Ask any photographer or digital imaging artist and they’ll tell you that the better the makeup is done, the less there is to do at the post-production stage, i.e. less “Photoshopping” is needed. So, instead of spending time choosing the right filter or editing your photo to make your selfie look better before it goes onto Instagram, put your effort into getting your makeup selfie-ready.

The following tips will up your selfie game, in time for the upcoming Christmas and year-end celebrations – you’ll surely be having tons of photos taken. So, be prepared!


1. Prime your skin: Want a natural “beauty face” effect? The trick to it is priming. Many skip this step thinking that it’s redundant – it isn’t. It helps create a smoother canvas for your foundation and prevents skin from oiling up too much. Applying a primer before your makeup routine also ensures your makeup stays for longer. See our recommendations for primers. If you really don’t like primers, at least moisturise thoroughly before you start makeup application.

2. Contour your face with bronzer: The elusive V-shape facial contour is no longer a dream if you contour. See our tips to contouring (and highlighting), explained in five easy steps. Contouring properly gives your face natural-looking definition that the Lo-Fi (the filter) can’t give you.

3. Use mascara to amp up your eyes: Be generous with mascara and don’t neglect your lower lashes. Applying mascara to your lower lashes “opens” up your eyes because your lashes will fan out more.

4. Line your water line with a soft colour: Lining your water line with a black eyeliner may offer a sultry look in real life but you risk looking like you have smaller eyes in selfies. To make your eyes look bigger and brighter, line with a softer colour like cream, peach or white instead.

5. Exfoliate your lips: Flaky lips look extra obvious on photos. Exfoliate your lips and apply some lip balm, especially if you’re wearing lipstick. Use either a lip exfoliator to do the task, or run your toothbrush lightly over your lips to get rid of dead skin on them.

6. Highlight your cheekbones and nose: To bring more definition to your face, highlight your cheekbones and nose. These are the highest points of your face and highlighting them ensure that they catch the light from the camera so they look more outstanding. No need for the brightening tool in your photo editing app.

7. Don’t forget the blusher: Cameras can sometimes wash out your natural flush, so compensate with some blusher. For your complexion to look more radiant on camera, you may need to apply more blusher than you do usually. To make sure you’ve nailed the application, take a selfie right before you step out of the house. If you like what you see, you’re ready to go!