Travel season is almost upon us again which means it’s nearly time to dig out that passport with the photo you’d probably rather not look at! It’s fairly common knowledge that people tend not to look their most attractive in their passport photos. When the time to renew your passport finally comes around, you can spend ages preening yourself to look your best, yet somehow still find the results are less than satisfactory. So why is it that we tend to look so different in the mirror than we do in the photo?
A very harsh flash
The main reason is that the standard ID photo booths tend to have a very harsh flash. It’s extremely bright and therefore highlights even the slightest shadows and imperfections and can almost make pale skin look green. For this reason, if you want a decent looking passport photo, make up is a good idea.
Try a corrective primer or foundation
Even if you don’t normally use it, try a corrective primer or foundation. You want to give yourself some colour. For paler skin an apricot tone under the eyes will counteract any purple discolouration. Add extra make up to those ‘bags’ or dark circles and you should achieve a healthier effect. You can use concealer on any spots or blemishes and it’s a good idea to put powder on top of the foundation. Ideally, you want a matt finish as the harsh flash picks up on the slightest bit of shine and amplifies it.
Define your lips
Use a liner on the lips to define them. You can add deep colour to lips if you wish or keep them more natural looking, but as long as they look healthy and not dry or cracked you should be ok. Don’t use lip gloss and again aim for a matt finish.
Another area to focus on is the laughter lines around your nose. They tend to protrude and stand out even more in the harsh light, so use some make-up to soften this area. You may find you look fairly different in the mirror, but hopefully you’ll find this works wonders for the photo. Good Luck!