#17 MAKEUP AND SMELL THE COFFEE!
Should I invest in professional hair and makeup for my headshot session?
I would personally recommend using a trusted makeup artist for any portrait photography session. A skilled makeup artist can create the illusion of flawless skin, define the eyes and enhance facial features. Professional makeup will also help to keep re-touching and post-production down to a minimum.
Great makeup can make or break a photo!
But, before we go any further.
**THIS IS NOT THE TIME TO EXPERIMENT**
Remember your style.
Stick to your signature look, as you want to portray your personality in your headshot. In my last post, I discussed dressing appropriately for your brand or role. The same rules apply to makeup. Do you usually wear red lipstick? Natural face? Stick with the style of makeup for which you are known. Leave the experimental makeup to the realms of conceptual fashion and beauty. We can shoot that another day.
Here are a few tips should you want to do your makeup yourself.
- Keep it real.
Your makeup should be an accurate representation of you and your brand. We’re looking for a good balance of clear skin and realism.
Use a thin coating of foundation which still allows for natural skin texture. If too many layers of makeup are used in an attempt to better accentuate facial features, it will cover the pores and skin texture, resulting in flat, un-realistic looking skin.
- Matte is your friend.
Steer well clear of shimmer and glitter, resist that urge! For party makeup, shimmer can look great, but for photography, use a matte finish. Whether it be eye shadow, cheeks, or face, remember matte will always look best.
- Natural Look, not “Light”
It is more important to aim for a natural look than “light makeup.” Studio lighting has a way of reducing the impact of makeup, so you can afford to go a little darker with lip colour, mascara and eye shadow.
- Colour of foundation.
Match the colour of your foundation to the natural colour of your skin in your neck and chest area. Resist the temptation to choose a shade which is darker than your skin tone. Oil-free matte will yield the best results in headshots but it can be difficult to apply correctly.
- Oily Skin.
The best way to control oily skin is to use a blotter sheet. Mattifying gel (cream) is another option. It’s easy to apply and works well with the skin of all types and colours.
So, consider whether you should invest in professional makeup for your headshot session. Your headshots are an investment in yourself and your brand so spending a little more to achieve better results seems like a no-brainer to me.
If you do choose the professional option, be sure to confirm that your make-up artist is proficient in make-up specifically for photography. There is a big difference in ‘night-out’ makeup and photo-shoot makeup.
I’m a portrait photographer based in Tamworth, Staffordshire. Specialising in creative and styled portraiture, fitness photography, headshots, and personal branding for actors, athletes and business professionals.
Book a session today.
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