Congratulations on getting your headshots taken or updated. It’s usually one of the most put-off things we do but also one of the most important for personal branding and presenting a professional image. Because of this, you may be living with your headshot for a few years. To capture the best version of yourself at the moment the shutter clicks, and feel confident in front of the camera, I have put together some simple tips that will make for a successful (and fun/painless headshot session:
- Mindset: Relax and have fun! I’m going to make you look great and you’ll have an easygoing time! I know how to position your head, shoulders and body for a flattering view. Just follow my direction during the session (no matter how odd it feels at the time) and it will be fine!
- Clothing and Jewelry
- Style: Make sure that your photo depicts you in a manner appropriate for your field. Typically this means a dress shirt or blouse, a shirt and tie, or even a suit. If you are in a corporate field, this often means solid dark colors like blue or black. If you are in a more casually-dressed field, you can dress as you would for your business, but avoid bright patterns, low necklines and turtlenecks.
- Fit: A tight fitting collar or overly low and loose neckline can squeeze or reveal more than you may wish. Check the fit. If you are going to have arms showing, move your arms in your jacket and test the fit, jackets that pull at the shoulders and arms are not flattering.
- Jewelry: Keep it simple. Big, shiny jewelry (unless that’s your business) can distract from the important subject, you. I don’t recommend dangling earrings unless they are important to your “look.”
- Colors: Try to keep the clothing from being too close to your natural skin tone. Whites, pinks, and yellows sometimes “wash out” skin tones. In general, the best colors are medium shades of blue, green, burgundy, and rust.
- If you are unsure about how your outfit may photograph, have someone take a few shots of you with a cell phone so you can see how it looks at a quick glance. Or, just look in the mirror and move your head and body a bit to see how the clothes move – especially around the shoulders and neck
- Makeup Suggestions:
- I always urge my female clients to wear more makeup than usual, but not to go overboard. You want to add a little definition to your features, but you don’t want the makeup to be what is noticed. Make sure you use a base/foundation to even out the skin tone (foundations without SPF and are more matte based are best), some mascara, curled eyelashes and eye liner helps to define your eye. Lip color should not be too bright (one to two shades darker than your natural color) and should coordinate with the outfit that you bring. Also apply some powder to eliminate shine. Some blusher will give your skin a healthy glow. It’s a good idea to bring your lipstick and powder to the session for reapplication if necessary. Shimmery eye shadow and cheek color reflects the flash and does not photograph well.
- Hair Tips: Again, remember that you will be living with your headshot for quite a while and you will not want it to be a reminder that you needed a haircut or color touch-up! It’s a good idea to get your haircut a week or so before the session, maybe even go to a “blow-out” bar and get the hair done by a pro right before the session. Feeling good about how you look will make you feel good about getting your picture taken. Men, a fresh shave is important.
- Glasses: If people would not recognize you without your glasses, wear them. If you wear them occasionally, I would leave them at home. I will work with you to make sure your glasses don’t catch too much of a reflection.
- Additional Tips for Looking Your Best:
- If you get your eyebrows waxed or threaded, please do so at least 2-3 days prior to your headshot shoot.
- Increased water consumption will help clear your skin and give it a healthy glow. It will also make you look younger and fresher.
- Reducing consumption of coffee, teas and sodas will give your teeth a break from stains and discoloration to
- If at all possible, avoid alcohol for a day or two before your shoot. It dehydrates the skin.
- Try to get a good night’s rest before the day of your shoot.
- Confidence is Key!
No amount of preparation or posing will replace the natural magnetism that comes out to play when you’re having fun in front of the camera. Once you are prepared for your session, then relax and have fun in front of the camera. Be yourself and those great photos you are looking for will get captured that much easier.