3 Reasons Why Professional Makeup is Important for Headshots

You put your makeup on every day, so that should work just fine for a headshot, right?


Unfortunately it's not that simple. Headshot makeup is an art form of itself and differs greatly from going-to-the-office makeup. Here are three reasons why you should consider professional makeup for your headshot.


1. Distraction is the Enemy of a Headshot

When a person first views your headshot, you want all of their attention to go to your expression; that's what creates a positive reaction and feeling of connection or engagement with the image.  


Anything that distracts the viewer during those crucial first seconds can significantly reduce the impact of the shot. Distractions can come in many forms, such as bad lighting, clothing selection, jewelry or makeup and hair. All of these things should compliment the image, rather than steal the show from your expression.


When it comes to makeup, what works for walking around every day can create major distractions in your headshot. Strong hard-lines on your eyeliner, colored eye shadow, bright lipstick, thick mascara, color differences between face and neck, etc... 


Less is more in headshot makeup, its all about looking natural. An intricate balance of makeup that evens everything out and carefully accentuates features without drawing any undue attention. Its a silent part in the movie that can make or break the show. 


Breaking the Rules

I will make one caveat to the above statements. If a cornerstone of your visual identity/brand is bright red lipstick, winged eyeliner, pink eyeglasses or anything else I might otherwise consider a distracting element, then of course you have to own that. If that's what you put emphasis on in order to be memorable then that's where we break the rules a little. It still doesn't change the fact that all of the other makeup elements will benefit from a professional touch to get the most out of your headshot investment. 



2. Under the Microscope

A headshot is an up close and personal experience; almost like putting your face under a microscope. 


While good lighting and Photoshop retouching can take care of blemishes, minimize the appearance of wrinkles, etc... there is no substitute for good headshot makeup. 


If you look closely at your everyday makeup.... do you look made-up or do you look effortless? It needs to look effortless and natural to get the best out of such a close-up image.


3. The Power of Confidence

If you assume good lighting and technique, what makes or breaks a headshot is the photographer's ability to pull a genuine and engaging expression out of you. This becomes much easier if you feel more confident after having professional headshot hair & makeup performed. You'll be much more likely to have a better outcome when you bring that confidence to the front of the camera. 


To provide hair & makeup services I partner with the artisans of Warpaint International Beauty Agency. They come to my studio to perform services right before your shoot. Are you ready to apply your WarPaint and prepare for battle?