Do Selfies Distort Your Face?

woman taking selfie

It’s a rare few who can claim they haven’t snapped a series of selfies in an attempt to capture that perfect angle—or cringed in horror when a certain position highlighted a double chin or made you question if your nose is truly that big.

With an uptick in requests for rhinoplasty to improve selfies across plastic surgery practices nationwide, many plastic surgeons worry that our selfie-obsession is giving society a warped view of their own looks—literally. Reuters recently talked to a few about their concerns, and here’s what they had to say.

Strike the right pose for your nose

When polled by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons, 42% of surgeons reported seeing an increase in patients who want to improve the way they look in selfies.

But if you’re seeing something you don’t like in your selfie, there’s a good chance you aren’t getting a clear view of how that feature actually looks. That’s because when you take a selfie with your phone, the combination of the wide angle of the front-facing camera, short focal length, and close distance between you and the lens can highlight asymmetry and distort your features.

A recent study found that perceived nasal size increased as the camera lens got closer. For example, at 12 inches away, the nasal width increased by nearly 30% in both men and women, while proportions remained true to scale at a distance of five feet. So, before you rush to your favorite plastic surgeon, try using a selfie-stick, switching angles, or having a friend snap your picture instead so you can get a more realistic view of your appearance.

Your selfie shouldn’t be the reason for surgery

A quick google search will yield plenty of tips for improving your selfie results, but plastic surgery shouldn’t be one of them. While we want you to feel wonderful about the way you look, looking different in your selfies shouldn’t be your only reason for getting work done, simply because it isn’t an accurate view of your appearance.

On the other hand, if you—like many of our San Diego rhinoplasty patients—have always wanted to change a feature that doesn’t quite “fit” with the rest of your appearance, or you simply want to look younger and more refreshed, our plastic surgeons and aestheticians can help you safely enhance your appearance.

If this sounds familiar, we encourage you to contact us today to set up a complimentary consultation. Together, we can discuss your concerns and goals and come up with a treatment plan to help you look and feel your best, whether you’re facing a camera lens or not.