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Many of the beauty industry’s biggest names have Instagram to thank for catapulting them into the public eye, but that didn’t happen overnight. Like anything else, mastering Instagram takes both patience and practice, and multiple components come into play when creating a photo feed that highlights your best work, and ultimately fuels your business.
Here, five Instagram hacks that successful stylists swear by.
Decide Who You Want to Attract
“I think the most important factor to remember when taking a photo is knowing the exact audience you’re trying to attract and making sure your photo reflects that,” says Jessica Jewel (@thejesjewel). As a creative color specialist, Jewel’s feed is full of vibrant shots. She requests that her clients wear black or white shirts for after shots so that the focus is the hair.
Quality over Quantity
If you’re taking photos the same way you did when you first started, it’s time to evolve. “Photos are so much more polished than they used to be,” says Michael Lowenstein (@rossmichaelssalon). “Today’s social media posts are close to magazine-quality images. You’ve got to keep up.”
Find Your Light
“For me, afternoon lighting works best,” says Michelle Zeller Porumb (@mane_ivy). “I shoot in the shade in indirect light to get the most out of the color.” If you don’t have natural light at your disposal, try an LED ring light but be mindful of the true color you’re trying to capture.
Test Out Devices
Sarai Speer (@theplatinumgiraffe) uses a Canon Rebel t7i to shoot photos and videos and notes a drastic difference in her photos. “I have done quite a few side-by-side comparisons and there is not even a contest in clarity, quality and true color when using a pro camera instead of a camera phone,” she says. The Canon Rebel t7i is friendly for beginners, it’s easy to travel with and it connects directly to smartphones via Bluetooth or WiFi for timely posting, Speer says.
Pick Your Props
“I can’t live without a backdrop,” Alexandra Wilson (@alexandralee1016) says. “It allows me to take a clean photo every time, and using the same backdrop for each of my photos makes for a consistent Instagram grid.” If you are shooting in natural light, brick or concrete walls work well as pseudo backdrops. Whatever your prop may be, make sure that it’s enhancing your work instead of causing a distraction.