Legs of dancers

When you're planning to perform for a crowd of any size, it's important to dress in a way that will show up on stage. Here, some tips.

Choose your look—wisely

Pick rich, vibrant colors. If you are fair-skinned, do not wear white. It will wash you out and make you look ghostly on stage. But be aware: Some lighting technicians use "gels" to color the lights, which can distort the color you're wearing (a red light will make a yellow shirt look orange). If possible, try to find out ahead of time what the lighting scheme will be and choose your clothing accordingly.

Play up your features using cosmetics if you are going to be on a lit stage. A vibrant-colored shirt will only go so far. You'll need to make sure you wear more foundation, blusher, mascara, eyeliner and lipstick than you would when walking down the street. What looks garish in regular light will not look so dramatic when under the stage lights.

Consider whether the temperature in the room is likely to be hot and steamy. If you tend to perspire, you may want to think hard about what colors and what fabrics you should wear on stage. A silk can often show up even the smallest spot of sweat. Pale colors do little to hide underarm circles. Your best bet is to wear something light and cool in a color that is rich and dark and won't show wetness nearly as much.

Play up your hair. Just as your features can look underwhelming when under the lights, so too can limp hair. Give it some extra volume and shine.