Preparing for your Boudoir Session

Don't stress about preparing for your session, I’m here for you! We'll go over everything from what lingerie is best, to what you can do to pamper your body beforehand. I’m excited to help you get the boudoir session of your dreams!

Before we worry about anything else, I always like to start by telling my clients to take care of themselves before their shoots! Drink lots of water, exfoliate, moisturize. Spend extra time taking care of your skin, it's going to be your main outfit! If you're shaving or waxing do it a few days before.

Use this session as an excuse to pamper yourself! Whether that means taking the time to do a pedicure and manicure on yourself, or booking an appointment for someone else to, it's always a good idea. When doing polish I find it works best visually to have the polish on your nails and toes match. If your polish is chipped, I'll have you remove it before your shoot.

Please eat something before you shoot. Don't do anything drastic like a cleanse or fasting. Posing for your boudoir sessions is kind of similar to a yoga session. You'll be holding muscles you normally don't, and often times be inverted laying down. I don't want anyone to feel faint or light headed. The small amount of body change you feel from cleansing or fasting will not be visible in the final photos. I photograph everyone so their body looks awesome. Even if you think you're a bit bloated after you eat, I promise you will never be able to tell in your photos.

Wear loose fitting clothing the day of your session. Tighter fitting clothing can leave creases or red marks on your skin.


I strongly recommend avoiding booze for at least 24-48 hours prior to your photoshoot.  Alcohol dehydrates, can make your eyes red, interferes with your sleep, your circulation, your digestion, and all sorts of other fun stuff, and plus the camera tends to notice when everything’s not working at optimum levels.  For vanity’s sake, drink lots and lots and lots of water in the few days before the shoot. Don’t worry, I will have champagne available for you right before your shoot to help calm your nerves!


Try to get at least two solid nights of sleep before your shoot.  For me that means eating balanced, regular meals, abstaining from alcohol and caffeine, and getting at least 30-60 minutes of exercise during the day.  Whatever it takes– a warm bath, turning off the TV early, cleaning something, whatever– do what you need to do to make sure you’re well rested.  Your eyes and skin will thank you.



IF (and only if) you are someone who feels prettiest with a fresh haircut or eyebrow/bikini wax or new mani-pedi or blowout or whatever, schedule an appointment in advance so it lines up nicely with your shoot.  Please, if possible, refrain from spray tanning! Your natural skin will photograph best! So many clients have malfunctions with their spray tanner, resulting in weird color patches and drips. The spray tanner also settles in every fine line of your skin, making you look much older. If you absolutely must tan, I recommend UV tanning, which while harmful for your skin, photographs better. Make sure you use extra moisturizer as to not dry out your skin.



I cannot stress this enough: you will look good wearing something that makes you feel good.  It’s all very nice to have something super pretty that your partner/friend/bra fitter thinks you look great in, but if you don’t feel comfortable and pretty and sassy, you may not have a great time when lights are on and a camera is pointed at you.  By the same token, a boudoir shoot is not necessarily the place for you to stress out about bra fit.   Wear what you love, whether it’s a lacy mesh bra or a corset or a plain white tee shirt.  You will look gorgeous and happy in what makes you feel gorgeous and happy.

  • DO have panties that match your bra! Even if you have beautiful and expensive pieces, please make sure you have at least one matching set.

  • DO feel free to over pack. We'll go through all the options you bring at the beginning of your shoot. We will select pieces based on what will photograph best. It's always better to have more to choose from!

  • DON'T choose thongs or g-string panties. Thongs and G-strings tend to make your butt look a bit flat.  I recommend doing a cheeky panty or hipster. They make the butt look round and voluptuous! The only exception to this rule is body suits, high-waisted panties and teddies. They can look amazing with a thong!

  • DON'T Bring in baby doll style lingerie. Many women are self-conscious about their mid-section. We all feel comfortable with a bit of loose flowy coverage. When you put more fabric at an area you're trying to hide, it highlights it and makes it look larger. I want to highlight your waist! If you're uncomfortable with your mid-section, try a high-waisted panty, teddy or bodysuit!

  • DO think texture! I recommend sticking with more solid colors over prints. My favorite colors are black and jewel tones. I love any texture as it adds interest to your photographs. Lace, beading, glitter, straps, chains, ect. are some of my favorite things.

  • DO bring VERY high heels. I love a good pair of flats in our day to day life. Boudoir though is a fantasy and it's true the higher the heel the better your butt looks. Even if you return them after your shoot, it's always a good idea to bring a pair of "do-me" shoes. I love black and nude pumps, with a spike heel and a pointed toe. Unless you love the shoe, I don't recommend ankle straps. Visually they shorten your legs.

  • DO bring larger scale accessories. Small and delicate jewelry won't photograph well. It's also hard to edit around. When choosing jewelry, think statement pieces! I love earrings over 10mm in size. The more your jewelry catches the light, the better it will be to photograph.


And lastly, Have fun! Whether you’re doing this for yourself, or for your significant other, the most important thing to remember is to have fun with it. If you’re having fun it will make the experience that much better. Also, keep in mind that doing a boudoir photo shoot is an investment. The time and energy (and money) it takes to put together a successful boudoir session will all pay off in the end when you see your images. That’s my promise. I want each and every client to have an unforgettable experience with me from beginning to end.

© 2020 by Margie Dotson Photography.

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