The Perfect Headshot, Decoded

By: Bella Gerard

Photos by: Mollie Coyle

Every time Thirty Seventh hosts a headshot event, the sign-ups fill up in less than ten minutes. Georgetown is a school as addicted to LinkedIn as it is to Snapchat. It’s hardly surprising to see a fellow classmate in a full suit and tie on a Tuesday, running to an info session or interview. Pre-professionalism is a way of life, and Hoyas know how necessary it is to embrace it.

All this, and yet the perfect headshot still alludes many. So with the help of our amazing photo team, we’re here to change that. But before you show up for your appointment, there are some things to consider…

Tips to Achieving the Perfect Headshot

1. Rock the right outfit

Try not to wear white, as we shoot our headshots against a white backdrop. Beyond this, there’s no real limit to what can be deemed “business professional”, so the choice is up to you. Many traditional jobs will prefer you in a suit or blazer, but a crisp button down, or simple sweater can photograph well when worn with confidence. Try to avoid any crazy patterns, but don’t be afraid to rock a fun pop of color – it just might be the thing that your future employer remembers.

2. Prepare your appearance

Many make the mistake of trying a new look for their headshot, but sticking to what works is almost always a better call. This is not the day for girls to try winged liner for the first time, nor should boys schedule a haircut the hour before. Your headshot should represent you, so it should look like you, too. You should consider the intensity of the professional lighting, however, especially when it comes to applying makeup. Bright lights tend to wash out the face, so applying a bit more than usual will appear natural in photos. Stay away from foundations with SPF and powders with silicon, as they both create flashback when used with flash photography.

3. Perfect your pose

Don’t be afraid to try a few poses! Remember the shots are shoulders-up, so good posture is essential. Beyond this, taking a head-on shot as well as one with your chest angled to the side gives you some variety. If you’re rocking a blazer or suit jacket, take a few shots without this layer. The more options you give yourself, the higher chance of you being happy with your pose.

4. Opt for retouching

Hoyas, you’re all stunning, and this is not an insult, but for $2, you should definitely get these photos retouched. Retouching elevates your photo and gives it an even more polished finish – and beyond slightly whiter teeth and slightly smoother skin, it can also save you from that blemish you haven’t been able to get rid of for weeks. Like we said, your photo should look like you, but it should also portray you in your best light, so some professional lighting and tweaking will only help you in achieving the perfect pic.


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