25% off Accessories (applied at checkout). FREE 🇺🇸🇨🇦 Shipping on orders over $50

Take Perfect Underwater Pictures With Your iPhone

January 05, 2018 5 Comments

By now, everyone should be completely acclimated with the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and the iPhone X. While these three phones are a huge departure point for Apple, like their predecessors the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, all the three new iPhones are dust and water-resistant. To be specific, the new iPhones have an IP67 rating. 

Perfect Underwater Pictures Starts with Understanding Your iPhone 

What does an IP67 rating mean? 

The IP in "IP67" stands for Ingress Protection, and the 6 is the dust-proof rating, whereas the 7 is the waterproof rating of the phones, and signifies that the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X are protected for up to 30 minutes in a depth of up to 1 meter (39.4 inches). This means that while the new iPhones are dust and water resistant, they are not waterproof. 

take underwater pictures on iphone tips

Tips for Taking Underwater Pictures on Your iPhone 

Tip #1: Get the Right Waterproof iPhone Case 

Enter the SHIELD Metal iPhone Case... 

Sure, a few drops of water here and there won't hurt your new purchase, but if you want to protect your phone from water, drops, scratches etc without covering it in bubble wrap, you need to step your game up. The SHIELD is a metal iPhone case that will maintain your phone's integrity, while being fully waterproof and shockproof even in the toughest of circumstances. 

underwater iphone pictures tips

Shop the Hitcase Shield Now

Or try the Hitcase Pro... 

If you're ready to put your iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X through its paces, get yourself the HITCASE Pro and get ready to throw away any other action camera you may have invested in prior. With its rigid, impact resistant ABS/Polycarbonate shell and rubberized surface, the HITCASE Pro is one tough iPhone case that will extend your iPhone's underwater ability from 1 meter, to 10 meters (30 feet). That alone will allow you to really go on an adventure. 

underwater iphone photography picture tips

Shop the Hitcase Pro Now


Tip #2: Use Your iPhone's Volume Button to Take Underwater Pictures 

Before you hit the water, you still need to remember that you can't use your touchscreen when you're under. To take photos underwater on your iPhone, the volume key will be your new best friend — this is also called taking photographs in burst mode, which is what is needed when shooting fast moving objects underwater. Try this over and over to make sure that you're comfortable with your shutter release and can quickly navigate to the camera without using the screen. 

Tip #3: Make Sure Your iPhone is Fully Charged Before You Shoot 

Make sure your iPhone is totally ready to take underwater pictures before you jump in the water. That means you’ll also want to make sure your iPhone has a fully charged battery before you head out for your day of shooting. You absolutely cannot charge your phone while it's wet so make sure you get you do this before you get to your shooting destination. If you immediately need it while you’re in the water, it's better to let it dry off first or utilize wireless charging. The same thing applies when you want to transfer photographs to your computer. 


better underwater iphone photography


Tip #4: Get the Right iPhone Photography Accessories 

In order to take perfect underwater photos every single time, you'll need to accessorize. Get yourself a lens — or lenses for your iPhone if you're feeling adventurous. A wide-angle lens and a fish-eye lens for your iPhone will completely revolutionize how you view underwater photographer. Even on an iPhone. 

Now that we've got all the technical bits out of the way, it's time to take some pictures, and have fun with your new underwater photography skills.

Discover the Hitcase iPhone Lenses

Tip #5: Take Underwater Pictures During the Golden Hour(s) 

The best time to shoot underwater is anywhere between 10 AM and 2 PM. There is absolute visibility underwater and the sun is at its highest point. To be honest, you could shoot even on a cloudy day, but you have to remember that the light will be refracted when you're underwater, and your images will have a blue/green hue to them. 


how to take underwater iphone pictures

Tip #6: Be "Part of Their World" 

The little mermaid wanted to walk on earth, so when she had the chance to walk on dry land, she didn't remain on some tragic barge taking pictures from a distance. If you want to be in the ocean, really immerse yourself in the aquatic life. Get as close as you can to your subjects in order to maintain sharpness and color. Buy a filter for your external lens, but resist the temptation to only shoot from above. 

underwater photos on iphone


Tip #7: Have Fun with Your Underwater Pictures! 

Finally, the only way to take perfect pictures every time is to keep trying. Practice first in your swimming pool and when you like your results go advanced — go under the sea and create imagery that amazes people! 

Now that you’ve discovered how to take underwater pictures on your iPhone, see for yourself how you can dominate iphone photography this year one of our favorite blog posts, 8 Ways to Start Succeeding at iPhone Photography This Year 

Ready to outfit your iPhone for its next underwater adventure? Check out our waterproof iPhone case series to find the perfect waterproof casing for your iPhone model and take epic pictures whether you’re on land or below sea!  

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.

5 Responses


September 16, 2019

Love this, lots of good tips


August 13, 2019

I just tried it for the 1st time w/my iPhone 8. Travelon plastic case with lanyard. Galápagos, quiet inlet and beach with surf.

- plastic case doesn’t hurt photos
- home button doesn’t work in plastic case, so I turned on Assitive Touch in Accessibilty settings – puts a multifunction home button in the screen
- turn the camera on before submerging. The side buttons work but not the touch screen.
- when wet (above water), single touches work ok, but swiping the lock screen to get to the camera doesn’t. The Assist. Touch button button saves you. Map one of the Assist. Touch buttons to App Switcher. Unlock the phone, switch to camera app, go under and shoot.
- in the calm water of the inlet around noon (good tip in the article that I hadn’t considered) pics came out well while snorkeling.
- in the surf from 2-2:45, pics were blurrier. Prob mix of less direct light and water stirred up by the surf. Still quite clear, but the pics aren’t nearly as good. – All the pics have serious blue green – no filter – and the phone can’t focus as well. Wondering if there’s a better mode or any camera adjustment to help, or if calmer water and closer subjects are really the best.


June 05, 2019

Where can we buy a filter for your lens you mention in #6? I’m interested in one for my super wide lens.


September 07, 2018

Why cant u just pit ur phone in a zip lock bag and then take the photo


April 19, 2018

Is there a way to access the camera from a locked iPhone without having to touch the screen?