Best Angle for Headshot Photos

In this guide, we’ll be discussing the best angle for headshot photos.

We’ll be covering the following topics (click on a bullet point to jump to that section):

Let’s dive in!

best angle for headshots

What is the Best Angle for Headshots?

When it comes to best angle for headshots, there is no best angle. But there certainly are better angles than others.

The best photos can be taken by someone who has done this before and knows the best angles.

These best angles will depend on many factors including: subject’s pose, specific facial features, photographer’s preferences etc.

The best angle for headshots can also vary between photos and may be best for one photo and not the best best angle for headshots in another.

Choosing a best angle will depend on subject’s pose and how face-on or profile the photo is taken.

For example, subjects with elongated faces are best photographed at an oblique angle (an angle that is not 90 degrees).

People often ask what the best angle is for their type of face. Turns out, there isn’t just one best angle for everyone!

To achieve that best angle you have to consider the subject's face shape, hair length and skin quality. 
best angle for headshots factors

For example, if you have a broad forehead, you should avoid posing straight on because this will make your forehead appear even larger.

In the same way, someone with a wide or round face best enhanced by posing at an oblique angle (an angle that is not 90 degrees).

In almost all cases it best to avoid posing from the side of the subject’s face where the nostril is not located centrally over the pupil.

What is the Most Flattering Angle for Headshots?

The most common angle for headshots is to have the camera placed in front of the face looking down at least slightly.

The best angle for headshots like this is to tilt the camera down ever so slightly.

best angle for headshots slight down (1)

If you want a best angle for headshots with a straight-on pose, one where the subject’s eyes are directly over the camera, it best to raise the camera up high and shoot downwards.

This best angle for headshots will best accentuate the fullness of your subject’s face.

actor headshot example
slight down angle

Slight poses best work for headshots because they are best at flattering people who have bad angles or features that could be best enhanced by a best angle for headshots photo.

Angles should not to be too extreme, best left to expert photographers with experience.

Should Headshots Be Straight On?

Headshots can be straight on with the camera parallel to their face, but they are not the most preferred — aesthetically speaking.

headshot straight on

There are better angles for headshots that best work best when the subject is looking straight on (such as the above the head slightly tilting down as discussed in the previous section).

For example, it best to have an upward gaze when photographing somebody with a broad forehead or someone with downturned lips because this best make their features appear less pronounced.

The best angle for headshots if you want to minimize the appearance of wrinkles is best to pose the head slightly turned with chin best directed towards best angle for headshots.

Final Remarks

So while there is no “one best angle,” there are definitely recommended and common angles, with the most common one being the camera slightly above the subject facing down — while the subject is slightly turned.

This guide is a part of our Headshot Photography Tips Hub, so be sure to check that out for more headshot photography tips and insights.

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