Imagine this: You’re wearing a brand-spanking-new outfit, you’re having a fire hair day, or you’re just generally feeling yourself. Perfect time to indulge in a little personal photo sesh. Okay, so you go capture your winning selfie, and BAM, you look like a troll.
Come onnnnnn, you know it’s happened.
Sure, maybe the word “troll” is a wee bit harsh, but let’s just say your dream of seeing the likes roll in on your latest IG post is slowly fading away.
Ugh, the worst, right?
Okay, chill, chill, chill, I’ve got you. Today we’re going to go over all the best selfie poses and tips, so we don’t have anymore tragic selfie moments that have you crying over the bathroom sink.
Get your phones ready, friends. It’s time to capture an epic selfie with these poses and tips.
Know what vibe/mood you're going for with your selfie pose
In case Captain Obvious isn’t exactly your middle name, I’ve got a little tip here that I’m going to shove down your throat: When capturing your selfie, please, know what mood you’re going for.
Are you trying to channel your inner Beyonce with a little sass? Do you want to get a little silly? Do you have something serious you want to say in your caption?
Whatever the case, knowing the feeling you’re going for in your selfie won’t only help you pick your pose, it will also help you pick your outfit, your lighting, and your setting.
And hey, if your selfie is a bit more spontaneous, pick the pose that fits your mood. If you woke up feeling bright and sunny, opt for a happy selfie pose. If your spice level is at 100, embrace it. And hey, if you’re feeling a little down in the dumps, ain’t nothing wrong with a little moody selfie.
Here are the best selfie poses based on your mood:
1. Sexy selfie poses
- Show off the booty — and your face — by using a mirror selfie and looking over your shoulder as Ariana Grande did above. Best of both worlds.
- A photo in bed is almost always going to be alluring. Pose by highlighting the fact you’re in bed, and don’t be afraid to use a tripod if you want to get a full-body shot
- Let’s be real, confidence is always the sexiest part of any selfie. When posing, highlight the parts of you that make you feel most confident. Not feeling great about a certain part of your body? Keep it out of your selfie. Simple.
Check out more tips for sexy selfie poses here.
2. Happy selfie poses
- It’s not complicated. Smile.
- Bring a little more joy into your selfie by laughing. Just be sure that the laugh actually looks natural. If it’s relatively obvious that you’re fake-laughing in your selfie, you’re going to look silly. Best case scenario: Get someone to genuinely make you laugh and catch a pic of it.
- If you really want to capture joy, take your selfie with someone who makes you happy. A child, a significant other, even your pup can make for an excellent partner for your happy selfie.
3. Serious selfie poses
- Pouty lips will never fail when you’re going for a more serious selfie.
- Having difficulty looking serious? Try pretending you’re surprised. Not full-blown “surprise party” surprised, but just a tad shocked or intrigued by something you just heard.
- Pose in a way that adds shadows to your face. This ends up giving your selfie a serious and mysterious vibe.
4. Thoughtful selfie poses
- Opt for the classic thoughtful selfie pose by resting your head in your hand. Just don’t rest the full weight of your head in your head or you’ll likely end up with squishy chipmunk cheeks.
- Don’t look directly at the camera. Instead, look off into the distance as you snap your shot. You know, like you’re thinking deep, deep thoughts.
- Thoughtful selfies generally require a thoughtful caption. If you’re trying to make a statement about a topic that is important to you, take your selfie in a location that relates to whatever statement you’re trying to make. For instance, if there’s a particular business that you don’t think is ethical, take your selfie in front of that business to make a point.
5. Silly selfie poses
- Squinty eyes, tongue out, head tilted. It’s a classic.
- Try making a growling tiger face. It’s playful, but also adds an element of sass to your silly selfie.
- The duck face is out. Seriously, this face is so overdone at this point, there’s nothing silly or interesting about it. Have more fun with your silly selfie and retire your duck face, ‘kay?
6. Mirror Mirror on the Wall, when should I make use of the always-popular mirror selfie?
Biiiiiiiig fans of the mirror selfie over here.
In fact, if mirror selfies are your jam, too, we’ve got a whole guide to taking a top-notch mirror selfie.
In general, though, here a couple of posing tips for nailing your mirror selfie pose:
- Pose with the camera in front of your face if you’re feeling a little camera shy.
- When standing, try putting one foot in front of the other, keeping your arms away from your body, and pushing your hips back.
- You can also sit in your mirror selfie. Angle yourself to the mirror, bend one leg in and keep the other straight for something dynamic, or opt for both straight but angled to the side to add length. Just avoid slouching, please.
- Can’t decide between sitting or standing? Try the side squat mirror selfie if you’re feeling a little peachy.
- Get creative with it and pose in your car’s side-view mirror. Mirror selfies can be a little out-of-the-box, too!
7. How to pose for a selfie in a group
Posing for a group selfie can be a real pain in the bum. Am I right or am I right?
There’s always one person who’s not in the frame, or someone is a little too close to the lens, or another person is just not looking in the right direction.
For the perfect group selfie, use some of these tips:
- Make sure everyone in your selfie is in the light. You don’t need Bobby lurking in the background covered in shadow (creeeeeeeepy).
- On most phones, you can use the buttons on the side of the phone to capture a picture. This helps with keeping your hand steady. A pop socket can also help you maneuver the phone.
- Stagger people so you’re either in a line or have taller people stand in the back. Even taking the selfie from above and having everyone stand behind you can work. Play with angles, move people around, and utilize people with long arms to snap the shot.
- When in doubt, just suck it up and use a selfie stick to really get the best group selfie. We know selfie sticks can make you feel like a total nerd, so we’ve got a whole guide on how to use a selfie stick and not look ridiculous.
To put it simply: Face the light source, use natural light when possible, and snap away.
To expand on specific instances for you visionaries who have a particular selfie mood in mind...
8. If you're taking a selfie with golden hour lighting...
You know how I said lighting matters? Well, if you can get golden hour lighting, don’t question it, just do it.
Soft, diffused, and warm, taking your selfie when the sun is starting to set will give your complexion a luminous glow that you can only get during the golden hour. Golden hour poses are truly the most natural.
Usually, I’d recommend avoiding shadows on your face for a selfie, but with the golden hour, it’s all about playing up the shadows. Bathe yourself in the warm glow of the sun for a selfie that is guaranteed to be an A+.
9. If you're taking a selfie at night...
While night lighting isn’t the ideal lighting situation, you can still capture a selfie that makes you go, whoa.
And really, it’s pretty simple.
When taking a selfie at night, make it obvious that you’re taking it at night. Plain and simple.
Don’t turn every single light on in your house trying to fool people into thinking it’s daytime (it won’t work). Don’t throw on the flash and pretend that you’re just magically lit up (unless that kind of nostalgic, throwback feel is your goal).
Instead, go for a more moody feeling, play with shadow, or make sure there’s a good reason for why you’re taking a selfie at night (i.e. a selfie in front of the Eiffel Tower lit up at night will never not be magical).
10. If you're taking a selfie in the morning...
In some cases, the morning light can be a little harsh.
If you know what you’re doing, morning selfie lighting is one of my favorites. Again, though, the best morning selfies are the ones that make it obvious that it’s a morning selfie.
Take your selfie from bed, go for an “I woke up like this look”, or have the sunrise in your background.
11. Have you considered thinking out of the box with your selfie pose?
Nothing helps your selfie perform better than when you get a bit playful with your shot. For some unique selfie poses, try these:
- Hang upside down from monkey bars
- Climb a tree
- On a roof
- In the middle of the street
- In front of your ex’s house (you know, shock value)
- In the water
- On a bike
- Skydiving (you daredevil!)
The easiest way to capture a unique selfie pose is to switch up your location.
Not satisfied? Here are more awesome selfie posing tips:
If you've made it this far, you deserve to get a few more exclusive selfie posing tips for everyone:
Ladies, listen up, whether you want to admit it or not, there are some tried and true selfie poses for girls out there that will bring your selfie to a whole new level. Curious? I’ve got you.
- Try relaxing your lips. No seriously, do it right now to see what I mean. You probably don’t even realize it but many of us hold so much tension in our mouths. Relax your jaw, ever so slightly part your lips, and voila! Lip injections without the needle.
- Extend your neck forward when you snap your shot. You may feel a little silly doing this, but it will make sure your chin and neck area look elegant.
- Know your angles. I know, I know, that sounds a little vague, but trust me on this. The women out there who selfie like pros? They practice. They know what angles work and what angles don’t, and they play up those features. This will be different for everyone, but if you take the time to figure out your angles, you can master your selfie. Ain’t no shame in your selfie game.
As a man, you might feel like all the best selfie posing tips out there are for women. Well, you’re right, selfie posing does tend to target woman, but here’s the deal: Almost all of the tips apply to you too, buttttttttt if you’re feeling a little left out and you want some male-specific selfie posing tips, no worries, we are here for you.
- Don’t look bored. I’m not sure who started this trend of men looking bored in their selfies, but it just does not work. A blue steel look? Sure. But if you don’t know how to pull off that look and I catch you just looking bored, no bueno.
- Hairlines can be a point of insecurity for a lot of men, so be sure you’re really considering where you’re placing your camera. Shoot from above and your forehead is going to look massive, shoot from below and we won’t even see your hair. Instead, shoot at eye level and if you’re worried about your hairline, tilt your head back ever so slightly.
- And hey, when in doubt, opt for sunglasses and/or a hat. With the sunglasses, you’ll probably feel a bit more confident and less camera-shy, and the hat — well, I think we all know what the hat is for.
How to use light when you pose for a selfie
Light is everything. Repeat that: Lighting is everything.
But seriously, there’s nothing that takes a selfie from zero to one-hundred in a shorter time than optimal lighting.
In general, when lighting your selfie, opt for natural light. When natural light isn’t possible, diffused lighting is better (i.e. plenty of light spread out rather than one lamp shining directly on you).
And here’s a big one that people often forget: Light yourself right at eye level. So, for instance, if all the light is coming directly from above, you’re going to end up with dark under-eye circles (ugh), while lighting from below will make you look like you just stepped out of a Halloween movie (no thanks).
Who's ready to take their most epic selfie yet?
Are you itching to whip out your iPhone so you can start snapping away?
Oh, I bet you are.
Try using some of these tips, don't forget to practice, and never be afraid to get a little experimental with your selfies.
I've said it before and I'll say it again: The best selfie poses are the unexpected selfies.
Go ahead, shock me. I dare you.
Extended reading for those still looking for their best selfie pose:
- Creative selfie poses: Get creative with your selfie poses.
- Lazy selfie poses: Not everyone wants to run across town for the perfect selfie pose; read on to find out how you can nail your lazy selfie pose.
- Sitting selfie poses: Getting off the couch really is a drag, but that's no problem for those looking for the perfect sitting selfie pose.
- Standing selfie poses: You've decided to get off the couch. Perfect, now you are ready for our standing selfie poses guide.