Your Picture Is Worse Than Your Mirror Image, But The Real You Wins
Published in Jul 2020 / Updated in Dec 2020
It’s a shame you will never get to see your face the way we see it because that’s the most attractive version of yourself. We see people getting offended when they are told: “you look nothing like your picture.”
Now researchers tell us that instead of taking this as an insult, we should consider it a compliment backed by solid facts.
The way you look in person is much better than the way you look in mirrors and pictures. And here’s why you look good in the mirror, bad in photos but even better in real life.
Pictures and mirrors lie to you. But pictures are worse.
Why Do I Look Good In The Mirror But Bad In Pictures?
Pictures don’t do you justice. They freeze your face, which creates the “frozen face effect.” It’s not very flattering, which is why most people think they look bad in photos.
This was the discovery made by psychologists at the California and Harvard universities.
The study compared photos against short 2-second video clips. Practically every time, the video image was considered more attractive than the photo.
So, the reason you look better in mirrors is that you are “alive.” The motion has a big impact on your attractiveness. That is why you are more attractive to us than you are in pictures.
The brain does not see a face as a single frame, which is what it’s forced to do when looking at a still picture. In reality, the brain captures several images of the face. It then comes up with a more accurate representation of what the face is truly like.
Well guess what? The real you is a lot more attractive than the mirror or the photo version.
How Is Mirror Image Different From The Real Thing?
First of all, the mirror reverses your face. What you see as the right side of your face in a mirror is in reality your left side.
It was discovered that when your mirror image is flipped, you are more likely to prefer it.
So, for those wondering how you really look like to others, a mirror image turned the right way is probably as close as it gets.
Also, some people wonder, do pictures make you look fatter?
First of all, there’s some good news. Only 10% of people think they are photogenic or love the way they look in pictures.
So, yes, pictures can make you look fatter. The camera on your phone is not perfect, and it can exaggerate or minimize some of the features on your face.
That’s why you will even look different on different phone cameras. Yes, pictures seem to make you look fatter depending on lighting, your pose, camera quality, and so forth.
That is why a single snap is never enough to get the perfect picture. People turn the cameras to various angles to get a picture they are happy with.
Are My Bad Selfies Actually What I Look Like?
No, you are not as bad as you look in selfies. In fact, this is why many people ask, why do I look different in pictures? Usually, this is in reference to the way the person looks in a mirror.
Remember that you have a three-dimensional face, and your selfie is a two-dimensional version of you.
Your mirror shows you a moving three-dimensional image, while a picture captures a single frame of you and processes it into a two-dimensional shot.
So, obviously, your picture will never look as good as you do in the mirror or in person. The motion has a huge impact on the way you look, and selfies completely miss that.
In reality, your face is not frozen in a single frame, even when you are completely still. So, the brain is able to get an accurate image of what you look like, unlike your selfie camera.
Besides, the phones are usually programmed to highlight certain things about your face, traits that might not be so visible to those who see your face directly. That’s why some people are surprised to see how deep their wrinkles are after looking at their pictures because their mirrors never distort these aspects of their appearance.
But Why Do Mirrored Pictures Look Weird?
A mirrored picture is still a photo, which we have seen ranks very poorly in comparison to your look in the mirror. When a picture is mirrored, it gets even weirder because you are not used to seeing yourself that way in pictures.
The real reason you always hate the way you look in pictures is partly that you look better in person. On some level, I guess you know this, but now you have confirmed it.
Have you been finding yourself attractive in mirror but ugly on photo?
Then that’s to be expected. Take comfort in knowing that you look your best in person.
Now that you know you look better in person than you do in your mirror or pictures, you might be wondering how to see your true image. Or rather, how to see what you really look like to others.
For now, be comfortable knowing that you look better than your mirror or your camera says you do. If asked: which is more accurate, the mirror or the photo; you at least know that the mirror gives a better visual representation of what you truly look like to the rest of us.