Saturday, January 3, 2015

Taking the Perfect Nail Selfie!

Viva La Nail Selfie Revolution!

We all LOVE showing off our gorgeous jamicures!  But sometimes...  our photos leave a little something to be desired.  I'm totally guilty of some of these, but in my adventures, I've learned a lot.  And now I'm going to share it with you!!

#1- Lighting!  
Good lighting is SO important!  Indirect natural light is the best.  The sun is the best light source ever.  There really is no comparison between the sun and a light bulb.  Any time you can take your nail selfie in natural sunlight, the better!

Here is an example of a GREAT photo!  It's outside with natural lighting and a fun prop.  The background makes sense and it's nice and clear.

Here's an example with bad lighting.  The nails are still cute, but it's not a great picture.  There is a shadow right across the front.  No bueno.

#2- Clarity! 
We want to see the cute patterns and designs on your nails, so blurry pictures are definitely a no-go.  Here is an example of my nails.  This photo has so many things wrong with it!  It's a night time photo, so the lighting is not great.  And it's blurry!  I loved my nails like this (Frosting lacquer with the Love Struck top coat), but the picture would have looked SO much better with natural lighting and a non-blurry take.

#3- Hand Poses!  
There are a lot of ways you can pose your hands.  Props are a big favorite, so is the "natural hand".  Mug shots are fun and so is "hand over hand".  Have fun and be creative, but try to stay away from the dreaded "Claw Hand".  It's a little frightening.

Why am I holding my hand like this?  That's not what a hand looks like.  (In my defense, this was my very first set of jams and nail selfie ever.)

Here is a great application, but poor lighting and "the claw"!  I think the only time we hold our hands like this is when we're taking awkward "nailfies".

Here's another "claw".  Why?  It looks painful.

Here is an example of a good hand pose!  You can see all of the different designs, the nails are clearly visible, and the prop makes sense.

This is a fun prop and the posing is nice.  If I had clenched my hand a little tighter, it would have looked uncomfortable, but a gentle grip is very nice!

Here is the "natural hand".  It is a big favorite and it is so lovely!  Notice how the sleeve of her shirt or sweater is pulled to the middle of her hand to give a nice backdrop for the nails?  Gorgeous!

Hand Over Hand is just lovely, too.  This pose requires a helper to take the photo for you which might make it less of a "selfie" (unless you use a timer!) but it's still so nice.

#4- Props!
Props are super important.  Things to look for:  make sure it makes sense for your photo.  Is it a Christmas jamicure?  Christmas props or ornaments are cute!  Things to avoid:  brand names and props that don't make sense.  Are you showing off your nails, or your new phone/ makeup/ thermostat?  (For the record, I'm not sure if you could take a nail selfie with a thermostat, I was just throwing that out there.  But now I'm curious- CAN you take a picture with your thermostat?)

My Jamberry mug frequently shows up in my nail selfies.  It's a great size and color, and it helps me keep my hand relaxed and natural looking for photos.

This prop is relevant!  I put on my Hunger Games NAS (Nail Art Studio) wraps to wear to the Mockingjay Part 1 with my friend.  Holding my mockingjay bracelet in my photo just made sense.  I did have to be careful not to clench too hard or I'd end up with a claw.

I was going for a bit of a "Rebel Chic" with this look.  It seems like my favorite jamicures are black, white, and silver.  I liked the sweet and glitzy with the rocker edge that came with the skulls.  A blingy prop made sense to me at the time.  It's been months, and I still like this picture.

Although, I could have picked a better background. Which leads me to...

#5- Background!
When you're taking your picture, you want your nails to be the focal point.  You don't want them to get lost in the prop or the background.  The general rule of thumb is:  The busier your mani, the more basic the background should be.

I love these super cute floral french tip wraps (China Rose Tips), but I'm not sure what's happening in this picture.  Are they coming out of the door?  What is she holding, a bush?  Simpler would have been better!

These are my nails again.  And while they're super cute, there is too much happening in this photo.  Am I trying to show you my nails, my tights, or my skirt?

Here is a pretty nail selfie.  The focus is the nails and the background is subtle and not distracting.  

#6- Cuticles!
This might be the most important part of the whole blog post!  We are taking pictures of our nails, and part of good nail care involves our cuticles.  A good cuticle oil will help not only by keeping the skin around your nail moisturized and looking good, but when you massage it into your skin, it also increases the blood flow under your nail and helps your nails grow stronger and faster.

These cuticles need some help.  The Jamberry cuticle oil and Nourish lotion can help!  Plus, the lighting isn't great here.

These cuticles look a little better, but you should be pushing your cuticles back right before you apply your wraps or lacquer.  It really does make a difference!

Bad cuticles are the only cuticle related faux pas in the nail selfie world.  If you're applying lacquer, make sure you clean up those cuticles BEFORE snapping your nailfie! 

I was super excited to try my very first Jamberry lacquer (Kiss) that I took a picture right away.  But my cuticles are covered in lacquer and my prop doesn't make any sense.

These cuticles look much better! No lacquer mess here!  (Just some not totally even painting.  I love the Jamberry wraps because the cuticle shape is so nice, I don't have to do any work after I put them on except cuticle oil every day except the day I apply my wraps.)

Hopefully I've covered some of the do's and don'ts and you are well on your way to taking the perfect nail selfie.  And don't worry if they're not perfect at first, I've committed ALL of the no-no's on my journey!  The most important part is to have fun and to share what you love!  I love my Jamberry nail wraps and I share them often!  You can see more of my nail selfies on Instagram ( @bekahvreeland)! 

Bonus Tip:
The Jamberry home office is can see your nail photos when you use the hashtag #JamberryNails and if you tag the specific wrap or lacquer you're wearing.  That last photo would be #JamberryNails #SunKissedJN and #MatteFinishJN.  Not sure where to find the proper hashtag?  Check out the website!  It's listed right under the description!
And as always, you can check out the current designs on my website  


  1. You missed an important one. The bad wrap. Buckling, bubbling, skewed, too big on cuticles, too small, not filed properly.

    Great post!

    1. You're right! I did leave out the bad application nailfie. My hope is, though, that no one will have a bad application to take a picture of. ;)

  2. Thank you so much, this is very constructive and helpful

  3. Thank you for your tips! Big help!