What Should You Wear for Your Headshots?

Fenja What should I wear for my headshot
Diego What should I wear for my headshot

What you decide on wearing for your headshots establishes your professional identity. It can be said that most of the people you do business with will see your headshot before they meet you. I have put together a few tips to help you answer the question, What should I wear for my headshot?

Dress to Impress!

Professional apparel varies depending on the workplace. It can be said that lawyers and doctors are generally more formal. While technicians and creative workers tend to be more relaxed. What you must do is think of yourself as the boss! So, you are the boss! The question to you is – What do you think a person should wear to impress their clients? You aim to find confidence in your clothes and be what you want to be – The Boss!

What About Casual Clothing?

Research suggests that wearing formal clothes contributes to a feeling of power and control. This can impact your posture and presence in photos. On the other hand, casual clothes are not a no go. You aim to feel relaxed in front of the camera and not like you have a rod welded to your back! There is one thing I think you should remember! – Sloppy Jo T-shirt and jogging bottoms will not make a good impression on your clients – You can trust me on that!

How Many Outfits Should I Bring?

It is always a good idea to bring a selection of options, and every photographer will thank you for that. They can then help you make the right choices with your clothes. What you can consider When planning your different looks is to think of it as a series of meetings. You want to look good at each one, but certain outfits help you feel a certain way. Make sure each outfit you select shows you in the best light, and remember not to wear faded clothes with frayed collars and cuffs. They may be your favourite items to wear, but they will look bad in your pictures. 

Does That Suit You Sir?

There was a study on the connection between clothing styles and hiring recommendations. It stated that those wearing blazers and trousers are considered to be more forceful and influential. The study also found suits and trousers in darker colours contribute to preferred hiring for leadership and management roles. So if you have them, it is a shame not to shoot them.

What about Jewellery?

If you intend to wear jewellery, keep it simple, and think of it as the finishing touches. Whether it is a necklace, earrings, bracelet or watch, it must not dominate your pictures.

What Colours Should I Wear? 

I have found a great article on The Psychology of Color: How What You Wear Can Affect Your Work Performance. The article deals with the science of how particular colours influence our moods, thoughts and behaviours. For example, red sends the message of confidence and energy. Moreover, navy blue and black give a sense of authority. So, think about the message you want to convey and select colours accordingly.

  1. Dark colours are perceived as more formal and authoritative.
  2. Light colours make the wearer appear more friendly and approachable.
  3. Some bright colours convey confidence and energy.
  4. Muted tones are conservative and less threatening.
  5. High-contrast pairings like a dark jacket and light shirt suggest influence and authority.

In the end, simple colours and subtle patterns usually look best on everyone. Bold or busy ones tend to distract from your face.

Avoid Using Stereotypical Outfits

The most common mistakes are:

  1. Dressing like a doctor! – To avoid looking like a doctor, don’t wear a white blazer. It will likely look like a medical coat in the final cropped headshot. 
  2. Dressing like a waiter! – To avoid looking like a waiter, don’t wear a white button-down shirt, with a black tie, and a black suit.

Is There Anything Else I Should Try and Remember?


Simple V-necks work well, as do button-down shirts. As most headshots are cropped closely around the head and face, V-line gives a guiding line and works well. However, make sure that the V is not Very revealing! One thing you want to avoid is a distraction and look more provocative than you intend. Women can are perceived as less competent if their clothes are too revealing. Therefore, blouses and tops with higher necklines are best. 

Tight or Baggy Clothing?

Fitted clothes look best, but super tight or baggy looks ill-fitting or sloppy. Fitted clothing tends to look cleaner and less distracting. Loose or baggy clothing will not work for formal or business-casual photos. But extra tight suits, you know, those Hipster jobs look uncomfortable and wrong.

It seems like a statement of the obvious, but make sure your shirt or blouse neck size is the perfect fit, not tight or too wide. It is simple when you think about it. Loosely fitted collars leave distracting gaps that draw attention away from your features.

I’m Ready for My Close-Up, Mr De Mille!

What you wear for your headshot session influences what your photos say about you. Whatever photographer you decide upon, give them the best shot of giving you great shots! You must be prepared from your hair to the ground. You can find more about my Individual Sessions – Contact Me to book now.

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