ULTIMATE BOUDOIR OUTFIT TEST:
HELLO THERE! I hope this guide will help you make choices that feel true to who you are. Here is the first test you can give yourself when you are considering what to wear to your boudoir session.
Just ask yourself these two simple questions:
- Does it feel true to you?
- Do you love how you look in it?
If you answer Yes to both, then you have a winner! Woo hoo!
This guide is full of suggestions and advice, feel free to break any 'rules' as long as you are true to yourself.
Lingerie: My Favorite Styles
Top lingerie recommendations, and here they are! All of the styles on this page can work well for all body shapes. Find a piece the goes with your proportions in a way you love. There are versions that are more casual, high-drama options, and lots in between.
BODYSUITS AND TEDDIES
My personal favorite and #1 recommendation for a boudoir session. This option will fit like a swimsuit, and when you find something that fits well, they are flattering, comfortably and photographs very beautifully. Bodysuits come in a variety of styles: solid, soft cotton, or go for something epic with geometric lace or a bold color.
BRAS AND UNDERWEAR SETS
A well-fitting bra and panty set in a solid color is a simple, lovely option. Go for a balconette bra to show off your cleavage, or a lace bralette for a soft, romantic look. When it comes to bottoms, cheeky or bikini-styles emphasize curves, while high-waisted styles feel fun and vintage-y while drawing attention to your waist.
These fit like a dress (usually short and around hip-length, but they come in longer styles as well). They come in a wide variety of options, depending on the fabric/color /detailing- from super-soft cotton to dramatic sheer lace.
A word of caution: A 'babydoll' is another style of nightie with a lightweight skirt that starts right under the bust. I generally recommend avoiding them - baby dolls tend to be less flattering in boudoir portraits because their voluminous skirts hide the natural waistline.
Lingerie: Dramatic Options
If you love lingerie and want your portraits to be full of drama, bring some extravagant lingerie pieces for an elegant, powerful vibe.
There are two different types of stockings (note that only one kind is meant to be used with a garter belt).
"Stay-up" stockings have a rubber lining on top - the are NOT meant for garters, but you can pair them with a dramatic bra/underwear set or If you'd like to wear these, I suggest getting them 1-2 sizes too big so that the rubber will lay flat against your leg. The rubber lining is very tight to help the stocking stay up on its own, and it usually cuts into the thigh a bit.
Stockings without the rubber lining are made to be used with garters in order to stay up.
My favorite stockings to photograph are the ones that have lace detailing at the top of the stocking - it makes a beautiful focal point. It can be rather difficult to attach your garters to stockings - I'm happy to help you at the studio.
GARTER BELTS + GARTERS
A garter belt is worn around the waist or hips (over underwear) and has attached garters or fasteners to hold up thigh-high stockings. You can also wear a garter belt without stockings (just let the garters hang) for a more relaxed, undressed look. A "garter" refers to the dangling fasteners that hang off of a garter belt, and attach to stockings. Sometimes other lingerie pieces (like a fitted nightie or a bustier) will have built-in garters, which can also be used to hold up stockings.
BUSTIER + CORSETS
Bustiers and corsets are more structured than a bodysuit- they typically have built-in support similar to a bra, and extend down to the waist or hips. They designed to shape the torso, and usually have vertical boning for support, with laces up the back to cinch the waist. If you're drawn to something that feels extravagant or a little vintage-inspired, these can be an epic choice.
BRALETTE: A lightweight, unlined bra. Natural and Romantic.
DEMI-CUP BRA: Covers the bottom half of the breast and provides lift/support.
LONG LINE BRA: The bottom of the bra extend down to the waist for extra support.
PUSH-UP BRA: It will provide lift and padding.
T-SHIRT BRA: Smooth Style, will fit under a t-shirt seamlessly. Works best if you're going for a relaxed and casual session.
BIKINI: Med Coverage- High Cut Sides which will show off your legs. Lace Bikini can be flattering on your bum.
CHEEKY: Med Coverage- Have coverage in the front and less fabric in the back. These will look amazing if you love your butt.
THONG: Less Coverage- Minimal on the sides, will make your legs look very long.
HIGH-WAISTED: High Coverage- Will give a vintage vibe and accentuate your hourglass shape.
Beyond Lingerie: Cozy & Comfy
SWEATERS & CARDIGANS
Sweaters and Cardigans add layers and texture to your images. Longer cardigans are easier to wear of the shoulder. A cardigan or sweater can be paired with romantic lace.
Stay relaxed during your session with super-soft Pajamas, Off-the-shoulder t-shirts, tall over-the-knee socks. Another choice may be to add Crop-top T-shirts.
An amazing piece to add layer and texture. Choose soft cotton with lace or elegant silk. You may also choose large floral print.
Beyond Lingerie: In your closet!
By adding athletic wear you can inspire strength and confidence. You can add yoga pants and sports bra that make you feel amazing.
Everyday clothes can be anything from your jeans and crop tops.
You may wear your favorite pair of jeans with a bralette.
T-shirt or crop top with a Lace bottom.
A jacket all on its own. The possibilities are endless!
FINE ART TOPLESS
Some will go for a look that will show the breast/nipples. This option can be with or with out underwear. Either way the pubic area will be covered by careful posing of your legs or with a blanket/or sheet.
IMPLIED NUDE: You are fully nude- your pubic area and breast stay covered with blanket or posing with your arms and legs.
IMPLIED TOPLESS: Keep underwear on, but we will skip the bra. Breast stay covered with blanket or arms.
LINGERIE + CLOTHING
Middle amount of skin coverage, bra, underwear, or lingerie sets.
You may pair everyday clothing like jeans and t-shirts with bras or underwear.
Accessories & Shoes
SHOES OR BAREFOOT:
The majority of clients will be barefoot, It is a perfect way to stay relaxed during your session and create a more natural vibe, however, if you love shoes, or have been eyeing some for your session, you may bring them along to create a look.
Pro tip: Heels with a pointed toe will visually elongate your legs.
You are more than welcome to bring pieces that speak to your style and personality.
You may bring favorite blankets, wedding veils, fans, sun hats, or panama hats, any special jewelry.
Headpieces: flower crown or masquerade masks.
My personal favorite: A bouquet of flowers.
Let's Prepare a Timeline
The do's & don'ts & big No NO's
A week or two before your session, Finalize your final outfits. It is best to avoid feeling rushed.
The week of your session try on your outfits. Make sure everything fits and don't forget any pieces or accessories you may want to add.
IMPORTANT: Make sure you cut out any visible or distracting tags.
Two-Three days before your session have all your items ironed or steamed. Hang all your pieces and have them ready to go.
The morning of your session, double and triple check you have all the items you desire to wear. Get ready to have an amazing day!
Comfort equals Confidence.
I hope this guide helps and inspires you.
BOUDOIR WARDROBE FAQ
How many outfits should I bring?
In reality there are not set number of outfits you may bring. You may bring up to 5 outfits, including Nude or Illusion of topless as counting as a look/outfit.
You are welcome to bring more than what you need, I am more than happy to help you curate your mix of final choices.
What color is best for boudoir?
This is in mostly about you, make sure you get something that feels like you.
Think about what a color conveys or means to you.
For example: Bright colors feel lively, pale colors feel soft, deep colors feel bold and dramatic.
Patterns vs Solids?
Solid colors let the focus be more on you, so the majority of my clients stick with solid colored pieces, adding variety through a mix of fabric and texture (silks, linens, laces, etc). If you love patterns, they can add some fun personality into your portraits.
Nipples you ask?
You're welcome to wear sheer things at your session! A lot of folks wear sheer things where their nipples or body hair are visible, and that's lovely. I won't edit out nipples or visible hair, so if you'd prefer for them not to show you can choose to stick to more opaque fabrics. You are more than welcome to bring Nipple petals/pastys.