You’ve spent hours getting ready, your hair and makeup looks flawless and you’ve got your favourite outfit on – you think you look the cat’s whiskers and you’re ready to party.
You have a few drinks and a friend picks up her phone, take a snap and you look at the picture – shock horror – you think you look HORRIFIC!
“Why did no one tell me I had a shiny face, my hair looks flat, I have a triple chin and my face looks lop sided!? THAT IS NOT WHAT I SAW IN THE MIRROR LEAVING THE HOUSE! My life is a lie!”
What if I told you there was a way to love every photo of yourself?
Avoid flashback makeup
When cosmetics contain certain ingredients such as silica powder and zinc oxide, they reflect the light from a camera flash that can make your skin look white or shiny. If you know you’re going to have your photo taken, look for foundations and concealers that don’t have these ingredients and instead have a mattifying effect, so you don’t have to powder after. I am an avid SPF user, however, if you’re being photographed, skip the sunscreen and make sure the foundation you are using does not contain an SPF.
2. Push your chin forward
As we naturally smile, we throw our head back and retract our chin in which looks unflattering on camera. To control this, keep your chin forward (you may feel like a turkey, but this works, honestly!) and bring your tongue to the roof of your mouth to prevent a gummy smile.
3. The mirror is misleading and here’s the science…
The reflection of you in the mirror is generally reversed to what you see in a photograph. Seeing yourself in reverse can look weird, and this is partly down to the fact that our faces aren’t perfectly symmetrical.
Usually, one eyebrow is higher or a different shape, one eye might be bigger or lazier than another, and one side of your lips tend to droop more than the other side.
Because we look at ourselves more in the mirror than in a photograph, our brain “prefers” the mirror version, so when you see an image, it seems strange and generally, we don’t like what we see.
THE RULE OF 9
If you follow the rule of 9, you can find out what angle suits you best. Simply take a photo of your face from 9 angles. Lift your head and move your head to the left, middle and right. Drop the head to centre and repeat the same sequence – left, middle and right and then drop your head lower and do the same again.
As you go through the images, you’ll probably find that there are a couple of angles you prefer over others. Generally, people will prefer the angle that is most symmetrical and therefore most familiar with.
I’ve circled my unsymmetrical features – you’ll notice I have one eye smaller than the other, my forehead is more prominent on one side, my right lip doesn’t lift as high as my left, and the right side of my chin pulls on the skin creating a line.
What you can probably tell is that I prefer my left side as this is the most symmetrical angle for my face and therefore, it matches what I think I look like (hence why you’ll only ever see the left side of my face in all my pictures). Once you find your side, play around with the angle, do you prefer your head tilting to the left or right or kept in the centre?
All these features are very common and remember that most people would never notice. It’s only more apparent when you flip the image so you can see both that your brain spots the unsymmetrical features.
So give it a go and let me know how you get on. 95% of people all prefer the same side… I’d love to know which side you love the most!