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  • Writer's pictureMaura Gallegos

How to Prepare for Your Boudoir Session

Knowing you have a boudoir shoot around the corner can be stressful - let alone having to prepare for it! Whether it's your first shoot or your 10th, you're probably wondering what you can do to get the most out of your experience. As a professional boudoir photographer, I'm going to walk you through the steps to look, and most importantly, feel your absolute best on the day of your photo shoot.

#1: Prep Your Outfits

The boudoir photo was taken in moody lighting with the woman laying down in a boudoir pose. She is wearing a tan colored lace bodysuit and has her left hand on her chest. LACE Boudoir Photography took the photo. See more at
Lace Boudoir Photography | San Francisco, CA

Prepping your outfits can take some time, so I recommend doing this first. A couple of weeks before your shoot, take an inventory of what you already have in your lingerie collection at home. Maybe there is something lacy with the tags still on it that you haven't gotten a chance to wear. Or if you're anything like me, you've lost inspiration with your current styles and need to go shopping for a couple of new pieces.

For the best results during your session, I recommend that my clients stay away from neon colors or loud patterns. Instead, opt for something neutral and subtle like a lace teddy. Or something a bit more bold like some thigh-highs and a garter belt. It doesn't matter what you wear during your boudoir shoot, as long as it's something that makes you feel sexy and comfortable.

Pro Tip: Always try on your outfits before your photo shoot to make sure you are happy with the fit and look overall. If it makes you want to dance when you look it the mirror, it's a yes from us!

It may depend on your photographer, but we recommend bringing at least 3 bras and panties with a variety of thongs and cheekies, along with a one piece bodysuit or two. A matching set like this one will make you look confident and cohesive in your photos. You can also bring an oversized button-down shirt or a cozy knit sweater to layer and change up your looks throughout the boudoir session. Finish up your look with a pair of heels, and minimal gold or silver jewelry.

#2: Level Up Your Self-Care

In order to look your best, you must feel your best. Prior to your boudoir session, we recommend booking a manicure and a pedicure at your local salon. Choose neutral colors that won't overpower your outfits or expressions. The goal is to see you through the lens, not your nails.

Another way to prep for your boudoir photo session is to take care of any waxing or shaving needs. There are going to be areas of your body that are visible during your shoot that you're not used to seeing all the time. This includes your legs, underarms, bikini, etc. If you are waxing, make sure to schedule your appointment 2-4 days before your shoot so that the redness has time to fade. If you're shaving, it's best to do this the night before.

One of our favorite ways to prep for a boudoir session is to book an airbrush tan for even, glowing

The boudoir photo was taken with warm light with the woman kneeling on a bed in a boudoir pose. She is wearing a black lace lingerie set and her hands are unclasping her garter belt. She is posing for a boudoir photo and only her back is visible. LACE Boudoir Photography took the photo. See more at
San Francisco Boudoir Photography

skin. Let your tanning artist know that you would like to go for a natural look and to avoid any harsh tones. If you're in the San Francisco Bay Area, we recommend visiting Shade in the Marina District for the best results. If you're running short on time, you can use a self-tanning kit like this one. If you're going this route, I suggest that you phone a friend to help you apply it evenly in the hard to reach areas. Don't worry, it's totally normal - we do it all the time!

#3: Day Before

On the day before your tan, be sure to drink plenty of water and eat a nutrient dense breakfast or lunch. If you can, avoid greasy and processed foods. This will provide energy during your shoot and prevent skin inflammation and/or puffiness, leaving you feeling like your best self.

Take care of any last minute shaving or skin care needs. If you have acne prone skin or are struggling with a breakout the day before your shoot, you can give these miracle patches a try for trouble spots or pesky pimples. If you are worried about the visibility, never shy away from asking your photographer to retouch your photos. Remember, in the end, boudoir is about embracing the parts of yourself that are perfectly imperfect.

If your photographer does not provide retouching services, click here to download my boudoir editing preset for FREE! This will make your photos look professionally edited, and did I mention it's completely free?

#4: Morning Of

On the day of your shoot, it's time to start packing your boudoir tote bag! Carefully fold your lingerie, clothing, and other accessories. Place them in a bag to bring with you to your shoot.

Pro Tip: Wear loose clothing on the day of your boudoir shoot to prevent indentation on your skin. This is especially important on the way to your shoot.

The boudoir photo was taken with natural light with the woman smiling softly and looking over her left shoulder. She is wearing a lace panty set and is highlighting her curves with her hands in a boudoir pose. LACE Boudoir Photography took the photo. See more at
Bay Area Boudoir Photography

Some boudoir photographers will provide hair and makeup services on the day of your shoot and invite you to sip champagne while the pros work their magic. This gives you an opportunity to relax before your shoot. If your photographer does not provide this, be sure to connect with a hair or makeup artist in your area for a more luxurious and carefree boudoir experience.

Now that you know how to prep for your boudoir shoot, it's time to book! When booking a boudoir session in the San Francisco Bay Area, be sure to check out Lace Boudoir Photography for the best luxury boudoir photography experience.

If you've made it this far and want to learn more about the boudoir experience, download our FREE boudoir guide where we go over all of the tips and tricks to make your photo session one to remember.

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