If you’ve been wanting to get into blogging (or even just upgrade your equipment), I wanted to share essential equipment that every fashion + lifestyle blogger needs. Whether blogging simply as a hobby or you want to eventually use your platform for something bigger, here’s a list of equipment that you will need in order to get sh*t done.
As I’ve grown as a blogger and photographer, I’ve upgraded the equipment that I use several times. I started out with a fuji point + shoot, was gifted a Canon Rebel xSi around my 2nd or 3rd year of blogging, and have made 2 more upgrades since then. If I were a blogger just starting out, I would start with a Canon Rebel T3i or T5i. Both cameras are good starter cameras, but the reason I picked these 2 in particular is because they have an LCD flip out screen, which means if you want to vlog or need to take pictures of yourself, you can actually see what you look like. Now, these have a crop sensor instead of being full frame (the easiest way to explain this is to think about the difference between using “photo” and “square” when taking pictures on your phone), so with a kit lens it’s fine but if you upgrade to a prime lens (like the nifty 50) then you’ll have to make a few adjustments when shooting.
Both are under $600; if you’re not afraid to buy used (both of the ones I bought were!) you can find them for half of that on Amazon and Ebay. Just do your research! I upgraded from the xSi to a T3i and LOVED IT, but because my photography business was growing and I needed to be able to give clients larger files, I upgraded again to a 5DMarkii which is an old body (they’re on version IV at the moment) but the photo quality is amazing.
Unless you buy the body only, cameras come with a standard kit lens. Most people will say that a kit lens is crap, however, if you’re still learning how to use your camera then it’s totally fine! For bloggers, the kit lens will sometimes be better when you go to events because you can capture more in a frame than if you were using a prime lens (one that doesn’t zoom). If your kit lens is in good condition, KEEP IT. There are a ton of other lens to choose from, but if you want to add more to your collection, the nifty 50 (a 50mm f/1.8 lens) will give you that blurred background you see in pictures, a 35mm lens is great for interiors, and a 100mm lens (a macro lens) is perfect for those close up, more detailed shots. These 3 lens are what most bloggers use and will cover all bases.
Again, there are a ton to choose from, so only add more to your bag when you feel that you’ve outgrown what you use. I started with the nifty 50 but upgraded to a 50mm 1.4 lens a few months after getting my 5DMarkii because it’s a full frame camera and I could see the limits of that lens. A 35mm is next on my list.
Once you get your camera and lens situation set up, these extras will help you especially during those times you have to shoot on your own. PLEASE NOTE: this is NOT a definitive list – you can add in flashes, diffusers, filters, etc.- these are the basics that you will need at some point as a blogger.
For the longest I was doing bootleg set ups on books and chairs but I finally got a GOOD tripod (the first I had was crap, lol). I like this one because it has a swivel head and I can take pictures portrait style with it. I still haven’t had to use it for an outfit shot, but I wanted to invest in one so that in the event my photographer isn’t available, there would be no excuses!
Now, you can play with the self-timer and run back and forth to your spot before it snaps OR you can just get a remote that you can hide in your hand or pocket. Just make sure that it’s compatible to your camera.
On days when it’s dark or shadows are high and I’m shooting flatlays or portraits, this helps to balance things out and give me more light. Get one that has 3-5 options (gold, silver, light diffuser, etc.) included and thank me later.
So that you don’t injure or kill yourself when taking flatlay photos, get a step stool. I have this one because I shoot with a full frame and don’t need to be up so high to fit everything in, but I’m going to get another one so that I can play around with angles when shooting with clients.
Kikkerland Rhino Step Stool, $12.99
Find a cute one to hold your camera, SD Cards, and lens. Sometimes I will grab my camera and 1 lens only and just throw it in my bag so that I only have to keep up with one, but if I’m going on location somewhere I take my camera bag with me so that I have everything with me and can experiment with the type of shots I take.
There are so many things that can fit on this list, but I’m only going to tell you about 3: marble contact paper, 2 foam boards, and/or the LINNMON table top from IKEA. If you need to shoot flatlays but don’t have an all white room or a marble counter top, you can use these to make easy backdrops for your products. Trust, not all bloggers are blessed with those things in their homes but use these tricks when needed!
Obviously, a laptop/desktop computer and a smart phone is necessary, so these aren’t included here, but if you have them and then invest in the above tools and equipment, you’ll be all set.
If you’re just starting to blog, check out this tab to get more blogging tips, like the following posts:
Happy blogging! xo
*I shoot with a Canon so these are the products that I will recommend. A lot of bloggers like this brand because the colors are more natural in pictures and there’s a slight softness as well.