Here is a quick summary of the best advice on how to prepare for a headshot session. Make sure you’re in a good mood when you meet with your photographer, iron your best set of clothes, brush your hair and your teeth and above all else — be yourself. Beyond this basic advice, all else are refinements and considerations intended to finesse your experience and the final product—a great headshot. So, for answers to most common questions, keep on reading and let’s go over some specific information.
Clothing and Wardrobe
Your personal choice of what to wear to a headshot session is a personal matter, however, there are some guidelines you shouldn’t overlook.
Pick out several pieces of clothing that make you feel confident and good about yourself.
Horizontal or vertical stripes and patterns can exaggerate body width or height, and unless they are used strategically, should be avoided.
Clothing with busy patterns and logos can clutter a headshot, detracting from the focal point of the photo — that’s you.
Try to stay away from anything stark white unless it’s under something, such as a blazer, jacket or sweater.
Avoid jewelry that can cause reflections.
Select colors that emphasize the color of your eyes, hair or skin color. Also keep in mind that colors communicate mood. This article about the psychology of color is a good read. Solid colors are a great place to start.
It is important for clothing to look well pressed. Iron all shirts, blouses, scarfs, slacks and dresses.
Ensure that your wardrobe is well-fitting. Loose clothing can project a frumpy appearance.
Hair and Make-up
Great-looking hair and sensible make-up are an asset to any headshot session. And, while not everyone will agree to professional hair and make-up,they can make the difference between a good headshot and a great headshot.
FOR MEN: haircuts should take place 2-3 days prior to a session to avoid the prickly look of fresh cut hair.
Bring a hairbrush to cope with fly away hair during your session.
FOR LADIES: don’t underestimate the importance of professional makeup for your headshots. The makeup you wear in daily life is NOT the same as the makeup you’ll enjoy from a professional make-up artist. As an added bonus, they can provide touch-ups throughout your session.
Do you have oily skin? Use oil-absorbing cosmetic pads to minimize bright reflections caused by oily skin.
FOR LADIES: Bring hair accessories if you wish to pick up your hair or create a pony tail.
Drink plenty of water a day before your session to keep your face looking healthy and well-hydrated.
Wrinkles, Laugh Lines & Spots…
While none of us can avoid the natural process of aging, we can minimize its impact through the use of appropriate posing and studio lighting and the benefits of post-production.
TIP: Looking up at the camera stretches the neck and minimizes unwanted skin folds (a.k.a. the double chin).
Wrap-around and feathered lighting helps to smooth facial lines and minimize fine wrinkles.
Leaning forward provides a natural lengthening of the neck, which causes the skin under the chin to stretch.
Post-production can provide cosmetic enhancements such as the removal of age spots, acne, scars, stray hairs, skin smoothening, teeth whitening and other selective services (this service a.k.a. “retouching” is offered at an additional charge).
Our studio offers professional retouching upon request. A personalized assessment is provided to discuss the retouching process and areas of concern and to ensure your satisfaction. Here is a example:
If you wear glasses and have a strong prescription, or if you have glasses with no anti-reflection coating, we do advise that you bring a pair of blank frames without lenses for the shoot. The purpose is to avoid any glare from showing up on the glass surface of spectacles.
TIP: Wear contact lenses.
Ask your optometrist to pop out the lenses from of a spare pair of glasses.
We may ask you to slightly tilt your glasses forward to minimize the naturally occurring reflection on the surface of the lenses.
If reflections present a consistent problem, consider removing your glasses during the shoot.
Here are some final thoughts to help you prepare for your professional headshot session.
Get a restful night’s sleep prior to your session.
Bring a handful of smiles.
If you have any questions or concerns, call or e-mail us.