The word, ‘Selfie’ was recently named word of the year by Oxford Dictionaries. How does a word achieve this honor? First, it needs to demonstrate an unavoidable prominence over every other word. Selfies have asserted themselves into our mainstream culture and it appears as though everyone has, at one time or another, posted one somewhere online. If it’s good enough for Ellen’s recent A-List selfie at the Oscars, The Pope and the Obama’s, then it is certainly nothing to be disputed. How does one take the perfect selfie?

The Phone

We’ve all had it happen. You click the camera on your phone to see what you look like, and immediately panic sets in: two chins, hair everywhere, maybe remnants of lunch still on your face. Simply having a forward facing camera isn’t enough to capture the perfect selfie. While Apple may be credited with the conception of the selfie with the introduction of front facing cameras, today, it is commonplace. New improvements in technology have yielded front-facing cameras with as many as 5 mega pixels to ensure you’re getting a quality shot. Better yet, phones like the Samsung Galaxy s4 simultaneously shoot using the front and back camera, giving you a multi-faceted selfie experience.

The Angle and The Ambiance

Regardless of how dolled up you are or how good your phone is, a great selfie is dependent on two things: angle and ambiance. The right lighting creates an ambiance that can truly make or break your photo. Yes, filters can perfect things, but rather than relying on an orange/vintage/clown filter, why not start with great lighting? Eliminate anything that may distract people from your photo, like a dirty mirror, piles of laundry, etc.. Keep it clean and light!

After tidying up your area, ensure you capture a great shot by using the right angle. A good angle will flaunt your good attributes and hides the bad ones. Always position your phone upwards and slightly slanted to make your face look slimmer. If you’re including your shoulders, hold the phone slightly to the side with your neck extenuated to create an elongated look.

Still Don’t Have it Down?

You’ve attempted to position yourself ever so, you’ve dropped your phone four times, and have actually fallen off of your bathroom counter. You’re just not getting it. As mentioned, we totally condone the use of filters and editing to take your picture from, “Huh?” to “Uhh huhh!” The BeFunky app offers more than 190 unique filters and editing capabilities to guarantee a good photo. If you’ve cropped and filtered and edited and angled, and it still just isn’t working, it may just be time to invest in the Selfie Stick. Just don’t bring it out with you in public.