The Beauty Checklist: Prepping for Your Photo SHOOT

Preparation is key to a successful photo session with the black rabbit. Just as we are preparing to build an exclusive experience to you by designing your shoot with specific poses, creating custom handmade dresses or building backgrounds among other things, so too, it's very important for you to prepare for your photo shoot.

There are five major areas where little preparation goes a long way to a successful session: Face, Hair, Hands, Skin and Clothes.

About a week before your shoot is the perfect time to start planning your outfits (and share them with us :)) and booking time with a spa or with yourself at home to take the below beautification steps. Some of our clients even take the day off to go enjoy a day at the spa (which we think is a wonderful idea!). Don't worry, there is no need to lose any weight or change your beauty routine or the like; these tips are here to help you get in the mindset of the shoot, make your experience special and help make your images even more beautiful!


Wax eye brows. Eye brows are one of the most important features of a face besides the eyes. They frame your eyes and help emphasize expression. If you decide to have your eyebrows waxed or threaded, be sure to schedule the appointment for at least a few days before your photo shoot. Otherwise, an eyebrow trim/touch up at home could be done a day or two before the shoot.

Get a facial treatment. Take the opportunity and go out in full pamper mode and get a professional treatment at least a week before your shoot. Since facials tend to cause redness, a week usually allows enough time to heal. If you are a on a budget or prefer to do it yourself an at-home facial with a masque is always a fun alternative to a night on the town. Throw in a delicious book, de-stress your mind and soul with some lovely peppermint tea and repeat as necessary.

Exfoliate. A nice, soothing session using a grainy scrub (or gently rubbing your skin with a washcloth) on your face and body is an indulgent way to spend an evening. Plan to exfoliate a couple times before your appointment, but be sure to allow a few days between ‘treatments’, as well as a couple days after the last one before your shoot.

Whiten Teeth. Purchase white-strips that whiten teeth in a week or less for a quick whiteness boost. Check with your local drug store or your dentist for more information. If you’re due for a cleaning, this is a perfect opportunity to get the whitening done as well.

Don’t Pick. A pimple is very easy to cover with makeup, but scabs, wounds and flaky patches are more tricky. Avoid the urge to pick by any means necessary. If it's a pimple you really must pick, try tea tree oil or other natural remedies to help.


Touch Up Your Roots. If you dye your hair, aim to touch up your roots about three days before your photo shoot. Don't plan on any major changes to your hair - trust us.

Get a Trim. Neat, healthy hair is youthful and vibrant. If it’s been a while since your last haircut, even a subtle trim can make a world of difference.

Deep Condition. Your salon will gladly do a professional conditioning treatment, or you can use your favorite deep conditioner or protein pack at home. Even olive oil or an egg hair pack does wonders to hair. Combine this with a gooey face masque and voila, you got yourself a pampered evening. Wrap up the hair turban style, put on some tunes, wear some comfy pajama pants and relax or read a book.

Get a Manicure. While you’re at it, get the pedicure too. If you’re hard on your manicures, book the mani/pedi for the day before your shoot.

For a minimalistic look that will go with anything, stick with neatly shaped, clear nails and a light French manicure. Soft, neutral colors work well for fingertips. Toes can get away with most colors, but ideally would match your nail color.

Clean Your Wedding Ring. Using a toothbrush and toothpaste is a great day-to-day way to clean your bling, but most professional jewelers have sonic cleaners that make it sparkle like the day it was born. Many will even clean your ring for free. Especially if you return to the jeweler you bought it from.

If it’s been a long time since your last pro cleaning, take the ring in right away. If there are any loose stones in your setting, they may get shaken loose, so it’s a good idea to allow a few days in case the goldsmith needs to re-set anything.

Him, Too. If you’re bringing your man to your shoot, make sure his nails are neat and his ring is clean. And have him trim his nose and ear hairs as well.

Moisturize. Make sure to moisturize your hands and fingers and bring a small tube of moisturizer with you to the shoot just in case.

Wax or Shave. If you go the waxing route, give yourself a few days to heal before your shoot. Shaving can be done the night before. Be sure to get your legs and underarms, and if you’ll be wearing a swimsuit or lingerie, go for the bikini area as well.

Spray Tan. If you usually have a faux glow, get a spray tan at least three days before your shoot. If you have fair skin and don't usually tan, don't start - best to come as naturally as you are.

At the end of the day, there are some things no amount of preparation  or make up can change or hide, (and maybe you wouldn’t want to), such as scars and birthmarks. Some people feel that these markings are part of who we are, while others would rather have them “photoshopped” away. If you feel strongly about a certain mark, please let us know otherwise we prefer to leave freckles and the like just the way they are (we love freckles!).

Hydrate frequently. During the week before the shoot, make sure you drink plenty of water. Water helps keep your skin beautiful, so drink up!

Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. Moisturize your entire body, from the tips of your toes the tips of your fingers - moisturized and hydrated skin photographs well and looks healthy.


Bring 5-6 outfits. Your portraits are a reflection of a polished you. Choose outfits you love: think of those special pieces you might not wear often because they’re impractical for day-to-day use, or the go-to blouse you always wear when you’re going somewhere nice. Or take the opportunity to go shopping for some extra-special pieces like that evening dress you've been eyeing. It's fun to play dress up for a day and feel like true princess or super model. Fitted pieces work best rather than loose clothing.

Something Dark. Bring at least one dark outfit or top. Black, Navy or Charcoal work best here.

Something Light. For your light outfit, think angelic. Soft, gauzy, maybe even layered and sheer. It doesn't have to be white, you could go with cream, nude, light pink – whatever.

Something Fun/Whimsical/Fancy-Schmancy. This outfit is your chance to really show your personal style. Instead of Funky, you can also try Structured, Soft, Elegant, Formal, Architectural, Sculptural.

Something Sexy. This one is entirely your call. You could skip sexy, and that’s up to you. But if you’d like to, you can be an understated sexy in a backless formal dress, or a more overt sexy in a pretty pinup-style swimsuit. Beautiful lingerie is lovely and empowering.

Consider Necklines. Also bring items which show if your collar bone, such as boat necks, scoop necks square necks, v necks and off the should pieces. Go for something different than your run-of-the mill T-Shirt neckline. If you love turtlenecks, go for it! The point is, mix it up and bring various different styles of necklines

Think Texture. Any pieces with texture make for an interesting, tactile experience. Choose something lacy or architectural.

Avoid Prints and Patterns. Patterns and prints are distracting. They steal attention from a portrait no matter how beautiful they are. Patterns and prints also go out of fashion, hence select pieces which have staying power and will look timeless even 20 years from now.

Fitted Forms. Fitted clothing that shows your shape work best for photographs. Avoid that billowy, blouson top, or anything with dolman or batwing sleeves. While they might be flattering in person, they will not be slimming in camera. This applies to any body type. Outfits that hug your curves such as your hips, arms, and waist are especially photogenic. This is especially true for maternity shoots.

Accessorize. Bring complementary accessories; stick with classic pieces that add but don't distract.

Forget Shoes. We prefer to shoot portraits and generally don't show feet. If you must, bring your favorite Manolo's or Louboutin and we'll sneak them into a shot. On the other hand, bare feet add something lovely and natural to portraits when we do photograph them.

  • Bare face (wash and apply your usual moisturizer only)
  • Clean, dry hair (very short hair should leave it wet)
  • Comfy outfit (to sit in while you’re being styled)
  • 5-6 fitted outfits to wear in photos
  • Pretty nails (Neutral fingers, fun toes)
  • Clean wedding ring
  • Touched up brows