Contrary to what you might think, love thy self(ie) is not meant to sound narcissistic or self-absorbed. In fact, the idea of loving your image is something that, although society would tell you otherwise, is actually a healthy endeavor! Doesn’t it almost sound too good to be true? To be happy with the way you look?
Love Thy Self(ie)
Being happy with your current selfie doesn’t necessarily mean that you are happy with your weight, your looks, your current situation in general; but what it does mean, that you are happy enough with the outcome of the photo of yourself to proud enough to post it across social media for all the world to see. I am asked all the time how I take such good selfies. Is it my camera? No. Am I overly photogenic? Um, no. In fact, there’s many a day that I take a new selfie that I look pretty awful in real life, but that selfie turns out stellar. I’m going to set about telling you exactly how I do that, exposing all of my secrets.
Before anything else, I would say that lighting matters. I’m not telling you that you need to have perfect lighting like a model’s photo shoot, but light is super important. Overhead lighting is not your friend however, and outdoor natural light is by far the best. But lets say you aren’t able to go outside and feel the need to document your look? Create some light with ambient lighting in your room, meaning turn on some lights that have lampshade and glow from the side, rather than the top of a room. Downward lighting (like in a mall or an office) is NOT your friend.
Second, there are some secret apps that are going to help your efforts when it comes to tweaking that image and taking it from just being ‘alright’ to ‘amazing’. In my arsenal, I am a big lover of Snapchat filters, InstaBeauty, and Enlight. I use Snapchat more than anything, but when I can’t, I rely on Enlight the majority of the time.
Your Photo Assistant is an App!
When it comes to taking a selfie using Snapchat, I put on the ‘Pretty Filter’. This is the little icon that is just the pretty face, and you’ll find using it that it smooths out the skin, elongates the face and accentuates the eyes. It also casts a tan color over the whole image, which goes back to why I think having good lighting is super important. If you are in a darker setting using the Snapchat Pretty Filter, your image won’t turn out very good. It will be grainy and dark, and will cast strange shadows. This is working against your effort to create a better selfie!
The Pretty Filter is the way to go! Open Snapchat, take a photo using the filter, save to your Memories, and later save to your Camera Roll. However, when you are in a big group of people, you don’t want to divulge your Pretty Filter obsession (hey, I get it). Or you want to zoom in to your image or even just take a normal photo using your smartphone’s camera. That’s fine too! Just open it in InstaBeauty afterwards for some post-processing upgrades. Using the app InstaBeauty you can add different filters, fix your image, you can even add different colored makeup to your face and enhance anything you choose!
If it isn’t the image of your face that needs fixing as much as the photo itself, then I use Enlight. Enlight is a great photo editor that gives you tons of filter options to alter your images. This is great for improving saturation or softening edges, for changing color photos to black and white or sepia, for overlaying textures, or even turning your photos into watercolors or other types of works of art!
The most important thing when taking a great selfie is to feel confident about the image itself. It needs to be interesting to the viewer and I tend to think as a generalization, people don’t get close enough to themselves when taking pictures of themselves. Let us see that beautiful face! Get close and let us see your imperfections, those freckles and dimples are what make you uniquely you and even if you don’t love them, people identify you by your unique qualities! Get a little closer. Don’t smile straight into the camera, tilt that head to the side. Make yourself laugh, add accessories or a hand gesture to make it more interesting. Almost anything goes as long as it is fun and accurately represents YOU.
Be A Ruthless Editor!
I have saved my best for last, knowing that I couldn’t leave you without telling you the most important trick I have up my sleeve when it comes to taking any photos at all… Take lots and lots of pictures and then ruthlessly edit them! Even when you feel like the pose is exactly the same, there may be a slight difference in the photos that set one ahead of the other. As you scrutinize the photos you take, be absolutely ruthless when it comes to saving photos. Don’t save a photo unless you absolutely love it 100%. Delete anything you don’t love immediately. And then keep doing that until you have 1 or 2 images that are your absolute favorites. And then, when you can’t choose between them, ask a trusted friend. This always works for me!
Armed with these few new tricks, you should be on your way to capturing a new selfie that portrays the confident beauty that you are!