Life News & Runway

The Hipstamatic Pros Show Us How to Take the Perfect Selfie

Love it or hate it, the selfie has pushed its 15 minutes into potentially permanent territory. If 2013 was the year of the selfie, let's make 2014 the year of the good selfie, shall we? No more duck lips, no more awkward crops, no more "sexy" bathroom shots (ladies, please —this is not a good look for our gender!).

Is a sophisticated selfie merely an oxymoron? Not so, says Molli Sullivan, Communications Director for the insanely popular digital photo app Hipstamatic: "I love artistic selfies that veer more into storytelling, but few people do that really well.”

So how can we step up our selfie game? Molli rounded up a few of her Hipstamatic friends to show and tell all.

Mario Estrada takes a black and white selfie in front of a canyon backdrop

Name: Mario Estrada

Title: Editorial Director @ Snap Magazine // Director of Fun @ Hipstamatic

What makes the ultimate selfie? Photography is the act of capturing light, so lighting is your biggest friend — but it can also be your foe. Natural light works best, but feel free to turn with your phone in hand to see where the shadows on your face are the most flattering. The secret to the ultimate selfie is to push your head forward while squeezing your shoulders back. This feels a little weird but it pulls at your neck, which thins it a bit. Then, the challenge is to look comfortable!

Favorite Hipstamatic lens? My favorite combo for selfies is definitely the Lucas lens with Rock BW-11 Film. The Lucas lens opens the midtones to soften shadows and the Rock film is black and white with a bit of grain, which gives it a rock and roll feel.

Rheanna Martinez takes a artistic selfie with the Golden Gate bridge in the backdrop

Name: Rheanna Martinez

Title: Editorial Assistant @ Hipstamatic and Snap Magazine

Who is your favorite selfie shooter to follow? Suzana Dordea on Oggl (@suzanik). She’s pretty and dope. (Honorary mentions to Nicola Formichetti (@nicolaformichetti) and Brad Goreski (@mrbradgoreski)).

Molli Sullivan wears a large fuschia hat and takes a happy selfie with her partner

Name: Molli Sullivan

Title: Editor-in-Chief @ Snap magazine // Director of Communications @ Hipstamatic

What are some common mistakes when it comes to shooting selfies? For me, the biggest mistake is simply taking too many. There’s a time and place for selfies — amazing outfits; documenting a specific moment in time; artistic and purposeful storytelling — but there’s also such a thing as too much duckface.  

If 2013 was the year of the selfie, 2014 will be the year of… The couple selfie (your bestie, significant other, etc.). Couple selfies feel less self-indulgent and more about fun and documenting your life.