What exactly is #texturetuesday ? If you’ve taken a peek at skincare instagram, or the “skinsta” community as it is frequently called, on any given day you’ll see hundreds of stunning product photos. But if you scroll on a tuesday, you’ll see one type of product shot above all else: texture captures. The popular hashtag #texturetuesday (with 233k posts to date) brings out people’s best macro photography as they share up-close shots of their favorite products.
It may seem easy to capture these #texturetuesday shots, but a lot of work goes into each photo. If you’ve been wanting to dip your feet into texture photos but don’t know where to start, you’re in the right place! Below are ten things I’ve learned about shooting #texturetuesday images that I hope will help you.
1. Start with the right tools.
Macro photography can be a tricky skill to master. Itrequires playing with aperture, exposure and angles in a way that may take more time than a typical flatlay or lifestyle shot. The level of detail in a quality #texturetuesday requires a bit more work on the front end (shooting) than other types of photography, in my experience.
I shoot all of my photos with my canon rebel t6i and my 18-55m lens that can go to an aperture of 4.5. This has been sufficient for my purposes so far, but I am also looking into a macro lens that could go even wider. I would highly recommend a camera that can go to at least 4.5 in aperture if not wider to get the best results. An iPhone could do the job if you shoot in portrait mode and have good-quality natural lighting, but to me it just won’t produce as high quality of a photo.
2. Choose a product with color for a popping #texturetuesday.
Although there are some exceptions to this, in general shooting a product with color makes for a better texture photo. Vivid colors do better in the #texturetuesday hashtag because they are visually appealing and catch your eye when scrolling through Instagram. I also find them easier to capture because the camera tends to focus better on color versus white.
3. Use a white background.
This is account-dependent if you use a particular background that you love, but I find that one of the easiest ways to shoot textures is by putting the product (by itself or in a container) on a white background. It pops on your feed, doesn’t look out of place if you can’t crop the product perfectly, and doesn’t interfere with the product itself visually. I use these white boards that I buy from Amazon in a value pack. Alternatively, a white pillowcase works well.
4. Shoot before you’ve used the product so the jar is full and pristine.
Whenever I buy a new product, I shoot whatever texture photos I want with the product in the jar prior to using it. It’s harder to create a good #texturetuesday if the jar is half empty! These photos are often more appealing to brands as well.
5. If the product has an air bubble, mess around with it with your finger.
Sometimes the jar looks a little funny because one half of the top doesn’t have product in it. When this happens, I move the product around with my finger or a spoon. This creates a little more depth to the product, as well as making it easier for the camera to capture it. Sometimes it doesn’t look perfect straight out of the jar! Don’t be afraid to play with it.
6. Create swatches with your fingers.
When my #texturetuesday involves sharing swatches of individual products (or small groupings, like the feature photo in this blog post), I use a clean white board and rub the swatches out with my fingers. This makes it look smooth without being too perfect. I also find the white board makes an easy surface to scrape the product off and back into the jar.
7. Go back to kindergarten and make finger painting art for #texturetuesday!
One of my favorite ways to shoot textures is to take a bunch of products and make a sort of painting with them. I usually do this with close to expired products, or ones I don’t like as much, so I don’t feel like I’m wasting product. This makes me feel like I’m five years old again! It’s also a fun way to get out of a creative rut – everyone likes painting, and you can go in so many directions with it. Use a white board for a background (or another color if that appeals to you more) and go crazy.
8. Or showcase a collection of textures in their jars.
Alternatively, you can show off a group of textures by arranging the jars nicely. I often make them in a circle with little space in between so shadows don’t interfere with how the textures look. This is a fun way to showcase your stash or compare textures in a certain category.
9. Use natural lighting.
My second-to-last piece of advice: whenever possible, use natural lighting for your photos. This is helpful for three reasons. 1) It makes figuring out shutter speed much easier; 2) it gives you more room to play around with your aperture, and 3) it makes for higher quality photos in the end. Unless you are a skilled product photographer (such as @juanskindiary or @svvphia , who I highly recommend checking out on Instagram), it is difficult to achieve adequate exposure when shooting indoors, ESPECIALLY for up-close photos. Shooting in sunlight will help with creating consistently beautiful photos.
10. Use the #texturetuesday hashtag and enjoy sharing your textures with the rest of the skincare community!
Don’t forget to use the #texturetuesday hashtag to show off your hard work. This is my favorite hashtag to scroll through as it’s just filled with incredibly detailed, vivid product shots. Have a look yourself!
I hope these tips have helped you become stronger in your product shots and post some incredible #texturetuesday photos! Let me know which one was the most helpful in the comments.