You’ve been planning your video shoot for a while: all the pre-production, scripting and arranging have been done, and you feel more ready than ever to go on camera.
But there’s another last thing to consider; what you’re wearing!
We’re not talking about style or taste (we’re sure your choice is lovely 😉).
We just mean, dressing for video is not always as straightforward as dressing nicely.
Technological barriers exist that result in camera sensors distorting images, so your favourite floral top may look like it’s swimming when seen on a screen. Odd, right?
So let’s have a look at a few simple tips that will allow you to look your best and your audience to solely focus on what you’re saying without being distracted by your clothes.
First off, let’s talk colours. As a general rule, avoid extremes: try not to wear a lot of colours and avoid hot colours that could be distracting.
This sounds straightforward enough, but be careful: even something simple like white can be too bright and slightly glow in the shot, and black can lack detail when setting the correct exposure for skin tones.
Try going for soft, solid colours with a neutral tone. Blue and grey are two examples of neutral colours that will look great on camera.
Pastel tones are also nice and calming, but wear pastels in moderation. They are best kept for small areas, such as a shirt under a jacket. Large areas of pastel can blend too much with the background and look a bit washed out.
What you’re looking for really is something saturated enough to stand out, but not too blinding. Here are a few examples of solid colours that typically work well with different skin tones.
The palette below shows a good selection of tones:
Image Source: OC Creatives
In terms of fabric, we recommend avoiding anything shiny that could reflect light into the lens and be off-putting. Also, bright colours on shiny fabric can bleed off onto your skin affecting the natural tones.
In general, wear something comfortable. If you are too hot, too cold, or uncomfortable in some other kind of way, your discomfort will show in your body language and make you appear distressed. Keep in mind most video shoots will include lights so you might want to prefer something light and breathable like cotton.
Use pattern sparingly
Patterns are probably the most dangerous thing in video. Have you ever heard of the Moiré effect? If not, you will still be familiar with this example:
Image source: The Print Guide
The Moiré effect happens whenever a pattern is too fine and detailed, and the colours too thin, so they overlap and result in colourful waves and circles, especially at a distance.
As you move in the video, the effect will move with you and it will be even worse: have a look here.
As for big patterns, which won't affect the technical abilities of the camera, they aren’t always a good choice either. Try and avoid a bold pattern that can retract from the meaning of the video, leading your viewers’ focus away from the content.
Keep jewellery simple
Jewellery can be tricky in two different ways. Firstly the reflections, as we discussed previously on fabrics, can glare back into the camera as you move and become distracting.
Secondly, jewellery can affect the sound quality of the video if banging or jangling. Especially in an interview, you want what you are saying to be as clear and understandable as possible so the last thing you want is noises overlapping with your voice!
Bring a few options
Lastly, if you are unsure what would be most suitable, you can always bring a few options of clothing with you. Factors like the background colour may not be known until the day of the shoot and this can be a major factor in what colour will look best.
Appearing on camera can bring on anxiety, worry and stress. There is no need to feel overwhelmed about what to wear. If you follow these simple guidelines, you will most certainly look the part!