Sure, you can use your phone or tablet to capture a selfie, but there are many good reasons to use a compact or interchangeable-lens camera instead.
Not only do you stand to capture better-quality images, but you'll typically have more flexibility with focal lengths, enabling you to get more of the scene into the frame.
Cameras are also increasingly becoming equipped with features that make the selfie-shooting process easier, from delaying the exposure to give you enough time to pose to triggering the shot automatically when it senses you're ready.
Not only that, but skin smoothing and slimming filters mean you can instantly look your best, previewing these effects in real time.
So, whether you're after something you can slip into your pocket or something a little more substantial, read on to find out what we think are the current best cameras for selfies.
1. Panasonic TZ90
Masses of selfie functions and a huge zoom lens squeezed into a pocketable body
Type: Compact | Sensor: 1/2.3in | Megapixels: 20.3MP | Lens: 24-720mm | Screen: 3-inch tilting touchscreen, 1,040,000 dots | Continuous shooting speed: 10fps | Max video resolution: 4K | User level: Beginner
The TZ90, also known as the ZS70 in the US, is unquestionably one of the smartest cameras around for selfie shooters. Flip the touchscreen around to face the front and you’re presented with a range of controls, such as the option to soften skin, activate a slimming mode or choose between blurring the background and keeping it sharp. There’s a Buddy Shutter option that captures the image as soon as you and a companion bring their faces together, and if you’re some distance away from the camera you can even trigger the exposure by simply waving your hands across your face. Together with 4K video recording, a built-in viewfinder and a mammoth lens equivalent to 24-720mm, it’s fit for whatever you want to throw at it.
2. Sony RX100 III
With a relatively large sensor and a wide-aperture lens, the focus is very much on excellent image quality
Type: Compact | Sensor: 1in | Megapixels: 20.1MP | Lens: 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8 | Screen: 3-inch tilting, 1,228,800 dots | Continuous shooting speed: 5fps | Max video resolution: 1080p | User level: Enthusiast
It might not be the newest RX100-series camera from Sony, but if selfies are your thing then you really don’t need to plump for one of the more recent, pricier options. The RX100 III is still a commendable choice as an overall camera – the fact that it’s so well suited to selfies is just an added bonus. Its screen, which tilts upwards over a 180degree angle, has a high resolution of 1,228k dots, which compares very well even against the newest cameras. You also get effective face detection and the ability to have a three-second delay before your selfie is taken so that you can just concentrate on looking your best and not on fiddling around with the controls. It also stands out from its peers with a large 1in sensor and an integrated electronic viewfinder, and all of this is condensed into a surprisingly small, pocket-friendly package.
3. Panasonic Lumix LX15
Panasonic's answer to Sony's mighty RX100 line is a corker
Type: Compact | Sensor: 1in | Megapixels: 20.1MP | Lens: 24-72mm f/1.4-2.8 | Screen: 3-inch tilting touchscreen, 1,040,000 dots | Continuous shooting speed: 10fps | Max video resolution: 4K | User level: Enthusiast
With its tiny body, flip-up touchscreen and a range of selfie modes such as Soft Skin and Slimming, the LX10 has plenty of appeal for those wanting to capture themselves with ease. And that's all before you get to the guts of the camera, which themselves are pretty solid: a large, 1in sensor, 4K video recording, and a lens that has a bright aperture of f/1.4 at the wide end, to help with blurring backgrounds and low-light shooting. The fact that it has a relatively short zoom lens might put some off, but this does at least help it to remain pocketable.
4. Nikon D5300
This upper-entry-level is arguably Nikon’s finest budget offering
Type: DSLR | Sensor: APS-C | Megapixels: 24.2MP | Lens mount: Nikon F | Screen: 3.2-inch articulating screen, 1,037,000 dots | Continuous shooting speed: 5fps | Max video resolution: 1080p | User level: Beginner
Since its 2013 launch, the D5300 has been updated by both the D5500 and D5600 – but the fact that it’s still available just goes to show how relevant it continues to be. It offers excellent value for money next to more recent DSLRs, and has the advantage of a 3.2in LCD screen – larger than the 3in displays we’re used to seeing on such cameras. While the display isn’t responsive to touch, the effective face detection on board means it's debatable if you need this. You also get built-in Wi-Fi, GPS and compatibility with a raft of Nikkor lenses, so it's a great option for the travelling photographer looking for an all-in-one solution.
5. Canon EOS 200D
Canon’s baby DSLR offering picks up from where the EOS 100D left off in style
Type: DSLR | Sensor: APS-C | Megapixels: 24.2MP | Lens mount: Canon EF-S | Screen: 3-inch articulating touchscreen, 1,037,000 dots | Continuous shooting speed: 5fps | Max video resolution: 1080p | User level: Beginner
Billed as the world’s lightest DSLR with a vari-angle screen, this teeny camera manages to combine the longstanding benefits of Canon’s EOS system with up-to-date technologies. You can, for example, use it with a huge range of lenses that stretch back thirty years, but still ping out all your creations effortlessly through either Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or NFC. The 3-inch screen can be fixed to a range of positions and is super sensitive to touch, while face detection and tracking keep you in focus as you or the camera move around.
6. Olympus E-PL8
A competent yet stylish body, with a range of smart accessories alongside
Type: Mirrorless | Sensor: Micro Four Thirds | Megapixels: 16.1MP | Lens mount: Micro Four Thirds | Screen: 3-inch tilting touchscreen, 1,037,000 dots | Continuous shooting speed: 8fps | Max video resolution: 1080p | User level: Beginner
Olympus very much had the style-conscious user in mind when crafting the E-PL8,. The result is a beautifully retro camera, complete with metal dials and leather accents, that can be pimped with a range of cases, straps and other accessories. The camera enters its selfie mode as soon as you flip the screen down underneath the body, with an e-Portrait mode on hand to smooth out skin and the option of using the camera's Art Filters to give your selfies an alternative treatment. Furthermore, the one-second delay gives you enough time to shift your focus from the shutter-release button.
7. Panasonic GX800
Plenty of features shoehorned into a tiny shell makes this a winner
Type: Mirrorless | Sensor: Micro Four Thirds | Megapixels: 16MP | Lens mount: Micro Four Thirds | Screen: 3-inch articulating touchscreen, 1,037,000 dots | Continuous shooting speed: 10fps | Max video resolution: 4K | User level: Beginner/enthusiast
Yep, another Panasonic model, but it makes the list for good reason. The company has focused strongly on delivering small but fully featured cameras in recent years, and the GX800 blends its small form and flip-up screen with the option to use different lenses from the ever-growing Micro Four Thirds lens stable. You can change the focus of the background, apply Soft Skin and Creative Filter options, and set for a number of shots to be taken in quick succession, with a large countdown timer displayed before it all starts. You can even capture selfie panoramas and use the Buddy Shutter option described above if you're with a friend. The only real downside to the camera’s small size is the 210-shot battery life, but with USB charging you can still keep it juiced up conveniently while on the move.
8. Canon EOS M3
It might have had a bit of stick upon release - but this outgoing model is now a bargain
Type: Mirrorless | Sensor: APS-C | Megapixels: 24.2MP | Lens mount: EF-M | Screen: 3-inch tilting touchscreen, 1,040,000 dots | Continuous shooting speed: 4.2fps | Max video resolution: 1080p | User level: Beginner
Canon’s EOS M models might not have had the appeal of other mirrorless lines, but the EOS M3 is arguably the best value camera in this list. Why? For a start, having recently been replaced with the EOS M6, it can now be had a bargain price. In fact, it’s the cheapest model on this list to sport an APS-C sensor, which gives it an advantage over the compact cameras for image quality. Its screen is touch sensitive and its wireless functionality also works well, which also means you can control it from your smartphone or tablet if you want to capture yourself from further away.