Why Do I Look Better in The Mirror? [7 Reasons to Look Different]

Ever compared your photos to your real looks in front of the mirror? This comparison will make you Wao, do mirrors tell a lie? Why do I look much different in photos as compared to a mirror? Is something wrong with my looks or mirror?

To kill all above confusions, stay with us till the end. Here we will answer all mirror related questions such as: Why do I look better in the mirror?

We don’t look better in the mirror but we look different in the mirror. The reason is that the mirror shows averted reflection of our looks. As we see it most of the time. So, we become habitual of our mirror version. But when we compare this version to photos, we feel the mirror image is much better. It’s all about our feelings and perception, nothing else!

Most of the customers at photographer’s shops always complain the same. But when photographers flip their image, they feel comfortable with it. There is science and psychology behind this strange phenomenon.

Keep reading to explore more!

Do You Actually Look Better in The Mirror?

When you start comparing your photo with your image in the mirror you may wonder. Oh, Is this you? How different do you look in real life? Why do you look better in the mirror than in photos? What’s wrong with your images? The deeper you go, the bigger the confusion it seemed to be!

For you, the image in the mirror is better than camera photos. Both science or psychology play a role behind this mystery? No more questions now. Let’s jump to the answer

It’s true that you look different in the mirror than in real life or camera photos. The reason is that your mind is used to or comfortable with your reflection in the mirror more than the camera. That’s why when you compare your looks to other images you feel they are different. It’s all about your perception that your mind has become habitual of receiving signals from your mirror. That’s why it looks better to your perception rather than other images.

In reality, neither does mirror depict your real image, nor does the camera. That’s pretty confusing!

7 Reasons Why Do I look better In the Mirror

It’s clear from the above discussion that you look different in the mirror. Now the question arises what is the” science” or “psychology” behind this fact.

1.  Mirror Shows Flip Image

The image that the mirror shows is your averted reflection. This flip version looks better than other images. When we look in the mirror, we can control our appearance. That’s why we look better. But in photos, we see our image when a photo comes in our hand. So, when we say mirrors never lie, we mean the mirror removes asymmetry of our face as it shows the horizontal view.

2.  We Focus Less on Mirror’s Image

We are habitual of seeing faces many times in the mirror. So, we pay less attention to facial expressions. But when we see us in photos, we tend to focus on posture, facial expression, and camera performance. That’s why we criticize the mirror’s image less than photos.

3.  Mirror images are close to our facial looks.

We need not prepare ourselves to get portrayed in the mirror. We see our natural looks there. That’s the look we have most of the time unless we do makeup. But when we compare our photos to mirror images it looks more artificial.

4.  Mirror’s Image Is Mostly Safe in Mind

When we familiarize something, it gets imprinted on our memory. Whenever we view our image in the mirror, we like it as we are familiar with it. But when we view our looks somewhere else, we find it less identical to the view that is safe in our mind. This way, we don’t accept the difference immediately and think mirrors portray us better than the camera.

5.  Lightening Matters A Lot

We don’t focus on the lightning factor when we look at ourselves in the mirror. But when we see our photos, we pay more attention to lightning. Our brain is tuned to view our looks in the mirror even at low light. You haven’t heard anyone complaining that he looks bad in the mirror when light is dim. But when you see yourself in photos, you might have heard the lightning complain many times.

6.  Face Symmetry

When we see our face in the mirror, it looks symmetrical at first glance. In reality, everybody has an asymmetrical face. That is, the left side of the body is different from the right side. But when we see our photo from different angles, we find it totally different from the mirror as its 2D version. But the mirror image provides a 3D version of what we really look like.

7.  Psychology-Mere Exposure Effect

Scientists believe that the mere-exposure effect is responsible for better looks in the mirror. When we see one thing again and again, we start liking it. Same happens with our reflection in the mirror. We see it while washing face, brushing and makeup. But when we see our looks somewhere else, it seems to be opposite to our exposure. That’s all psychology and science behind this mystery.

Our Thinking Makes the Perception Better

It’s all a matter of perception. You look better in the mirror because you think you are better. One research was conducted in which participants were shown many photos and asked them to recognize real photos. Almost everyone tried to separate the finest look photo because they think they look better. In this way, 90% of participants fail to identify their real looks.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Which is the more accurate mirror or photos?

Neither mirror is accurate, nor photos are a hundred percent real. The mirror shows the reverse side of our looks. But when we see our photo, we observe it from others’ perception. We feel as if the third person is looking towards our photo, not ourselves. Same person, same looks but different perception. That’s all the game.

If I look good in the mirror am I good looking?

If you look good in the mirror, maybe you think you are good looking, not others. It all depends on what you think of yourself. Experts say that we all think that we are attractive unless we see ourselves in other’s eyes. It does not mean you are ugly if you feel you look less attractive in the mirror.

Why do I look better in some mirror?

It’s true that different mirrors show you differently. If the width of the mirror is less, it will bend your image. In the meanwhile, an outward full-length mirror will show you heavier and bulkier. On the other hand, inward and long mirrors will show you taller and smart. The image version of the mirror is dependent on the shape, size and curvature of the mirror.


This post will clear the confusion of your better image perception in the mirror. It would be a good idea to replace the word better in this topic question with the word different.

Now it makes sense. The question is now: Why Do I Look Different in The Mirror: that’s the half answer. 

But my question is whether this question of different looks arise before the invention of photography or after? Ever thought you look different in the mirror? Share your thoughts in the comment box below!