How to Take a Professional Headshot & Work-Appropriate Makeup

Admins on the Rise: Maven Makeover Part TWO

At our latest Admins on the Rise event, Maven Makeover, one thing was clear – everyone loves a little pampering! Maven Makeover focused on how to “make over” and refresh your professional profile, including making your resume more impactful and your LinkedIn profile more searchable. This includes having a professional, personable headshot, so we brought in some experts: photographer Kendall Brobst and makeup artist Rachel Domingo. The two talented women had our guests feeling their best while taking their headshots, and they shared some amazing tips for a fantastic headshot and work-appropriate makeup in Part TWO of our Maven Makeover coverage!

(Check out Part ONE & Part THREE for more resume, LinkedIn, and Interview tips)


Professional Headshot Tips from Kendall Brobst who shoots everything from weddings, live music, travel, and of course all types of professional headshots:

  • What’s Your Vibe: Match your look to the ‘vibe’ you are going for in your career and the jobs you want. For example, if you are applying to start-ups, you probably don’t want to wear a formal business suit in your headshot.
  • Be the Star in Your Photo: Don’t wear anything that is going to ‘outshine’ your face. I recommend small jewelry, solids or simple patterns and nothing too eye-catching or distracting.
  • Smize ‘em in the Eye: I always like to shoot headshots straight on vs. a profile. You always want people to see your eyes!
  • Be yourself! Above everything, you want this photo to convey you, the real you that is going to walk into that interview. Have fun: relay a story or a joke between you and the photographer to loosen things up to avoid a photo that feels stiff.


Tips for Work Appropriate Makeup from our go-to makeup expert, Rachel Domingo, who helps women look their best for all kinds of special events! You can also visit her at the Mac counter at Bloomingdale’s in San Francisco.

  • Less is More! Avoid caking it up as much as possible. There’s nothing worse than when it looks like you’ve tried too hard to look good. It should look, feel, and be effortless.
  • Know your audience: Be sure your makeup is appropriate for your work environment. It should be tailored to the impression you want to make with your employees, colleagues and superiors. If you work in a creative environment, don’t be afraid to express yourself creatively, especially if you’re an artist deep down!
  • Neutral is Natural: Neutral colors are always a “no fail” choice when it comes to color with your makeup. Choose complimenting colors for your skin tone and eye color to make your best features pop.
  • “Blend blend blend is your friend friend friend!” It’s important to avoid harsh lines and heavy makeup when coming to work. Save the smoky eyes for Happy Hour and soften up those beautiful features to appear more approachable and professional.
  • Keep it simple: Are you the “I do my makeup in my car” type? Only have 5-10 minutes to spare because you’d rather have coffee than a full face of makeup? No worries! Let’s be all about minimal makeup with a maximum impact, and you’ll have a perfect 10-minute makeup face with your latte in hand, looking refreshed and ready to attack the day!
  • “Five to stay alive.” Piggybacking on the last tip: pick 5 top makeup items and make it your “Daily Go-to” routine. Ex: Mascara, Liner, Tinted Moisturizer, Bronzer, Lips — this is still technically a “full face” without doing a full makeup beatdown a la Instagram. And you won’t need 3 different makeup removers to take it all off when you’re too tired after a long day.
  • Wear it with confidence! If you don’t feel good in it, don’t wear it! Like most things you wear, it’s important to actually feel good. If it doesn’t make you feel like you can take on the world today, save it for a day when it will!

The big takeaway? It’s all about being comfortable and confident in putting your best professional self forward. Want to learn more? Can we help you find your next dream role? Drop us a line!

Posted on

November 15, 2017


Job Search Advice