Do you have a boudoir session booked but aren’t sure what to wear?  Maybe you’re a photographer new to boudoir sessions and aren’t sure how to guide clients on dressing for session success.  We’ve got advice for women from women photographers on what photographs well and what you should think about wearing for your session!

What Do You Wear To a Boudoir Photo shoot?

For a boudoir photo shoot, invest in at least one really great bra and underwear set that compliments your body type and makes you feel confident and sexy.

If your session length and package allows for multiple outfits, other great boudoir items include:

  • Additional lingerie
  • Normal clothing
  • Accessories

Bras and Underwear

Start your boudoir photoshoot wardrobe with one really great bra and underwear set.  The style should compliment your body type and skin tone as well as match your personality.  Basic black is always a classic choice, but don’t be afraid to try other colors or patterns.

Your bra and underwear should also be in good condition and fit well.  You don’t want to be constantly tugging the bra down or pulling your underwear up.  

If you have the budget, buy/bring along a few sets and create different looks by mixing and matching colors, textures, or patterns.  

clothes for boudoir sessions

Other Lingerie

Once you’ve picked out a bra and underwear set (or a few!), start exploring other pieces of lingerie that match your goals and vibe for the photoshoot.  If you like the vintage mood, choose a classic slip.  Want something more modern?  Choose a bodysuit.  Teddies, camisole, and stockings with garter belts are always sexy.

If you’re feeling apprehensive about showing so much skin, choose a beautiful silk robe or satin nightgown to incorporate into your shoot.  Your photographer can use it creatively to imply sexiness without revealing so much of you!

Great lighting makes a HUGE impact in boudoir photoshoots. Learn how to natural lighting to add impact to your images with our Dynamic Natural Lighting Mini Course

Normal Clothing

There are no rules saying you have to wear lingerie and only lingerie for your boudoir session.  What makes you feel confident and sexy?  If it’s sexy casual clothes, use those!

For example, pair a sheer top with jeans or use a simple white blouse, unbuttoned, with a black skirt.  Pair a lacy colored bra with denim shorts.  Or use a business suit with something unexpected such as a garter belt and stockings.  

If you are shooting your boudoir session as a gift for your romantic partner, use one of his items such as his favorite dress shirt or her favorite t-shirt.  Using your partners clothes adds a fun surprise and provides an extra connection to the images.

Again, there’s nothing saying you must wear something uber revealing for a boudoir photoshoot.  You can be sexy and sultry in a dress or pantsuit.  Check out the backup dancers in any Robert Palmer video or pinups from the 1950s and 1960s.  They convey feminity and sexiness while still keeping lots of skin covered!

Your normal clothing also works for boudoir sessions

Props and Accessories

Accessories and props can add texture and dimension to your wardrobe.  These items can also add to the mood of your session.  Think about vests, robes, dressing gowns, jackets, earrings, chokers, necklaces, hats, scarves, gloves, robes, or even shoes and boots.

Again, don’t be afraid to raid your partner’s closet for some props.  Borrow his hat, watch, or favorite jersey.  Incorporate her sexiest shoes, vintage slip, or collection of antique perfume bottles.  Anything that adds to the mood and feel of your session or connects you with your partner.

Let Your Photographer Help!

If you’re still undecided about what to wear at your boudoir photoshoot, ask your photographer.  Most will gladly give you guidance or shopping tips.  You can also send them photos of the pieces your considering and ask for feedback.


The true secret to great boudoir photos isn’t what you wear…it’s all about attitude and confidence.  Choose pieces that make you feel sexy and you’ll photograph sexy, no matter what you’re wearing!

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