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In today's day and age, everyone is armed with a smartphone. Heck, even "burner" phones come with a camera of their own. Our social media insists on photos. Our dating sites have photos as a mandatory part of their screening qualifications. If you don't regularly have shots taken of you, you're behind the game.
Being able to take a good photo of yourself has never been so incredibly important. It can make or break your dating life, your career, as well as how much people want to hang out with you. I'm not even exaggerating; it's that rough.
As a person in the modern era, you owe it to yourself to learn how to take an amazing selfie. As a former model, I can offer these quick tips and tricks to help you make your selfie game better than ever before.
Before you even bother with a snapshot, prepare yourself first.
Preparation is 90 percent of your chance of taking a good selfie. If you aren't put together and looking your best, your photos will reflect it; it's just that simple.
Put on some makeup, do your hair, and pick out a good outfit. Oh, and don't try to take a good selfie if you're not well-rested. These little details make a world of difference when you have a selfie in mind. They matter because they show.
Tatiana Ward is a good example of an Instagrammer who knows how to kill it on prep time. Just look at her makeup!
Be aware of your lighting.
Just like with any other form of photography, if you want the perfect selfie, then lighting matters. Harsh lighting will bring out your fine lines, acne, and the dark circles under your eyes. Soft yet bright lighting will fill out your face.
If you are using natural lighting as your light source, shoot during a time of day when the sun isn't too bright. If you're using any of the best ring lights and flashes for your photography, check to see how it looks on you before you commit to the first selfie you put as your next profile picture.
With your lighting, remember that angles matter, too. Take time to play around with your lighting angle and how it changes based on where the light in question is positioned.
Look up towards your camera.
Kim Kardashian is infamous for using this trick to take an amazing selfie, every time. Looking up at the camera widens your eyes and gives you a younger, more curious look.
This pose is a classic among selfies because it works. So, work it so that it works for you.
Extend your neck.
Back when I was a model, one of the most common posing mistakes you'd see was models who didn't extend their head away from their neck. This would cause models to look fatter than they were, and at times, even gave models a double chin.
You can look a good five pounds thinner by just tilting your head away from your neck. Give it a try, and make sure your camera is angled above your face to get a good look. To really look relaxed, push your shoulders down while you're at it.
Don't be afraid to smile.
It's absolutely possible to take amazing selfies without smiling, but let's be honest—it's a little overdone. We have all seen the same stereotypical Instagram pout. It's cute, sure, but it's hackneyed.
A genuine smile will almost always show you off better than a "fashion pout." It may not be as glamorous, but it will give people the right idea about you, and will make for a really good selfie a lot of the time.
Learn to love the selfie stick.
Please don't hate me.
Look, I get it. Selfie sticks are about as cliche as millennials get—but they are popular for good reason. A selfie stick can help get the distance you need and the angles that your own arm can't possibly reach.
Don't feel ashamed by it. Even celebrities have selfie sticks. If you're looking for really unique angles, a selfie stick can be the easiest way to take a perfect selfie.
Filters are your friend—but only to a point.
Filters are a staple in taking a good selfie. They are the quick fix to issues like blotches or off-colored looks. If you lack Photoshop skills, your filters can make a "meh" photo turn into a head-turner.
Sure, you might not be able to get the same kind of effects as the ones in this Vogue shot, but you can still wipe away a lot of problems with a quick swipe of the wrist. Just be careful not to overuse them, though, as blatantly fake pictures could be one of the main reasons your photoshoots don't look good.
Shoot multiple selfies.
Believe it or not, much of being able to take the perfect selfie is the quantity of them you take. You can't just bank everything on one selfie, you know. You need to take multiple shots to get the very best one.
You don't have to take hundreds. Just take three or four to get the best look. It's a numbers game.
Learn your top selfie poses.
Selfie poses can make or break your ability to take a good selfie. If your pose sucks, your selfie won't show you off as well as it could. If you aren't sure what poses work well for you, take time to figure out what works in a mirror.
Still not sure how to pose? Try a YouTube video to teach you how.
Exhale and relax your lips for the right pout.
Ever notice how every single Instagram model seems to have the same pout? It's flattering, sure, and some might even say it's key to being able to take an amazing selfie.
To do this pout, just exhale while you relax your lips. Gigi Hadid is a pro at this, but there's no question you can learn this self photography tip to help you take the perfect selfie, too.