Beauty Checklist for your Business Headshots

The following is a beauty checklist for your Business Headshots from your neighborhood Photographer. Photoshoots are not a normal occurrence for most people, as a photographer, I’ll be the first to admit this. Professional makeup and hair styling are a big part of the services I offer and make for a more polished look than if you do it yourself. As a business professional, your headshots are truly the first impression people have of you, make that impression a good one!


headshot is your first impression

Image by Marissa Mayberry Photography

Even when you leave the hair and makeup to a professional, when having your business photos taken, there are still five areas where some prep beforehand can make even more of a difference. Neglect them, and an otherwise perfect photo could end up with distracting elements which take the focus away from where it should be – your gorgeous eyes!

The week before you get your headshots done (or sooner, if you’ve booked ahead) is the best time for planning. Decide on your outfits, choose which beautification steps you will take, and schedule any appointments you’ll need at the salon, spa, or even in your own bathroom to prepare!

*Before we start, I’d like to point out that these tips are ideas for getting the very best out of your shoot, these are not required, or even necessary for everybody. I suggest choosing any of these as long as they fit within your budget and lifestyle.

The five areas are:

  1. Face
  2. Hair
  3. Hands
  4. Skin
  5. Clothes


1. Face

makeup and skin care tips for your photoshoot from a headshot photographer

  • Whiten Teeth. You can get white-strips that whiten in about a week or even less for a quick whitening.  If you want to go the dentist route, they can whiten teeth, too; some even do it for free for new clients. If you’re due for a cleaning anyway, you might consider going all out.
  • Don’t Pick. A breakout is easy to cover with makeup, but scabs, wounds and flaky patches are more tricky. Please, as soon as humanly possible, stop picking at your skin. Enough said?
  • Exfoliate. My in-studio makeup artist, Dora Vera, has a great tip for preparing your skin: The night before your session, gently exfoliate your skin if you haven’t in at least 4 days, this will ensure your makeup will look its absolute best for the camera. This is also an indulgent way to spend an evening. Some of our favorite exfoliants:
  • Get a Facial. If you really want to go the extra mile (and have the time) for a true pamper mode, make sure to schedule your facial at least a week before your shoot. Facials can make your skin tone red so a week generally allows enough time to heal.

Add a glass of wine and a bath and you’ve got a spa night scheduled! Repeat as necessary.

  • Wax Eyebrows. If you decide to have your eyebrows waxed or threaded, be sure to schedule the appointment for at least a few days before your photoshoot. Otherwise, an eyebrow trim/touch up at home could be done a day or two before the shoot.


2. Hair

business woman headshots posing and lighting

  • Touch Up Your Roots. Being a female business owner can reek havoc on your hair. If you dye your hair, touching up your regrowth a few days before your photoshoot is ideal. *This sort of editing in Photoshop is an extra charge since it is very time consuming. And I never suggest completely changing your look right before your photosession, just trust me!
  • Get a Trim. When your hair looks healthy and newly trimmed it makes anyone look more youthful and vibrant. Especially if it’s been a while since your last cut, even a subtle trim can make a huge difference.
  • Deep Condition. If you want to go the extra mile, make an appointment with your salon for a professional conditioning treatment. You can also use your favorite deep conditioner or protein pack in the comfort of your own home (again, adding a glass of wine can turn it into a well deserved spa night). Toss it on with your face masque from In The Weeds. Put on your favorite Pandora or Spotify station and pretend like you’re in a music video while you’re marinating, read a book, etc… it’s your night!


3. Hands

Beauty routine for your hands! This one is usually overlooked but can make a huge difference since a lot of poses do involve your hands!

headshots for women in san antonio texas businesses


  • Get a Manicure. While you’re at it, get the pedicure to go along with it, because of foot massages. If you’re hard on your manicures, book the mani/pedi for the day before your shoot. It’s always good to keep the nails soft looking using neutral colors that work well for fingertips. This is a more classic look you won’t regret later! I don’t usually make a habit of photographing feet unless the client needs full body shots, so toes can pretty much be any color. If you are wanting full body photos, just be sure to choose a color that will compliment your outfit choices.
  • Others, Too. If you’re bringing anyone else for the photosession, say managers, co-workers, your husband, make sure their nails are neat as well. Better yet, forward this checklist to them too!


There’s so much info in this blog because I want your business branding to be amazing! I’ve decided to split it up into two posts and you’ll want to read the next one.

I saved the best for last…

4. Skin

5. Outfits, baby!

Wondering if you actually NEED updated headshots? Check out my post about it here: Do I Need Updated Headshots

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Melissa raelynn photography Studio | 1333 Buena Vista St. Studio 206 san antonio, texas 78207

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