How to look your best on video calls
When working from home began, video calls were happening multiple times a day. It was a way to keep us in touch, motivate us to get out of bed and shower. A good video call would help keep our spirits up.
But as we stay working from home longer and longer the video option has been turned off for many conferences and I often find myself looking at a zoom screen with no other faces than my own.
This change is not unique to our company and in fact has become a trend across the globe. As long as video is not required for a meeting more often than not employees are choosing to keep their video off during calls.
For those few of you out there that are still willing to turn on that video button, or feel that video calls might become popular again in the near future, here are some tips and tricks to help you look your best on those calls!
Light your face
It’s best to start with lighting because that will dictate where you are sitting. Open up your shades and let the natural light pour in, but don’t let all that light hit your back. I recommend having your largest light source either right in front of you or no more than 45 degrees away from directly in front of you. Also be aware that your screen can be a large source of light, so adjust your screen brightness, too, especially if you are taking a call without natural light. A bright screen can blow the highlights on your face out, making you look more like Casper the Ghost than a video calling champion.
Raise your Camera
There is one, and only one, acceptable camera angle: head-on and at eye level. Your table is almost certainly going to be lower than your face, and that means people are going to get an unflattering look up at you. Use a set of books, a stool, or a higher table to make sure your camera is at the same level as your eyes. You don’t want people to feel like they are looking up or down at you.
Test your video before the call
You want to show up to your meeting already looking good so that you’re not adjusting your surroundings, screen brightness, angle, or hair live for everyone to see. Both Zoom and WebEx have an option for showing you a preview of your video before the call starts.
Find a quiet place (and your best headphones)
Most of us don’t have a great deal of control over audio, but you’ll sound better if you take a call in a quiet place. Also keep in mind that your headphones might have a better mic than your computer. As a courtesy to others, please keep your mic muted unless you are talking.
Overall these are great tips whether you are video conferencing from home or the office and can be used even when this crisis is over.
Stay Safe, and stay healthy.