The only thing worse than drinking the water in Mexico is coming home from an unforgettable spring break with a memory card filled with unflattering photos. But don’t run to your computer and click “untag” just yet. Follow HC’s guide to looking great in your spring break pics and you’ll be giving that chick with Facebook model shots a run for her money.
1. Find out what colors suit you best and then shop for bathing suits in those colors. The easiest way to do this is to look through magazines for girls who fit your look, suggests Beaux Wellborn, a pageant coach who was recently featured on MTV’s Made. “Three things you want to look for in photos are hair color, complexion, and eye color,” she says. “Once you see those, you can pretty much guarantee that the colors will look good on you.”
If you don’t have time to rifle through magazines before you pack your bags, a quick trick is to figure out if you look better in gold jewelry or silver jewelry. If it’s gold, you’ll look better in warm tones, like oranges, yellows, browns, and yellowish greens. If you look great in silver, you’ll look better in cool tones, like blues, greens, pinks, and purples. If you’re not sure which tone you are, colors like eggplant, teal, and red look good on almost anyone.
2. Go to a swimsuit store and take your camera. It’s hard to tell with just your eyes what is flattering and what isn’t, so as you try on each suit, have a friend take a picture. Use the pictures to double check to make sure everything fits right and isn’t hugging you in all the wrong places.
3. Find your best lighting. Keep your camera handy and take lots of practice shots to see which angles work best for you. Each woman is different, Wellborn says, so it’s important for you to find the right lighting and pose to show off your best assets. While doing this, make sure you’re angling both your body and your face. The best angles usually come when you’re not looking at the camera straight on.
4. If you’re concerned about looking lean, it’s all about the skinny arm. Placing one hand on your hip (aka no spreading of the arm flab) instantly slims you down and makes up for all those times you cheated on your spring break diet. For an extra flattering pose, turn your body slightly sideways so that one foot is placed in front of the other and is pointing toward the camera. Keep your weight on your back foot to perfect this pose.
5. Smile naturally! No one likes a corny school-picture-circa-eighth-grade smile, so relax your mouth! Sometimes it helps to actually think of something funny to give you a genuine smile. For an extra pretty grin, use Crest White Strips before your trip to have a glowing smile in every picture.
6. Be confident! It’s easy to tell when someone is self-conscious, even in a photo, so focus on how hot you look instead of small flaws.
By Nancy Mucciarone for Her Campus