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  • Writer's pictureFiona Bielby

8 Relaxed but Professional Outfit Ideas for Your Headshots.

Updated: Mar 11

What to wear for your headshots, the dos and don'ts.

Let's talk about the colours, the fit and how to accessorise your outfit for your headshots.

Professional headshots, you know you need them! Yet the idea makes you clam up, you don't want to look stiff and too formal, you want the photos to show you in your best possible light. You want people to connect with you from the get-go; the times are changing and guess what!? Yes, you're in the right place if you're looking for inviting, relaxed headshots that ooze you.


You want friendly, you want approachable and you want fun!


It doesn't matter what your job is, everyone will connect with someone who's fun, friendly and approachable.


But what to wear, oh my, what a task! When I had my headshots taken, I just dove into my wardrobe and brought out a couple of things I enjoy wearing, have a look at what I chose, that's me below. I just made a snap decision but I know for some people making these choices can be tough.



Full body photo from a headshot session


What to wear when you come for your headshots

Your headshots, let's talk about the colour...


Pick mid-tone colour plain colours that will keep the focus on you and won't distract the viewer, unless you are well-known for bold and bright colours, that is of course. Matching colours that sit in line with your branding and your website can be a clever way to keep things in theme for your headshots.


Embrace your femininity, and have fun with muted or bold female colours, you could even play with soft prints with certain clothing items if you like. Clothing that can be added in and out, can work well with these statement colours or prints. In an ocean of images, your character could shine through and make an impression on the viewer, you don't want to be too generic.


When it comes to choosing, do be mindful of which colours suit you and your skin tones, I can look ill and washed out in beiges and blacks as I'm pretty pale.


Jewel Tones colour chart

Jewel tones can work well, they photograph nicely and are universally flattering. Choosing one of these can be a no-brainer. You really can’t go wrong with neutral tones either, including black, white, brown, beige, taupe, and cream, these are classic shades that are universally appealing. Even so black can be harsh and dull in pictures; however, it does lend itself to some professions.


In my opinion, navy is a better option for most people, it definitely is the case with me.


Be careful with flesh tones, such as creamy, peachy, cafe au lait or mocha are renowned for washing out the wearer as I mentioned above, this is because there often isn't enough contrast between the top and the skin tone, so bear this in mind.


Depending on your skin tone, pastel colours can also have the same effect as fleshy tones, so try to stick nearer the mid-tone pallet.



Photo from a recent headshot session, client is in a denim dress looking at the camera

Patsy chose to wear this bold denim dress which complimented her skin tone perfectly along with contrasting with her hair colouring. She wanted her LinkedIn audience to view her as down-to-earth, but professional, choosing denim immediately reduces the formalities, yet the chic cut and neckline add a touch of formality too.



The fit of your clothing is important for your headshots.

Here are a few things to think about, before you pick your outfit for your headshots.

Make sure whatever you choose fits well, long sleeves can be flattering but are not essential. Tailored garments versa a baggy fit, lots of people will choose baggy, thinking it makes them look slimmer, but sometimes it can do the opposite, you'll know though and if you don't I'll happily help you decide.

Dress for the job you want, if you're scouting a formal job in this kind of setting, dress for that, but if you're an artist, an author or the owner of some local business you might want to wear something a little less formal for your headshots, you'll want people to relate to you and if you can create a friendly version of yourself this could really help your audience connect with you through your headshots.

Glam it up, and accessorise your outfit, if you wear glasses and have a funky pair, ear them they'll add character to your images and they could stick in someone's mind, helping them remember you and what you do.


Keep hair natural for your headshots, how you like to wear it, don't go crazy on the morning of your photos and choose something totally different, these images will be here for a little while so if you do this and wish you hadn't you may live to regret that choice. Getting a fresh blow-dry or whatever you like to do to make yourself feel good is always a great idea

.

Consider a makeover before you have your session, but only if it's something you'd do for occasions, what I'm getting at here, is to make yourself feel as fabulous as possible, the more fabulous you feel the better your photos will turn out. Show the best version of yourself, be confident and be you.


8 Outfit ideas for your inviting and friendly headshots.

How to put the perfect outfit together for your headshots even with limited garments, you don't need 100s of clothes just a vision.


Outfit moodboard one, relaxed headshot vibes

This casual but smart outfit will give you a friendly, down-to-earth feel, the earthy, neutral colours blend seamlessly and the jacket adds a touch of country personality. A soft pattern that might stick in someone's mind can be helpful too.


Outfit moodboard two, country headshot vibes

A more summery version of the above collection, the vest adds a daytime vibe to this relaxed outfit.


Outfit moodboard three, down to earth  headshot vibes

I love this casual mix, the tan belt and heels tie everything together nicely, especially with the brass buttons on the shoulder of the shirt body suit which add a touch of glamour and the neckline is a great choice. The glasses will make a fun prop during the session, a touch of personality. Imagine seeing Prue Leith without her show-stopping glasses and jewellery, it would be wrong.


 Headshot Outfit moodboard four, funky casual look.

The pink, large-scaled pink houndstooth trousers, definitely add a bold statement here, this is what I make when I say embrace your feminity. Teaming these funky trousers with the white turtle neck gives a classy but inviting feel to your images.


 Headshot Outfit moodboard five, summer ensemble

A simple summer ensemble, the earth tones of the dress are matched with the tortoiseshell glasses and the funny gold sandals. The hat doesn't have to be worn, it could simply be held or be something you use to bring across your personality if you're known for hat-wearing. A white shirt or blazer of some kind could be added to this outfit to cover your shoulders and add another dynamic to your headshots.


 Headshot Outfit moodboard six, feminine pastels

Feminine pastel colours can be a great way to put your girly touch to your headshots, if it suits your skin tone, if not try a jewel colour to give you a pop. This boyfriend fit brazer will look fabulous teamed with the Broderie Lace Shirt for a more formal look.


 Headshot Outfit moodboard seven, beach vibes

Beach vibes for chilled-out entrepreneurs or the more artsy type.


 Headshot Outfit moodboard eight, a pop of colour

A pop of colour can bring the attation back to you, bringing a selection of outfits that can easily in mixed up is always a great idea when it comes to having your headshots taken. I'm not sure if you noticed but there are only two pairs of trousers in this mix and 2 pairs of shoes if you change it up with tops and blouses you can get a great variety of images without too much hassle.


What neckline is best for your headshots?

Who'd have thought your neckline could be so important in your headshots?


Neck lines that are perfect for your headshots

It may seem an inferior thing, yet your neckline choice can make a real difference to your headshot photos. You want to go for simple lines: crew, Peter Pan, collared and turtle-necked tops could all work well for your headshots. You want to consider the type of job you are applying for and then choose the most appropriate, something with clean lines is less distracting.

Where possible keep your shoulders and armpits covered, unless this is something you should be showing for the type of profession you are in of-course, if it is then you'll know. Layering other items of clothing for your headshots, such as a blazer or a cardigan over the top can work well and add interest to the neckline without being distracting


Another thing that's worth mentioning, make sure you wear the correct undergarments to ensure your underwear is concealed, peeking bra straps not only look unsightly, but they are also considered to be unprofessional if they're making a show in your headshot photos.


Check out my top tips below in my YouTube video.






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My top tips for getting the most relaxed, still professional headshot photos.


  • Choose the right photographer for you.

  • Bring along props, if they appropriate

  • Take your time

  • Hydration and rest

  • Simple relaxation techniques

  • Visualize great photos


Let me expand and explain more here.


 

If you need somewhere local to shop for great clothing for your headshots, check out the following businesses for these local towns:


Shopping Inspiration for your Headshots in Malton, North Yorkshire

The Rusty Fox Shopping Inspiration for your Headshots in Helmsley, North Yorkshire







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