It can be hard to decide what to wear when you’re on camera. Is it your favorite outfit? Or the one you feel most confident in? What will make you look your best on camera? And what will serve as a distraction?
Avoid Glasses and Other Reflective Objects
Great lighting is key to great photo and video shoots. But those lights can easily reflect off glasses and jewelry, causing distractions and glare. If you can’t or don’t feel comfortable removing your glasses, speak with your photographer or videographer about ways to minimize the glare.
Choose the Right Color for You
This is where it can get tricky if you don’t know the right colors for your skin tone. Sam recommends navy blue, burgundy, or muted neutral tones if you aren’t sure. Avoid white, black, or reds. Sam shares some onscreen examples that show why those don’t work as well.
You may have heard this recommendation before, but it can’t go unsaid. Patterns, even small ones, can cause a major distraction on camera, as Sam demonstrates with stripes, small floral prints, and more.
Choosing the right outfit to wear on camera doesn’t have to be complicated. By following these recommendations, you can be confident the wardrobe you put together to be on screen will help your message pop.
Ready for more tips? Check out Sam’s 4 device recommendations for improving the audio in your videos.
Speaker 1: (00:01)
Hey guys, Sam from Out & About. For today's pro tip, I'm going to be discussing a topic that I get asked quite a lot. How do I dress for being on camera? I’ve broken it down into what I believe are the three most important things to consider before your time on screen. These tips should have you looking great and position you to make the maximum impact on your audience. Step one, whenever possible, try to avoid wearing glasses or flashy jewelry. Oftentimes in video, you will be lit with several different lights. These lights can create a distracting glare if the subject is wearing glasses or flashy jewelry. However, it isn't a deal breaker. A talented camera crew may know just how to adjust the lights to reduce glare, but it does pose a challenge. Consider taking off your glasses and/or wearing contacts on the day of shooting.
Speaker 1: (00:47)
Step two, choose the right color. Whenever possible, aim to wear solid colors. We want you to pop on screen, but not distract. Furthermore, it's important to choose colors that flatter you. If you don't know, or don't really care, some universally safe colors include navy, burgundy, or muted tones. Bold colors can work, too, but avoid wearing hot colors, such as pink or pure red, as they can reflect or bleed color onto your surroundings. Probably the most common problem I encounter is when a subject is wearing black or white with black; your shirt can get lost in the shadows as the camera operator exposes your face. With white, the details and highlights can be easily overexposed creating a spotlight effect, which can be especially distracting. The bright white of a shirt can also sometimes make it difficult for the camera to get your skin tone just right. White isn't totally off limits. However, if you want to wear white, try breaking it up with a jacket, a tie, or some other accessory.
Speaker 1: (01:39)
Last but not least, step three, avoid distracting or busy patterns, including stripes, herringbone, or checks. We want the viewers’ focus to be drawn upward toward your face; fine lines, polka dots, and even small floral prints can be distracting to the viewer. Stripes can sometimes create what's called a moire effect. This happens when fine patterns in your shot interact with the pattern of pixels on your camera sensor, creating a distracting effect on your subject that looks like this.
In summary, we want the focus of your video to stay on you and your message by making sure what you're wearing on screen complements you and isn't distracting while also ensuring it interacts nicely with the camera. For a more in-depth guide on how to prepare yourself for your time on screen, check out our video interview guide linked below. It includes even more tips and tricks on how to look your absolute best on camera.