What To Wear & How To Wear It
Image Is Everything...
So with that said ~ let's give you a few pointers on what makes for  great images for your senior pictures.
Nails & Polish
Girls & guys should be sure to have fingernails freshly manicured, clean & filed. Girls need to remove chipped nail polish ~ it will show. Black & blue & fluorescent nail polishes keep popping up as a fashion trend. Don't wear it for your senior portraits - it's far too trendy and it will make your fingernails look odd and even stranger 20 years from now. The best idea would be to stick to neutral tones, light to mid pink or better yet a french manicure.
Oily skin, especially on your face really is the enemy. Oil will show up as unattractive shiny spots on your face in pictures, (especially on your forehead). Wear a foundation makeup that doesn't have oil in it and if you do have oily skin, refresh your makeup with translucent powder during the shoot. You can also buy face blotters at the beauty supply or makeup counters in most drugstores. They are great for absorbing excess oil while leaving your makeup intact.
Don't use makeup with SPF protection in it for your portrait session. Foundation with SPF has a reflective quality, i.e. it looks shiny in pictures. Don't use it for portraits because it will photograph as big shiny spots on your face.
Eyeshadows and Eyeliners:
I really need a rooftop here ~ take it easy! Please don't arrive looking like a raccoon ~ there is nothing worse than this look. Neutral eye colors such as grays and browns are the best. Avoid pastels and highly frosted shadows. If you need a little help with this we will be happy to apply your eyeshadow for you.
Bronzer - eek! I myself wear it on a daily basis but NOT FOR PICTURES. It shows up only as a shine or looks like little dust specs. Steer clear of it on picture day. (I know, I feel weird without just  little too - just trust me here though.)
Apply your make up a little more dramatic than you would wear on a daily basis - go for " a night out" kind of look.
Apply only lotion that does not have tinting or glitter.
Don't be tempted to use a lot of hairspray, gel or other product in your hair on picture day. Your hair should move with you and blow nicely in the breeze. Don't get a last minute hair cut or hair style change. Give your hair at least a week or so to grow in a bit from a haircut.
Curly or Straight?
I suggest you wear your hair however it looks best. If you want the look of both for your pictures you will need to book an add on session for a different day due to the fact there will not be enough time during your scheduled session for you to curl/straighten your hair. An add on session is an additional $75.00.
Sunburns are nearly impossible, if not impossible to "fix" or retouch. Suntan lines are also very tricky so you should vary your shirt sleeves and bathing suit tops when tanning to avoid the lines. Avoid getting over tanned too. There is a reason models don't tan much - lightly tanned skin just photographs better.
DO NOT spray tan before your session ~ it will photograph orange and it will probably be blotchy at the knees elbows and hairline.
Girls - be sure to shave your legs and under your arms.
Guys - unless you are going for the rough stubble look be sure to be clean shaven. You have time to do both looks if you like also - just be sure to bring a razor.
Do yourself a HUGE favor here and see your optometrist and ask to borrow a lenseless pair of frames for your session. Glass glare is difficult and COSTLY to remove.
Choose varying styles of clothing - you need some different looks ~ so change each outfit up a bit. Bring some dressy, casual and in between. Include hats and scarves to add a splash of contrast color and spunk.
Short skirts or dresses really limit your posing options ~ so think carefully before choosing a lot of this type of clothing. It's a good idea to vary your wardrobe styles. So make sure to also bring jeans and shorts along too. The right clothing allows your face to dominate the portrait ~ all other elements in your portrait should be secondary. So, our goal is for the faces to be prominent not the clothes. For this reason, we discourage busy patterns, stripes and large logos.
Solid colors win hands down every time.
Have fun with the clothing too! Bring the prom dress and distressed jeans - we really want to capture the fun side of you!
To my guys - you really need to bring more than just T-shirts. I know, I know - "it's what you wear every day" BUT you want to look sharp -so bring a few solid colored long sleeve button down shirts in striking colors and a few short sleeve collared shirts. Also make sure to bring a plain white T-shirt to wear under if you want.
Wrinkles WILL SHOW in your portraits. If your eye can see wrinkles the camera will see them even more. Iron your clothes and bring them on a hanger. Please make sure your clothing is also free of stains - check close at the neckline, cuffs and underarms. You really need to do your part to be prepared in plenty of time before your session so all you need to worry about the morning of is getting yourself ready. Don't wait until the night before to try everything on or to look it all over. You may also bring your clothing down to the studio the night before if it makes it easier for you.
To my girls: try EVERYTHING on WITH your under garments that you will be wearing. Make sure you bring the proper undergarments for each outfit. Be careful that clingy knit clothing lays nicely over your bra - avoid having a bra line or the color of your bra showing through. If you are wearing white tops or white pants be sure you bring white panties to wear too. If you are wearing anything strapless be sure to bring a strapless bra.
If you are concerned about the size of your upper arms then of course you will want to be sure to wear long sleeves.
It's nice to include special or important jewelry in your portraits - however keep in mind that too much of it can be distracting. Pendant type necklaces will be tough to keep in their proper place when you move around as we pose you. Organize jewelry by placing it in baggies and slipping it over the outfit it goes with so you won't be hunting for it when changing your outfits.
Make sure that your shoes work with each of your outfits with the exception of planning on being barefoot with an outfit. One thing I do want to mention is that white tennis shoes stick out like a sore thumb - try to avoid them if possible.
The Bottom Line...
Parents and Seniors need to meet in the middle. Agree to compromise on the clothing. Parents - remember they are young and fun and we want to capture that - don't try to stuff them in an outfit they hate. Seniors - remember who is paying for this. Keep in mind that not only is this a right of passage for you but for your parents as well. It just hasn't been you who has been visioning how your pictures will look but so has mom and dad. They had a HUGE hand in getting you to this point so you gotta give a little here - and really...is what mom wants you to wear THAT awful? ( Just do your dramatic sigh, roll your eyes and put the garb on & smile pretty - we'll snap a few and move on.) I promise.

Laura Schroeder Photography Muscatine Iowa