WOULD you pose naked for pictures? Or perhaps semi-naked with just your lingerie on?
Think about it for a second. What do you reckon?
Boudoir photography has been around for a while now. We’ve all seen it and heard about it. But can it really help boost women’s body confidence? Or is it just vanity gone mad?
All these questions and more I posed to the lovely (and incredibly talented) Helen from Masque Photography over a cup of tea. And I gotta tell you what I heard warmed my cockles.
Especially because it turns out that the majority of the women who take part in a boudoir photography shoot are not doing it so much for the benefit of their partners, as you may – like I did – believe, but for themselves, as Helen explains:
Boudoir photography has an amazing power to transform how women feel about themselves and their bodies. It is great for giving them extra confidence, which they can take away with them and build on.
“I find a lot of my clients want to tick it of their bucket list or have reached a mile-stone in their life. I have women ranging from 20 to 60-years old, all shapes and sizes and I pride myself on being able to flatter each and every one.”
Whilst admitting that every woman is nervous when it comes to posing for the photographs (some needing to indulge in a little dutch courage!) Helen says that by the end of the shoot, every woman is behaving much more confidently.
There is something so exhilarating in feeling those butterflies in your stomach and pushing past them and actually doing it. One of my clients Marianne told me about her poor body confidence, but said she knew how much her husband-to-be would know how much she had overcome for him.
It was a very emotional and personal gift and I am so pleased that she conquered her fears and just went for it. I love the fact she did this not only for him, but for herself as well. A confident woman is unstoppable, walks taller, smiles wider and achieves more. This is the power of boudoir!“
Personally I was amazed to hear from Helen that the majority of her clients are not in their twenties, but older, in their thirties and forties. And even more surprised to hear that many women in their sixties have also treated themselves to a boudoir shoot.
The media continually tells us that women look their best – and are at their most happiest in terms of body image – when we are younger and at our most youthful, yet from Helen’s experience it seems it is actually the older women who have the confidence to celebrate their bodies.
I have had women who have just come out of relationships who have wanted to feel better about themselves and it has worked wonders for them. I have a lady who had just become a grandma and wanted to feel sexy again.
I have also had a lady who had recently had a tummy tuck after losing a large amount of weight and wanted to celebrate her new body.”
It appears then that there is something about becoming older and experiencing all that age brings, which draws the fearlessness out in women and provides them with the courage to celebrate their bodies, faults and all.
And I have to say, personally, I find this so bloody refreshing! Listening to Helen share her passion for her art and talk about some of her experiences with clients left me with a huge smile on my face. Why?
Well, because as women we are continually told that our bodies are not good enough, we are bombarded with unrealistic images that we feel we have to live up to, we are pressured into feeling we have to strive for perfection and most of us are led to believe that we are too fat, too thin, too curvy or – often in my case- not curvy enough.
I am lucky. Lucky in that I’ve always been pretty body confident but I also know many wonderful, breathtakingly stunning women who aren’t. Who feel embarrassed or ashamed about their bodies. And it breaks my heart.
So to hear about, and see, women who aren’t models, posing and showcasing their perfectly imperfect bodies, is just brilliant. And sure as hell makes a lovely change!
And whilst posing in the buff or with little on, may not be to everyone’s cup of tea, I gotta tell you, I for one take my hat (and clothes) off to the women who are brave enough to go for it and to the photographers like Helen for making them feel like the absolute goddesses they are.
What do you think? Have you posed for boudoir photos? Did it empower you and provide you with body confidence? Would you like to do it or do you think it’s just too vain? As always, I’d love to hear what have you all have to say.
Many thanks to Helen for sharing her thoughts with me on this and for kindly allowing me to share her client photos! You can connect with Helen on Twitter and Facebook or find out more about her talents and photography here at masquephotography.co.uk
See you Wednesday! With love and pouts,
* All photographs belong to Masque Photography and have been used with kind permission.