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The Top 9 Poses For Professional Headshots | Simple Tips


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These are the top 9 poses to use in your next headshot session.

The “traditional”

This is the headshot photo your company will tell you you need and send you to a regular photographer they use. You can smile or not smile in this shot – we’d recommend trying out both.


The arm cross

A well-known and typically hated pose – the arm cross. However, you’ve probably been doing it wrong which is why it feels so wrong. You can feel closed off if it isn’t right. When you get the arm cross technique down just right, it looks playful and comfortable.

The sitting “power” pose

Andrea Vaccarelli_headshot lifestyle Leesburg VA

This pose asserts its dominance every time. You spread the legs out a bit, rest the elbows on the knees, and fold the hands. Give yourself some wiggle room here. It can feel awkward at first but if you can let go, laugh at yourself a bit, you’ll end up with an amazing shot.

The comfortable arm

Here, you just want to create a cozy “you can talk to me anytime” feel. Something about the arm resting under the head allows the onlooker to feel comfortable with the person in the photo. You can tilt your head a bit, give a laughing smile, or look serious.



An easy prop (coffee mugs)

Having a small easy prop is great because it gives you something to do with your hands, making things feel a little less awkward. Even pretending to sip the cup can pull out the best smiles. Remember to let loose when you’re holding a prop – these images are meant to feel a little more natural. Someone would want to look at you with your mug and think, “Yeah, I’d have a coffee with them.”

“Wash” your hands”

Sounds strange, but a great method to getting your hands to look more natural is by rubbing them together like you’re washing your hands. Slowly moving them while the camera is shooting captures really natural-looking hands. You’ll look like you’re ready and listening y=to your clients.


The candid laugh

This photo is a showstopper – people love seeing you happy. We feel that happiness jump off the page or screen. A real laugh, not just a weak laugh after someone told a bad joke, makes people feel like they can laugh with you. They think you like to have fun and they feel like they could be themselves around you.

Holding the legs

Get comfortable and pull in those legs (if you can. If not, hold onto you knees or wherever is available to you.)


Against the wall

A common pose for sure, but still one of the best. This one captures you at a fun angle. You can do this pose almost anywhere, indoors or outdoors. Up against a studio wall or a brick wall, this is a go to pose because it offers that typical headshot angle with a bit more “umph”.

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