Outfit Selection Do’s and Don’ts for Your Senior Photo Session
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Outfit Selection Do’s and Don’ts for Your Senior Photo Session

Outfit Selection Do’s and Don’ts for Your Senior Photo Session

Attention: This blog is for the real American teenager. The normal, imperfect, real human being looking to be photographed, not the rail thin, super model. Just to clarify I certainly have nothing against the supermodel, it’s just that the majority of the world (myself included) isn’t working with that body type.

This blog’s focus is on the everyday girl, because any one of you can look amazing in photos, with a few tips and tricks. Below is a list of do’s and don’ts that apply to just about everyone in the majority when it comes down to it.   Obviously, it’s not a completely comprehensive list, because every person’s body and personality are different, but it can definitely serve as a guideline.

Accent Your Assets

Is your waist the smallest part of you? Do cinch your waist. Accentuate it with every outfit.

Have great legs? A swing dress, shorts, or skirts will accentuate them.

Don’t skip heels. Whether you choose a wedge, stiletto, or heeled bootie, almost everyone can benefit from a couple extra inches on their leg line. Of course, you should be yourself and bring other outfit options that include your lucky sneaks, especially if you wear them every day. But you also need to represent the other sides of your personality as well. One of those needs to be a look that will more likely withstand the test of time. Often formal pictures are the ones that will still be considered at least somewhat classy in ten years, you know it’s the little black dress never goes out of style theory?

Do wear color. Particularly jewel tones. Colors draw the eye into a photo and there is a jewel tone the works with almost any skin type.


Don’t wear white. The camera doesn’t like white and neither do most skin types. White is hard to work with, and it’s not that interesting. Save it for your wedding day.

Style Matters

Do wear shorts. Shorts can elongate great legs and create personality, just like a dress.

Don’t wear daisy dukes. Remember you want to love these photos in ten years and daisy dukes, although on trend, will scream classy less the older you get.

Do wear something with some sort of a sleeve, cap sleeve, regular sleeve, quarter length etc… Unless you have incredibly fit arms, there are probably more angles of your arms you won’t like than angles you will like, if you choose to go sleeveless.

*Note: be careful with bell sleeves. If you choose them be prepared to be posed, arms up, hands on hip positions that create space between the bell sleeve and your waist, otherwise you end up looking wider than you are.

Don’t wear strapless. First strapless requires almost impeccable posture, something not even supermodels often have. Secondly, there can be so many unflattering angles when wearing strapless that it really limits the movement and often creates an uncomfortable, stiff looking photograph.

Accessories are your best friend

Do wear interesting jewelry and  accessories. This adds layers and dimension to your photo

Don’t wear an infinity scarf.  It can make you look like you have no neck or like you are shrugging your shoulders.

Do bring a scarf. While scarfs on the neck are not my favorite, it can be used as something to hold in a photo that can blow in the wind or add movement.

Do have pockets.  Pockets give your hands something to do.  When you are the only one in the photo, arms can be awkward if they are just hanging down at your side.

Do wear dark jeans. This is a no brainer – Everybody knows that dark colors make you look skinny

Do watch out with ripped jeans.  I know grunge is in, but super ripped jeans can really limit movement in photos and the truth is just like daisy dukes, they aren’t timeless, but they can be done.

Pay attention to feminine details- No. I am not saying you have to be super girly. But I am saying that feminine details such as off the shoulder shirts add softness and something interesting to the photo.

Do pick outfits that represent your personality. Yes, bring your college t-shirt, cute slightly ripped favorite pair of jeans, and your Chuck Taylor’s, just make sure that it’s not your only outfit.

Keep in mind, rules are always subject to change depending on body types and personalities. The best thing to remember is that diversity truly is key. Make sure you three to four senior portrait outfits are as completely different from each other as possible.  Focus on variety, after all your personality is multifaceted and you definitely want to photograph every side of it!


I am the owner of Widyn Photography and Denton Bridal Show. Learn more about me at Meet LeeAnn and don’t forget to ogle the gorgeous moments and people captured in my portfolio




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