Ever heard the phrase ‘don’t judge a book by its cover?’  Of course you have, you probably nodded approvingly to the comment too.  But let’s face it, if the choice arose between a brand new shiny book and an old, tatty book that smells a little funny, we both know which one you’d reach for first.  That’s because appearance matters.

Whether we like it or not, we live in a society where we’re judged on our looks before our brains, it’s unfair but it’s the truth.  It’s also the reason why deciding what to wear to a personal branding shoot is the number one thing that causes the most anxiety in my clients.

Worry not, I’m on hand to talk you through this step by step.  Thanks to years of experience, I know what looks good on camera, and what to avoid.  I want you to step out in front of that camera, feeling like (insert name of woman/man you admire; for both her/his brains and style) and let that confidence shine through you to my camera.


  1. Incorporate your brand colours

I want to provide you with selection of photos that will sit seamlessly on your website, social media channels and business cards.  I therefore recommend looking carefully at your branding colours and choosing items of clothing that compliment them.  I say ‘compliment’ rather than ‘match’, because matching can limit your choices.

Be creative, if your branding colour is blue, why not wear orange?  If you’re unsure which colours sit well together, try using a colour wheel so that you feel confident about your selection.

2.  Wear what makes you feel good

Please don’t reinvent yourself for your personal brand shoot, be yourself.  If you normally wear jeans with a smart top, that’s absolutely fine!  If you hate heels, that’s fine too!  Bring that oversized jumper you love to wear, or those boots which always make you feel more confident about your legs.  I want you to feel good about yourself. You’ve come a long way to get to this far, it’s time you had some fabulous photos to celebrate!

Wear colours and styles that suit you and your natural skin tones. We’re not all born with that innate knowledge of what looks good on us, so if you’re not sure I recommend asking a trusted friend or better yet, invest in a stylist.


3.  Solid colours look fabulous

Neutral or solid colours always work well, so they’re a perfect choice for those who may not feel as confident putting an outfit together.  Wearing clothes in solid colours won’t overwhelm the overall image. Neutrals, of course, are known for their timeless look and never compete for attention.

Stay away from shirts with large logos, graphics or words, they not only bring attention away from YOU, but can cause your images to prematurely date.


4.  Bring multiple outfits

The weather changes, locations change and sometimes an outfit you love actually doesn’t capture as well on camera as you thought it would.  There are many reasons why it pays to have more than one outfit for a photoshoot, but I think the most important one is; you will have a more varied choice when it comes to your selection of photographs.

I would aim to have at least three outfits to change into on the day, along with a change of foot wear too. If we’ve agreed on multiple locations, then perhaps take inspiration from there.  For example, heels and jeans if we’re going to a bar, a comfortable jacket if we’re walking along the river. This can be the perfect opportunity to wear that outfit you brought, but haven’t had a chance to wear yet.

Check out these outfits from my personal branding session with Jane Brook, House of Colour stylist – Jane definitely knows what to wear!



1.  Don’t wear worn out clothes

Keep tired, old clothes at home. You’ll want your images to have sharp, vivid colours and neat lines. To achieve this, choose items that are new or in fairly good condition and make sure your clothes are looking their best, by ironing out any creases.

2.  Don’t neglect your hair and make-up

It’s really worth putting that extra effort into your appearance for your personal branding shoot.

Some clients love having their hair, make-up and nails done professionally before a shoot whilst others prefer to do it themselves. Whatever your choice, don’t forget this finishing touch – it’s the icing on the cake.

And yes, this applies to men too – you might need a trim!

3.  Avoid tight and uncomfortable clothing

The last thing you need to be concerned with during a photoshoot is the tugging and adjusting of clothing.  For this reason I suggest you avoid wearing outfits which would be considered tight or revealing (revealing too much skin is a big no-no). Choose comfortable clothes which naturally hang in the right places.

4.  Don’t go too trendy

Trends go in and out of style, we all know this.  While we don’t want to look dated in our clothing choices, we also don’t want to be regretting an outfit a few months down the line.  Wherever possible choose classic styles that suit your body shape – this will give your photos longevity and prevent any fashion regret.

To sum up: wear what you feel comfortable in, try not to be swayed by fashion trends and take your time choosing your colour palette.  If you want to run an outfit past me, or need any further advice, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.  If you’d like further tips on personal branding photography, please visit my top tips page.


Personal branding photography top tips

If you would like to know more about my photography, please explore my website, or reach out to me at michelle@michellemorris.co.uk. If you would like to regularly receive my newsletters and blogs please join my VIP list (you’ll get first dibs to offers and promotions).





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