Business Headshots 101: Hair and Makeup

Hair and Makeup is something that is so personal, it is one of the top concerns of the entrepreneurs and businesswomen we work with!

Shooting with us is pretty awesome because I’m the hair and makeup artist for all of the shoots! We definitely know the light we’re working with, how to match the makeup to the outfit and the person, and how the makeup is going to photograph, and what is possible with retouching.

But, what if you live somewhere and aren’t able to shoot with us? Here are some things that are great to know if you are doing your own hair and makeup, if you are a photographer looking to learn more about what makes excellent hair and makeup, or if you are a makeup artist and hair stylist looking to improve!

Natural, flawless makeup is a perfect starting place for a shoot! Usually I build up the makeup so that the client will get some variation in their looks. Then, I usually bump up the eyes a bit. From there, I could bump up the eyes again, or add a stronger lip! This will usually depend on the client’s preference.

Here are some examples:


Basic Eye



  • Prime – MAC Paintpot in Painterly
  • Light Eye Shadow Base – Tom Ford Light Gold in Golden Mink
  • Light Brown Powder in Crease – MAC Wedge
  • Black Liner focused on outer edge of eye – Bobbi Brown Black Gel
  • Liner Smuged with Dark Brown Shadow in Tom Ford Golden Mink
  • Mascara: L’Oreal Carbon Black

Eye Bumped Up


  • More Bobbi Brown Eyeliner added above
  • Smudged out with a darker, matte, brown shadow
  • Shadow added underneath
  • Light Gold in Golden Mink on Inner corner and under half of the eye
  • Dark Brown in Golden Mink on Outer corner of eye, blended to be really soft


Bold Lip


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  • Laura Mercier Lip Stick in Coral
  • I love using coral’s, bold red’s and sheer red’s!
  • I do love a soft lip, so I actually don’t end up doing a bold lip a lot of the time



Building the look.


One of the most important guidelines I follow is to match the tone of the makeup to the wardrobe. Cool tones with cool tones, and warm tones with warm tones. I usually go with purples and pinks on the cool side, and corals and golds on the warm side! Check out these two differences:


               Cool                                             Warm


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Showing your hair stylist a photo of how you normally wear your hair is very important! You definitely want your clients to recognize you. The best hair stylists will take how you normally do your hair, and adjust it for the camera. Fly-aways are super hard to control, and making the hair clean and not distracting is a huge challenge (especially if it’s windy outside :). I use a special wax/pomade on a stick to control fly aways.

One other really important aspect of hair for camera, is to make sure there is volume. Using a dry shampoo to create lift at your roots is a great first step. If it isn’t enough lift, then try to add in some back combing. Make sure to bush out the top layers to hide the backcombing underneath.

Depending on how much hair you have, you may need to split it in back and bring it forward on each side, or if you have a lot of hair, just take enough on each side so it doesn’t over take your face. When the photographer is framing the photo, if it is all hair, it’ll look weird! Also, try out different options: hair all on one side, hair back and coming over the shoulders a bit, one side back etc.


Let me know if you have any other questions I can answer in the comments!


Keep shining,


1 Comment
  • Yacon Root
    October 24, 2017 at 12:41 am

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