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Do's and Don't of Dressing for your Photo Session

While this is a general list of the do's and don’ts of how to dress for photos, there are always exceptions to the rules. The main thing is to be comfortable and feel great in whatever you choose to wear. If you feel good, it will show on your face in the pictures.



● Choose classic & timeless styles. These photos will be hanging on your walls and treasured for years to come. By choosing simple, classic clothes you will help give your images a timeless feel.

● Choose clothes that are comfortable and you feel good in. If you feel good, it will show

● Look at your home decor. Do you like bright colors? Neutrals? Since you will be hanging these photos in your house you want to make sure the colors of your clothes go with the color scheme of your home.

● Keep outfits complementary as opposed to completely matching (e.g. all white shirts and jeans).

● Undershirts for guys help absorb the sweat in hot weather. (you would think the extra layer would make you warmer, but it has the opposite effect)

● Dark, light and bright: Darks for adults, and lights or brights for small children. Do it the other way and the adults will dominate the scene and draw the viewer’s attention, while the smaller people will disappear.

● On the way to the photoshoot rock the A/C in your vehicle. Gradually cool down the temperature more and more so that by the time you arrive to your photoshoot, you are icy cool, and it will take a bit longer for the heat to become irritable.

● Think about what colors will show sweat the most if you sweat easily. Solid colors will show the sweat. Patterns will help cover up the wet marks a bit.

● Consider wearing hair in an updo, this will keep hair off your neck and let the breeze hit you and cool you off a little.



● Avoid extreme differences (e.g. one person is wearing a casual knitted chunky sweater and the other is wearing a nice silky dress). It can be quite jarring.

● Avoid clothes that are tight and right up against your skin – you want to give your skin room to breathe and have some airflow. Dresses and tops with cutouts are not only fun, but they have built-in ventilation

● Avoid wearing any clothing with large logos or motifs/characters. These graphics, particularly logos and well known characters can really detract from the focal point – your lovely faces. Peoples eyes will naturally be drawn to those in the first instance

● Stay away from bright whites on a regular basis, as bright areas of white clothing draw the focus away from the subjects and can get blown out in the light. (I do think that everyone in white on the beach looks gorgeous.)

● Avoid neon or overly saturated colors

● Don’t all wear patterns. Personally, I enjoy having an outfit in the mix that has all the colors in it. However, not everyone in the photo should wear patterns as it may distract from the final image.

● Don’t wear white bottoms if you want sitting poses. You don’t want to get dirty on the way to a shoot or early on in the photos and have to deal with stains on your clothes.


  • Use light layers of makeup, don't cake it on.  

  • Avoid cream products.  Opt instead for gel, powder, or liquid

  • Use matte colors to help cut down on any extra shine

  • Use gel or pencil eyeliner instead of cream

  • Use waterproof mascara

  • Use  translucent setting powder and a setting spray

  • Bring blotting paper to tap  away the sweat without smearing the makeup



Another great article is

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