How to Look Slightly Better in Photographs

Despite having my blog for a few years now, I’ve still not perfected the art of posing. I am forever looking at *actual* fashion and style blogs, wondering how they gain their endless confidence to pose in shopping centres, busy streets and city crowds in front of actual people. There’s a host of popular fashion and beauty bloggers who have all developed their token pose for in front of the camera. It’s almost as though, as soon as a camera is pointed in their direction their head tilts to their signature angle, which has taken years to refine. I’ve still yet to get to grips with what my angle is when it comes to pictures, and I do yearn for the days of Myspace when it was acceptable for everyone to hold the camera at a 45 degree angle and click the button. The Myspace angle was flattering for everyone. Me and Tereza had a little ‘photoshoot’ this weekend and I think it’s fair to say we gained many contrasting versions of my face within the series of images. 
I’ve one of those face shapes which has to be caught at just the right angle to make it look acceptable to the camera. I’m aware of my face shape, which is round version of a heart shape, and I’m aware that when it’s photographed at certain angles it can make me look awful, as demonstrated in the image above. From years of dealing with these chubby cheeks, under eye circles and a pointy little nose, I know that the lighting has to be just right so it doesn’t emphasize these parts more. I won’t call them flaws as that’s self deprecating, they’re simply parts that look even more beautiful when in the right light (wink). Getting to know your actual face shape is an important part of life really – when it comes to hair cuts, blusher and even your eye liner, it’s always worth having a little look at what techniques work to make the most of your lovely face. As my cheeks are chunky, winged eyeliner offsets their appearance, as does a light contour; rather than big blobs of blusher on the apples of my cheeks. Every face it different though so just mess around with a few looks and see what works for you.
Mimic a Model – If you ever look at behind the scene videos on instagram and Twitter at models ‘behind the scenes’, you will see that they are never still for long when it comes to a photoshoot. If you’re not used to being in front of a camera just mess around a little bit. Jump around, smile, laugh, talk, pout, and just keep snapping. Out of 150 pictures we took of me this weekend, there’s literally 20 or less which I look good in. But at least there was 150 to choose from, rather than just taking 20 and not being happy with any of them.
Light and Bright – As mentioned, I have to be quite careful with lighting so it doesn’t make more shadows on my face. I’ve found that facing a window in natural day light is the best for softening the features I am aware of. Light can change the entire shape of your facial features, so if you’re concious of your nose/chin/cheeks/anything just play around; stand in front of the window, stand with the window behind you. Go outside and stand under a tree! If you’re not used to taking/having pictures of yourself you don’t know what works so try everything twice.
Tilt Your Head– You will notice that most if not all bloggers have their own ’tilt’. Honestly, go on any beauty or fashion blog and you will notice that time and time again they will opt for one kind of pose. Some are lucky and can be shot from many angles, but most will have one style and stick to it. I must admit this does annoy me endlessly when you scroll through 20 outfit posts and their head is at the. same. damn. angle. BUT if it’s not broke, don’t fix it, right? And goes to show that not everyone looks amazing from every angle too, so it acts more as reassurance than anything really, haha.
Use Your Hair – My hair is the source of my power, and I find it endlessly useful to hide the shape of my face. The only way I can make a face shot work from straight on is by bunching it all to to front and fake my jawline, this works particularly well when it’s wavy like in these images.
Check Your Camera Settings – If you don’t have the luxury of a lighting set up, like many don’t, obviously the great outdoors is your best bet. However, some aren’t confident going outside and taking pictures of themselves. Some little tweeks of your camera settings can help you out though. Some cameras do have pre-set settings for portrait images, which will soften your skin, add exposure and adapt to the light automatically, if not though I simply up the exposure manually (usually a square button with a +/- on). Remember if you up to exposure you need to stay as still as possible to avoid blurriness as it will make the shutter speed slower! 
Edit Your Pictures – I use online photo editors like PicMonkey, or ones on my phone like Cymera. Both idiot proof and have a lot of guided features to make you look better.
Relax– Just relax. Try and be as comfortable as you can in front of the lens. No matter how cringe you feel, you know you’re never going to be as cringe as when those people on Facebook pay for a makeover and photoshoot and put the 90’s-esque images in a folder called ‘modelling’.
Basically- Take as many pictures as you can, as quickly as you want, posing in as many different ways as possible.
And if in doubt – filter the shit out of it:

No, really, filter the shit out of it:

Bloggers to admire the posing photogenic confidence of:

Zoe London
Temporary Secretary
Victoria’s Vintage
Media Marmalade 

….And a thousand more!

Who do you admire the posing of?


  1. October 20, 2014 / 10:50 am

    Haha, I lol'd at the Facebook 90's photoshoot part! I am also deffo someone who needs the lighting to be on my side. Thanks for having me on the bloggers list here! The 'mimic a model' trick is the one i usually go for. Although, I'd say I look more like I'm doing the shuffle dance than a model! I literally just bounce back and forth. Ha, this would explain why I haven't got the balls to take my outfit photos in a busy place, i look like an actual idiot! x

  2. October 19, 2014 / 9:22 pm

    Haha I just read this after your tweet earlier, you look great in these photos! Your hair is absolutely gorgeous by the way 🙂
    I know what you mean about how much it changes with different poses though, I have so far found one specific head tilt and camera angle I like, so all my pictures look the same haha
    Poppy x
    Saving Faces

    • October 19, 2014 / 9:26 pm

      Thanks poppy! Ah I always think I've found MY angle then next time I go to do it I look terrible haha!

  3. October 16, 2014 / 6:37 am

    All I've got to say is you're welcome and why the fuck am I not on the list?!! X

    • October 16, 2014 / 9:09 am

      Because you're mentioned further up!! Hahaha x

  4. October 15, 2014 / 8:18 am

    Hi Terri

    I really like the shape of your face without your swept forward. You don't look in the slightest bit awful in the first pic, just sad! I really find that people see other people faces much differently to how one sees ones own face. For example, if I have a few shots of my mug and I am trying to choose the best (well, least terrible) picture so ask my sister to pic one, she ALWAYS pics one that I like least and think I look most terrible in.
    Miss Tulip x
    The Thrifty Magpies Nest

    • October 15, 2014 / 5:02 pm

      I know what you mean!! When looking at the shots Tereza kept saying the ones I thought were awful were nice!

  5. October 15, 2014 / 6:04 am

    You look stunning in all of these pictures! xx

    • October 15, 2014 / 5:01 pm

      Thanks naffy!!

  6. October 14, 2014 / 11:29 pm

    I'll never be photogenic no matter what filters I use

    • October 15, 2014 / 5:01 pm

      Whateverrrs. Everyone can get one good picture…. Out of 100 haha

  7. October 14, 2014 / 8:41 pm

    hahahaha such glorious photos.
    As if you included me on this list. But then again I suppose I am excellent at making myself look presentable compared to real life hahaha

    • October 14, 2014 / 8:46 pm

      You're a fine example of how a person changes like some kind of freak as soon as a camera is on them hahaha