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1. Get a friend and two outfits you love. Women should choose colors and at least one v-neck. Studies show that men respond more positively to women wearing red, so if you have a red v-neck, all the better. Once you’ve got your outfits, do something to relax yourself and make your “photo shoot” fun – a bottle of wine might help (but not too much – don’t get sloppy!). You might be able to get a friend who also needs profile photos and you can take turns and laugh through the awkwardness together!
2. Make sure you have good, soft light. If you’re indoors, nothing fluorescent or directly overhead (and if you’re outside, avoid high noon. The “golden hour” before sunset produces incredibly warm and flattering sunlight. It’s like a real-life Instagram filter. I highly recommend it.
3. Get ready to take a LOT of pictures. I would recommend at least 50. If you’re uncomfortable getting your picture taken, make it 100. It’ll probably take you 50 just to relax enough to get a good one. If you get an amazing photo for each outfit in the first 5, fantastic. But if you take a minimum of 50, you’re bound to get at least 2-3 really great options.
4. Smile. Relax your jaw. Choose a friend who makes you laugh. You’re going for relaxed and warm. Look into the camera with “soft” eyes. It might sound ridiculous, but you can do this! Put yourself in the shoes of the person you want to attract. Is this person warm, loving, affectionate? Project those emotions while you gaze into the camera. Practice, practice, practice!
5. Be sure to get a fantastic headshot (collarbone and up) and also a full-body picture. The headshot should be the first photo in your profile, and women should be looking directly at the camera and smiling. Men should smile, but can also look away from the camera. The second should be a full-body shot. To maximize your selection, make sure you get good options for each with different outfits on.
6. BONUS: If you can get an “action” photo of yourself doing something you enjoy – playing tennis, riding your bike, walking your dog, awesome! If you have a RECENT (within the last 12 months) photo of yourself from your last 5K, or your bowling league and it’s flattering, feel free to use it.
If you can’t manage the “action photo,” insert a laughing or “having fun” photo for your third shot. You can even include another person or two IF and only IF you are clearly center-stage in the photo. (Think of yourself as the star and the others as background extras). This should not be the first photo in your profile and no one should be outshining you.
7. Selfies get a bad rap, but men respond positively to them and they can be great if done correctly. Here’s a selfie I took of myself to prove not all selfies are lame (I never wear red – I put it on for the photo only). I took about 70 photos to get this one. This photo got me rated “one of the most attractive people” on OKCupid: