It’s no secret – lighting is vital and makes all the difference when it comes to taking the perfect photo or video. Whether you’re taking a killer Instagram selfie, filming your go-to makeup tutorial, or want to impress in a video meeting or interview, say hello to ring lights: your new bestie.
For those unfamiliar, a right light is a relatively simple tool that provides professional, high quality lighting in photos and videos. The device, usually made up of small LED bulbs or one interrupted ring of light (hence the name), provides an evenly diffused affordable light source at home or studio set ups.
If you’re wanting to up your social media or video quality game, keep reading for the low down on ring lights and how to make best use of their benefits.
Better Quality Images
A ring light will help to sharpen an image; making them clearer and easier to see. They’re extremely flattering and skin will appear smoother with blemishes reduced – great for close up shots and vloggers. The LED ring will also cast an attractive halo catchlight in your eyes (a unique and unexpected bonus!).
Eliminates Harsh Shadows
When shadows aren’t an option, such as when applying makeup or taking selfies, ring lights are a favourable option. Awkward shadows, which can lead to uneven makeup application, can be caused by standing under overhead lighting. By flooding your face with lighting face on, using a ring light for makeup minimises this issue and provides an illuminating even glow.
LED Ring lights are extremely multi-functional. Whether you’re a streamer, Instagram influencer or photographer, a ring light can help you to step up your content game. Ring lights come in a variety of shapes and sizes with different light settings to suit your usages, enhance your set up, or be used on the go. For MUA’s and beauty techs, they can improve the brightness in a salon – better lighting = improved precision and happy clients.
It’s best to look for lights with adjustable colour temperatures as this can affect your content. A warm or blue tint to your lighting can add a certain ambience, whilst a white light will produce sharper images with high colour accuracy. Basically, the more settings, the more versatile you can be!
Whilst natural lighting is great, it’s not always there when you need it (especially on gloomy days in the UK). LED ring lights with a daylight light setting are the perfect alternative for this; creating conditions that are ideal for applying makeup. On the other hand, cool white light can be quite harsh for makeup application and may cause you to overdo it with certain products.
Aside from the colour temperature of your lighting, a dimmable ring light will allow you to have even more control. Although a brighter light may be great for certain close-ups, a dimmed light may be better if you’re using shiny or reflective objects whilst shooting. Try out different settings to see what works best for you.
Placement and Extras
Since most ring lights can be attached to stands or tripods, it allows you to angle or position the light at your preferred distance. Play around with the position of the lighting to find your ideal shot. After all, you don’t want to risk dazzling yourself or ruining your filming by having the ring light too far or too close.
Generally speaking, a ring light should never be positioned behind your microphone or camera. Keep it close to your camera or phone to avoid casting shadows. Ring lights with phone holders can help with this - some also come with remote controls and bluetooth clickers so you can snap the perfect shot from a distance. Attachments such as mirrors are ideal for makeup lovers, and desk clamps are a great aid when streaming or recording at your computer or dressing table.
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