Right, you’ve booked your actor headshots session, you’ve read the make-up blog post and now you’re thinking ‘what the hell do I wear?!’ ‘How many tops should I bring?’ ‘Is my only option black polo necks?‘ Here is the no-frills guideline:

  1. Bring lots of options. Seriously, LOTS. You don’t want your gallery to consist of 200 pictures of you in that same wool jumper. Make sure your actor headshots have some variety.
  2. Avoid baggy clothes. They aren’t flattering.
  3. Colour: black and white are an obvious yes. Also bring pastel shades for a softer look and punchier colours for some energy.
  4. Necklines are key for actor headshots: Bring a selection of the following:
  • V-necks, great for drawing attention to your face (think about it like an arrow).
  • Off-the-shoulder tops, ideally not too low as otherwise it can look like a naked portrait.
  • Round necks, ones that are not too high are best.
  • Shirts, it really changes an actor’s energy when they stick a shirt on. Perfect for variety.
  • High necks, not my favourite as the neck is an important feature in actor headshots. In saying that, if you have one you like, bring it along to the shoot.
  • Ties, not usually used for actor headshots. However, if businessman is very much your casting type or you do a lot of corporate/role-play work, definitely bring a shirt and tie.
  • We could go on all day about the various other forms of necklines but basically you’re looking for a good variety.
  1. Patterns: Avoid excessive patterns, glitter or anything too distracting. A tiny bit of detail near the neckline however can really work in bringing a hint of personality to your headshot.
  2. Shoes: actor headshots are head, neck and shoulders shots so no one will ever see those feet. However, wear shoes that encourage good posture. Lots of actresses wear a slight heel for this reason.
  3. Bring a coat or jacket for the outdoor shots. Simple styles work best. Stay clear of fur, glitter, army or bomber jackets. When making your choice, pay attention to the neckline and as always, if in doubt, bring it along.
  4. Finally, bring layers. It can get chilly if you’re doing an outdoor shoot so bring some thin warm layers for under your coat.

And that’s it. Once you’ve made your selection, forget about what you’re wearing because in the end, the clothes enhance the headshot, but you make it.

PS Don’t forget to iron those shirts before the shoot and carry them carefully to avoid creases!

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I am back in business and shooting outdoors only for actors. You are kindly requested to follow all these rules diligently, to sustain a healthy and safe workplace in this unique environment.
I very much suggest the outdoors shoots as a great alternative. Please read my procedures here.