017: The Trick to Always Look Good on Camera

I’m going to teach you a trick that I have found works, not just for me, but for a lot of my clients to really be more presentable and more engaging on camera and also on stage.

Now, I first learned this strategy when I was competing in beauty pageants and I used it to consult my pageant contestants when I was a pageant coach, but I recently heard it again from a mentor of mine as a speaking trainer and I thought that is really what we’re talking about. We’re talking about the same thing and that is the strategy of what he called, “Pretty Face”.

Pretty face… Pretty face is basically the idea that when you are onstage speaking or in this case, on camera speaking, the person who is watching should be able to either pause the video or someone in the audience of a public speaking gig, should be able to take your photo and at any time along the way, when your photo is taken or when your camera is paused, you should have a pretty face.

Now, what this actually does, because I’m sure you’ve seen those people before who like, when they’re giving a public presentation or something, or they’re speaking to a camera and they have like, what I would call a dead face, which is just like zero personality, zero expression.

So, it’s a little bit different to do the opposite of it, to kind of be very still, but if you are the opposite, if you’re the type of person who is naturally more subdued or maybe a little bit more monotone, then this is definitely a trick for you. So, pretty face, when I was doing this in pageantry, I was teaching women who are competing in beauty pageants that you may be, you know, on track to be a celebrity. If you’re going to be Miss USA or Miss Universe, you have to be prepared to have your photograph taken at any time. I think a really good example of this is Nicole Richie.

Now, Nicole Richie for those of you who are from my era remember Nicole Richie as like the party girl, right? But every photo that she was in, she posed for. She just looked fabulous, no matter what. It was almost as though she just knew someone was constantly taking her photo and so she was constantly aware of how she was positioning herself, how she was using her face, how she was using her hands and how her body was. So, if you were to look at any photo of Nicole Richie, she usually knew that that photo was being taken and she was able to manipulate how she showed up in order to make sure that photo turned out great. Okay. So, that’s what pretty face is all about. So, here is what I would recommend doing if you are somebody that needs help with the idea of pretty face for whether you’re speaking on camera or on stage.

First thing that you need to do is smile. A smile could change everything in your face. It uses a lot of muscles in your face and it really brightens up the way that you look. So, just simply a smile can, if you were to pause and anywhere along the video, can make a big difference in how you communicate.

Now, thing number two is that pretty face doesn’t always have to be pretty. In some cases, pretty face simply means that if I’m telling a story and part of the story is dark or mysterious or creepy or weird or whatever then, that’s the expression that I may have. So, it doesn’t mean that you’re always smiling and always looking glamorous. That’s not really what pretty face is. It’s just that it’s turned on. Okay. You really want to have your face turned on.

Again, think about people who you’ve heard speak before. Bill Nye the Science Guy is like famous and the guy with the dry eyes you know, those guys from commercials, well they’re famous for that very stoic look where there’s not a lot of expression in their faces and just very subdued, right. As a public speaker and as an on-camera personality, podcast host, and as an influencer, having light in your face and energy and being turned on is a lot better. You’re going to be able to influence a lot stronger and communicate in a way that people are able to really pick up on because you’re giving them more touch points, right. Facial expressions and body language and movements with your hands are always that people are communicating.

If you are only using your voice to communicate and you’re not using your facial expressions and you’re not using your hands or not using your body language, then you’re only communicating so much, but by having pretty face, by turning yourself on really, like your facial muscles are turned on. Your body language, your energy is up and turned on. You’re going to be a better communicator. Next time that you head on stage or turn on the camera for your show, I want you to think, “Okay. I’m going to have my face turned on, lit up and have pretty face. No matter where they pause in this video, it’s going to be expressive.”

Thank you so much for reading.

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I’ll talk to you soon.