How to Take a Corporate Headshot That Actually Looks Professional

Corporate headshots are more important to potential clients than you might think. They send a strong message about who you are as a professional and how you want to be viewed. After all, first impressions are made within seconds, so your portrait should convey the message you are aiming for with confidence.

Here’s how to take a corporate headshot that looks professional:

Prepare Before The Photoshoot

Preparation is incredibly important before getting your portrait made. Before you go in for your photoshoot, you should carefully consider what you are going to wear and how you will look in your picture. This may include anything from a new haircut and skincare regimens to the expression you will make in the portrait.

This may sound like it’s on the extreme end of preparedness but you will likely have this picture for a while and you want to be happy with the result! Be sure to follow each of these four steps before your session.

1. Choose Professional Clothing
Believe it or not, your clothing can make or break a corporate headshot. Firstly, you need to select colors that compliment both you and the background that will be used in the portrait. Solids are also a better choice for corporate headshots, as patterns can come across as busy in the image. It’s also a good idea to bring a few different outfits along so that you have several options to choose from.

2. Plan Your Hairstyle in Advance
It is best to try out your preferred hairstyle a week or two in advance of your portrait session. But perhaps even more importantly, it’s also ill advised to get a haircut the day or two before. Best case, your hair will have that “fresh cut look” for the picture—worst case, you end up with a cut that you’re unhappy with and now it is memorialized on your company page for years to come. Bottom line, you want your hair to look normal and natural so that your portrait turns out looking like you.

3. Take Care of Your Skin
While skincare regimens are great, trying a new product or procedure on your face the day before a photoshoot is another bad idea. You never know how your skin is going to react and you don’t want to arrive at your photoshoot with blotchy, angry skin from a new facemask or treatment. We recommend planning your skincare choices several days before your photoshoot, so that you are looking your best.

4. Practice Your Look
It may seem cheesy, but practicing your preferred look in the mirror before your photoshoot can help alleviate uneasiness about the outcome. Your expression and body language should both convey professionalism and confidence. Take a look at some examples and practice mirroring the expressions and hand placements you like best beforehand so that you’re fully prepared on the day of your portrait.

During the Photoshoot

If you’ve followed the steps above, you should have nothing to worry about on the day of your photoshoot. You are in expert hands! Here are a few final things to remember the day of your corporate headshot to ensure the best possible photo.

Relax: The most important thing that you need to do during a photoshoot is relax! If you are nervous or stiff during your appointment, it will come through in the picture. Most photographers (especially at Gittings !) are skilled at helping you feel at ease. However, if you know that you have an especially hard time letting your guard down for photos, it may help to bring along a trusted colleague or even to try listening to your favorite music.

Listen to the Experts: Your photographer will expertly direct you so that you achieve the best possible headshot. Be sure to let them know if you have any preferences for the photo, but remember that they will advise you so that everything from your position to the lighting allow you to shine.


The Gittings team has been producing professional corporate portraits for 90 years. Our photographers will take the time necessary to ensure that you feel comfortable and confident about your corporate headshot.

During your photoshoot, our photographers will help to straighten ties, smooth wrinkles, and add any necessary makeup to ensure you look your best. Our photographers will also take a few test shots to see what your preference is before moving forward with the photoshoot.

We’d love to work with you! Contact us today to discuss updating corporate headshots for you and your company.

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