’s wise to be thoughtful when photographing near reflective surfaces; they have been the cause of many selfie fails.

3. Keep it natural

Selfies tend to look best when they look natural. Even if your makeup screams glam, a natural, genuine smile will light up the picture—but capturing your candid facial expressions can be challenging. Even the most confident can feel a bit uncomfortable in front of the camera.
Here are a few ways to keep your pics looking natural and professional without having to do much:

  • Just to reiterate, try to take advantage of natural sunlight when possible. Early morning as the sun is coming up or twilight in the evening are great photo op times because the lighting is softer.
  • Avoid contrived “MySpace selfie” angles and opt instead for a natural head tilt that flatters the contours of your face.
  • The urge to make a big cheesy grin or even pull a face can be tough to overcome, but try to keep your expressions genuine. To help you avoid “overacting” in your selfie, try keeping your eyes shut until you snap your picture. This will keep your expression fresh.

4. Practice makes perfect

If you could glimpse the camera roll of any beauty blogger, Instagrammer, or selfie guru, we’re sure you would see tons of “duds” amongst that shining, perfect snap. It’s rare to get your best selfie with just one attempt, but be patient—and try these tricks.

  • Practice your angles. Tilt your heading a variety of ways to see what happens to the contours of your neck and face. Additionally, lifting your head and chin a bit can elongate the neck and help you avoid a double chin. Snap a few pictures to see what translates well through the camera and when you find an angle or pose that works for you, rock it!
  • Experiment with different lighting to see what light levels, shadow play, or tones make you feel most confident in your pictures.
  • Play around with makeup styles, different shades of highlighters, or new contouring techniques to see what helps your best features pop.

5. Camera settings can make all the difference

Technology has come a long way, and the camera on your smartphone is more sophisticated than you may realize—it just may take some trial and error to unlock its power. Try these suggestions as you get started:

  • Download a camera app. Both iTunes and the Google Play store are full of apps dedicated to helping you perfect your phone camera skills. Instagram and SnapChat are fun options for playing around with filters and doing light editing, while apps like Candy Camera, FaceTune, and Manual Camera can help you take better photos and then edit to your heart’s content.
  • If you prefer to play around without the help of an app, your phone should have some built-in, manual camera settings that will help you perfect your shot. You can customize brightness, adjust focus, and some phones even have the ability to adjust exposure.

6. Bonus tip: get a little help with quick cosmetic solutions

There are many tricks to taking a good photograph of yourself—and we happen to think you and your selfies are pretty gorgeous. However, if you have always been bothered by something about your appearance, we’re here to help. A number of the following selfie helpers are fast acting and have zero recovery time, so you can be smiling with greater confidence in a matter of days.

  • Bothered by a “gummy” smile? We can use a small amount of BOTOX® to relax the upper lip elevator muscles and thus reduce the amount of your gums that show when you smile.
  • Noticing sun damage or hyperpigmentation? Try laser skin resurfacing or a chemical peel to rejuvenate your skin and enjoy a soft glow.
  • Wishing your lips were as full as your favorite blogger? Try putting some plump in your pout with lip fillers.
  • Want to revitalize dull skin tone and texture? Skip the blur filter and opt for a professional facial to give your skin some TLC.
  • Getting eclipsed by your double chin? You can reduce excess fat under the chin without surgery, thanks to Kybella®.

This is just a small selection of the many treatments and skincare options we have to highlight your beauty and help you feel confident, no matter who is taking your picture. Contact us today, and we’ll help you glow in your selfies all holiday season long.