Precise camera and light controls. Bright and versatile ring light with a fully adjustable stand. Shoots at 1080p and 720p resolutions, delivering reliably smooth and well-lit video streaming. Easy to set up.
A webcam-based ring light is not for everyone.
Selfie ring light kit Includes flexible tripod smartphone holder to shoot in portrait or landscape mode. Integrated brightness and color controls. Bluetooth tripod remote control. Comes in black or pink.
Not the most rugged ring light available.
Handheld lightweight ring light grips snugly to your smartphone for well-lighted video or photos anywhere. Affordable unit features 3 brightness settings. Easy to swap between front and rear cameras.
Its battery life is not particularly impressive.
Inexpensive ring light features 3 brightness settings with up to 5 hours of battery life. Easily attaches to smartphones and laptop displays for vlogging, meetings and more.
Battery barely lasts 2 hours on its brightest setting.
This bright ring light is optimized for makeup tutorials. Setup is simple and unit has a small desktop footprint and a highly flexible stand. Dimmable light readily holds smartphone as it records. Available in 3 sizes.
This is not designed as portable compact ring light.
We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.
Gone are the days when you had to ask a friend or even a stranger to snap that perfect photo of you. Considering how easy and convenient it is to snap a selfie these days, there’s no excuse for not having at least one photo of yourself that you absolutely love. But the challenge with taking selfies is getting the lighting just right. If you want to make sure you always have the ideal lighting conditions no matter where you take a photo, a selfie ring light is a must-have.
A selfie ring light illuminates the area around your smartphone for perfect lighting every time. You can use it in both indoor and outdoor settings, and many styles are lightweight enough that you can easily take them with you on the go.
But if you want the best lighting possible, you have to choose the right selfie ring light. That means figuring out which models are compatible with your smartphone, the style of ring light you need, and the type of power you prefer. Our handy guide has all the tips and tricks for choosing the best selfie ring light for your next photo session.
The first thing to consider with any selfie ring light is whether it will work with your particular smartphone. Some models are only designed to accommodate iPhones, while others can only fit Android phones. If the light attaches to the phone directly, make sure it will fit your model.
If you want to use a selfie ring light with a DSLR camera, make sure that the model you choose is compatible with that device, too.
Clip-on vs. freestanding
Selfie ring lights are available in two styles: those that clip onto your phone and those that are freestanding. Some models can be used both ways.
Clip-on selfie ring lights tend to be the most lightweight, compact options, so they’re ideal for travel or selfie-taking on the go. They don’t offer much in the way of adjustability, though.
Freestanding selfie ring lights are larger and designed to stand behind your smartphone when you snap photos. They include a tripod for your phone so you don’t need to hold it yourself, and they often allow you to adjust the light to direct it exactly where you want it. Freestanding models tend to be fairly bulky, though, so they aren’t always the best option for travel.
Most selfie ring lights are battery-operated, which means there’s no cord to get in the way and no need to be close to an outlet. The batteries are usually rechargeable, so you can easily charge them with a USB cable. In most cases, you’ll get at least three hours of battery life out of a selfie ring light, though some models offer up to 10 hours of battery power before they require recharging.
Some freestanding selfie ring lights have an AC adapter that requires an outlet to power the light. While you can usually only use these lights indoors, you never have to worry about the battery running out when you’re in the middle of taking photos. Just be sure to choose a model with a long power cord of at least five feet so you can easily position the ring light.
Selfie ring lights vary in size from small, compact models to large, tabletop styles. Clip-on lights are usually small and lightweight, which makes them easy to stash in a bag or even your pocket. Freestanding selfie ring lights are typically larger, so they work best if you mainly take selfies at home.
For the most versatility, choose a selfie ring light with multiple light settings. Opt for a light with at least three different brightness levels to account for the various lighting conditions you might experience.
If you want to customize your lighting even further, choose a selfie ring light with a dimming feature. Some models allow you to dim the light all the way from 100% to zero, which provides the most control over how much light you use for each selfie.
Clip-on selfie ring lights often include a remote that can connect to your smartphone via Bluetooth. A remote allows you to easily capture photos and video with the touch of a button and at a distance from your phone.
Selfie ring lights vary in price based on type and light settings. Most lights cost between $7 and $55.
Clip-on selfie ring lights with only a few brightness levels typically range from $7 to $16. These models are usually extremely lightweight and compact, so they’re ideal for taking on the go. They don’t necessarily offer the best lighting conditions, though.
For clip-on and freestanding models that offer three brightness levels and a Bluetooth remote, you’ll usually pay between $16 and $30. The clip-on models are travel-friendly, but the freestanding models are usually best for home use. The remote makes taking perfect selfies even easier.
Freestanding selfie ring lights that offer a dimmer feature for full control over the lighting level and a Bluetooth remote usually run from $30 to $55. These models aren’t especially travel-friendly, but they provide the most lighting options for your photos.
Pay attention to the background when you’re taking selfies. A bright-colored background like red, blue, or green may reflect on your face when you use a selfie ring light, distorting your photos. White or light-colored backgrounds are usually best.
If you’re using a clip-on selfie light, experiment with the angle that you hold your phone to figure out the best lighting for your photos.
Always place freestanding selfie ring lights on a stable surface. You don’t want the light to wobble as you’re trying to snap your selfie.
If you’re using a freestanding selfie ring light, position it so that it’s at eye level. That provides the most flattering lighting for your photos.
There’s a wide range of selfie ring lights on the market, so you can usually find the perfect option for your photo needs. The OURRY Clip On Selfie Ring Light is an ideal option if you’re looking for a small light that’s easy to take on the go. Its cute cat shape is fun, and the light rotates 360° to provide lighting from all angles. We also love the Keliiyo Selfie Ring Light, which is a freestanding model that also has a phone holder. The flexible arms make it easy to direct the light where you need it.
Q. What are the benefits of using a selfie ring light?
A. With a selfie ring light, you’re guaranteed perfect lighting for all your photos. Specifically, the light can prevent shadows from falling over your face. It can help make sure that your photos don’t have any unattractive orange or yellow tones, too. A ring light also helps improve the quality of your selfies because it reduces the chance of pixelated areas in photos.
Q. Can I place a clip-on selfie ring light on a phone with a case?
A. Most clip-on models are designed to fit over a case. However, it depends on the design and thickness of your case. The clip is usually somewhat flexible so that it can accommodate a variety of cases. If you find that the clip won’t fit over your case, though, don’t try to force it or you may wind up breaking it.
Q. Do I have to use a selfie ring light with a smartphone?
A. Most clip-on selfie ring lights are designed to fit on a smartphone and likely can’t be attached to a traditional DSLR camera. You can usually use your clip-on light with a tablet, and you may be able to clip the light onto a table or other flat surface, though. Freestanding selfie ring lights can be used with any type of camera because you can simply place the camera on a tripod and set the light where you want it.
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