10 Thirst Trap Poses for Women & Men


Last Updated: May 13, 2024

Dating Tips

A thirst trap is a social media photo meant to attract attention through visual appeal, usually featuring the poster in a provocative or flattering manner. These images aim to boost engagement by utilizing effective photography techniques like lighting, posing, and composition. Here, we’ll talk about what makes a great thirst trap for both men and women and how to keep things tasteful so that you attract your ideal audience.

Understanding Thirst Traps

Although thirst traps have become a part of our everyday lexicon, you might be wondering where this term came from and why thirst traps are so prevalent.

The phrase came about in the 1990s, when being “thirsty” referred to someone with unsatisfied lust. Similar to being stranded in the desert without water, being a thirsty person during this decade meant that you were pining after something (or rather, someone!)

A “thirst trap,” then, became a phrase to describe pictures intended to draw the attention of a thirsty person, primarily on social media platforms like Instagram and Snapchat. The goal was to trap the gaze of an admirer to gain clout or make a connection with your crush. There’s also a psychological component here! Studies show that sharing thirst traps can actually release feel-good neurotransmitters such as dopamine and oxytocin. In other words, posting thirst traps makes us feel good.

Of course, the reception of thirst traps hasn’t always been positive. While 70% of people surveyed from Western cultures saw thirst traps as a positive form of empowerment, confidence, and self-expression, folks from more conservative backgrounds aren’t so enthusiastic. 55% of these respondents were likely to consider thirst traps as inappropriate because of their display of sexuality.

Nowadays, thirst traps have become more than just a way to send a virtual wink to your crush. They’ve also become financially powerful! Social media influencers have reported significant revenue gains from posting these steamy selfies. Some estimate that thirst traps account for 50% increases in their financial revenue thanks to spikes in engagement and sponsorships. And, some users have even enjoyed a 300% increase in likes and comments after posing thirst traps instead of their usual content.

It’s no wonder, then, that thirst traps have only become more popular over time. It’s estimated that online accounts are increasing the use of thirst traps by 15% every year since 2015. And, they’re considered to be 80% more effective in sparking engagement with an intended audience than non-thirsty posts.

So, how can you leverage this information to build your online presence and maybe even attract the eye of your dream audience? Let’s take a look at some thirst trap tips for men and women.

Thirst Trap Poses for Women


Studies show that women are twice as likely as men to post thirst traps as a way to build self-confidence rather than gain sexual attention. With this in mind, try out a few of these poses to see which one feels most comfortable for you.

Pose One: The Over-the-Shoulder Glance

When done correctly, the over-the-shoulder glance is the perfect pose for appearing coy and seductive. Not only is it sophisticated and tasteful, but it will also allow you to highlight your good side.

Here are a few tips to pull it off:

  • If you feel comfortable with your shoulders and neck, reveal them by wearing a sleeveless shirt or dress.
  • Make sure that you twist your torso towards the camera enough that both eyes appear in the image.
  • Relax your shoulders to elongate the neck.
  • Work on a smoldering look.
  • Consider leaving the mouth slightly open.

Pose Two: The Laid-Back Stretch

If you’re someone who exercises regularly, one of the best times to snap a thirst trap selfie is during a workout. We know, it may seem counterintuitive, but actually, this is when endorphins will make you look relaxed and when your body lines will be most defined. Here’s how to take the perfect laid-back stretch selfie:

  • Use workout clothes that don’t show sweat stains
  • Don’t wait until you’re maxed out, otherwise you’ll appear exhausted. Instead, plan on taking your selfie after you’ve worked up a good sweat but not tired yourself out too much.
  • Snap your selfie in the full-length mirrors while you’re stretching or flip the camera and take the picture from above.

Pose Three: Close-Up Selfie with Smize

Don’t be intimidated by the lingo: a smize is simply a smile with the eyes. It’s your way of being playful with your gaze to make your thirst trap more alluring. The results are absolutely disarming. Here’s how to capture it:

  • Make yourself smile, genuinely in the mirror. Notice the way that your eyes squint slightly as the muscles around your lower lid contract upward
  • Now, practice that subtle muscle contraction without moving your mouth. That’s your smize!
  • Give the look more authenticity by conjuring up an image of something that makes you feel whatever emotion you’re trying to convey, be it sensuality, confidence, or playfulness.
  • Take the picture in great natural lighting or a ring light with the face angled slightly towards the camera
  • Go with light, natural makeup

Pose Four: Leg Showcase

Your gorgeous legs deserve their moment in the thirst trap spotlight! Here’s how you can showcase your legs during your next photography session:

  • Find out what styles are best suited for your legs. For instance, long, slender legs will be best accentuated by form-fitting skirts and rompers while more voluptuous legs can be celebrated with a-line skirts and heels.
  • Create visual interest by placing one foot in front of the other, crossing your ankles, or even slightly lifting one foot off the ground behind you and coming up onto the ball of your standing foot.
  • Take the camera from a low angle, which will elongate your legs.

Pose Five: Casual Hand-in-Hair

This classic pose is sure to convey the kind of relaxed attitude that will make your thirst trap more approachable. Here’s how to achieve it:

  • Set the scene with your best girl-next-door outfit. This is a casual look, so it pairs well with the clothes you might wear to a day at the beach like a cute top, jean shorts, and clean sneakers.
  • Turn your head slightly. You can create a sense of adorable bashfulness by turning your head slightly away from the camera.
  • Play with your hair as you would naturally. This pose should look 100% natural, so even before you snap a pic, think about how you would normally play with your hair when you’re relaxed.
  • Place your hand at the base of your head, just below and behind the ear, and then run your hand through your hair towards the ends, giving your hair a twirl towards the end. Snap pictures throughout this process and then choose the one you like best.

Thirst Trap Poses for Men


It’s not just women who can benefit from learning the ways of the thirst trap. Here are five poses that can help you get the attention of your crush.

Pose One: The Mirror Selfie

The mirror selfie is a classic that every guy should master if he wants to make a good impression. Here are a few tips to get started:

  • Relax. Most people are more attracted to a face that looks relaxed and open than one that’s trying too hard to look tough. Even if you want to accentuate your muscles, do so as subtly as possible. Visible flexing is a turn-off.
  • Time to say goodbye to the bathroom selfie. The truth is, the toilet in the back of your shot isn’t doing you any favors. Instead, stick with mirrors placed in your living room or the gym, especially in areas with good natural lighting.
  • Hold the phone at eye level or above. Men tend to take pictures from a low angle, but this won’t be flattering.

Pose Two: Casual Lean

Want to live out your can’t-be-bothered band member persona? The casual lean is a great pose for you! Here’s how to master it:

  • Maintain good posture with a very slight lean. You don’t want to lean too far that you start to look hunched or about to fall over.
  • Put your weight on one leg. This will happen naturally, and you can decide where to place the non-dominant foot, either crossed behind or slightly in front of your standing leg.
  • Choose your level of drama. If you want something subtle, keep your arms down, with your hands in your pockets or crossed in front of you. If you want a more dramatic effect, raise the arm you’re leaning on so that you’re propped on your elbow.

Pose Three: Action Shot

Action shots are great because they’re more visually interesting and they’ll make you feel more relaxed by giving you direction. Here’s how to get started:

  • Snap a selfie during your next walk. Anytime that you’re outside, whether you’re hiking or walking the dog, it is a good moment to take a sexy selfie. The natural lighting and the mood boost from the fresh air will make you look fun and adventurous.
  • Want more action? Call in a friend. Action shots are best done by another person. If they’re using a smartphone, make sure the settings are adjusted towards movement. For point-and-shoot cameras, they’ll want to use a high shutter speed to prevent blurring, low aperture, and image stabilization if available.

Pose Four: S-Shaped Pose

If you’ve never heard of s-shaped poses, it could be because the term comes from the art world, referring to a common stance for human sculptures and paintings. Here’s how it works:

  • Shift your center of gravity away from the midline so that your spine is more S-shaped than rigid. This is going to give you a sense of relaxed confidence that is sensual and inviting. Try channeling Michelangelo’s David.
  • S-shaped poses are common in Greek sculptures because they accentuate the drape of linens. So, wear clothing with a nice drape, such as a loose-fitting T-shirt.

Pose Five: Backward Glance

This is a pose that is effective for both men and women! The trick is getting it right with these steps:

  • Relax your shoulders. Crossing your arms could inadvertently cause you to shrug your shoulders and give you a hunched look.
  • Choose between a profile shot and a three-quarters shot. The more you turn your torso, the more visible your face will be in the shot. Either one could work depending on what you want to achieve: profiles are more angular, bold, and dramatic while three-quarter shots in which both eyes are visible, are softer and more inviting.
  • Pick an interesting background. The best way to set up a backward glance thirst trap is to find something worth looking at and face your body toward it. That way, when the photo is taken from behind, you and the background are working together.

General Tips for Enhancing Thirst Traps

Ready to take your selfie game to the next level with thirst traps? Take these final tips along with you for photos that are sure to break the internet!

  • Always choose natural light when possible. Sunlight will bring out the balance of your natural skin tones and give you an energetic glow.
  • Keep your light source to the side. When you are choosing your light source, make sure that it’s not directly behind the camera or behind you. Instead, you want it to be somewhere around 45 degrees to the side. This will ensure that you don’t get a harsh glare or unattractive shadows.
  • Think about the message you want to convey with your expression. As we mentioned, an over-the-shoulder smoldering glare can look absolutely fierce (and borderline intimidating) while a shy smize can give you a sense of friendly allure. So think about what kind of message you’d like to send out into the world.
  • Make sure your wardrobe aligns with your message as well. Just like you want your expression and pose to say something specific, you can also think about what message your clothes are trying to convey. Bright and light colors are typically associated with openness and excitement, while deeper tones will give off a sense of sultriness and intrigue. How much skin you show will also greatly impact how your photo is perceived. If you feel comfortable taking selfies in a bikini or in nothing but gym shorts, you’re definitely going to give off the traditional thirst trap vibes. But, you can also play around with clothes that are sexy but less revealing. Overall, the clothes that make you feel your best will be the ones that appear sexiest in your photos.
  • Keep the focus on you. Even though it’s not a bad idea to take your thirst traps in interesting places, make sure that the focus is always on you! You might even play around with aperture to keep backgrounds slightly out of focus.
  • Don’t force it. At the end of the day, not everyone is going to enjoy or benefit from taking thirst traps. Indeed, if you’re feeling pressure to take sensual selfies as a way to boost your following or your own self-confidence, you could end up with pictures that look forced. Plus, if you are in a committed relationship, studies show that you could be risking tension with your partner by posting your thirst traps. All of this is to say that if thirst traps aren’t your thing or you think you might be posting them for the wrong reasons, don’t feel pressured into taking them at all.
  • Take more pictures than you think you need. The beauty of modern digital photography is that you can snap pic after pic after pic until you feel very comfortable in front of the camera. So, our last tip is that you don’t be overly critical as you go. Instead, take a few photos, look over them to make sure that your lighting and composition are good, and then keep taking pictures. Throw in a few poses and looks that are out of your comfort zone. And then go back to the ones that feel more familiar. That way, you’ll end up with many photos to choose from, and you might just surprise yourself!

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