The glory days of being able to tear up dodgy snaps of your triple chin and garish make-up before anyone sees them are long gone. These days, if you’re caught on camera in a compromising position – with eyes wide shut or a très attractive muffin top – it’s likely the photo will end up instantly super-sized and tagged on Facebook, rather than where it really belongs: in the bin.
A new generation of cutting-edge cameras – and fanatical amateur photographers – has emerged and it seems we’re all expected to look like models whenever anyone happens to have even a phone camera on hand. Which, let’s face it, is all the time.
So, it’s more important than ever to know how to look good in front of the lens. If you don’t have the luxury of a personal airbrushing artist to trim five kilos or magically erase the dark rings under your eyes, then rely on our guide to looking naturally great in photos.
1. The skinny
Everyone can make themselves look instantly slimmer, claims stylist Sarah Donges (thebeautytutor.com.au). Just try the trusty “red carpet pose”, which celebrities have been honing for years. “Turn on a 30-degree angle towards the camera, with one foot forward. It will make your torso appear slimmer and your legs look longer,” she says. We’ve tried it, and trust us – it works!
2. Stand tall
To avoid looking saggy-chested, like you’ve just rolled out of bed or you’re auditioning for an amateur production of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, think about your posture and consciously stand up straight. Mum was right when she told you that tummy in, spine straight and shoulders back is the way to go. While your photo is being taken, draw in a deep breath and exhale while maintaining the same position. This will ensure you look naturally poised, rather than ironing-board stiff.
3. Chin up
When a camera flashes, many people tuck their heads back to avoid the light, and this results in the ultimate photo faux pas: the dreaded double (or even worse, quadruple) chin. To counteract this, have the camera slightly above your eye-level when your photo is being taken, advises Cathy Crawley of Beautiful Moments Photography (beautifulmoments.com.au). “It will elongate your neck and draw the chin line out,” she says. Easy and effective.