Internet, Networking, & Security Around the Web 5 Situations Where You Need a Selfie Stick Sometimes taking a regular selfie just doesn't cut it By Elise Moreau Freelance Contributor Elise Moreau is a writer that has covered social media, texting, messaging, and streaming for Lifewire. Her work has appeared on Techvibes, SlashGear, Lifehack and others. our editorial process Facebook Twitter Elise Moreau Updated June 24, 2019 robuart / Getty Images Around the Web How to Get a VPN Tweet Share Email You probably already know that practically everyone in modern society who owns a smartphone has become at least mildly obsessed with taking selfies. Now thanks to certain inconvenient selfie situations, a little smartphone tool appropriately dubbed by the internet as the "selfie stick" is here to save the day. What Is a Selfie Stick? In essence, the selfie stick is really just a monopod for your smartphone. Here's what it actually looks like and how you can buy one. You strap your phone to one end, hold the other end, and extend it outward so you can take as many photos or capture as much video footage of yourself as you want. (Your phone connects to the selfie stick so that all you have to do is push a button on the end that you're holding.) This trendy new gizmo is all the rage right now, and it turns out that even camera equipment retailers are struggling to restock them. But why would anyone use one, you might ask? Here are just five common situations that might require the use of a selfie stick. You might look a little ridiculous holding your smartphone at the end of a stick from an onlooker's point of view, but at least your photos and videos will turn out fabulous. 01 of 05 You Need to Fit Multiple People in a Group Selfie Photo © Getty Images For a solo selfie, holding your arm out the old fashioned way usually works fine. But if you want to get two or more people in one shot, then it can be a serious problem. Human arms just aren't meant to extend out that far. So grab your selfie stick and tell your friends to smile or strike a pose. You should easily be able to fit everyone into your group photo without much effort. 02 of 05 You're Traveling and Want to Capture the Background Scenery It's not uncommon to find a selfie stick in the wild when there are tourists around. And when people travel to someplace new, they often want to remember everything they saw by capturing it in a digital photo or video format. But what could be better than having yourself in those photos and videos too? The selfie stick is a traveler's perfect solution for getting background scenery in a photo with your own face too. 03 of 05 You Don't Want to Bother a Stranger to Take a Photo for You Lisa Werner/Moment Mobile/Getty Images When you need to take a group photo or when you're traveling alone, it's a common trend to resort to asking a nearby stranger to take a photo that gets everyone and everything in the shot. But then of course, as luck would have it, the stranger often has absolutely no idea how to operate your phone or camera, and then ends up taking a terrible photo that's off center or too dark or something. So why even bother? Two words: selfie stick! 04 of 05 You Hate Seeing Your Arm in Your Selfies AzmanL / Getty Images Let's face it — holding your arm out far enough to take a selfie can be awkward, and you can almost always see the arm in the selfie photo anyway. Just as well, holding out your arm for long periods of time is tiring. Although aiming the selfie stick at just the right angle takes practice, it is possible to take great photos or videos without seeing the stick itself. The selfie stick is also just a great alternative for taking multiple photos or long videos when you just don't have the strength to hold your arm all the time. 05 of 05 You Just Want to Capture More Creative Viewpoints Kevin Frayer/Getty Images News Last but not least, sometimes people just want to add a little extra pizazz to their selfies by taking advantage of creative angles and different points of view. You can raise or lower the stick whichever way you want, and depending on the setting and position of the stick, you can even create somewhat of a fisheye effect in your photos. It's also just great tool to have for keeping your phone stabilized when you're ready to snap a few good selfies. Tips for Taking Great Selfies Your face is beautiful. Don't ruin your selfie by taking them under awkward lighting and then applying a hundred different filter effects to it. Use the tips discussed in the link above to improve your smartphone photography skills so you can take better selfies.