20 Best Male Poses Ideas For Portrait Photographers

20 best male poses and portraits photography guide helps you to bring out the best look of a male model you click.

If you are a photographer who does not work with a male model very often, it would be tough to choose male poses when you are doing so. In the past male models were not so famous for advertisements, but things are changing now. Along with women, men are now playing a significant role in the advertising industry. 

But when it comes to posing, women’s and men’s poses are entirely different. It is well-known that through photography, photographers present women’s flawless beauty, makeup, curves, and style. But men’s poses should represent his coolness, confidence, power, strong jawline, and self-control. 

Men’s photography is all about power and angles. So you have to portray the model accordingly to show the man’s masculinity and confidence. A Photographer’s Guide to the Best Male Poses will help you to achieve your goal through the portraits you capture. 

Best Male Poses Ideas & Tips

Some simple yet effective tips can make your portraits significantly better. These tips are not just for men models but any photography; you should keep these tips in mind.

  • A small camera lens makes a face look a bit roundish and puffy. 
  • If the subject looks directly at the camera, it will appear shorter. 
  • Long size lenses are capable of flattening the depth (, i.e., the nose seems shorter on 120mm local length and more significant on 50mm focal length)
  • One of the basic things is a closer subject looks more prominent, and a distant subject looks smaller in photos.

While capturing pictures, remember these and implement these things. These will surely help you to get better images. 

Closeness to the camera

Distance between the subject and the camera can change the cover of an image. You are shooting with a male model, so you have to make the model masculine. To do so, you can use the closeness to get a better result. 

Closeness to the camera Pose

As you already know, the part that is close to the camera looks bigger, so keep the chest or torso close to the camera. This will make the model look more masculine. So you can use these tips to get over control over the image you capture and present the model in an appropriate way you seem fit. 

Camera Closeness Pose

Choosing Lens 

Without the ideal lens, it is tough to get the expected result. So you have to know what lens to use in which condition. You should keep in mind that a small focal length gives you more perspective, allowing you to capture more depth. On the other hand, longer lenses are great for close up, but it makes the object look more petite.


A photographer’s job is not limited to just pressing the shutter button. If the model’s pose does not seem appropriate to you, you should guide it on how to do it. Sometimes candid pictures turn out great. So you should keep capturing. 

If you take too much time to correct the pose with every tiniest detail, it may look fake and unnatural. So keep snapping pictures, and you do not have to waste a lot of time correcting the pose.

Tips for Enhancing Different Male Pose Features 

It is possible to snap flattering photographs by using body and facial features in specific ways. These tips will help you understand every pose better and surely help you get more eye-catchy portraits. 

Facial Features

The Jawline

Facial features jaw line

Nothing represents manliness better than the jawline. Most of the clients and models want the jawline visible on the image. So now it is up to you to make the jawline visible without showing a double chin. 

Jawline makes the model attractive, but double chin does exactly the opposite. So you have to capture the image in a way that in it, the jawline will be visible but not the double chin. To hide the double chin and make the jawline angular, you can ask the model to pull down his chin. 

Another great way of hiding a double chin is to use hands. The model can rest his cheek on his fist. This will make the image look beautiful while hiding the double chin. Placing the fist on the side of the neck can also do the trick. 

The Eyes 

Facial Features The Eyes

In photographs, eyes tell a lot of things. If you are working with a wide eye model, you should ask the model to close them partly. That is because wide eyes look adorable more than manly. Narrower-looking eyes give the model a focused look making him look more masculine. 

By looking closely at the model’s eyes, you can identify if the model’s eyes are the same size or not. Having one eye smaller than the other is very common among men. So if the eye positioning is not correct, then the image could turn out horrible. So, you should keep the small eye closer to the camera to make the eyes look identical. 

Some people blink quite rapidly. When capturing an image, if the model blinks, that shot is wasted. To get a perfect shot, ask the model to close his eyes for some second before you shoot. This will allow him not to blink for some moments, and you can capture a few frames inside those moments. 

Some models have wide eyes, while some others have naturally dropping eyes. While working with a model that has naturally dropped eyes, you should consider capturing images from a higher angle. It will make the eyes gaze up and will lead you to get a perfect shot. 

The Head 

Facial Features The Head

Proper head positioning can improve the overall image look. It will not look good if the model tilts his head toward the camera. That is because this pose gives an overall feminine and cute vibe rather than manly. So ask the model to tilt his head away from the lens.

Many models contain bald spots, and that does not look good in the image. Most models felt insecure as well for that kind of spot. So it is on you to hide the spot and hide his insecurity. What you can do is shoot from a low angle to hide the bald spot. This will keep the focus on his face and hide any imperfection.

Bodily Features


Bodily Features Posture

For male model photography, the importance of having an emphasis and good posture is more than you think. It is essential to have the appropriate posture as this complements the overall pose of the model, making it look stunning. So, make sure your model is relaxed. Ask him to keep his shoulder open and make him stand up in a way, so he seems taller.

The Waist

Bodily Features The Waist

One of the simplest things to do to have a great portrait is to make the model’s waist look thinner. You can use the basic knowledge of photography and capture the image for a distant position to make the waist thinner. Also, asking the model to lean his waist in will also help. 

The Shoulders

Bodily Features The Shoulders

An ideal male body is imagined to have a V shape. That means the model’s waist should look thinner, and the shoulders should look broader. To make the shoulder look bigger, you can ask the model to lean his shoulder toward the camera and square the shoulders as greater as possible. This helps the model get an ideal shape look. 


Bodily Features The Lags

Subtle changes in leg positioning can make the model look quite better. If the model is posing in a standing position, then ask him to cross his legs. Also, make sure he puts all his weight on the back legs. This will make the model look more relaxed and will emphasize the whole pose.

Also, positioning the legs and shoulders wide apart and leaning against a wall while bending the leg closest to the camera and placing a bit higher on the wall is a stunning male pose.

In case the model is posing in a sitting position, whether it is a chair or bench, you should click the image from a bit higher angle. Ask the model to place the ankle of one leg onto the knee of the other legs. It will make the model relaxed and give a cool look. 

For better-looking images, make sure the model is not set at a 90-degree angle to the camera.

Helpfully, these tips will help you a lot to get the most from every pose. 

Best 20 Male Poses Ideas

Now let us learn about specific men’s poses.

Adjusting the Wardrobe

Adjusting the Wardrobe

Wardrobe adjusting poses are quite famous among wedding photographers. This pose includes movement and a sense of intimacy in an image. 

Ask your model to make subtle adjustments to his clothing. Adjusting is not essential, or he does not have to make any changes, but the movement he does is vital here. Activities such as adjusting ties, cuffs, touching hands or watch or hat, popping the color, etc., makes the image look great. 

This pose helps to create a very casual and relaxed environment. It also draws attention to the model’s outfit. If the model is wearing a unique and detailed outfit, this is an ideal pose to do. 

Your model can look directly into the camera or away from the camera. Try different angles and find out what looks best. 

Hands in Pocket 

Hands in Pocket Poses

One of the common questions photographers have to face during a photoshoot from the male model is putting my hands. So while the model is doing a standing pose, the hand in pockets is a great pose to try. 

This pose is suitable with many variations of standing poses like leaning. It allows the model to relax and look wooden. The model can put both his hands into pockets or just one hand. Also, his hands can be in the jacket’s pocket or pants pocket. 

The model can use either rear or back pockets. But make sure the thumb is hooked outside of the pocket and not inside with the rest of the finger. 

Hands in Hair 

Hands in Hair Poses

The hair swipe or hands in the hair is quite common in the fashion and advertising industry. This pose looks great, especially when the model has long hair. 

It makes the model look more spontaneous and relaxed. The model can pose keeping his hand or hands in the hair. He can also swipe his finger through the hair. It is a versatile pose as, depending on the facial expression, it can be both intense and playful. 

For showing the upper body strength of the model, this is one of the best poses of all time. 

Hand on Face 

Hand on Face 

A hand on the face is a great pose and also very versatile. The model can place his hand on his face to look more thoughtful. 

It can show the intensity in the eyes of the model. Though it looks best from the front angle, you can still try different angles to get more from the shot. 

Neck Touching 

Neck Touching Pose

If you want to make the photo look like it is candid, neck touching is the ideal pose here. It creates a very subtle slutty look. 

The Hand-clasp

The Hand-clasp

It is great men sitting and standing pose that shows humbleness and approachability in an image. This pose is one of the most versatile men’s poses. It goes without with the lean-in, tilted head, and many more sitting positions.

In the sitting position, the model must place his elbow on the knee, and he can lean in or even not. 

It can also be executed when the model is standing as well. It blends perfectly when the model leans on a wall or railing. For showing jewelry or tattoos, a close-up handclasp is one of the most versatile poses for men. 

Hand on Hip Poses

Hand on the hip may seem a bit feminine pose, but with some stubble changes, this can be excellent men’s pose. This pose is a very classic one, and with narrowed eyes and broad eyebrows, it looks stunning. 

Place the camera below the eye line of the model. With proper facial expression, this pose can express intense, playful, and everything in between. 

Arm Crossed  Poses

Arm Crossed 

Arm crossed is one of the simplest and basic men’s poses. Even those models who are not so good at posing can execute this pose without any difficulty. 

The facial expression can make the image casual, formal, and anything you want. It goes perfectly with so many other poses. It is a great one to try in several situations. 

Holding One Arm 

Holding One Arm

If you want to show vulnerability through your images, then ask the model to hold his upper arm using the other hand. 

Make sure the arm looks relaxed. It is a very versatile pose as these can be suitable with many different poses. Also, the image can be clicked from various angles. 

The Lean 

The Lean 

Possibilities with the lean pose are countless, and it gives a lot of scopes to get creative with your photo. This pose allows you to get a relaxed and natural-looking picture of the model. 

The model can lean to a wall with his back or shoulder. Both look very expressive and relaxed. It is also possible to use a railing or bar table, flag pole, tree, etc., to lean instead of a wall. 

Several different things there is to try with the pose. The model can look towards or away from the camera. It is possible to get an intense vibe keeping the legs straight and a casual vibe by bending it and placing slightly higher on the wall. 

Try different angles with this pose, and you’ll get what you are expecting soon enough. 

Lean Forward 

Lean Forward 

Lean forward on lean in is a great sitting pose. In this pose, the model should place his hand, arm, or elbow on his knee and lean towards the camera a little bit. 

This pose can be done sitting on a chair, stair, bench, or pretty much anything. With the proper camera angle, you can make the model look masculine as well. 

Leaning into the Arm 

Leaning into the Arm 

Another excellent pose for showing vulnerability. It also gives the model a more approaching look. In this pose, the model must lean forward while placing his hand onto something and lean into it. 

Tilted Head Poses  

Tilted Head 

The tilted head position is one of the most complicated male poses to work with. The model has to tilt his face without moving his body. Also, make sure his jawline is visible and the model is also relaxed. 

Asking him to close his eyes is a great way of expressing peacefulness in the image. It is a very commonly seen pose in fashion magazines. So try at a different angle to get the perfect tilted headshot. 

Knee up Poses

Knee-up is an excellent pose to apply in both sitting and standing posing. Find something that your model can use to place his leg. Ask him to put his hand on the positioned higher leg, and it will make him look cool and confident. 

Try different angles and positions with this pose, and you’ll surely get a perfect shot. 

Knee up Poses

If the model is sitting, ask your model to bring his one knee up and place his elbow on it. His hand can be placed on his face or neck, or chin. 

To give the model a more confident look, make sure his chest is open and facing the camera. 

Crossed Legs Poses  

Crossed Legs Portrait

Crossed legs can be executed in a couple of ways. For a more casual business look, the model can place his ankle onto his knee. 

For an open and joyful pose, the model can sit on a floor, or sofa, or bed and cross his legs. This looks stunning and 

Backward Chair 

Backward Chair 

The backward chair is a very classy male pose, and it is very common as well. It shows confidence and self-assurance in the model. 

This pose can be used with many variations such as crossed arms, hand on the face, and many more. Be a little creative with this pose, and you surely will get some good snaps. 


Stairs Portrait Pose 

For male photography, stairs bring out a lot of possibilities. Stairs are very familiar to all of us, and it makes the image quite appealing. The background adds beauty to the image, and the stairs pattern and repetition add interest to the pictures. 

Ask the model to lean towards the camera while doing a sitting pose. The stairs railing can be used for lean poses as well. While sitting, placing an arm on his head also allows great posture. 

Jacket over The Shoulder 

Jacket over The Shoulder 

Jackets never go out of style, and so his pose. It is a very commonly seen pose in magazine covers. It shows the attitude of the model quite beautifully. 

Make sure the jacket matches the overall outfit of the model. You can capture the image making the model look towards or away from the camera. 

Walking  Poses

Walking toward the camera in formal dress-up is quite a famous male pose. It looks good because it is natural. But not just with the formal dress. You can capture this pose quite beautifully with a casual dress. 

You can ask your model to walk toward the camera from a distance, and you keep snapping images. This will help the model get relaxed, and at the same time, you’ll get some fine shots. For a natural-looking image, this is an excellent pose. 

Male Poses With Props 

With Props Poses

You can add versatility to your image by asking your model to hold something in his hands. The props can be a basketball, a car, bodybuilding equipment, or anything like that. 

You have to make sure that the props match his outfit and create an overall good impression. Moreover, you can try different props here to make the model portray better. 

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Final Words on Male Poses 

A photographer’s job also includes guiding the model along with capturing the images. So try to engage with your model and encourage him. Give the model guidance from time to time, and you’ll surely see the result in those images you click. 

You should make sure the model is relaxed and try to make the image as natural as possible. Hopefully, you have got new ideas from ‘A Photographer’s Guide to the Best Male Poses’ that will guide you to get better portraits. 

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