by Andrew Harper
If you’ve ever had your headshot taken, you’ve probably asked the photographer “You’re going to work your photoshop magic, right?” And usually the answer is something along the lines of “We do light retouching.” While that may make some people nervous, the truth is that there are a lot of steps you can take before your appointment to get your skin looking its best. We’ve organized a list of preparations you can make when you’ve scheduled your session and broken it into three key categories: Diet, Products, and Overall Wellness.
It’s an age old saying: “You are what you eat!” And it’s true. Your body takes nutrients from food to build and sustain itself on a molecular level, and with your skin being your largest organ, it only makes sense that our first tip is to pay attention to your diet leading up to your headshot session.
- Cut Dairy (if you haven’t already). Most people become lactose intolerant as they get older, and with good reason. Dairy increases inflammation in the body, leading to uneven skin-tone (or splotchiness) and sometimes a puffy appearance, particularly around the eyes.
- Increase your Omega 3s – these can be found in foods like salmon, walnuts, and chia. They do the exact opposite as dairy – reducing puffiness and inflammation. Worth noting, the anti-inflammatory affects are not just limited to your skin, they’re also excellent for people with high cholesterol and blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease.
- Incorporate Vitamin C daily – Vitamin C increases the production of collagen and fights free radical damage from sun exposure.
- Water Water Water! - Try doubling your water intake – unless you already drink a lot. Make sure to sip, not gulp, so that your body has ample time to absorb it – not just flush it out. Here’s a link outlining the benefits of proper water consumption.
Tip from the writer: My favorite summertime drink is a homemade juice from apples, lemons, and spinach. All three ingredients promote healthy skin cell production and fight the negative affects of sun exposure which is key when you live in the Sunshine State like we do!
Everyone has their own skincare regiment. When you need results fast, however, don’t be afraid to add a couple steps, especially at night time when your face and body are restoring themselves.
- Exfoliate - exfoliating removes the dead skin on the top layer, leaving your face fresh and bright. It’s also helpful in aiding the process of new skin cell development.
- Moisturize - we recommend any product that has hyaluronic acid. It’s an ingredient that can hold and supply a massive amount of moisture which when applied can lessen the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
- Caffeine Scrub or Mask - you can find these in stores, but we personally recommend you make your own. You can either gently rub this on your eyelids (carefully) or apply it and let it sit. Massaging the skin encourages circulation and has immediate visible benefits to reducing puffiness.
This category can be the easiest if you let yourself breathe for a moment…
- Relax - if there’s anything I’ve learned from watching my skin, it’s that stress is the number one factor in blemishes. It’s hard not to be stressed, but if you pay attention to things that let your mind wander it can help you unwind. Read a book, watch a movie you haven’t seen in your favorite genre, go for a walk in the evening when the weather is nice. Self-guided meditation apps are everywhere nowadays and are perfect for just before bed. Here’s a link to some really good (and free) ones.
- Stay Active - sweating not only has mental benefits, it also flushes toxins from your body through the pores of your skin. Just be sure to wash your face after!