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Headshot Wardrobe Guide

by TheHeadshotAssistants
March 3, 2016 10:33PM

Color Wardrobe Range

Everyone has a list of what not to wear for Headshots: Don't wear white. Don't wear stripes. Don't wear patterns. Don't wear logos.  This leaves a lot to be answered, from why can't you wear white in Headshots? or What color can I wear in Headshots. There are 3 things you must ask yourself before you should go asking what you should wear.

1. What is the purpose of these Headshots? 

2. Who are they for and what are they for?

3. Who do I want to convey in these Headshots. 

4. Who am I when they actually meet me. 

First I want your trust, so let me first show you two images that break all the rules, but work.

Jpeg, Jpeg

I think these are great instances where the gambles of breaking from convention work well.  Now if you venture a bet, that their are no rules in Headshots I can now present my case that I believe every entrepreneur can follow so their Headshot gets them in more doors. 

1. What is the purpose of your headshot seems simple enough at first and maybe it is. Maybe you are a dentist who just needs an image that represents your practice. If you aren’t an Actor Click Here.  As an Actor you might want to portray a dentist. However if you are that specific that will really limit you. So lets back up in definition. How about we say “Biz-Med-Ed”.

Commercial Looks

Purpose of a Biz-Med-Ed Headshot: Commercial, Sitcom, and Drama. 

Commercial:  Should be brighter, you could wear a light colored jacket and simple bold or even pastel blue top. By avoiding the “White Lab Coat Look” you add considerable range to your “type” while eluding to an educated someone who  looks like they could be on that one show…

Commercial Biz-Ed-Med: Should be bright and friendly, like in commercials. Commercial Headshots do better with a smile because the Casting Director is working for an ad agency and they are usually looking for faces that sell products and happy products sell. They psychological effect of someones smile at you is uncannily similar to the desired effect the ad agency is trying to effect.  So someone looking to fill the Biz-Med-Ed type would be looking for someone smart, happy, and neighborly. Like a hip Mr. Rogers, or the neighbor kid who grew up to be a responsible and your mother would trust. 

Sitcom Biz-Ed-Med: While similar in tone to a commercial in color and tone, this shot takes some talent on both sides of the camera. Because these shots need to capture your essence.  For instance, while a great commercial shot leaves the Casting Director and Advertising feeling unapologeticly gitty with excitement about the happy you’ll bring into the room. Whereas a sitcom should make them feel like they are meeting a real person, who is intelligent fun, charismatic and likable. Like millions of people will like you to show up into there home. Unless you are a character Actor. 

If you are a character actor or someone who is aiming for co-star and guest star jobs cause you aren’t a leading star type or just someone starting out, it’s a good idea to  the business you should think more specific.  

Biz-Med-Ed One Commercial: Cheerful, bringer of good news, pleasing, friendly.  Ties, collars and hair in check, this one knows how presentation is everything.  Straight on eyes right there starring back at whoever is looking at your picture.  “Hello?” :)  “It’ll be okay.”  “I might very well save the day.” Bit more plastic.

Biz-Med-Ed Two Sitcom: Bit more real, Co-worker, Ho-hum (literally say it looking into camera), could be mysterious, 5-o’clock shadow.  Loosen your color, pour a glass of wine. Hold it steady, you still have to do rounds or maybe it’s been a night out with your mates. Shagin’ the town a vibrant color, you’ve been shagin it on point maybe an hour past your prime. Kind of moody would be great for primetime drama. Moody light not too moody, think Primetime medical show, 30yr old Teenager drama, Acronym: CopLegal PDDA Drama, put on the right glasses and make it a period piece, now take off the glasses.  Take off your jacket, vest, coat, pelt, or pashmina.

Biz-Med-Ed Three FIlm Drama: Drink your glass of grape drink because unless you know how you handle your alcohol it makes no since to start playing with it now. If you are under drinking age DON’T DRINK AT ALL. This type should be a bit Rough for wear. Tie off, shirt unbuttoned., jacket off, basically change it up. Slightly disheveled like they’re 6 hours into their shift. around the edges, hair not perfect yah know it’s Biz-Med-Ed, they are pros but they hustle and bustle: Unless your going for Daytime, there nobody sweats so when you say “HoHum” LOOK FABULOUS. Then ride away in a rented Ferrari. But above all mix it up.

During the Shoot Tip: Get as much as you can, by keeping a fluid wardrobe, dress in layers and slowly peal them off throughout the duration of the “Look” shoot the Have you ever played “Repetition” it an amazing game to play while getting Headshots, but rather than getting in a heated debate, or suddenly gigging while repeating phases….find key phrases that you can connect with.  I could be “You’ll be fine today.”  or “ Great, Happy to Help.” Or “If you insist.” OR “Oh happy day what a day it’s been.”  OR-XD my favorite of the all “Fck You.”

Okay so Question #1, maybe answered. Ask your Questions below!

Click Here: If you want to see another Look brokendown. 

Click Here: To find out who uses Headshots and How.


  • actor
  • headshot
  • photography
  • wardrobe
  • women

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