Why I use video and lighting for phones

Video and Live streaming is king right now for marketing your small business and is a great addition to your everyday Instagram stories too. How do you get good lighting for phone, feel confident on livestreams, and why do I use my cell phone for video?

That’s what I go over in today’s post. Are you using video yet?

I’ve added video to my travel photography agenda as a way to help me remember the moment once I’m home.

With the Facebook algorithm changing constantly, and the industry flooded with businesses just like yours… we HAVE TO STAND OUT.

–>> Video marketing works because everyone else is afraid of it 😉

Cheap LED lights for phones on Amazon

How to use video for business marketing

Honestly, I don’t like being on video either.

I hate the way my voice sounds on video and most of the time, I’m in a hoodie and yoga pants while I work from home, alone. My hair is always a mess and I have really bad skin. Those of you who look cute everyday make me jealous… it’s why I rarely take selfies. Well, plus, ugh Selfies!

The thought of doing a live stream on a whim is just not what I wanna do.

–>> Here’s the thing though… it doesn’t have to be hard, complicated, or difficult to look your best on the fly.

With a tiny bit of lighting prowess, you can take your smartphone and do a Facebook, Instagram or YouTube livestream up a notch.

Good lighting makes everything better.

–>> The best part is that lighting options are super cheap (or even free!) with your smartphone.

selfie light review for smartphones

Cheap Lighting for Phones

Today, I review two inexpensive LED selfie lights that I use for my livestreams with my iPhone: 

No affiliate links here, just straight up LED lighting reviews.

Why do I use my phone for video?

Though I’m a professional photographer and have all the fancy DSLR cameras that can do video, I actually prefer to use my phone for recording videos.

–>> My phone is easy, fast, simple, and most important… with me at all times.

During my last trip to Africa, we drove for 17 hours to get from Harare, Zimbabwe to the beaches of Mozambique.

That road road trip was long and it was CRAZY. The entire road trip was like Mad Max Thunderdome, with any rules of the road completely disregarded.

With my phone, I was able to quickly capture snippets of video anytime I felt like it. Whereas, my DSLR was nearly always packed away in the trunk of the car with the rest of my camera gear.

the back roads of Mozambique Africa

Other reasons that I prefer my cell phone for video is that I can easily airdrop the videos from my camera to my computer with a click of a button and the added security of all of my photos and videos getting automatically synced to Google Photos, I LOVE using my phone for photos and video on my trips.

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How to Pick a LED video light for your Phone:

How do you know which light to buy? It all depends on your end goal with your photos and video. Are you going to be filming outdoors or in other bright light? Then a small selfie light won’t cut it.

Here is my selfie LED lighting review for using your phone for video, Facebook live streaming, and Instagram stories. These are some super cheap phone lights available on Amazon (under $20).

What are you mostly taking pictures or video of?

  • Do you want lighting that is super light and small for travel?

If that’s the case, I highly recommend the Comaray CM-150 LED panel. This is what I bring with me on my trips because it is thin, flat, holds a charge well, and has a tripod screw mount for attaching to a clamp.

This has come in handy so many times, as I regularly record video in hotel rooms or in the car (while someone else is driving).

–>> The flat panel LED light is also able to be attached to my DSLR or mirrorless camera’s hot shoe (aka-my ‘real’ cameras). Anything that has multi-purpose is a YES in my book.

lights for recording video on a phone
LED Video Light Commlite CM-L50 Dimmable 50 LED Ultra High Power Panel video light


  • Are you looking to take travel photos or selfies while out in restaurants?

Then, I recommend the selfie ring light from Raphycool, which even has a model that includes a battery charger.

This one clips onto your phone around the camera and adds a powerful punch of light at a close distance while being hands free. It has 3 brightness settings.

cheap lights for phones on Amazon
Top L: the light || Top R: off || Bottom L: low || Bottom R: High

Selfie lights on Amazon Review

Selfie lights for your phone are great because they clip onto your phone and you can use it hands free. That comes in handy in bowling alleys and other fun outings with friends. It’s also a great way to add lighting when you want a photo of your favorite cocktail in a bar.

Here I show the Raphycool selfie light from Amazon and the 3 different light intensities in real world examples:

  • the light itself
  • with ambient room light (selfie light is OFF)
  • setting A
  • setting B
cheap lights for phones on Amazon that clip onto the phone for selfies
Raphycool Selfie Light Rechargeable, Selfie Ring Light iPhone, Ring Light Phone

Review of CM-L50 Dimmable panel video light vs. Raphycool selfie ring light from Amazon for your iPhone videos and Instagram Stories.

Best Selfie Ring Light in 2019

LED video lights are portable and easy to use for recording video on your smartphone, mirrorless DLSR, and other cameras.

I use my LED video lights to add a small amount of fill light to my Facebook Live broadcast, Instagram stories, and YouTube videos.

📹 Today, we have a LED video lights review of two popular options for selfie lights on Amazon. The CM-L50 panel video light and the Raphycool selfie ring light and why you need to add lighting to your videos.

So, that’s it! This is my review of the two lights I use for different reasons.  The LED Video Light Commlite CM-L50 Dimmable 50 LED Ultra High Power Panel video light and the Raphycool Selfie Light Rechargeable, Selfie Ring Light iPhone, Ring Light Phone, 1500Mah Power-Bank 36 Led Light Clip on iPhone Samsung Galaxy iPad Photography Camera.

–>>Be sure to check out my other post, which goes through all of my low-tech gear for recording YouTube videos with my iPhone.

So, are you using additional lights for your phone? Share below:

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