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What You Should Wear for a Headshot

Updated: Apr 26, 2023

A headshot is often the first impression that a prospective client, employer or business partner sees before they get to meet you in person. Generally a “headshot” will just feature your face and upper torso, so most of these guidelines will focus on the shirt or blouse that you wear.

First lets take a look at some professional headshots we've taken.

Now here's some tips!

Color & Patterns: Mid-tone and neutral colors photograph best. Focus on colors that complement your complexion and eye color in window light. Classic and timeless patterns and textures such as pinstripe, simple floral, subtle plaid or paisley, waffle knit are all fine to work with

Style & Fit: Women – Crew, boat or narrow V-neck tops all photograph well. Make sure to try on your top a couple of days before your portrait day to make sure it fits well. With a nice blouse, a jacket is optional. Men – A well-fitting button-down shirt is the foundation to a great photo. Bringing a sport coat, suit jacket and tie is optional based on how professional you want to be portrayed in your headshot.

Accessories: Simple jewelry or a tie is best and colors should complement the colors you are

wearing as well as your complexion.

Here's some more examples:

Now of course we have to share the "don'ts" of headshot attire, here's what to avoid:

Color & Patterns: Flesh tone and pastel colors have a tendency to blend in with your skin tone. High contrast and busy patterns generally do not photograph well on their own but can be worn with a suit or jacket. Avoid trendy patterns that may “date” your photo.

Style & Fit: Bulky and oversized items should be avoided. Casual T-shirts with slogans are generally not suitable for a professional portrait. Plain T-shirts can be considered for a more casual career portrait.

Accessories: Bulky and large statement jewelry, scarves and accessories can detract from your portrait. They should only be considered as an intentional style choice that may relate to your profession.

Keep in mind that what you wear is meant to enhance your natural features, and not be a distraction. You've got this!


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