what to wear for a boudoir shoot

11 Wardrobe Ideas that Aren't Lingerie | Washington DC Boudoir Photographer

By far the most common question I get from clients are about what to wear for a boudoir session (the second most common is about privacy). And I often hear, can I do a session if I don't want to wear lingerie? And the answer is, of course you can!

First, let's get the idea that you have to wear lingerie at your boudoir session out of the way. Do I love a good bra & undies set? Absolutely. Do I expect you to wear that at your session? Nope, not at all. Many women feel like they have to wear lingerie for boudoir, and that couldn't be further from the truth. Many women don't wear a single piece of lingerie at all.

Not everyone is into lingerie, and I get it. You don't go around wearing it everyday, so it just doesn't feel like you. While boudoir is often about stepping outside of your comfort zone, you should still feel like yourself. Some of my favorite images from sessions don't include a single piece of lingerie. Here are some of my very favorite looks that don't include a single garter belt:

1. Classic T-shirt & undies.

You can't go wrong with this classic. Flattering on just about every body type, it's casual and sexy. 

2. A bodysuit. 

This one strays into the lingerie category, but I give it a special exception for good reason - bodysuits are amazing. They are flattering for everyone, comfortable, and no more revealing than a bathing suit. If you don't feel comfortable in traditional lingerie, this is a great lingerie-esque option that many women feel great in.

3. A dress.

Yep, a dress. Crazy to think you can wear something that's meant to cover you from head to toe, but you can make this work too. I recommend dresses that have lots of movement so we can play with it as we go. Best worn without anything underneath!

4. A tank top or cami.

This is another great casual option. If you love that "I just woke up like this" look, a cami can show off all of your curves.

5. Oversized sweater or cardigan.

Sweaters are a great option because you probably already have the perfect one in your closet. Take your favorite everyday sweater and wear it for a session you won't be able to forget.

6. Nothing at all.

You're here, so you might as well get nekkid while you're at it.

washington dc boudoir photographer

7. Body chains and jewelry.

I typically recommend keeping limiting the accessories and jewelry you wear, but body chains are my one exception. They are a great way to add interest and just a hint of sparkle.

washington dc boudoir photographer

8. Lace tops.

I love lace! It's so gorgeous and beautiful for everyone. Lace tops in particular are a favorite. They give you a little extra coverage while also giving a glimpse into what's underneath.

9. Crop tops.

If you're game to bare your midriff this is a fun choice.

10. A bed sheet.

Simple and a classic for boudoir. 

11. Fishnet stockings.

Fun and endlessly sexy. I recommend fishnets instead of your typical stocking for several reasons, not the least of which is that fishnets just super hot.

So that's it ladies! A list of ideas for your next boudoir session that doesn't include anything from Victoria's Secret. You don't need to spend hours shopping and worrying about what to buy before your session - you probably already have what you need in your own closet.

And if you're still unsure, I've still got you covered. Every client has access to the studio wardrobe for boudoir sessions, and I send a complete What to Wear guide and preparation advice when you reserve your session. 

At the end of the day, no matter what you wear, your images and experience should be a reflection of you and your style.


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Currently booking boudoir clients throughout the Washington DC and Northern VA area.
Contact me to learn more and book your custom boudoir experience.