Naturally, one of the most fun parts of doing a boudoir session is shopping for great lingerie to wear to your session! Beautiful lingerie is not cheap, and can easily run into the hundreds or even thousands. Lingerie is not required for a boudoir session by any means – we can easily shoot an entire session in one nice bra/panty set – but if you’ve always dreamed of having sexy photos of yourself in some stunning lingerie, here are some great sources.
Although this might surprise a lot of people, one of my favorite sources for boudoir session attire is American Apparel. Although you wouldn’t traditionally think of American Apparel as a source of sexy lingerie, they have a lot of pieces that make for some amazing and unique outfits. Their lace collection is particularly great, as well as their hosiery collection. In my opinion there is nothing sexier than a woman in a lace dress and nothing else – and the best part is that after your session you can add a slip or blazer to it and wear it out to a party. If you’re insecure about your stomach, some of these options can give you better coverage while still having lots of sex appeal.
For traditional lingerie at a reasonable price, the most well-known sources are of course Victoria’s Secret and Frederick’s of Hollywood. Although they have stores in most malls, the best selection of their collections can be found online. (First row: Victoria’s Secret; Second row: Frederick’s of Hollywood)
For high end couture lingerie, there’s no better option than Agent Provacateur. Although their pieces are pricey, they are also very well made and flattering and will hold up to regular use.
Another high end couture lingerie company is Claire Pettibone. Although she is best known for her wedding gowns, her Heirloom Lingerie collection (think lots of lace and sheer fabrics) is equally stunning.
If you’re looking for something softer and more romantic (and typically more comfortable), Anthropologie (intimates here and chemises here) and their sister company BHLDN (bridal lingerie here and regular lingerie here) have a lot of great options (first row Anthropologie; second row BHLDN).
If you’re doing your boudoir session in Paris, I highly recommend setting up a pre-session shopping spree here. Paris is the unparalleled world capital of lingerie, with amazing shops on virtually every corner. Department stores like BHV, Galeries Lafayette, and Printemps have huge selections of lingerie from several top designers. You can also set appointments at some of the smaller boutiques and provide your preferences and measurements in advance, and they can have a selection of items pulled out and ready for you. There are also a wealth of antique stores that offer beautiful vintage items, as well. Contact me for more information about arranging your own personal lingerie shopping spree!
LINGERIE BUYING TIPS
-When selecting lingerie, the most important thing is that YOU feel comfortable and sexy in it. If what you’re wearing makes you feel insecure, awkward, or out of character, that will come through in the photos. Nothing is more sexy than confidence, so the better you feel, the better you’ll look!
-Choose items that accentuate your favorite body parts and minimize your less favorite parts. For example, if you love your chest but hate your tummy, pick a baby doll, corset, or romper. If you love your abs but hate your butt or thighs, pick a bra, skirt, and garter set. If you love your legs, don’t cover them up with stockings! I will always pose you to make you look your best, but a well-chosen wardrobe can be a huge help. Also check in with your boyfriend or husband and ask him what his favorite part of you is so that we can give that area special attention.
-Go to a high end lingerie shop to be properly fitted for a bra. Most women don’t wear the proper size bra, so before spending a lot of money on fancy lingerie, get measured and make sure you know your true size!
-Don’t use items that are too tight for your body – a size too big is much better than a size too small.
-We all love black for its sexy and slimming qualities, but most black items will look identical in photos, so pick your favorite black item and incorporate other colors to add variety to your shoot.