Dutch photographer Lois Cohen shares her top tips and tricks for shooting the perfect shot of your best looks. With her expert advice, you really can’t go wrong.


  • Think about what you want to highlight and what type of atmosphere you want to create with lighting.
  • Keep it simple: this will usually give better results than placing a lot of lights near your subjects. Start with a simple one-light setup and only add more lights if really necessary.
  • If you use lamps and you want to create soft light, place a diffuser (like a softbox) in front of your light source.
  • Want to accentuate certain hair textures in a dramatic way? Try a harsher side light. 
  • With flags or a dark surface, you can create a dark silhouette by placing it on the side(s) of your subjects.
  • With a rim light or back light you can glam up your shot. 

But also: screw the rules. Just play around with the lights as much as possible to get your desired look. And remember – an overly polished look is not always the most intriguing, so don’t be afraid to be experimental.

“Screw the rules. Just play around with the lights as much as possible to get your desired look.“

Angles and lens

  • The choice of angle and focal length is extremely important for a good beauty shot.
  • Go for a portrait lens if you don’t want distortions. 
  • That said, distortions can be interesting. Try using an all-in-one zoom lens and play around with different angles on different focal lengths. See what happens. 
  • Depending on the shape of the hair, a certain angle in combination with a certain focal length can make the lines of the hair look very different – good and bad. It can make the hair (shape) either less impressive or more impressive. 


  • Certain color combinations can make an image super appealing and editorial, while other combinations can make your image look cheap.
  • If you want to go for a very stylised and campy look, match colors in a clever way.
  • If you want to go for a more editorial look, go for the unexpected color combinations. Perhaps even color tones that clash a bit. Like a bright color combined with a very muted or earthy color.
  • Finally: think about how the colors in your make-up and styling can complement the hair color.