How to take good boudoir photos

Written by gwen wark
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How to take good boudoir photos
(Jupiterimages/ Images)

Good boudoir photos are sensual, seductive and flattering. In order to take the best boudoir photos, planning your session in advance is essential whether you are the model or the photographer. By taking care in choosing the setting, lighting and accessories, your boudoir photographs will look natural and soft rather than stiff and posed. This makes the overall image more flattering, resulting in better boudoir photographs with minimal effort.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


  1. 1

    Plan your locations. Make sure any areas being used in the shoot are clean and free of debris or distracting clutter that might interfere with the settings for the photographs. Select more than one location. While traditional boudoir photos are set in the bedroom, don't ignore the possibility of other areas or backgrounds such as blank walls.

  2. 2

    Decide on your outfits. Avoid using tight-fitting lingerie or clothing for early poses, since this clothing leaves unflattering marks on the skin. Choose a variety of outfits in which you feel comfortable. While lingerie is standard, it is by no means the only outfit possible for a sexy, sensual photograph.

  3. 3

    Choose your lighting. Soft, even lighting that is free of shadows creates the most sensual imagery. Natural lighting also works well; if you have access to natural light, plan your shoot for later in the day when the sunlight is less harsh.

  4. 4

    Practice posing. If you are taking your own boudoir photographs, this means strutting your stuff in the mirror to get an idea of what poses are flattering. Choose poses that are soft and natural-- try to avoid poses that direct the viewer's attention away from the subject.

  5. 5

    Plan your make-up. This ties in with your lighting choices--you will need heavier make-up to combat the effects of powerful posing lights and flashes. Using several different cosmetic looks adds variety to the shoot, but make sure that you save bolder looks for the end of the shoot.

  6. 6

    Choose your hairstyles. This is another good way to add variety to a shoot. Some poses will lend themselves to flowing tresses, while others call for a sultry updo. For long looks, hair should remain natural, so avoid over-styling with products. Save the sprayed-on updos for the end of the shoot, so hairspray and clips don't cause unsightly crimping.

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