As a nail lover, we know how hard you work to pick your perfect polishes, adding artwork and personal touches along the way. After putting in all that work, it's only natural to want to show off your masterpieces on social media. You might have thought it was the easy part, but capturing nail photos can be super challenging! When it comes to content, the images that look the most natural can often be the toughest to capture - nail photos are the prime example!

So how do you score a great shot for Insta? Getting the right angles, distance, lighting and positioning are just a few of the factors you need to consider to prevent nail fails! 

We've put together our top tips to help you take the best nail photos possible! 

1) Get Camera-ready Cuticles 

Starting from the foundation, make sure your hands are ready for the spotlight by getting hydrated! Nothing ruins a great manicure like the sight of dry brittle cuticles. Avoid taking the attention away from your artwork by preparing your cuticles for their close-up. A product we love for everyday TLC is CND's Solar Oil. This lush cuticle conditioner keeps your skin soft and nourished for a smooth appearance, no matter how far you zoom in. Make sure to add a little oil to your cuticles right before you start shooting so they look fresh and ready for their close up! 

2) Discover the Right Distance 

Now that your hands are prepped and ready, time to find the right picture placement! Consider the complexity of your nails when deciding how close to capture your photo. Does your design involve intricate details that would be best under a macro setting or did you opt for a bold all-over colour that stands out at a distance? If you're not sure what distance to choose, we reccomend shooting from a slight distance, as you can always crop your shots after. A little bit of distance can also go a long way in helping your smartphone camera focus. 

3) Lay Down the Light 

Lighting can absolutely make or break your Insta image! If you have the opportunity, natural daylight can be the most flattering especially to show off subtle nudes and pastel shades. If outdoor lighting isn't convenient or it's too late in the day, set yourself up for success with the right artificial light. It's easier than you think to get studio quality lighting at-home! While some nail Instagramers swear by a light box, we're all about taking advantage of Glamcor's lovely LED lights. 

Take advantage of Glamcor's hands-free technology with the Multimedia Extreme. The most tech-friendly of Glamcor's LED lights, the Multimedia is a great option if you're looking to capture creative images at a further distance. The Bluetooth functionality lets you capture your perfect content without having to deal with awkward arm angles or clumsy handling. 

Pro Tip: Take your nail insta game up a notch by filiming nail art tutorials. Video can be a great way to gain a greater following and increase the engagement on your content. 

If you're looking for something a little more portable to capture nail photos anywhere, opt for Glamcor's Riki Skinny or Riki Cutie. The Riki Skinny is the perfect partner in crime to set up a well-lit vanity station. This works well if you choose to capture more of a flatlay style image with well-lit nails as the center of attention. The Riki Cutie is Glamcor's most portable option. This adorable smartphone sized LED mirror is compact but powerful enough to help you highlight your nails in any setting. Take advantage of the Cutie's table stand to set it up close to your nails or use the attached finger-ring to turn the Cutie into a double-duty photo prop.

4) Benefit from Backgrounds


PC: @opi 

While your main goal should be to highlight your nails, consider adding a bit of atmosphere with a unique background. For example, if you've painted on a beautiful bright colour to prep for a holiday, capture your content with your bags packed as background! Or if you're showing off nail art leave your tools in the background to show a behind the scenes perspective on your creation. 

As for colour, consider what you'd like to achieve or contrast in your nails. A bright bold background such as a piece of furniture or fabric can bring out fine details and make line work pop. If you're looking to show off a subtle glitter or more subdued nail look, opt for a chic background like a marble countertop or satin sheets. 

5) Plan Your Props 

One of the best ways to avoid awkward hand angles is to take advantage of props. After doing your nails, you've got the perfect prop right at your finger tips! Grab your polish bottle or dipping powder and position it in a way that lets you show off your shade while capturing all 5 of your fingernails.

Another great option for props is to add interesting accessories to bring out the best of your beautiful nails. Opt for a bit of bling like a feminine ring or bracelet to accentuate shimmery nails or contrast a matte finish manicure. A simple clutch or wallet can also make an easy prop while capturing nail photos on the go. 

PC: @opi 

6) Extra Hands to Help 

Sometimes we all need a helping hand! If you've got a vision in mind but can't quite capture it on your own, enlist a mate to make it happen! Having a helper lets you capture heaps more angles and helps you keep both of your hands in the frame. Two handed poses can bring out the best of your nail art or help you highlight an accent nail or multi-colour manicure.

If you're working with an iPhone, having a buddy to help can be the best way to make portrait mode work in your favour. Getting the perfect distance between the camera and your nails will help you highlight your work while getting in a bit more background and context. 

We hope you find these tips helpful to capture Insta-celeb worthy nail photos!