What if I told you there’s one thing that most people have in their kitchen pantry that could help you with your selfies, your family photos or pics of your kiddos? Well, there is! And it’s….


I’ve spent lots of money on the best reflectors a girl can buy. But when you’re backstage at NY Fashion Week, and you’ve left one of those dazzling reflectors at home and there’s no time to get a new one, it’s tin foil to the rescue!

Well, that’s how it started at least.

Then I realized that tin foil actually worked better than some of those fancy reflectors! So I started making my own. And so did a lot of other backstage photographers. In fact, for many of us, it’s now the go-to . When you’re travelling, tin foil is easy to get, easy to use and when you’re done with it, you just toss it out. No need to make extra room for it in your luggage.

But for you lovelies at home looking to up your selfie game, try a bit of aluminum foil. Grab a piece just large enough to cover a small baking pan, and while you’re facing the light, try holding the foil at about breast level, with the side farthest away from you, angled up at your chin. You may be able to feel the light hit your face. You should definitely be able to see the light hit your face! Don’t believe me? Check out the two photos below.

The one on the left has an aluminum foil reflector added.

[QUICK TRICK: If it’s windy out or it’s too flimsy for you to hold the foil, wrap it around a book or magazine so that it’s a bit more sturdy]

How to Look Good in Headshots or Selfies by Shannon Michelle Charleston Beauty Photographer

You can easily see that on the left, there is a bit more light on my face than the one on the right. Look at the cheeks, under the eyes, and the shadow on my neck. But the biggest wow of all is the amount of light in my eyes. Totally unedited [for education purposes only…hahaha], you can see how much extra pop or twinkle I have in my eyes when I am holding a reflector.

[QUICK TRICK: Don’t forget, if you’re shooting with an iPhone, you can still take the picture by pressing the “+” button where you normally control the volume. It’s so much easier than trying to reach the round button at the bottom!]

Happy Shooting 🙂