Do you need Senior Photoshoot Outfit Ideas? I’ve been a professional photographer for over 10 years and one of the first questions that I get once I book a senior portrait photoshoot is, “What should I wear to my senior session?’
Preparing for your senior portraits doesn’t mean you need to go out and buy a whole new wardrobe. Often times you will have everything you need already in your closet. It’s just a matter of coordinating everything. It can be so much fun to dig in and mix and match different textures and colors.
Keep in mind that the following suggestions are just that, suggestions. The best outfits are the ones that show your personal style and make you feel your best. A good senior photographer can pretty much make anything work. The best photos are the ones that showcase your unique style.
Be sure to read to the end to see a list of What Not to Wear to Your Senior Photoshoot.
The Best Senior Portrait Outfits:
First Thing to Consider When Choosing Your Outfits:
- What types of locations will you be using? Studio? or Outdoor Locations?
- What are the colors of the location?
- How can you showcase your personal style? Jerseys, school uniforms, sports equipment, instruments
- What color palettes look best with your skin tone?
- Bright and bold colors tend to photograph well.
- Are you trying to stick to a color scheme?
- What will the temperature be on the day of your session?
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The Best Senior Portrait Outfits for Girls
I don’t typically limit the number of outfits for my clients but, 3 different outfits (2 outfit changes) tend to be optimal for a 2-hour session. Any more than that and you end up spending more time changing and less time shooting.
It’s always fun to add a jacket, scarf, or hat to mix up an outfit, with a pop of color, without a huge wardrobe change.
Formal Outfits for Senior Girls:
A formal dress is such a fun way to spice up your senior photos. I have had girls wear everything from prom dresses with converse to their County Fair queen gowns.
Dressy or Classic Outfits for Senior Girls:
Dressy or classic outfits are a great choice because they are timeless. Whether it’s for a resume or your profile picture for linked in, you will be using the pictures long after you graduate high school. So you will want to keep that in mind when making your outfit choice. Solid colors are a good idea when going for a more classic look. But a light and airy floral print is a beautiful option as well.
Casual Outfits for Senior Girls:
A casual outfit is something similar to what you might wear on the first day of school. It’s a much less formal look without being too laid back.
Trendy Outfits for Senior Girls:
Trendy outfits are usually everyone’s favorite outfits because they allow you to show your unique style. Whether it’s flowy dresses or bell-bottomed pants, a trendy outfit is always a great idea for a senior photo shoot.
Outfits that Showcase your Personality/Accomplishments/Future College:
This is the outfit that typically pushes everyone to the third outfit change. If you participated in high school sports or activities, this is a great way to capture those memories. Whether it’s your cheer uniform, volleyball jersey, trombone, or violin, this is a great time to have a little fun with it.
The Best Senior Picture Outfits for Guys:
Formal Outfits for Senior Guy:
A formal outfit for a guy can be something as simple as a tailored suit or sports coat. Pair it with some tennis shoes for an edgy look.
Dressy or Classic Outfits for Senior Guy:
I think we can all agree, the most classic outfit for a guy is a button-down shirt with khakis. And with good reason, it looks great and will stand the test of time. Whether bright colors or neutral tones, a solid fabric is the best way to achieve the classic look.
Casual Outfits for Senior Guy:
This stands true for guys and girls alike, a typical first day of school outfit.
Trendy Outfits for Senior Guy:
Whether it’s a vintage concert t-shirt or an overcoat full of graphics, trendy outfits are some of the best looks for guys too. It’s an easy way to really let their personality shine through.
Outfits that Showcase your Personality/Accomplishments/Future College:
What Not to Wear to Your Senior Session:
- Oversized Clothing – This is not flattering
- Wrinkled clothes – Photoshop does not have the capability to iron clothes
- Neon colors – these don’t photograph well and can reflect onto the skin
- Super short and tight skirts – It’s fine to wear a short skirt as one of your outfits, but you will be very limited as far as posing goes. I wouldn’t choose a short skirt for all three of your outfits.
- Beware of plunging necklines. We will shoot from different angles and we don’t want to have to worry about wardrobe malfunctions.
- Red lipstick – I usually discourage red lipstick because it has a tendency to make your teeth look very yellow.
- If you are wearing fake eyelashes, make sure they are not lifting. Photoshop is not able to glue them down for you:)
- Loud floral patterns – unless of course, it is part of your trendy outfit. Then, anything goes. But typically floral patterns are very loud and sort of take over a picture rather than allowing you to be the star of the show.
The Best Props to Bring to Your Senior Photo Session:
- Framed Baby Picture
- Letterman Jacket
- Sports Equipment
- Musical Instrument
- Personalized Signs
- T-shirt representing your college
- accessories – hats, scarves, suitcases
- favorite books
- Balloons, and confetti – just know that these take a lot of time from your session
- Cap and Gown – honestly only about 10% of my seniors actually bring this
What to Bring to Your Senior Session:
- bottle of water
- oil blotting papers to wipe the shine off your face
- brush or comb
- family member
- biker shorts to wear under short skirts
- small snack – animal crackers, cookies, nothing too messy
Should You Have Your Makeup Done for Your Senior Shoot?
It’s always nice to have your makeup done and it can make you feel super special, which the camera will pick up:). Just be sure that the makeup artist doesn’t go overboard. We want to still be able to see your natural beauty.
The Day of Your Senior Portrait Session:
- Make sure you have all your senior pictures outfits together and packed in the car, as well as your props, and personal items.
- Make sure you know the location of your senior photoshoot and put it into maps to make sure you leave on time.
- Don’t wear your sunglass to the session. They leave indentations on the sides of your nose that are difficult to remove.
- Make sure you communicate to your senior portrait photographer if you have a side you prefer. Most clients, regardless of body type, have a “side” they feel shows their best features.
Graduating from High school is such a special time for you and I am blessed to be able to capture this time. Senior year is one of the major milestones in your life. Remember that no one starts off comfortable in front of the camera. As your session progresses you will relax and before you know it, you will be in your comfort zone.
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