Hampton Roads Boudoir Prep

How to Prepare for Your Boudoir Session

Figuring out how to prepare for your boudoir session may seem tricky, but I’m going to let you in on a little secret:

At Hampton Roads Best Boudoir Photography Studio, Hillary West Studios, boudoir prep is a breeze!

All you have to do is take a deep breath and read the following tips…


Determine Your Desired Look

Do you want to go nude, partially nude, wear lingerie or a favorite t-shirt? Do you want your shoot to be full-on sexy or sort of sweet? I will work with you to help determine and design your desired look for the session and we’ll work out details like location, wardrobe, and props. I’m not that photographer that once you book you never hear from me again.  I’m always available to you at any point.  I’m had clients call and even facetime from dressing rooms to get my advice on outfits.  I’m here for you!


Find a Specialist

Boudoir portraiture is a niche art form, so you must be very discerning when choosing a photographer. It’s crucial to do your research—browse their portfolios and read client testimonials. Since boudoir is such an intimate and vulnerable experience, it’s essential you find someone whom you trust and feel comfortable around.  I want you to have the best experience that you can.  This is why I tell you that you need a photographer you are truly comfortable with.  Don’t go with a photographer because of price or a specific prop.  Get to know the photographer and make sure you are comfortable before getting naked.  This is why I always meet you first and talk before your session.  I want you to be comfortable with me and me with you.



Start by shopping your closet for the items you instinctively select when you want to feel (and look) your absolute best. Don’t stress over this. If you feel lost, just bring one bra/panty set, one bodysuit, and one wildcard (like something from our Client Closet or your birthday suit). Have fun with it!  As I mentioned earlier, I’m here for you the entire way.  I’ll even go shopping with you if you’d like.  I also have pieces in the Lingerie Closet that you may like.


Prep Mind, Body, and Skin

Drink LOTS of water. Lower your salt intake and abstain from alcohol for a week before your shoot to avoid water retention. Treat yourself to a mani/pedi. Bath, shower, and moisturize. Enjoy a quiet evening and get a full night’s sleep before the day of your session.  Remember, no spray tanning or artificial tanning.  It makes your skin blotchy.  Any questions, let me know.



Take a deep breath and relax. It’s completely normal to feel nervous before your shoot. I promise it will be a fun, stress-free day that’s all about YOU. Trust us, you’ll be coming back for more!


If you would like more information on booking a session, please email:

[email protected]

or visit my IG: @hillaryweststudiosand DM me.


Ready to find out more?

Drop me a line today for a free consult!

Five Tips to Nail Your Boudoir Session

Let’s face it. Boudoir may be liberating, but it sure can be intimidating. Luckily, we have five guaranteed tips to nail your boudoir session.


Eat: Put Some Pep in That Step

We all know “you’re not you when you’re hungry,” so eating before your boudoir shoot is a MUST. Between hair and makeup and a smokin’ photoshoot, your boudoir experience is an long affair. If you don’t eat prior to your session, your energy and enthusiasm will wane within an hour. In other words: totesnot sexy! Make sure to eat breakfast before your shoot.


Relax: Learn to Love Your Body & It Will Love You Back

It’s okay to be nervous. You’re stepping outside of your comfort zone, and those nerves just prove you’re human. Embrace the butterflies! Gentle stretches or exercise practices like yoga and dance will help you connect to your body and mind. You’ll feel relaxed and in touch with how your body moves.  Don’t worry about not knowing what to do, that’s what I’m for 😉 If you’re struggling with body image, don’t forget I do offer a body image bootcamp.  What to know more, DM/PM me.

Hampton Roads Body Image Boot Camp

Don’t Stress: Bring Wardrobe You Love

Let’s talk about shopping. Some people love it, others run screaming in the opposite direction. Don’t feel overwhelmed by which outfits to wear. You can’t go wrong with one bra and panty set, a body suit, and a wild card, like something from our Client Closet (or maybe even your birthday suit). The fact is, lingerie isn’t for everyone, and sometimes implied nudity or full nudity is perfect


Follow Instructions: Point Those Toes & Pop That Booty

At the start of each session, I will give you helpful tips as well as remind you of those tips throughout your shoot. Plus, I’ll physically demonstrate each pose I want you to do by getting into the poses myself. That way, you’ll have an idea of what to expect when you’re in front of their camera. From pointing your toes and arching your back to poppin’ that booty, you’re sure to create flattering curves and gorgeous shapes.


Trust: Your Photographer Has Your Back

Boudoir is out of most people’s comfort zone. Be proud of yourself for taking this leap of faith and investing in YOU. It’s okay if you don’t know what to wear or how to pose because you’re in the hands of a boudoir specialist. I have studied the female body and learned from the best in the business so that I am capable of adjusting every inch of you, from your eyes to your facial expressions down to your adorable tootsies. All you have to do is let go, trust the process, and have a blast!


If you would like more information on booking a session, please email:

[email protected]

or visit my IG: @hillaryweststudiosand DM me.


Author: hillarywest

I am a body positive boudoir photographer based in Norfolk, Virginia. Since 2015, I have been empowering women, and sometimes men, to embrace their bodies and celebrate their unique beauty through photography. My passion for boudoir photography stems from my own struggles with body image and self-acceptance. I believe that everyone has the right to feel confident and beautiful in their own skin, regardless of their size, shape, or imperfections. My goal is to create a safe and inclusive space for my clients to express themselves and feel comfortable in front of the camera. I am dedicated to helping my clients see themselves in a new light and feel proud of who they are.