What Does Your Professional Headshot Say About You?

Have you ever considered what your headshot is saying about you? Does it represent your personality and profession? Business people look at your profile picture to discover more about you and perceive a story. So your picture can say a lot! Whether you want to stand out from others in your industry, attract potential employers or showcase your business profile, getting your headshot right is crucial! Does your headshot represent you well?

From your expression to your pose, we go through how to align your headshot with how you want to be perceived.

Photos by Iceberg Media for Dynamic Planning

Photos by Iceberg Media for Dynamic Planning

STORY TELL through your eyes

Your eyes are the key to captivating your audience. When we are engaged, our eyes are slightly squinted and tense. It makes you appear interested with the viewer. It looks much better to naturally relax your muscles around your eyes rather than forcing a squint to avoid looking angry.

Facial Expression

Your facial expression is one of the best ways to highlight emotion and set the mood of your headshot. Generally, headshots look best taken from the waist up so your audience can focus on the emotion conveyed. Your gives a viewer a good idea about the type of person you are.

So, what emotions can we illicit from your facial expressions?

  • Portray relatablity and trustworthiness with a big smile with a slight head tilt.

  • Convey your excellent at your job with a straight-on gaze and a slight smile.

  • A sideways glance with a laughing smile suggests you’re fun and approachable. This is great for creative industries.

  • A more serious expression with a slight head tilt generally infers you mean business.

Photos by Iceberg Media for Your Finance Group

Your Pose

Your body language says a lot about you. More relaxed and opened gestures reads different to crossed arms and uptight body language. Subconsciously, we read each other’s body language and react with gestures and certain posture. In a headshot, you can control your pose, so your language communicates exactly what you need it to.

What does your body language communicate?

  • A slight head tilt conveys you are approachable, friendly and a good listener. Place a hand on your waist to emphasise you are trustworthy and relatable.

  • Straight on position with both hands on hips reads, “I’m excellent at my job.”

  • Run one hand through your hair or add a jacket over your shoulder for a more fun and approachable message.

  • Arms crossed can sometimes look defensive and suggest you are not open for discussion. However, we believe this is a classic position to say “I mean business.” Keep your shoulders relaxed and accompany with a natural smile.

  • Sitting while leaning forward into the camera reads dedication and commitment. This is a flattering pose too.

  • Hands in the pocket is a comforting, casual position to convey you are approachable and relaxed.


It is important to think about what clothes you are wearing in your headshot and what they say about you.

Consider wearing:

  • Minimalistic, clean, fresh colours. Limit busy patterns and clashing colours, for exmaple pink and red.

  • Clothes appropriate for the camera. Generally, a smart shirt and trousers, with a tie and blazer is a classy and smart look. A shirt and skirt or pants looks great on a woman. Try a tailored blazer to communicate the ‘girl boss’ look.

  • Wear colours that match your brand or represent you

  • Pair styles that make you feel confident and yourself

Photos by Iceberg Media for Dynamic Planning

Be groomed and manicured

The best way to communicate professionalism is through basic grooming. A bit of manicuring and freshening up goes a long way! The camera picks up on every little detail. Even though Photoshop can make some touch ups to your photo, go through the effort of scrubbing up to show the best version of you.

Here a few things to consider:

  • Clean, well manicured nails. A decent length with simple manicure looks best. Keep those bright colours and funky designs for another time.

  • Washed, cut and styled hair. A neat hair-do is the best way to go for any professional photo.

  • Clean teeth- be sure to brush your teeth to rid of any left overs hanging around from your day. The camera cannot smell your breathe, but your audience will receive your headshot better with a clean smile.

  • Simple jewelry and elegant shoes to top off the look.

  • Fresh makeup with a bit of blush and colour to the lips.

Photos by Iceberg Media for Your Finance Group

Building a Connection

Lastly, don’t forget to form a connection with the camera. Be genuinely engaged with the camera and photographer to create a connection with the audience who views your photo. Show you are authentic and real. You can do this by looking into the centre of the camera lens, imagining they are a real person. This will help you create a better connection.

And don’t forget, be confident and believe in yourself. You want this to shine through your headshot to attract business professionals and make you stand out from the crowd.

If you’re looking to update your professional headshot, get in contact with us info@icebergmedia.com.au.

Check out more information on our Professional Portraits services.