Everyone wants to look their best for their portraits. Sometimes, that can lead us to doing things that we should definitely not do in the days before the photo shoot. Many of these things are probably not even something you think would be off the list, but I’m here to tell you what they are and why you should avoid them. Let’s get started.

  • 1. Get a haircut or color. Wait, what? But your hair is long and shaggy or you seriously need your dead ends trimmed off right? I completely get it. However, I highly recommend making these updates at least 3 days prior to your session. Ideally a week before. This way if the cut doesn’t lay right or the color goes haywire, you have time to deal with it before it’s session time. Granted if you are seeing the same stylist who has did your hair for 10 years and you go once a month to them, you’re probably fine, but try to avoid anything drastic.
  • 2. Tan. Listen carefully. Self-tanners have a way of showing up really really orange in photos. Like really really orange. I see this ALOT on wedding days with fresh spray tans. Do it a few days before and don’t try to go too dark at once. Depending on the self-tanner you use, you may need time for the tan to mellow just a bit, especially if the shade/brand leans toward Oompa Loompa. Or test the tanner a couple weeks before your session so you know how it will show up and then you can do it a day or two before if you absolutely positively must. Also, its perfectly ok to embrace your natural skin tone!
  • 3. Intentionally Stay Up Late/Not Sleep. Do I really have to elaborate on this one? Exaggerated dark circles, under eye bags, and bloodshot eyes look good on no one. Just sleep. New moms just do the best you can. You’ve got someone else calling the shots now. 😉
  • 4. Try a New Skincare Product. You do not know how your skin will react to something new. Avoid all the rashes and bumps and stick to what you know is tried and true the last few days prior to your session.
  • 5. Starve. I’m not referring to completely starving yourself to lose weight before hand (but please don’t do that either). I actually mean don’t come to the session hungry! This especially applies to men who can be a total grumpus when it comes to sessions anyway and if they are hungry…yikes! I shoot a lot in the late afternoon. Everyone is always like, “Oh we’ll just go eat after our session.” And then they show up, have to pose for 30-45 minutes and I can totally see when they check out of the session. And hear when they say, “I’m hungry,” for the 10th time. Listen, you are paying me and I’m going to make it as quick as I can. But, I do need cooperation to get the best photos and you simply can’t give me that if your stomach is growling. So grab a granola bar or a banana or something and have a quick snack before hand, ok. This one may actually top my lost as my main what not to do item.

I’m sure there are many other things not to do before your photo shoot that could be added to this list but maybe this will give you a few things to think about as you prepare for your session. And if you need some inspiration on how to dress to look your best, just click here to see my what to wear Pinterest inspiration board!

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5 Things NOT to Do Before Your Photo Shoot

May 19, 2021