Selfies have taken the world by storm. Every day you might take at least one or two selfies. One of the biggest issues with taking great selfies though is that your nose often looks enlarged. It might look large or disproportionate to your face, and you might want to make it smaller. There are ways you can make your nose look more attractive in the selfies you take.
You can make your nose smaller in selfies by employing angle techniques, lighting, or make up. These techniques depend on your face shape as well. Alternatively, if you are considering a more serious and permanent change, you can also get rhinoplasty.
People’s impression of us on social media is important to many of us. In 2014, there were around 93 billion selfies taken per day on android phones alone. This tells us that taking selfies has become a way of life and a form of self-expression. Taking great selfies that accentuate our best features and hide our flaws is crucial to our online media presence. This article will dive deeper into the different methods you can use to up your selfie game.
For an overview of important nose aesthetics principles, check out this Looks Theory episode:
In this study by Ward et al. (2018), they found that there is a large difference between taking photos from a distance of 5 feet versus taken at a selfie distance of about 12 inches. Their study noticed differences in nose protrusion, nose breadth, and bizygomatic breadth, among a few others.
You can see that the photo taken at a selfie distance has a seemingly larger nose than the one taken from 60 inches away. Looking at this photo tells us that selfies distort the way your nose looks in more ways than one. Taking photos from a closer distance of 12 inches increased nasal size by 30% in males and 29% in females. That is quite a significant increase.
Making your nose smaller involves making sure that your nostrils are not flaring and don’t look large in the photo. Accentuating the dorsum and trying to hide the sides of the nose will give the impression of a thinner nose. To make your nose look smaller, or in effect, regular-sized, read the options we laid out for you below.
Angles in photography have always been important. The same applies when taking our selfies. There are only two ways to manipulate angles in selfie-taking. First, angle your face correctly, and second, angle the camera correctly.
In another study on angles and perception, Schneider et al. (2017) found that photos taken from about 30 degrees and above were significantly more attractive than those taken from a frontal angle. Their research also yielded a bias towards left-leaning photographs as they were found to be a little bit more attractive than right-leaning ones.
This left-facing bias is not a new phenomenon. Throughout history, portraits usually had the subjects looking to the right and exposing the left side of their face. Famous paintings that exhibit this include Mona Lisa, Girl With a Pearl Earring, and even Andy Warhol’s take of Marilyn Monroe. In modern times, the idea of exposing the left side of the face in photos still prevails.
The idea of a left-sided bias also persists in a study by Lindell (2017) showing that, out of 200 participants, with 100 male and 100 female, there was more left-cheek bias at 41%, when compared to the midline and right-side bias.
To make your nose smaller in your selfies, you can employ the upper angle technique and the left side bias. In close-up photos, the object closest to the camera will often be a little distorted and look large. In the case of the selfie, that is often the nose. To help you a bit with that, leaning into the camera and pointing your chin a bit downward will remove your nose as the main focal point of the photo. And instead, elevate your cheekbones and eyes. Doing so will make your nose smaller as it is no longer the main viewpoint of the photo.
Don’t forget to also use appropriate lighting that brings out your features. Lighting and shadows play a huge role in what features of your face are brought out.
For example, dramatic overhead lighting and fluorescent lighting (left) are likely to show your nose the most and hide parts of your face in shadows. You want to avoid that because it will bring more attention to your nose and make it the selfie’s focal point. Meanwhile, appropriate lighting (right) that highlights your face well will bring out features like cheekbones and eyes and make the nose look more defined and not all over the place.
Contour, though a recent phenomenon for rock stars, has been around for centuries. It was originally done to accentuate an actor’s features. Eventually, it evolved to something massive, and nearly everyone has heard of it. Contour is applied to different parts of the face to bring out certain desirable features. The most common of these are the cheekbones and the nose.
Nose contour is an easy way for you to get a better and smaller-looking nose in your selfies. It may take some practice and monetary investment on your part, but nose contouring can improve the overall look of your nose.
The main idea behind nose contouring is to highlight the dorsum and the tip of your nose. This gives off a look that your nose is thinner, and it hides the wider part of the dorsum. Nose contouring has no perfect science. You will have to practice to see what works best for you and what does not.
There are two basic parts to nose contouring: the contour and the highlight. The contour hides the large sides of your nose and blends it smoothly into your face. It erases the shadows that give a nose that large-looking vibe. The highlight is to accentuate the tip and the center of the nose, giving the nose a look as if it thin and small. Basically the highlight distracts the eye, whereas the contour hides unsightly features.
This photo shows how contour hides the nose’s widest parts and uses highlights to make the nose appear thinner and pointer. The overall effect is a smaller-looking nose that fits well and is proportionate to the rest of the face.
Rhinoplasty is one of the more serious ways to make your nose look smaller in photographs. It’s quite a long-lasting change and won’t affect just your selfies. It will also improve how you look in real life. Only consider this if you want a relatively permanent change and are willing to commit to a different nose shape.
Rhinoplasties can be done surgically or non-surgically. And in 2013, rhinoplasties were the fifth most common surgical procedure.
Rhinoplasties were already around more than a century ago but have only been used for aesthetic purposes in recent decades. Unlike non-surgical rhinoplasties, this invasive counterpart is a permanent change and can last a lifetime. Surgical rhinoplasties are massive commitments, and you should only consider it if you are prepared for the permanent change. It will take about six months to see the final result after undergoing rhinoplasty. With this option, it is important to choose a board-certified surgeon to do the work on you.
Fillers (Non-Surgical Rhinoplasty)
Recently, non-surgical rhinoplasties have gained traction because, generally, people prefer non-invasive procedures. It uses hyaluronic acid as an injectable. In a study of 250+ non-surgical rhinoplasty patients by Hedén (2016), there were no serious complications related to the procedure, and all patients were satisfied with the preliminary outcome of treatment. The study tells us that using hyaluronic acid injectables as an alternative to surgical rhinoplasty is viable. However, one downside is that the patient would have to get retreatment because hyaluronic acid degrades over time.
In this photo, this man underwent non-surgical rhinoplasty to give his nose a more proportionate finish.