What should you wear for your headshots? 6 tips to help you decide

I’ll be honest—I’m no fashionista for my everyday self (I don’t care enough to dress up every day).

My best clothes are hand-me-downs from my sister (rompers, jumpers, and Instagram-worthy tops). And if left to my own devices, the most I’ll do for myself is pair a casual v-neck with the same ol’ jeans.

And actually, my lazy style is a good thing for both of us. Because my sister’s style is a staple for her, and my casual look is a staple for me.

It’s on-brand for both of us, and it’s what makes each of us memorable and likable. If a friend saw one of us walking down a crowded street, it’s one way they would recognize us.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I love to dress up when I can, and it doesn’t make a difference what you wear at the end of the day (more on that here).

But when you’re wondering what to wear to your headshot session, it helps to know how what’s on-brand for you.

Because that’s what building your personal brand is all about—being recognizable in your own way. And that’s exactly what you want to remember when figuring out what to wear for your headshots.

Here’s what you’ll take away from this video:

0:00 | One question you should ask yourself before deciding what to wear for your headshot session

1:17 | Why you should never ask someone else what to wear for your headshot session

1:56 | The outfit that’ll set you apart from everyone else (and prevent catfishing)

2:42 | Your personal outfit guru and how to use it to clean up your favorite everyday looks

3:04 | How to craft an outfit that’s a great icebreaker/conversation starter for the next time you’re in an interview (plus a guidebook that will help you design them)

3:57 | Knowing this will save you from looking like a potato in your headshots

4:46 | The secret to color-coordinating

5:39 | How to make one outfit go a long way so you get more time on camera and spend less time changing

6:17 | How to be strategic & intentional before planning your headshot outfits & why “what should I wear” is the last question you should ask yourself if you want people to pay attention to you.

When you’re done watching, you can access your free guide on how to build your personal brand with your headshots here.

All good things,
Lauren

What to wear to your next headshot session


If you’re like me and need someone else to do the fashion work for you, these tricks will help you a lot.

But the goal is to stay true to yourself. (So maybe don’t ask someone else to style you, otherwise, you’ll end up feeling embarrassed & acting awkward on camera.)

Before deciding what to wear, yourself this:

What do I want to be recognized for?

These tips will put the creative power back in your hands. Then you’ll be able to wear the clothes you feel most comfortable in and still look sick AF in your headshots.


Tip 1: Stick to your normal day-to-day outfits


This may sound risky (or freeing), but you don’t have to try so hard. Wearing your day-to-day outfits will actually set you apart in your headshots.

Why? Because people want to know who you’ll be on the job, not who you’ll pretend to be in your interview.

Plus wearing your day-to-day outfits creates consistency. If that’s how you’ll dress on the job (or it reflects your personality), your bosses or clients won’t feel like they’ve been catfished when they see you for the first time.


Tip 2: Use Pinterest


Okay, so you know what kind of outfits you wear daily. Now pick one piece (ex: dark jeans, v-neck, cardigan) and search “_______ outfit”.

Ex: “dark jeans outfit”, “v-neck outfit”, “cardigan outfit”

From there, take what ideas you like and leave the rest.

This will show you how to clean up your look in a professional way while still keeping your essence.

Tip 3: Bring several outfits

When you really don’t know what to wear for your headshots, I recommend showing up with a couple different outfits. You can ask for your photographer’s insight on how to pair them, and it gives you tons of wiggle room if you’re afraid of choosing the wrong outfit.

But the main reason you want to bring several outfits to your headshot session is to show off different aspects of your personality.

Think about it—if you’re professional, but you have a side of you that loves going to concerts, why not show both?

When you show that you’ve got your shit figured out in one photo… And then you show you’ve got your shit figured out and love The Black Keys in another, you’ll win someone’s heart over.

I go more into this in my guide on how to build your personal brand with your headshots. You can get it here (it’s free).

Tip 4: Google styles for your body type


Ever wonder why something looks good on everyone else, but you put it on and you look like a potato? (I don’t care what your shape is…we’ve all been there.)

That’s because the outfit doesn’t suit your body type. Knowing what style complements your shape takes the guesswork out of what to wear for headshots.

If you don’t know what your body type is, here’s a good quiz Stitch Fix has to help you figure it out. From there, go back to Pinterest and search “outfits for _______ shape”. You may have to play with the wording to get different results.

Note: always go with your gut. If you don’t like the styles that are popping up, you don’t have to wear them. Stick with what you love on yourself most.

Tip 5: Pick one color and build your outfit around that


Simpler is better. If you try to pair a bright green shirt with bold red bracelets, and blue jeans you’re going to look like a Christmas tree.

To avoid that, pick one color you feel most confident in. Then wear that with one other color that complements it. Again, you can search on Pinterest for ways to pair your colors together.

Less is more unless it’s on-brand for you to wear a bunch of different colors and you know how to do it well!

Bonus: bright colors reflect back onto your skin in photos. If you feel weird about having blue or red highlights on your skin, it’s best to leave out the bright, strong shades and go with deeper tones.

Tip 6: Dress in layers


This is similar to bringing multiple outfits, but you can make one outfit go a long way.

In my sessions, guys usually come in with a dress shirt, then add a tie, then add their suit jacket. Ladies usually have their favorite fitted shirt, then add a jacket on top.

This also helps if you get hot or cold easily (I always do).


What to do with this information


Those tips are a great place to start when you’re ready to figure out what to wear for your headshot session.

But.

“What should I wear to my headshot session” is the last question you should be asking yourself when prepping for headshots.

Why? Good headshots aren’t just a placeholder for your vacant profile pictures.

If you use your headshots as a means to build your personal brand (whether you’re a business owner or are job-searching), you can literally get higher-quality jobs and save so many wasted applications.

Your personal brand is what gets people to want to know you, pay attention to you, and take your work seriously.

If you want to learn how to how you can build your personal brand with your headshots, then check out this guide.

All good things,
Lauren


Get your free guide below!

Published by Lauren Mudrock

I'm Lauren and I help you catch and keep the attention of the people you (actually) want to work with through headshots and personal branding. (Your headshots will make you say, “That’s me?!” and “That’s me.” at the same time.) I'm somewhere between a wise sage and a big goof. I love singing, playing ukulele, and pondering philosophy. I also laugh a lot...mostly because I misinterpret everything I hear. Wanna work together? Cool, me too. Book your session here: https://lmudrockphoto.com/contact/

2 thoughts on “What should you wear for your headshots? 6 tips to help you decide

  1. If you want to be treated like a professional, you must look like a professional. So, professional headshoots is very much important and you should wear elegant and formal dress.

    1. You’re absolutely right! It’s important to wear something professional and to capture that side of yourself if that’s who your ideal audience is (I touch on that in my guidebook). Most of my clients are small business owners who feel like wearing a dress and blazer actually disconnects them from their ideal audience, so these tips are tailored to them.

      I will say, many of my corporate clients find great success in mixing up their looks for their headshots to create their own personal brand, but I definitely back you on wearing a more formal outfit if you’re looking to work with a more formal crowd!

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