Nekoda Mattox Photography

Do actor headshots need makeup and editing?

Actor headshots are meant to look natural - so many people new to the industry come to the conclusion that makeup and photo editing aren’t necessary - or even potentially taboo. They want to see what you really look like, right?

Not quite! When done correctly, hair, makeup, and professional photo editing work together to showcase your natural features, have a polished final headshot, and help you stand out in a positive way.

Light, natural makeup helps your skin look fresh, moisturized, and clear of temporary blemishes. You don’t want the casting director’s eyes to go straight to the pimple that inevitably happens the morning you need to go take your headshot, and it wouldn’t still be there when performance day happens. It’s completely normal and acceptable to have light makeup.

And yes - both men and women can wear makeup for a headshot. A professional artist will make it look like you aren’t wearing anything - so using their services for a polished look is completely gender neutral.

Light photo editing can also enhance the level of polish and professionalism in the headshot, and make sure eyes stay focused where they should be. It can remove distracting elements to keep the background clean, smooth clothing wrinkles, erase stray hairs, or make other small adjustments that work together for big impact on the final headshot. Taking a great headshot has everything to do with paying attention to details. Makeup and photo editing are two elements that are often overlooked, but play a significant role in getting a headshot that makes an impact.

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