A huge part of your preparation for your session should be choosing your wardrobe. “What should I wear?” is the most common question I get. It is an important question, and one you should put some thought into. Keep in mind, these tips are universal. If you feel strongly about something, then by all means, break the rules. The bottom line is that your clothes should represent YOU. Going shopping for your headshot session is something I recommend (keep those tags on!), but only buy things that you would wear in your everyday life. Take your brand into consideration, as well as your comfort… and read on!
There are a few key elements to consider when choosing your wardrobe. Neckline is at the top of the list. Considering the shot will be fairly tight (unless otherwise specified), you want to choose a neckline that is flattering. V-Necks are a safe bet for almost everyone. It shouldn’t be too low if you’re a woman, for risk of revealing too much cleavage. V necks lengthen the line of your neck and pull the eye up towards your face. Square or scoop necked shirts work well also. A square neck can broaden you a bit, though, so I suggest it more for petite frames. A button down shirt works for both men and women. I highly recommend layering for this, though. A plain button down shirt doesn’t have much structure and will leave you a little lost in an image- think floating head. For men, a vest, tie, or jacket works well, and for women, cardigans or jackets will do. Steer clear of turtle or cowl necks- they cut the line of the neck completely off and can add bulk where we don’t want it. Sweaters are tricky, as they denote a specific time of the year and can also add bulk. For a comp card shoot maybe, but not for a headshot session. Tank tops are great on women if you want to show a little more body. I am a big fan.
Now let’s talk layering. Don’t be afraid to play with layers! We can always pull it back if it feels distracting, so play with this as much as you’d like. Layering can add depth, dimension, point of view and interest to your headshot. The contrast of colors and shape can say a lot about you. Are you a woman that is more comfortable in a structured blazer or do you feel better in a t- shirt? Are you a guy that likes a three piece suit or a hoodie? There are million options here, and none of them are wrong. Just be honest about what makes you feel like the best you, and we can go from there.
No matter what neckline you are wearing, color is of equal importance. Saturated colors are the best. So dark blues, greens, reds, and jewel tones are beautiful. On the opposite end, whites, creams, and soft pinks are also gorgeous. The color will make a difference with your skin tone and eye color. The goal is to make you POP in your headshot as much as possible. There are two ways to do this. You can pull pieces that match your eye color. If this is your jam, be very specific. For example, if you have turquoise-green eyes, do not wear hunter green (or any other variation of green). Wear turquoise- green.. When the colors match, it brings it out. If it similar, but not quite the same, it will compete and actually detract from your eyes, making the image a little dull. The other option is to pick pieces that contrast. This always works.
If you need help with what colors correlate with each other, and how they can work in your favor, check this link out: The Significance of Color.
Solid color pieces always work, but I am a fan of some detail as well. Patterns that are too big can be distracting, but if you love it, bring it. We will make the call together.
Lastly, Fit is important. Make sure the pieces fit you well, as we want to be able to see your frame accurately. The more information your headshot can give a casting director the better. Nothing too tight and nothing too baggy. I will have clamps and pins to make sure it is as flattering as possible, so don’t hesitate to bring something you are questioning. We will make it work.
As far as what your wear from the waist below, it is completely up to you. If you want some 3/4 or full body shots, then bring what you want that look to be. It could be anything from skinny jeans, to a flowy dress. If you want to focus on tighter shots, just wear what you’ll be comfortable in.
Keep in mind we will be walking around, so wear shoes that are comfortable. If you have a pair of heels that make you feel sassy, then by all means, bring them along.
That’s it! Variety is key so the more options the better. Bring a minimum of five tops and layers to play with. Opt for variety in style and color. If you are not sure about something, throw it in, you never know what will work- you might be surprised!