This is the shorty list of the tools I recommend when you are getting started.  Just because I recommend these as you're getting started, that is NOT to say these are cheap and disposable.  In fact, a lot of the equipment on this list has been with me for 7-10 years.  I'm kind of old fashioned like that...if it ain't broke, I ain't buying something new (not usually--unless it's wireless--then, I'm in)!  :)   

Feel free to email me or catch me on Facebook IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT EQUIPMENT.  There is a lot of junk out there and there are a lot of people just listing items who have never used them themselves.  Beware of wolves in sheep's clothing.  I'm a real sheep.  That should be part of my legal disclaimer.  Just so you know.




1. Umbrella Kit.  Three lights (two umbrellas) for a 3-point lighting set up.  This is my favorite, although I did change out my lightbulbs for WARM bulbs from the hardware store in lieu of the fluorescents they come with.

$50.00 + FREE Shipping

Umbrella Light Kit (3 lights)


2.   Soft box light kit.  This is great for softening your subject’s face.  You will want some kind of light (clamp light from home depot works just fine) to fill in the rest of the lighting so you don’t have shadows in your background.

$59.99 + FREE Shipping

Softbox Light Kit (2 lights)


3.   O-Ring {Halo} Light.  A favorite of beauty bloggers everywhere.  Get ready to look like an ANGEL!  The lighting practically ERASES lines and imperfections from your face.  Bubble burster:  I’m not a huge fan due to the fact that I can almost always immediately see the “O” reflecting in the subject’s eyeballs, andddd a lot of people just flip on the o-light and don’t light their background properly.  If you take the time to master the stand/fill-light location in ADDITION to your Halo, we’ll give you a pass.  {Don’t make us look bad.}  Here’s the one I have.  {Of course I have one, silly.}

MiniHALO 14” ring 

FYI:  This is a direct link to the seller’s site.  We do not have an affiliate link with them.



 1.  Microphone for the top of your camera to optimize your sound. Sennheiser is LEGIT in the audio industry.  This is the one I have and love it.  😍 

$199.00 + FREE Shipping

Sennheiser Shotgun Microphone (mount to your camera)


2. Audio -Technica Lavalier.  (BUDGET CHOICE) This is a microphone that clips to your shirt.  YOU WANT THIS FOR SHOOTING VIDEO.  (Not needed for live-shots.) This is a “hardline" lapel microphone for your camera or smartphone.  Note:  You are “tethered” to your camera and this runs on batteries even though it is plugged into your camera.  Sound is very good especially for the price. 

$29.00 + FREE Shipping

Lavaliere Microphone with Smartphone Adapter

(For Smartphone use or with your Video Camera)


3. RODE Lavalier.  (BEST CHOICE)  This is a microphone that clips to your shirt.  Hardline microphone for your camera or smartphone.  You are connected to your camera or smartphone by the wire.  NO BATTERIES!  (Yay!)  Can also be used if you upgrade to the WIRELESS microphone kit RODE GO (just became available and allows you to not be connected to your camera or smartphone). You will need the additional “goodies” below (adapter and extension cable).

$60.99 + FREE Shipping ($90 reg price)

RODE smartLav+ Lavalier 

(Used with Smart Phone or Video Camera*)


*Need adapter for most video cameras.  (Just get it.)




RODE 20’ Extension Cable for Lavaliere

(to be used with the RODE Lavaliere.  Yes, you will want it.)



CAMERAS/Memory Card

1.   Webcam.  Step up your game (from your computer camera) to this great little webcam.  Takes away typical distortion that your computer camera does (you know—making your forehead bigger than it is…). Microphone on it is very good (as long as you are sitting in front of it—don’t go walking away or over to a whiteboard or anything.  Just sit there and look pretty).  

$62.90 + FREE Shipping ($99.99 regular price)

LOGITECH Pro Webcam C920

1080p Video Recording


2.   Camcorder.  Best video (IMHO) camcorder.  You will look like you are REALLY THERE with your audience.  For disclosure, the camcorder I use for all my training videos (Sony 3D Handycam circa 2012) is no longer available.  If I was buying new, I’d get this one, which is a little less expensive than mine was, but it’s got even better specs and if it lasts as long as mine has, you’ll be in great shape!

$698.00 + FREE Shipping  ($848.00 regular price)

SONY 4K HD Video Handycam Camcorder

Carl Zeiss Lens (suspendersnap!)


3.   Memory Card.  Get one of these, even if you can shoot on your phone or camera.  Makes for much easier transfer of video and storage if you like to keep your footage (packrat).  You’d be fine with 128GB but I go for the big kahuna of memory cards…the 256GB (you can get up into the 400’s I think…but that’s just gluttonous.) 

$68.99 + FREE Shipping ($99.99 regular price)

SanDisc 256GB Extreme Pro SDXC UHS-I Memory Card




1. YES, you need a tripod if you’re going to shoot videos.  

$39.90 + FREE Shipping

59” Portable Phone and Camera Tripod


Note to self:  Do Not skimp on your tripod.  You do not want a camera on the floor.  {Cameras like to be high up--they're snooty like that.)  You don’t need a super-heavy mac-daddy, but you do need a solid, sturdy tripod.  This one features a bracket for your smartphone as well as a camcorder or camera.


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