What to Wear for Senior Girls || Milwaukee Senior Pictures

What to Wear for Senior Girls

Clothing is a great way to help show your personality and sense of style! But knowing what to wear as a senior girl for your portraits can be difficult. Here are a few tips and tricks I have learned as a senior photographer that have helped my clients look their best.


It’s easiest to start with what NOT to wear. Whenever possible avoid neon colors and multiple types of patterns in one outfit (i.e. plaid shorts with a striped shirt). Don’t wear clothing with logos or text as these can distracting and difficult to read.


For one of your outfits, I highly recommend a light, flowy dress that is able to catch the breeze can bring extra movement to the photos. Shorter dresses and skirts have a similar effect on the camera, which means you cannot go wrong either way.

For all of your outfits choosing clothing that fits you correctly is key! Clothing that is too tight is uncomfortable, doesn’t allow you to move, and rides up or bunches during your session. However, outfits that are too baggy won’t let us show off your figure, and make you look wider than you actually are!

Coordinating, simple jewelry, and colors that are muted or go BOLD and get a bold red or yellow dress for that punch of color against a blue sky. As for your shoes, just keep the location in mind when deciding between heels, wedges, or sandals.


Plan multiple outfits for your senior pictures. Try picking a casual outfit, a dressy outfit, and a fun/hobby/sport based outfit. This is a great way to have variety, and show off your interests or sense of style.

Most clients plan one outfit for every 20 to 30 minutes of their senior session. I never limit outfits, but remember that the more time you spend changing your outfit is less time we are able to be shooting.


When planning outfits make sure to consider the location of your senior portraits. Choosing outfits with colors that clash with those of the existing environment will fail to make a cohesive looking portrait.

Think about the time of year. The light yellow-green of spring, deep greens of summer, and red-oranges of fall make for very different color pallets. Consider the season your senior portrait session is taking place when you are picking your outfits.


Plan your outfits down to your shoes, socks, jewelry, and a matching belt! This might mean you bring extras for each outfit, but details matter when it comes to senior photos!

In addition, switching out small accessories (i.e. jackets, hats/headbands, etc) is an easy way to add variety to your images within a portrait session. When in doubt bring a cute hat and pair of sunglasses to your session just in case.


If you want to wear your glasses in your senior portraits, think about popping out your lenses or borrowing empty frames from your optometrist. This is the best way to avoid glare or distortion that eyeglasses can cause in portraits.


I highly recommend hiring a professional hair and makeup artist for your senior photos. They will help you look naturally glowing, and your very best. But if you are planning on doing your own hair and makeup here are a few tips.

Use a matte foundation and concealer. Shiny or shimmery foundations may make your skin look oily, so I recommend you avoid them!

Avoid products with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide. These cause makeup “flashback” that leaves a white powder residue in images with flash. Google “celebrity flashback photos” to see examples of what can happen, and why to avoid it!

Go natural when it comes to your makeup. While you may need to add a little extra mascara for the camera, don’t go too heavy!

I often recommend wearing your hair down with soft curls, waves, or even straightened as long as it has movement. I want you to be able to touch, shake, and flip your hair around!


Bringing along props that illustrate your activities and interests is a great idea. Feel free to bring items such as sports equipment, uniforms, instruments, your favorite books, and outdoor hunting or fishing gear. We want to showcase what you love! So if you love your pet, bring them along! These photos are all about you!


  1. Try on your outfits to make sure everything fits, you feel comfortable, and have everything you need ready to go. Make sure your bra straps aren’t showing with any of your chosen tops.
  2. Iron and hang your clothes for the drive to your session. This will prevent wrinkles.
  3. Don’t wear a hat or headband on the way to your senior portraits. No one loves hat hair!
  4. Hairspray the part of your hair to prevent flyaways. Sounds silly, but this simple trick makes a HUGE difference for longer hair.
  5. Check your nail polish for chips, and do a last-minute touch-up.


Still sure where to start? When in doubt check out my What to Wear Pinterest board for inspiration!



Hi! I am Ali Bergen, a wedding and portrait photographer specializing in timeless and joy-filled imagery. I photograph weddings and portraits in Milwaukee, Hartford and all around the great state of Wisconsin.

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