How To Look Great In Portraits: What To Wear

So, you have scheduled your portrait session, and you are super excited about it!  Now you are standing in front of your closet, trying to decide which clothes to wear.

Never fear, I’m here to help!  🙂

Here are some ideas and tips for how to choose clothes that will look great in your photos.

What To Wear

  • Solid colors (or very small prints).  Prints that are too big and bright tend to draw the attention away from your face!
  • Long pants/skirts/sleeves.  As long as it’s not hot enough to fry an egg on the sidewalk, try to avoid wearing shorts or short skirts.  These can make you look “choppy” in portraits.  Long pants/skirts are much more attractive in pictures (in other words, cover your skin).
  • Harmonizing colors.  If you are taking family/group pictures, try to avoid the matchy look with everyone wearing exactly the same color.  A good bet?  Dad in neutrals, Mom in a solid dark color with matching accents, kids in brighter colors or small prints that pick up the other colors.
  • Darker colors.  White shirts/pants can be somewhat distracting in some cases.  Also, green is not great for outdoor pictures … it’s too easy to blend in with the grass!
  • Clothes that are wrinkle-free and fit properly.  Baggy clothes are generally not flattering in portraits.
  • Simple makeup (for ladies).  If you feel like you look great, you will!
  • Pants/skirt that is darker than your shirt.  This will help draw the eye upward to your face.
  • Layers are good.  They can add variety to your look.

For the more visually-minded among us, here are some sample “family outfits” that have been coordinated beautifully!  They do bend some of the guidelines listed above, but they do so gracefully.  🙂  (I did not put these together.  See below for photo credits.)

All of these are from Melinda Brookshire Photography, courtesy of I Heart Faces.

Need some more inspiration?  Here are some additional ideas from Taryn Brooke Photography.

Happy coordinating!  🙂


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