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How to take website-worthy before & after photos of hair salon clients

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You’re already in the routine of taking before and after photos of your clients. But are your photos good enough to repurpose on your website? Maybe, but maybe not. If you’re going for a professional, on-brand online experience that matches your space and in-person services (hint: you should!), your website’s photos must be top-notch. Of course, the best option is to hire a professional photographer to capture the client photos that will be showcased on your website. But I get it – that’s not always realistic! That’s why I’ve put together this guide covering how to take website-worthy before & after photos of hair salon clients. Photos you can not only share on Instagram, but that you can also repurpose on your website. P.S. a professional camera is not a must around here! All of these tips are intended for your iPhone’s camera! So let’s dive in!

Take all photos in front of the same, neutral background

First things first – setting the scene. A consistent background is your secret weapon. Choose a background that resonates with your salon’s vibe. Keep it simple with classic black, white, or a neutral tone that complements your salon’s aesthetic.

Keep the photos 100% distraction-free

We get it – details matter. To ensure the focus remains on your client’s gorgeous hair, choose a background with a very subtle pattern or texture. This will add depth without stealing the show. Make sure there is no signage, spotty decor or clutter in the background.

Pose your client

It’s not your client’s responsibility to know how to pose. After-all, they are not models, and posing does not come natural to them. Guide them through natural poses that highlight the end product of what you’ve done for them. Whether it’s a confident head toss or a casual hand-on-hip stance, have some go-to poses and let their personality shine through. And don’t forget to direct their facial expression! What to do with their mouth, where to look, and how to angle their head to get an expression that highlights (not takes away from) the focus of the image.

Your client’s outfit matters

Imagine having a photo of your clients hair showcasing your best work yet….but she’s wearing a bright orange shirt and your brand colors are a strict black, brown and ivory palette. As good as the hair is, I would advise that you eliminate it from your website. Avoid this dilemma by making a request to all of your clients. In your initial consultation or appointments with your client, politely request that they come to their appointments wearing a neutral colored top. This ensures their hair remains the star of the show and that all photos will ‘go’ with the rest of your website. And no capes, please! People can tell when your clients are wearing a cape. When your client wears her own top, it can come off more natural and relatable to your audience.

Photograph where there is plenty of natural light

Natural light is your best friend. Set up your photoshoot background area near a window or in a well-lit area to capture their hair in the most flattering way possible. Avoid harsh shadows – we’re going for that soft, radiant glow. Not only will the natural light give you the clearest photo possible, but it will show the truest color.

Back it up! Get both up & down and wide shots

Trust me when I say…this will be a bigger factor than you expect when popping your photos into your website! Imagine having a wide screen image frame that you want to fill with Chelsea’s after photo, which is an up-and-down (portrait) oriented photo. But when you get it plugged in, you’re left with just her eyes and noes, with a bit of hair on either side of her face filling the photo area. Having a variety of wide & tall after photos of your clients will give you much more flexibility and ease when plugging them into your website.

Portrait mode will be your friend

Not every salon owner has a professional camera on hand – and that’s okay! If you’re working with your trusty iPhone, make sure you’re using Portrait Mode. It works wonders in blurring the background just enough, giving your photos that professional touch.

Save the video footage you recorded for your TikToks or Reels

Don’t just stop at still photos. Save those videos you recorded for your TikTok or Instagram reel, as they can be repurposed for your website too! These can be turned into background videos to add movement or captivating GIFs that add an interactive element to your website. Capture movement – whether it’s a hair flip, a twirl, ‘jushing; her hair from the back, or the client looking up at you.

Remember, your after photos are a reflection of your expertise and creativity. Each shot tells a story of transformation, confidence, and your salon’s unique flair. With these tips in your toolbox, you’ll be able to take website-worthy before & after photos of hair salon clients. Ones that will leave your ideal guests craving to have that for themselves.

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