Everything You Wanted to Know About Boudoir Photography

Boudoir Photography Natalia Forrest

…. But Were Too Afraid To Ask

Boudoir Photography is getting a much larger press these days but a lot of people do not know what goes on behind the scenes. You may be a woman who has seen lovely images from friends or online and want some of these for yourself. But, you might be nervous and not know what is expected. Therefore, I have compiled this little guide which should cover everything you wanted to know about boudoir photography but were too afraid to ask.

What Actually Is Boudoir Photography?

Boudoir is actually taken from a French word that, in the late 1700s, meant to sulk. Therefore this was the woman’s bedroom or salon where a lady used to retire to when they wished to be alone. Over time and in a number of literary works this become linked to an intimate setting where women could ‘frolic or be scandalous’.

This has now started to mean that boudoir is where a woman can feel sensual, romantic, sexy or even a little bit naughty. And photographs are then taken to capture all of these feelings.

Who Has Boudoir Photographs Taken?

Many women now try out boudoir photography and for many different reasons. It does not matter what shape or size you are, or what age you are. Any woman is welcome. Some of the reasons for having boudoir photographs taken include the following:

  • A present for a partner for a special occasion – Maybe you have run out of ideas for Valentines day then some sexy shots of yourself might be the perfect gift.
  • A gift for a groom on the wedding day – many women try out ‘bridal boudoir’ where they have some sexy photographs taken for their prospective husband.
  • Confidence Boost
  • An already confident woman who wants some photographs for her own collection.
  • Someone who wants a fun photoshoot.

There are many reasons as well as these for thinking about a boudoir photoshoot.

Do I Have to Get Naked?

Short answer to this is – NO! For me, my clients priorities are the paramount importance. Therefore you set your boundaries and we stick to them. If you just want to have lingerie shots or even implied nude then we follow your lead. We will not encourage or force you to go beyond what you are comfortable with.

If you do want to try out some partial or fully nude poses then again we will be happy to accommodate your wishes. After all this is your shoot. Boudoir is very much a sensual photographic style and we can keep the mystique of this without taking off clothing.

If I am Stripping Off Who Will See Me?

I have a very small team in order to keep the photoshoot fun and intimate. Therefore, only myself and a makeup artist/stylist will be around to see you. My studio is locked and there are no windows so you will have complete privacy.

If however, you wish to bring a friend with you to make you more comfortable then that is perfectly acceptable. Just let me know in advance. It is though preferable not to bring your partner as I find that people are then less comfortable in front of the camera when their partner is watching.

Do I Bring My Own Outfits?

Before your shoot we will have a discussion with you about any items that you might want to bring with you. It’s a good idea to bring a range of items as then we can discuss which will work on the day for the looks that you require. It is always a good idea though to bring some lingerie sets and they do not have to be all black.

Some other great ideas to bring are items such as a plain white man’s shirt which can make a very sexy photograph.

You might also want to bring some (or all) of the following:

  • Slips
  • Nightwear (and no probably not your winter fleecy jammies)
  • Corsets. These can be boned or more of a fashion corset. If you are going to try a boned corset though it is best to try it out beforehand as they do often need you to be used to wearing them.
  • Stockings and suspenders. Stockings are great to bring with you, but don’t worry as we do have pairs available in the studio as well. You can try different types of stockings such as sheer black or fishnets, holdups and those that require a suspender belt. It is amazing how toned a pair of fishnet stockings can make your legs look.
  • High heels. Bring your favorite high heel shoes or boot with you. Again they will give you great posture and make your legs longer and leaner.
  • Jewellery. If you have a favorite signature piece then you might also want to bring your jewellery with you.

Apart from this list we also have a range of items for you to try. We hold a few corsets and slips. Plus we have an extensive range of jewellery to wear (it is amazing what a difference a signature necklace will make to a photograph). As well as feathers, masks, flowers and hats. You though might feel more comfortable in your own items.

What Sort of Grooming Prep Should I Do Before My Shoot?

If you wish to be ‘au naturale’ as we say then that is perfectly fine. If however, you want a smooth look then you will need to wax or shave those areas which you want to be smooth before the shoot. We advise to get this done a couple of days in advance so that any redness (eg. from shaver burn) has a chance to subside.

If you regularly get your eyebrows plucked and shaped then please also do this a couple of days in advance. There will be redness from this procedure which otherwise needs to be covered with makeup. If you have it done a couple of days in advance then the redness would have subsided.

Apart from shaving/waxing and your eyebrows you may also want a manicure and pedicure. You can have the most sensual outfit on but if your nail polish is chipped and your nails are torn then it will alter the fantasy image that has been created. Use the boudoir photoshoot as an excuse for an all over pampering session.

Can I Bring Alcohol?

If you want to bring some alcohol to relax then we are happy for you to do that. However, please do not drink too excessively. The idea is to relax not to get completely sloshed as that will ruin the photographs. We will offer you a glass of wine or champagne when you arrive anyhow.

You will also be able to have some nibbles – chocolate or fruit (or even fruit covered chocolate). So by the time you have chatted with us and then sat in the makeup chair you will be having a good time. Music will be playing and the focus is for you to be having a good time even before you get in front of the camera.

What Happens When I arrive?

On arrival you will be offered a glass of wine and champagne together with some nibbles. You will then be introduced to our makeup artist/stylist and we will all chat and discuss the clothing items that you have brought with you.

We will discuss the makeup and hair looks that you might want and which will work with the clothing choices. I will also make suggestions if I think we can improve on the outfits with items from the studio.

Once you are relaxed and the music is playing you will then hit the makeover chair where our makeup artist will work on the looks that you want. This will take about an hour so use this time to chat, relax and drink your wine. Makeup for photography does need to be a little more dramatic than you usually wear so that it will show up in the photographs.

After the makeup chair you are now ready for your first outfit and to get in front of the camera. Don’t worry this is painless.

I Have Never Posed Before

We work with all different types of people from those that are used to posing through to posing newbies. Some people are also a natural and do not need much coaching when they get in front of the camera. But for the majority of women posing for boudoir shoots is a completely different experience.

However, do not worry we are used to working and coaching people through the poses. Furthermore, I often show how to do the pose by doing it myself. This does cause some hilarity. Sometimes the pose does need to be exaggerated to get the effect showing up on camera.

I also do use a variety of props and we have chairs and a bed to recline over. It ends up being a lot of fun.

I Don’t Like My Boobs, Bum, Legs etc

A lot of women feels self conscious about at least one item of her body. Whether it is her boobs, bum, her legs or even arms and shoulders. During our initial chat we will discuss this with you. We want to know what you think your best features are and which you wish to hide or cover up a little more.

During our shoot we will then enhance your best features and showcase those which will also draw focus away from those items you feel less comfortable with. We can also use a number of props such as scarves, feathers and fans to camouflage problem areas.

We also use lighting to sculpt your body and show poses that will bring out the features you love.

What Happens After The Shoot

We plan to have at least 30-50 of the best shots from the shoot sent for you to look at within 3 days. We will let you know after the shoot how you can access these. All of these shots will be untouched and watermarked.

You can then choose the photographs from this list which you want to have edited. These will then be sent to you on a presentation USB stick. As you booked your package in advance we know how many shots you will need edited. And if you want extra shots we can accommodate that for an added fee.

Do Men Do Boudoir Shoots?

There is a new type of shoot available for men which has been termed “Dudoir”. However, when I have seen photographs of this type before they actually resemble a male fitness shoot. Boudoir itself is a very female type of shoot so whilst we offer this to females exclusively we will do male fitness shoots if requested.

I’m Interested in A Boudoir Shoot – What Do I Do Now?

Have a look at our pricelist here and decide which sort of package you would like. Then fill in the contact us page and we will get back to you and discuss your requirements.


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