Headshots are an essential part of any professional profile or job application. They provide potential employers with the all-important ‘first impression’ and show commitment to corporate brands or projects. However, now more than ever before, having a great headshot is critical for those who are remote workers or regularly engaging in video calls. So, what do you need to know about taking the perfect remote headshot? Here are 10 do’s and don’ts that will help you get it right.

Do Think About What You Want Your Headshot to Communicate

This is one of the most important tips when it comes to taking a great remote headshot. Think carefully about what you want your image to communicate – and ensure that it is consistent with your professional objectives. Are you aiming for a dynamic and vibrant image full of energy? Or a more conservative approach? This decision will largely depend upon the context and purpose of your remote headshot. 

Do Use Natural Lighting Where Possible

Light is always a major factor when it comes to shooting quality photographs. Wherever possible, use natural light as this will give a softer, more flattering, and less artificial effect than flash photography (unless it’s unavoidable!). If possible, experiment with different angles, distances from the light source, and times of day to get the best results. 

Don’t Use a Selfie Stick

This may sound like a strange tip but hear us out – using a selfie stick for your remote headshots is not only a bit unprofessional looking, but it also doesn’t usually provide the best angles or distance from the camera. Whenever possible, have someone else take your photo (at least 10 feet away) or use a timer on your camera if that’s all you have available to you. 

Do Use Props Sparingly

Props can be great if used sparingly and within reason – but they should never be overused or dominate the frame! Consider whether the props you choose support your ‘look,’ such as a stationary laptop if you’re aiming for a professional setting, or even books if you have an artistic personality and want to come across as creative in your headshot. 

Don’t Wear Bright Colors 

Bright colors should be avoided in favor of more natural shades, as these can appear overwhelming in photographs and distract from your face. Choose colors that are subtle, and muted but still reflect your unique personality – think navy blue, deep reds, earthy greens, etcetera. 

Do Wear Professional Clothing 

Professional clothing will help you look polished and put together in whatever remote headshot you choose to go with. Your clothing should fit well and remain neat at all times; avoid wrinkled pieces or anything too flashy (unless you are trying to make an authentic ‘style statement’). 

Don’t Wear Too Much Makeup

Makeup is an excellent way to enhance facial expressions and create some depth in online photos; however, too much makeup can often look artificial or garish in photographs. A good rule of thumb is only to apply makeup if necessary – less is usually more in these cases! 

Do Smile 

 Smiling makes all the difference when it comes to taking the perfect remote headshot. It gives off an air of warmth and sincerity, something that is essential for professional success both online and in person! For best results, practice smiling in front of a mirror before shooting any photos so that you can get comfortable with different kinds of smiles until you find one that works for you. 

Do Test Out Different Angles and Expressions  

Different angles and expressions can make all the difference when it comes to taking the perfect remote headshot! For example, try shooting from slightly above instead of straight on – this can help elongate faces (good for those who want longer-appearing faces!) Alternatively, shooting from below might add more definition and emphasize certain features (such as eyes). Experimenting with different angles combined with facial expressions like smiling or pouting can help make a powerful impact! 


Taking the perfect remote headshot doesn’t have to be complicated – follow these 10 do’s and don’ts provided above, practice beforehand if necessary and ensure that your photo looks natural, polished, and true to yourself – you won’t regret it! Good luck!