Bella got some great engagement photo advice from wedding photographer Meg Messina last week, and there was a great gem of a geek tip in amongst the hair and makeup tips.
Messina suggests that you tape a piece of tissue paper over your camera flash for an instant diffuser (the kind you wrap presents with, not the kind you blow your nose with).
In my list of top tips for taking beautiful photos with an SLR, I mentioned that your flash is too harsh when aimed directly at your subject and should be bounced or diffused. However, I had never heard this brilliant and so simple advice — plus, I've always got some tissue on hand in my gift wrap arsenal.
Diffusing light is worth it: Messina says is helps by "softening the light just a bit before it hits your face. Make sure the tape itself does not cover the flash or you'll be left with weird shadows."
For another flash diffusion technique with something you probably have around the house, try using a compact mirror!