Makeup For Headshots

Do you need a professional makeup artist or hair stylist for headshots?

This is a big question and every headshot photographer will answer it differently.  The simple answer is no.  You do not need a professional makeup artists or hair stylist for headshots.

Here is my take on why.  First let me point out that I have worked with amazing makeup artists and hair stylists on modeling shoots and ad campaigns.  They are invaluable when it comes to transforming a model into something spectacular.  However, with acting headshots, you don’t want to be transformed.  You want to be you.

The feedback I get from agents, casting directors, managers and producers about the headshots I take is the actor looks exactly like their headshot.  One of the reasons I feel that’s true is I don’t require a professional makeup artist.  I actually recommend actors do their own makeup and hair for their headshots.  Basically I want you to do the same thing you’d do with your face and hair as if you were going to an audition.

The photographers that recommend you should or must use their makeup artist say you’ll be in makeup for about an hour.  Think about that.  A professional makeup artist is going to do your makeup for about an hour.  My guess is you don’t spend an hour with a professional makeup artist before every audition so I don’t think spending an hour with my makeup artist before your headshot shoot is best because you won’t be able to recreate that look yourself.  And nothing pisses off casting directors and agents more than an actor that doesn’t look like the headshot that got them called in.

To me that arguement doesn’t make sense because 1.) Either the makeup artist is going to do something amazing that you would not be able to do yourself, which will mean that you can’t duplicate it for your auditions which will lead to you not looking like your headshots or 2.) The makeup artist is going to do very minimal makeup and not transform you.  They are just going to make you look like you.  In that case, since you already look like you without their help, you can save the extra dough.

If you are worried about a pimple or something, your Hot Headshots photo shoot comes with retouching of your final images so we can easily fix blemishes in post production.

I would rather you spend that makeup artist money on memberships to Actors Access, LA Casting, Now Casting or building your own web site or 8×10 prints.

Note: 100% of the actors you see on this web site either had no makeup or did their own.