What Is Boudoir Photography & Why Should I Do It?

You may see pictures of people wearing intimate apparel and posing seductively. Whether you’re on the road to self-discovery or wanting to try something daring, you may be wondering, what is boudoir photography? So we’re answering that question and sharing what you can do to prepare as well as tips for the actual photoshoot.

Article Contents:

  1. What is boudoir photography?
  2. 8 reasons to try boudoir photography
  3. Tips to have a successful first boudoir shoot

What Is Boudoir Photography?

Boudoir photography is a style where subjects wear intimate clothes and pose sensually, yet the photos look glamorous and artistic. The word boudoir is French and refers to a woman’s private sitting room or salon. This is why boudoir shoots usually happen in photo studios, bedrooms, or private dressing rooms to show intimacy. 

Whether you’re ready to express yourself playfully or still finding the courage to do so, we’re going to help you plan for the best boudoir shoot experience.

The concept of boudoir photography dates back to the 1920s, where women wore lingerie or sometimes went nude to express sexuality. It’s an exploration that aims to capture and highlight a woman’s beauty, figure, and emotions.

A boudoir shoot is an excellent way to show how confident and spirited you can be in photos—or discover that through the process! When you look back at these pictures, you can recall this empowering stage of your life where you truly felt comfortable celebrating your body and yourself in every way.

Reasons to Try Boudoir Photography

A boudoir photo shoot is an empowering and thrilling experience that gives you a confidence boost while enhancing your self-worth and self-love. It also allows you to rediscover and reconnect with your sense of self as well as your sensual side. These photos also make a great gift for your partner or to celebrate a milestone in your life!

Boudoir photography expresses your pure beauty and most radiant version that you may not even know existed. All of these reasons stem from loving yourself. 

Here are 8 reasons to book a boudoir photoshoot:

  1. Self-Love and Confidence Boost
  2. Step Toward Healing and Seeing Your Worth
  3. Rediscover Your Femininity
  4. Pamper Yourself
  5. It’s a Thrilling Experience
  6. It’s the Perfect Gift for your partner
  7. Chance to Wear New Clothes
  8. Timeless Keepsake

1. Self-Love and Confidence Boost

One of the reasons you should do a boudoir shoot is because it brings out the confident, strong woman you are, and sometimes, you need a little boost.

We tend to be our own critics, failing to see what makes us uniquely beautiful. The goal of a boudoir photo shoot is to reveal a side of yourself that perhaps you haven’t even noticed. 

  • Empowerment: boudoir photography highlights your natural beauty. This gives you the power to determine your own choices, including picking clothes and hairstyles for a boudoir shoot.
  • Self-love: Self-love means accepting yourself truly and nurturing your well-being patiently. Learning how to appreciate yourself is one of the reasons why you should do a boudoir shoot, as the photos exhibit your physical and psychological growth.
  • Body confidence boost: There may be times when you don’t like what you see when facing the mirror, urging yourself to cover the body and insecurities. Boudoir aims to celebrate your body, including stretch marks, loose skin, moles, scars, and everything that tells the story of who you are as a person.

2. Step Toward Healing and Seeing Your Worth

After going through a difficult phase in life, it can be hard to rebuild yourself and transform. While it’s going to be a long journey to start believing in yourself again, keep in mind that you are worth it.

Boudoir photos serve as a reminder that you are a strong, beautiful, and valuable person, and that’s something no one can take away from you. So, own it!

3. Rediscover Your Femininity

It can be easy to lose touch with yourself amidst the roles we play for others as well as the demands of everyday life. Whenever you feel overworked or exhausted, you need something to enliven you, and doing a boudoir photo shoot can help capture and embrace your feminine energy.

  • Time to reflect: A boudoir photography session is a self-exploration journey. Pausing to reflect enables you to think about what you want the photos to portray.
  • Getting creative: Boudoir photography is a great way to express your creativity and your individuality. One of the best ways to rediscover your femininity is to express it in various creative ways, including outfits, poses, and overall vibe of your session.
  • Transforming yourself: While the process of coming out of your shell can be scary and nerve-wracking, it’s a powerful phenomenon that gives you a renewed zest in life. 

4. Time to Pamper Yourself

Doing a boudoir shoot is a great time to pamper yourself and indulge in every minute of the spotlight. Everything that happens during the session will focus on you, and you deserve that kind of love. 

People spend so much time focused on careers, studies, and other things, yet we sometimes forget to care for ourselves. So, take a day off, give yourself some me-time, and get treated like a celebrity. It’s not selfish to treat yourself once in a while!

5. Thrilling Experience to Try Something New

A boudoir photo session may sound new to you, and such a new thing may cause you to hesitate. People who take on new experiences tend to keep positive sentiments and reduce negative feelings.

One of the things you can expect during a boudoir photo session is that it’s full of fun and a light mood. When you hire a skilled boudoir photographer who knows how to make subjects comfortable in front of the camera, you’ll get to experience something thrilling and have stunning images as proof.

6. Boudoir Photography Makes the Perfect Gift

Gifts reestablish your connection to another person, and boudoir images make excellent gifts (to you AND them!).

  • Birthday: Imagine the look on your partner’s face when they see a dainty leather album filled with your beautiful boudoir pictures. Whether it’s your birthday or your partner’s, boudoir photos let you appreciate yourself more. 
  • Pre-wedding: In traditional weddings, it’s customary for couples to give each other gifts. Give a very personal gift using your boudoir pictures. What could be better than the gift of YOU?!
  • Anniversary: whether you’ve been married one year or twenty, gifting boudoir photography to your spouse is a great way to capture and celebrate your love and intimacy.
  • Other milestones: Did your partner score a well-deserved promotion, or did you finish your degree? Not only will the boudoir photos serve as fabulous portraits of yourself, but they will also serve as a reminder of such a fantastic time to celebrate.

7. Chance to Wear New Clothes

When was the last time you’ve tried wearing a different style of clothes? When did you last buy something for yourself?

The chance to try sultry lingerie or other costumes or outfits is another good reason to schedule a boudoir photoshoot. It’s the perfect time to shop for yourself!

However, it’s essential that you choose the right outfits, especially lingerie that flatters your body shape well to accentuate your favorite features.

8. The Photos Are a Timeless Keepsake

You may collect things as keepsakes from the different stages of your life, and boudoir photos can join your growing collections. It’s an enduring souvenir that shows who you are as a person.

Whether it’s in the form of digital files, prints, or albums, the images will stay with you for years to come.

Tips to Have a Successful Boudoir Shoot: Complete Guide

Now that we know what boudoir photography is, it’s time to start planning for your photo shoot!

Remember, this is your time to shine, so the reasons should be all about YOU. Now that you know the various reasons you should do a boudoir photo shoot, the next step is to choose the perfect boudoir photographer!

Here are some tips to make your boudoir photography shoot a successful one:

  1. Preparing for Your Photoshoot
  2. Styling for Boudoir Photos
  3. Choosing the Location
  4. Boudoir Poses
  5. Communicating With Your Photographer

Here’s your boudoir preparation list:

Tip #1: Prepare for Your Photoshoot

Here’s everything you should do to prepare for your upcoming boudoir shoot:

  • Be sure to eat and drink plenty of water for the week leading up to the shoot, it will plump up your skin.
  • Hair – get your hair done a maximum 3 days before your boudoir session.
  • Skin – before the day of the shoot, do the things you know that could pamper your skin. It can be waxing your body (at least 3 days out!), getting a massage, or moisturizing and exfoliating your skin. Wash your face and apply moisturizer. I’d advise against any other skin products prior to your shoot. 
  • Nails – get a manicure a day or two before your photoshoot for a confidence boost! If you have polish, make sure it looks nice.
  • Mental preparation – Let’s be honest, you’ll probably get nervous the day before or the day of your session. This is completely normal. If you’re emotionally aware, you are convert your nervousness and adrenaline into excitement and confidence, leading to a great day that’s all about you. Try to take some time to rest and relax prior to your photoshoot.

Tip #2: Wardrobe & Styling for Boudoir Photos

The idea of a boudoir shoot may be outside of your comfort zone, so while you may want to wear something new, it’s also vital that you feel good in it. Otherwise, this can reflect on your face and body language in your photographs.

  • Clothes: Wear whatever makes you authentic! It could be the sexiest lingerie piece, bustier, bodysuit, thigh-high stockings, or even a swimsuit or a cocktail dress. You can even make casual clothes appear sensual by using plain-colored camisole, sheer tops, distressed jeans, or your partner’s oversized shirt.
  • Accessories: Boudoir photography makes use of minimal props as the goal is to emphasize your beauty. However, you can still use jewelry, scarves, garter belts, and heels to add context. If there is a personal item that brings meaning to your shoot, let your photographer know and see if there is a way to bring it into your session. 
  • Hair and Makeup: Style yourself in any way that screams self-love! Bring out your fierce side with red hot lips, smokey eyes, and loose curls. A professional hair and makeup artist is a great addition to the self-care part of this experience. 

Tip #3: Choosing the Location for a Boudoir Photoshoot

The location is essential as it influences the success of the shoot. It should be in a place where you can move comfortably.

Discuss with the photographer if you’re open to a private studio session. Does their space seem comfortable and give you a good vibe? Perhaps you would feel most at ease when you do the shoot at home—that is sometimes a possibility. Just ask!

Tip #4: Try Various Poses

Posing is one of the most crucial elements in boudoir photography as it sets the tone of your photos. A boudoir photographer knows how to guide you in posing to accentuate your curves and flatter every body type. Here are some poses that will make you glow in the limelight because you deserve it!

  • Sitting on the knees: This can serve as a warm-up pose to help shake down the nerves. You can play with your hair or part of your clothes to show lines and shapes. Shift back and forth to create movement and feel more carefree.
  • Using a chair as a prop: Simply sit back and try staring seductively at the camera.
  • Lying down: Whether it’s on the bed or floor, lie down and angle your legs to draw attention to your shapely features.

Tip #5: Communicate with Your Photographer

Boudoir photography can be an intimidating experience for some people. Particularly when this is your first time. Don’t hesitate to set expectations and when you schedule a boudoir session in our Grand Rapids studio, tell the boudoir photographer about any limitations you may have—physically or emotionally.

Related Questions

After knowing the basics, let’s answer a few more concerns about boudoir photography.

Can Anyone Have Boudoir Photos?

Yes, anyone can have boudoir photos as long as it’s consensual between the subject and the photographer. The important thing is that you plan and feel comfortable before booking a shoot.

Is Boudoir Photography Safe?

Boudoir photography is generally safe as long as you’re working with a professional boudoir photographer. Check reviews and testimonials. Study their work and see if their subjects look comfortable. Since boudoir photography involves posing in minimal clothing or even nude, you can keep the shoot’s environment safe by setting boundaries and communicating properly. A true professional will respect and honor your wishes.

Conclusion: Finding Your Reason to Try Boudoir

Boudoir photography is an art form and photography style showing romantic, sensual, and sometimes erotic photos of women as well as men and non-binary individuals. Whether it’s for your wedding or personal collection, a boudoir shoot is a fun way to show your provocative side and have visual mementos of it while building self-confidence and getting more in touch with yourself through this beautiful form of self-expression! 

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