How To Take The Perfect Hair Picture for Instagram

Published 27th Mar 2024 by hjiadmin

We're all after that perfect Instagram shot of our client's brand new look, but how exactly do you take the a good photo of your client's hair for Instagram? Here, the experts share their top tips for getting the shot.

How To Take Perfect Instagram Hair Pictures

Use Natural Light

To get perfect Instagram hair pictures, it all starts with your lighting. "We find it is always best to use natural light when shooting our clients hair. Fortunately we have windows going all around our property," says Joseph Ferraro of Joseph Ferraro, Harrogate. "Use ‘portrait’ mode or apps to blur the background so the hair is the main focus. Try different angles and videos to mix it up a bit, and take plenty of photos – you can never have too many!"

Enhance with Products

"Our stylists use smoothing products before blow drying when the hair is still wet to smooth the cuticle and give a better finish on the blow dry," Nicola Crossley of Clipso, says. "Use a shine spray mist on the finished hair to enhance the colour, style or cut on the finished look."

Products are essential for styling, however, they don’t always look right on camera and can create oily spots if you're not careful, says Guy Tang, who has over 2 million followers on Instagram. "Never spray the shine spray on the hair after the hairspray. All the hold has been broken down by the oils," he says. "Mist the shine spray onto the hair, but never too close. If you mist it too close you will have clusters all in one place.

"Brush the hair and back-brush it to swell it. Spray it with hairspray. Mist it and define it with your fingers. If you want to create more definition you can use the can to push it back."

Use A Ring Light

"Using a ring light is also a must," says Nicola. "Either using the ‘cool’ or ‘warm’ light setting depending on the client's hair colour to make the hair look the best it can."

"Turn off any orange light in your salon. It will give the hair a warm glow," says Guy. "Don’t have a window nearby with natural light coming in. If you have a ring light and a window it will look uneven. Have a white wall or something that looks clean and make sure you wipe the lens before you take the photograph," he adds.

Style the Hair

Big, voluminous curls and understated beachy waves are the styling favourites for Instagram, but getting them right for the ‘Gram takes slightly different techniques to getting them right for the salon.

Here, Guy shares how to style two of the best styles for getting perfect hair photos for Instagram; big, voluminous curls and beauty waves...

Big, Voluminous Curls

  1. Make sure the heat is on low to medium to protect the hair.
  2. Start at the nape and then work outwards in a pyramid. Try pulling the hair out and taking it away from the head.
  3. Don’t rope the hair round your styler. Pull it out like a flat panel. Put it flat onto the iron then wrap it around to ensure you get even heat distribution.
  4. Repeat all the way round to create a feathered look.
  5. Put the ends in last, then swirl and let them drop to create a relaxed finish. You don’t want to end up with fish hooks!
  6. Keep stacking and overlaying the curls. Put light colours on top and dark behind, to create dimension.

Beachy Waves

  1. Start at the front for a casual and relaxed look.
  2. Spiral the hair around the irons and leave the ends out. Don’t curl it too tight or you will create a spiral.
  3. You want it to look loose and then pull out. Repeat until you get to the back of the occipital. Direct forward, but pull away because when you over-direct it stretches back to its normal curling position.
  4. As you get towards the ear you should start pulling it towards you instead.
  5. If your client’s hair doesn’t curl properly, you will need to do a second revolution to make it tighter.
  6. Use your fingers to control the waves and fan the hair open. You should grab it and expand it to swell it open then spray it.

Tips and Tricks

Sometimes, a helping hand from your client can help get  those perfect instagram hair pictures, says Guy. "Ask your client to put one hand up at the front of the head to fan the hair out," he says. "If you can’t see the perfect shot with one hand lifted, ask the client to lift both hands to change the shape."

Playing with distance and settings on your phone can also enhance the photo. "Look through the camera lens rather than at the hair. Sometimes you will see things you can’t see on the hair," he says. "Choose the right setting on your iPhone. I like to use the close up, but then take a step back."

Creative Hair Looks

Pulp Riot artist Christabel Legrand says there’s a number of things to consider to ensure your creative colour looks great in a photo. “I find natural light works the best, but you want to avoid direct sunlight as this can sometimes change the tone of the colour. Having a neutral-coloured background is also really important as contrasting or bright tones in the background can also affect how the hair looks on camera. If you don’t have access to this, or it’s getting darker or duller during the day, another option is a ring light with a cool white filter. Don’t just take one image; have a play around with positioning and angles until you find what works for you.” 

Christabel’s Top Tips For Capturing Creative Colour

  1. When positioning the hair always angle your client’s head. From behind tilt their head backwards, ask your client to place their hands at the nape of their neck and spread their elbows out, then spread the hair over their arms. This makes it appear thicker, fuller and really shows of the colour.  
  2. For front facing photos, angle the chin towards the collar bone, soften the eyes. I always ask my clients to close their eyes or look ‘sleepy’ as it looks great and more relaxed for photos.
  3. Do get lots of content, work different angles and take videos as well as photos – for reels. There is nothing worse than spending ages creating a beautiful colour, spending time taking pictures and then not getting the perfect photo you can use on socials.
  4. Make sure your lighting is correct, as tones can change in different light and backgrounds.
  5. Don’t use much product when styling the hair, you can always rearrange the hair and add more product when you have set up ready to take the photo. 
  6. Don’t edit photos too much – it’s very obvious when a photo has been edited and is not a realistic expectation for clients or a real representation of your work.

Looking for more social media tips? Check out our useful glossary here.



Published 27th Mar 2024

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