How to Prepare for A Headshot

People preparing for a headshot are often more stressed about what to wear for the photo session than they are for the session itself. Feeling comfortable is essential to capture the perfect headshot. Keep reading for tips on dressing and preparing for that all-important headshot session.

Consider the Purpose of the Headshot

Photographers such as Jason Guy encourage people to determine the purpose of their headshot. What image are they trying to convey, and what goals do they have for their profession? Headshots are often the first impression that people have of a professional, and that perception is everything.

Dress According to the Industry

Everyone shouldn’t dress the same way for their headshot. Think about the type of clothing that people wear in their industry. They should think about who they want to view their headshot, and then wear what they would wear in a meeting with that person.

Multiple Outfits

Don’t bring just one outfit. Most photographers will allow outfit changes to ensure a photo the client likes. Sometimes, the outfit the client wants to wear doesn’t photograph as well as they thought it would, and it is helpful to have another option.

Be Careful with Fit

Do not wear clothing that doesn’t fit properly. Although flowy, loose clothing can look great in person, it does not always photograph well. It can make someone look like a large box. Instead, wear fitted clothing that gives the desired shape when standing in front of a mirror.

Clothing Styles and Colors

Clients should choose a flattering neckline that conveys the image they want. A low, plummeting neckline may suggest confidence and power, or it may look unprofessional to some people. Conservative is usually better.

Clients should consider bold colors to get attention and wear neutrals if they are more interested in people connecting with their personality. Drawing attention to the eyes is ideal, so wearing a color that makes the eyes pop can be a plus.

Avoid wearing larger patterns or prints. Usually, a solid color looks best in a headshot photo. Err on the side of being too dressy rather than too dressed down. Do not wear logos or pictures on clothing, as it can draw attention away from the face. Keep jewelry and accessories to a minimum as well.

Make-up and Hair

The best advice for styling hair and make-up is to keep it natural. The goal of the headshot is to capture who the client is. If a client typically wears their hair curly, they should keep it curly in the headshot. If hair is usually straight then it should be straight in the photo. Be careful when pulling hair up or back. Sometimes, hair pulled back is not captured in the photo, and it looks like the client has no hair at all.

Most photographers agree that professional make-up is essential for headshots. It conveys a polished look and helps the client feel beautiful and comfortable. Some clients, however, never wear make-up and will not feel comfortable for a shoot if they have makeup on. In this case, keep it natural.

Preparing ahead of time for a headshot can keep clients calm and comfortable during the shoot. Preparation is essential for capturing that perfect look in the shot.