No horizontal stripes with vertical stripes…no white after labor day…when is labor day??? Who can keep up with fashion “rules”? When it comes to your headshot attire, don’t overthink it! The most important thing is that you’re comfortable, but here are a few tips to ensure your headshot session is a success.
Fashion trends are fun, but they also serve as a timestamp. Funky zippers are here today and gone tomorrow. When you go for “trendy” you have to update your headshot frequently. Most business experts would call me crazy to talk you out of this because that would just be more money in my pocket, but I aim to treat my clients the way I would want to be treated by another business. At the end of the day though, if you’re a trendy person, you have to stay true to yourself.
Going for a timeless look is much more effective and affordable in the long run. A timeless look is also great because it allows you to use your headshot across multiple platforms (social media profiles, press releases, etc.).
2.) You’re the Star
This isn’t an Express or Brooks Brothers campaign (although my shooting style is editorial). You are here to market yourself, not the clothes. Your clothes should only compliment you, not steal the show. You should avoid busy prints and patterns (sometimes pinstripes and herringbone patterns do funky things to the camera). It is better to stick with solids. Your eyes are naturally drawn to the most detail in an image. In your headshot, it should be you!
You should also avoid distracting jewelry. Large earrings and necklaces are to a photo what shiny things are to an otter, your eyes zero in on it instantly. Simple jewelry (studs, pearls, etc.) or none at all are recommended.
The same goes for hair. Try to avoid a new haircut (or hair color) right before a session. What if it doesn’t turn out the way you hoped? You’ll be self conscious the entire time and will more than likely end up hating your photos. Your style shouldn’t hide your face either. As Tyra Banks says, if you have two eyes, show both of them! Finally, avoid fresh plucking or waxing the day of your session. Both of these tend to leave a bit of swelling and that doesn’t look good on anybody. For the fellas, a shape up the day before is better, just in case you get nipped.
3.) That’s Your Color
Don’t think you have to wear black or white to look professional (black is my favorite though!). Find a color that compliments you. Colors that bring out the color of your eyes or that go well with your skin tone can really make your headshot stand out.
Bold colors generally do very well for everyone, but especially well for the camera. Deep yellows, navy blue, and dark purples are great colors on just about every complexion.
As a rule of thumb, I personally look at nature as my guide for colors that go well together. Green and brown are like trees, pink and yellow are in flowers…you get the idea. I’m no expert in fashion though, so here are some tips from a professional:
Varnessa Bails: Wardrobe Stylist
Cool (pink or blue undertones)
Warm (yellow or green undertones)
Neutral (a mix of warm and cool undertones)
When determining the color of garments to wear, our aim is to look at hair color, eye color, and skin tone. I look at the overall appearance, rather than focusing on one thing. I am looking at how the colors reflect against your skin tone. Does it liven you up? Is it dulling against your skin? Do your eyes stand out? What about your hair against the color of the garment? Does it clash? For example, cool colors compliment red-heads (like blue). Warm colors (yellows) can be worn here and there by finding the right shade of the warm color. Ultimately, however, when wearing a top your best goal is stick with cooler colors or revert to your neutrals (blacks, whites, grays).
Ultimately, there are no “set in stone” rules to wearing color. There are, however, guidelines that definitely help in your overall appearance. They also help with how you’re perceived, be it a photoshoot, job interview, or just being caught by the style police. My aim is to always make sure my clients look polished with a high-end appearance. In addition to body type, color is one of my biggest topics when styling. I aim for staples and colors that are complimentary to one’s skin tone.
So if choosing your wardrobe is making your head spin, contact Varnessa for a consultation. Her new website is launching soon, you can check out her blog here. You can visit her site by clicking here.
I want everyone to be successful. I firmly believe that a good headshot will propel you in the right direction, and your wardrobe should match the level of success you intend to reach.
To book a headshot session with Smit’N Photography, click here.
Let Smit’N Photography help you capture what you love! Contact me today if you have a question, or would like to request a quote.