Guest blogger, Jen Becker, owner of JQIC Inc.

Okay, so you’re going to be on camera…how exciting!  Perhaps you’re shooting a video within your organization, or maybe you’re doing a DIY video project to help promote your product or service.  Since we’re in the video world, we constantly get the question...

What should I wear on camera?

We teamed up with JQIC, Inc. this month to answer this question!  JQIC, Inc. specializes in all things wardrobe, and feeling your absolute best in any situation…..and we are so fortunate to have the owner, Jen Becker, answer this tough question for our followers.  Here’s what she had to say…

Have an opportunity to be on film (interview, quick intro video or simply a message for the masses)?  Well hot damn, and good for you!  Dressing for the camera is a little bit different than dressing for an in-person interview, meeting or…anything!  You need to think about lighting, angles, atmosphere, the list goes on and on.  The camera tends to skew colors, and can put a big focus on things you may not want to focus on.  Dressing on camera the right way is often overlooked, but it's one of the most important elements to think about. 

The key to dressing for ANY occasion is to understand what message you’re trying to send to allow people to pick up on your non-verbal cues.  While people shouldn’t judge you for your appearance, trust me, they will and do.  If you wear anything distracting on camera, people will remember that and won’t remember anything you say. 

What you should wear:

  • Pastel colors, or just stick with blue (safest).
  • Simple clothing. Think solids. Stay away from stripes, patterns or flannels. 
  • Over-the-calf socks so your skin doesn’t show if you cross your legs.
  • A well coiffed ‘do.  But nothing too shiny in those locks.
  • At least ONE thing that makes you feel strong and empowered (a necklace, a dress, suit, earrings, shoes, etc.).
  • A good sense of humor.
  • Casual shoes (tennis shoes, chucks, flip flops, etc.) if the camera is only going to show you from the waist up.  Why?  Wearing heels changes your posture and your voice!  We want you to be as natural as possible. So, unless you have to show your bottom half, wear your comfy kicks.
  • Your smile.
  • CONFIDENCE. CONFIDENCE. CONFIDENCE.  It’s easy to feel insecure in front of the camera, even if you have experience.  Everyone in the studio has their eyes on you.  It’s a good idea to do a few practice runs in your chosen outfit beforehand so you feel confident in your message. 

What you should NOT wear:

  • White.  It glows and becomes the most noticeable thing on the screen.
  • Black. It’s too harsh and sucks up the light.
  • Reds.  They bleed on camera and are distracting.
  • Jewelry that moves, makes noise, or could hit your microphone.
  • Dangly earrings.  They distract the viewer.
  • Wrinkly clothes (intended or not).
  • Stripes, herringbone, checks, small intricate designs, or flashy jewelry. They are hard for a camera to pick up on.
  • Light colored pants.  Unless you have a pair of light colored pants that make you feel oh-so amazing, stick to darker colors so that the viewer can focus on you, and not your wardrobe.
  • Mix up darks and lights.  Don’t wear a dark shirt, dark suit, and a dark tie - you will look like you are auditioning to be a hit man on the Sopranos.  (Unless of course that’s the look you’re going for, then have at it!)
  • Brand logos (yes, even if it’s Chanel, LV, Coach, or whatever brand you want to tote), unless it’s your own company logo!
  • A bad attitude.  Viewers will not relate to you, and may end up being very critical. 

It’s really important that you look and feel your best to achieve the best outcome!

While wardrobe is extremely important to any video shoot, makeup is as well - for ladies and for men!  Yup!  You really think those newscaster men aren't wearing makeup?

I recommend you hire a professional makeup artist to help you get the best look possible.  They typically know exactly what type of makeup you need for the camera. It leaves the guessing out of the equation, and allows you to focus on the important stuff…what you’re going to say!

If professional makeup isn't in your budget, stick to these basic guidelines:

  • Stick to what you know.  Don’t try something new.  This isn’t the time or place to experiment.
  • Consider getting a makeup consultation prior to being on camera.  Knowing what colors look best with your coloring and skin tone will make all the difference.  If you are better off with warm tones, wearing cool tones will wash you out and will not show well on camera.  (Often times places like Sephora and Ulta will provide a make-up consultation for free!)
  • Moisturize your skin!  The camera picks up everything, so a well moisturized face will make all the difference.
  • Use non-SPF foundation.  Foundations with SPF tend to show up white-ish on camera. 
  • Keep shine papers handy.  Having a shiny face makes you look a little greasy, so keep that in check and you will naturally shine!
  • Keep shimmer makeup to a minimum. Consider just the bridge of nose, cupids bow on the lips (helps make your lips look a little fuller) and top of cheekbone.  Less is more, as the camera will pick up on the shimmer, so don’t overdo it.

Bonus tips for you to snack on! 

  • Put on your headphones and play your favorite music beforehand.  Pretend you’re an athlete getting ready for the big game!  Music helps put you in a good mood and can relieve any anxiety you may feel.
  • Take a deep breath, slowly in, slowly out.  Do this right before you begin and you will naturally calm down, and help set the tone for your big moment.
  • Don't forget to breath throughout video production.  I know it may sound silly to say, "don't hold your breath", but it's common to do so given all the nerves.  
  • Replace filler words “um”, “ah”, “you know”, etc. with a quick pause while you are thinking.  Pauses are easy to cut out during post-production.  It’s okay to just stop and take a breath – no harm will be done to the video. 
  • Speak at a slower tempo than you are comfortable with.  When people are nervous they tend to speed their speech up, and it’s difficult to understand what you are saying.    

Video is taking over, and it will not be uncommon to be a part of a video production if you haven't already.  If you feel like you need a pro to help you out, brand28 can get you headed in the right direction!  We're always teaming up to ensure that our clients on camera look and feel their best to produce a stellar product!

Jen Becker is the owner of JQIC Inc.



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