Frequently asked questions about your Boudoir Session

There are some FAQ’s lying around here somewhere but this is the condensed and updated version.

1. What should I bring to the session?
I answered that one perfectly WHAT TO WEAR.ย  Or fancy a YOUTUBE VIDEO? How many outfits you may ask? minimum 3 but bring a variety – lingerie is not that heavy to lug around.

2. How long does the shoot last?
About two hours. The part that takes the longest is the make up application. Those fake eyelashes sometimes require effort ๐Ÿ™‚ . It takes about 40 minutes to get ready- and the shooting part goes way faster.

3. Do you help with the posing? why yes I do. I show you all you need to do. It helps also you read my tips on how to pose standing up HOW TO POSE SEXY I think is funny. And for the close ups and what to do with your hands: HOW TO POSE HANDS
The best thing you can do is practice your facial expression in front of a mirror. It feels silly, but you will feel silly here anyways.
And I give you the general idea at theย beginningย anyway.

see? lie down twisty and hold boobs.

4. Can I bring a friend/sister/hubby?
Yes you can! whoever is going to help out and watch is fine. If they make you laugh even better. Takes some of my performance pressure off ๐Ÿ™‚

5. How many files do I get?
Digital… I kind of miss the good old glamour shot days that you had 16 shots and you had to choose your 5 best one from there. You blinked- you lost a frame. Nowadays for each session I have about 300 files. Dang it. A lot of the images are similar so that just helps me decide on which one has a better focus. ย You have two options: One I send you about 50 (depending on your package) so you can choose your top 25 that I can edit or you let me choose the best ones for you and you only see the final selections. Up to you.

6. What do you do with the other 250 files?
If they did not make the cut for the best ย I delete them- I need hardrive space. If you want them all – the private affair package includes all digital files for you to do as you wish. Otherwise they are just deleted or sold to playboy… I WISH. ๐Ÿ™‚

7. How long till I see the proofs?
Low season- meaning not this close to xmas and valenties day – usually you get a link of your proofs within 24 hrs. High season when I have more than 3 bookings per day is about 36 hrs. I will let you know an estimate at the end of the session.

8. I am getting married next week, how soon can I get the pictures and album?
hmm, yes I had these before. Yes, I do my darnest to get them done in a week. But album takes about 3 weeks so only prints can be done within the week. I usually send files to print on Wednesday and pick up Thursday and meet up with people on Friday or mail them.
Wednesday is print day.
Normally it will be two weeks from your session to get prints and 3 to get the album. So plan accordingly and dont give me any more stress related white hairs.

9. What is the extent of the retouching?ย 
Retouching includes:

  • background – any cable – carpet piece
  • skin smoothing- stretch marks, lumps, bumps, bruises, blemishes
  • face- under eye area- skin and teeth brightening
  • figure- tuck in the waist a bit and if you are sitting or bending funny smoothing extra skin aka the “roll”
  • aaaaaand my toes

I tend to have a light touch. It is still you but a bit enhanced. You can request more retouching after you see them.

10. I am plus size, and most samples the women look to be on the thin side. Any tips for plus size posing?
I shoot any bra size and any shoe size, what you see are flattering images around my blog and sometimes at request of the client I do not post any – so I may lack a bit in the plus – sized samples. But not too worry! you are in good hands. I really look for your best angles, I want you to love your pictures.
A good tip is to make sure the lingerie you get fits you properly, and skip the thigh highs if you can’t find the ones with out the elastic. Some great choices are corsets, bra sets, camisoles and sexy lacy robes. Anything lacy and see trough.
An article I wrote about this CELEBRATING BOUDOIR

and lastly my privacy policy… I will not post a faces- lips yeah, some boobs, some butt, but any marks or tattoos are deleted to prevent recognition. I sometimes distort the faces a bit too. Only you know they are your boobs.

Tips for Boudoir Photography in Hotels

I just got this question on an email and remembered that I have been meaning to write a post about this. And doing it before anything else distracts me.

VIDEO HERE or just keep reading ๐Ÿ™‚

The question was: have you done Boudoir Photography in a Hotel?

Why yes I have. And let me impart my wisdom. Note: with these tips, the photographer comes to you and you are in charge of booking and paying for the hotel. They do not apply for marathons where the photographer is booking several appointments at one tim ๐Ÿ™‚

1. Look for hotels that are newish or have been recently renovated. 
I was at the King Edward hotel in the renovated suites. Oh, my lordy. I wanted to move in. Clean colours with hints of red. And my dream headboard. So do check pictures of the hotels and make sure you confirm you are getting the new ones.

Nice hotels I have been in Toronto:

Close to the entertainment district for dinners:

Le Germaine – it has those blinds from the washroom I can shoot through, warm tones
The Ritz Carlton
Trump – it’s so pretty! more of white and grey tones and cherry blossoms – not that I like Trump he has a nice hotel

Close to the Eton centre:
Cambridge suites (just went to this- pleasantly surprised! and economic)

2. Book for a Saturday or Sunday, book me 3 pm then enjoy the night.

I was told that Sundays to Monday you can get cheaper rates. If you can get in early that is great. I need to start your appointment at 3 so in winter I still have daylight.

3. Hide the alarm clock, phone, remote controls.

Even those water bottles in the night stand. I usually do a sweep to do that but if you do that ahead of time is great.

4. Contain your wardrobe to one area.

Usually the washroom works, unless you want to use it in pictures if the shower or bath is extra nice. But we usually do that until the end. We do not want to mess the makeup.
Even plan for a milk bath shot! You just need to buy a big jug of creamer.

5. Share the expense.

Maybe get a one or two friends to pitch in for the room and make it a girls night. Or surprise your other half by making plans for dinner (you come to the hotel early), so you can meet him after the shoot and stay over. Maybe even show him an outfit or two you got for the shoot.

So maybe even do a boudoir shoot for his birthday or anniversary, where you book the hotel and have the session, then surprise him with the printed book and he will be like:  heeeeeeey, I know that place! And now you have a gift that makes them re-live the experience! I get bright ideas sometimes!

Book the Renaissance Toronto on a Blue Jay game!!! Have the session for you or both of you and then enjoy the game. ๐Ÿ™‚

Boudoir: to spray tan or not to spray tan

Back in the day, the look of fake tans was so orange that I did not recommend it. Boy! Have the spray tans have come a long way!
I decided to test it out myself, being a spray tan virgin. I only did the self-tanner thing once with the orange palm result. And was forever traumatized.
So! Thanks to Jenn from I got to try it out.

FIRST let me give you the tips.

Schulz Beauty recommends:
1) shower and exfoliate really well before your appointment
2) after showering no moisturizers, perfumes, makeup (GASP!)
3) after the spray tan don’t get wet/gym/sweat for 6-8 hours ( 8 hours for best results)!
4) after the spray tan no heavy exfoliation
and lots and lots of moisturizing to extend the life of your tan!

More FAQ’s here 

I followed it to the T, except the makeup, I wore my naked face but never without  mascara. I figured that would not interfere and I look awake.

So I did my scrubbing and my shaving the night before, figuring too that the shaving of the winter fuzz would exfoliate a lot of it. I was a bit wrong. 
And then the sweating part.  I wear extra strength stuff, still some of my armpit area looked funny but nothing noticeable.

And here is what I recommend:

To go there: in the summer is easy to just plop on a dark summer dress and be loosey goosey but in the winter with the layers and all those skinny jeans it’s so hard! I wore my sweat pants. And of course in that area  where her place is located, everybody is so fancy you feel schlumpy. But with a great tan afterward. Bra is truly optional.

Wear: If you are comfortable wearing nothing, be naked. Or wear the tiniest G-string possible and go topless or with pasties. Jenn is cool, and the room is very private. Keep in mind that whatever you wear will leave the tan lines, so wear a bra top that looks like lingerie- like a strapless bra or a demi cup one.

I am sucking it in as much as I can.

Start exfoliating a week before your appointment daily. You can’t believe the stuff that doesn’t get scrubbed that often. Especially in the middle of winter. One spot I missed my inner arms and around my ankles. Yeah, they look clean, but the dead skin shows like dirty tan skin. So use a sugar or salt scrub a week before, and then keep rubbing stuff off during your showers. And the night before do the last one with the shaving.

Avoid white stuff. What I liked about it, it looks great right after the application,  technically after you shower (min 3 hours) it sets you won’t stain, so you can  pretty much have a shoot the same day or the next. But 3-5 days is fine too. As long as you moisturize. Mine was still ok at day 9.

And Ta-Dah! That is right after the magic, and then it develops a deeper tone ๐Ÿ™‚ Not orange looking at all! It takes only 15 minutes!

I forgot to suck it in.

This is me and Lily- this is 3 days after the tan, no super white legs and smooth colour all over.

Can’t wait until the next one ๐Ÿ™‚ Get yours here

How to choose your boudoir photos… part of the FAQ’s

So! I don’t know why I didn’t write a blog post before about this, since I practically have written novels on how to choose your images on clients’ emails.

I usually have 4 types of clients:

A – the one who loves photos of herself  – knows angles and how to pose – I hardly have to direct her.
B – the one who loves only 10% of the photos of herself – kinda stiff in the beginning but gets the hang of it.
C – the one that just wants pics and is not picky – mostly relaxed, but still have to work to bring the sexy out
D – hates the camera

I think most of us are under the B category.  Some days even D. Sure we have our non- awkward moments and those you pray that no one uploads and tags you in. Like the image bellow. Totally me.

Here is the thing, you are trusting me to narrow down the pictures I take and not show you the not- so flattering ones. And it helps that you have your hair did, your makeup is expertly applied (ahem) and you are working those peepers with those fake eyelashes that are awesome. See example bellow: From smokey eye to cat eye to a “natural” look.


You get the unedited 50ish to choose from. You are going to LOVE about 3 – where I caught you just right. You will like and see the potential of another 5 or 10 (depending on the package). Then! here is the tricky part: you have to choose some with a guy’s perspective in mind. Yes, that one with the butt or the boob or your finger in the mouth.  Those ones.

So no matter how picky or how much you do not like your picture taken- someone is waiting to see those pictures and you have to choose those too.


Extreme photoshop ๐Ÿ™

For me, is a case of “hell, remove that cellulite and those stray hairs and that extra roll on top of the underwear”. I know about all that self-respect, that airbrushing just perpetuates an impossible standard of beauty and all that jazz. Which I agree with 100%. The airbrushing goes sometimes too far. Like this sample of Jennifer, it’s just ridiculous. The angle of this pose would make a twig look chunky. I worry more about how flattering the pose is than trying to edit it later.

I have a light hand. It will still look like you but no extra stuff. The lighting helps the pose and the lens, I am just going over little things. My philosophy is that guys don’t really pay that much attention to all the bumps, lumps and marks we care about. They are just happy to see you naked. I don’t think they even know what thigh gap is. So this “enhanced” version of you is just how they see you and how you should feel about yourself.
We women are often too hard on ourselves, dissecting every little flaw, but I say we should not aim for the photoshop skinny, we should just aim to be healthy.

So there! Let’s celebrate nakedness and bodies of all shapes, and the clone tool that deletes stress pimples. Because nobody wants to see those immortalized.

Tips on choosing a boudoir photographer in your area…

SO! I got my first-time-ever actual question! and all the way from California, it made my day! nerd that I am, I went and did a Sally Field thing winning an Oscar; “You really read me, you actually really read me!”

Anyhoo, not to drag my over-excitement, maybe it’s hormones, here it is:

We really love your blog and your work, unfortunately, we’re a bit far away to book a session (central California).  Do you have any tips or advice on what to look for when selecting a boudoir photographer?  There are a number of options in our area, but it can be difficult to tell which will give the best experience for the price.  Unlike a certain other photographer, they don’t all post blogs with loads of insight into their work.  We were hoping that as someone “in the biz”, with a style and approach that we love, you could offer some pointers on how to tell a good photographer from a bad.

I know right! Really hard to choose from a website with 5 pages and maybe a photo of a person behind a camera all cheesy.
I really try to make people as comfortable as possible with me and that includes giving as much information as I can, upfront and without any hidden surprises. It’s hard enough to get the guts to actually decide to book a session when after you are searching the results leave you with more questions than you started with.
Here are some tips on finding the right boudoir photographer for you. And if you are a photographer here are some things I learned on what not to do.

1. If it’s too good to be true (the price)- is probably true. 

This goes for craigslist or Groupon for that matter unless you actually heard of the photographer before. My problem with craigslist is that is usually amateur photographers offering you a deal so they can build their portfolio. Which is fine if you do not care where your images end up with. Craigslist just gives me the creeps. 
Groupon too, it is funny because I get asked tons to do a coupon deal but I have always refused for boudoir. The photographer has to offer a popular package – like mine that is worth $400, at a discount 70% or more (to make it enticing)- so for $99 and from that, Groupon gets half and you get the 49.50 to shoot, edit and print and get about $5 bucks per hour of my time. No thanks. Sure it drives traffic to a website and gets your name out there but it is not worth the headache. Write a blog instead. 
As a customer buying a coupon it puts you in the “cheap” category, and you might not receive the treatment and quality that you are really entitled to.
I did a post on why I charge what I charge that explains costs. 

2. Portfolio

So you found a photographer in your area and the portfolio looks ok. If you want to do a little snooping before you contact the photographer to make sure those are their actual photos. You can use a website called to check if that image has been used on other sites. Especially helpful when you find out the photographer has used a stock photo or something like that to pad the portfolio.
Also, google just the photographers name and check in the images part. That gives you a visual reference of the images that are connected to the name. 

3. Around the web

Even if you are not getting married, the wedding boards are a good source of experiences of brides to be looking for boudoir photographers. Places like
Browse the boards for people talking about their experiences, you will find a great range of good and bad.
90% of boudoir photographers shoot weddings. And all though it’s a different animal all together you get a sense of their experience and quality.

So you have scratched two things off your list and found a couple of photographers you are leaning towards based on portfolio and web presence. Now you have to get more information out of them before you can choose. 

Questions to ask the boudoir photographer:

Copy all or remove as you need:
 Where do you shoot? Is it a studio, home studio, or hotel? is there an extra cost associated with location?
What does the session of $xx include? (digital files or just prints?)
Is make up and retouching included?
How many outfits should I bring?
How long is the shoot?
How long until I see proofs or the final product? 
Do you have some testimonials?
How far in advance do I have to book?
Do you do a consultation before the shoot?
And I think the most important of them all is :
What is your privacy policy? 
     I stress this one in case you really do not want your photos posted anywhere. Get it in writing. If they have a non-disclosure agreement ask to get one. 
When writing your email it also helps if you outline your budget from the get go. Specially when you get to a page where the prices are supposed to be and they have the annoying email for prices.
And do not worry if they think you are being annoying with all your questions- it is their fault they do not have all the information available ๐Ÿ™‚ Most are happy to answer anything and you can get a sense of their personality when they answer. Do not hesitate to ask for a phone call to talk to the person directly after you email them. Talking to a real person helps to give you a real sense of their geekyness (in my case) or their attitude. Or even their gender! I heard stories of Jamies, Jules, Lindseys, Ashleys that you thought where a female photographer only to find out it was a guy. Like there is a Marlen Boro guy that takes boudoir of just men. I take a look every now and then.
And thanks for the question! I feel almost famous – at least web famous ๐Ÿ™‚ 

FAQ : Why is Boudoir Photography expensive?

Or why are you cheap? Or what it’s the difference between boudoir photographers packages?  Or why should I pay a regular price when I can get a groupon?

So hey! I know people look around- google Boudoir Photography Toronto and get a ton of pages- some you have to email to get the price list- hmm–. I have it all out in the open.

I consider myself middle range. Not too cheap, not too expensive. But people have asked me how I price myself in a very competitive boudoir market. It seems all of the sudden there are 144,000 results when you google boudoir photographers to choose from – yeah- you have fun.

There are a couple of things to consider in the price.
– Location: 
           Portrait Studio: A lot of photographers have really nice studios. So if you prefer to have a clean background and professional lighting everywhere, go for it. The pin up shoots look great on a clean background as well. The disadvantages are that there is usually no bed, and it can be a little awkward just to stand there.

          Hotel Room: And there are the photographers that offer Marathons. They rent a hotel room and shoot several appointments in one day to be cost effective or sometimes they ask the client to book it, adding to the actual package price.

           Boudoir Set: Some actually have the hotel room thing going in their studio. Which makes sense. Less clutter, a bed, different backdrops.

I cheat here. I am saving you money by shooting out of my place. I rent my neighbours bedroom and  have the backdrops- lighting- white sheets, hide all the clutter.
Yes, it is a bit weird you are coming into a stranger’s apartment to take your clothes off, but hey- at least it’s not a basement. And if you like to live on the edge I am pretty sure you’ve done it before eh? wink wink. oh, the slutty memories. ahem.

My place looks currently like this:

– The Make up options: 
           Do your own: so you are good at it, go for it. Do your make up like you are going out. Vamp it up. If you can add the false eyelashes. A neat trick is to just cut one in half. WAY easier to put on yourself.

           Extra for makeup artist: usually makeup artists are in the range of 70-150 per application. A boudoir studio will have one that they recommend and can offer a discount on bookings

           And there is me. Makeup junkie included in the package. Loved makeup so much I took a class after university. argh a long time ago. Learned a lot from my Glamour shot days. Boy did they pile it on. And I keep with it and justify my tall makeup case. It’s ok it has wheels.

– The Retouching and products:

Did you read the fine print? Yes, you get 30 images in your package but only one is retouched. gah. So you have 29 images that it’s great if you like the all- natural look and have something against Photoshop, but for me is not changing what you look like. For me is about making the white sheet, white not grey, and give an overall smoothness to the picture.
Or you have to pay extra- that is where they get you. Yes, $79 dollars is a deal for a boudoir session. But look closely what you are getting.

There is also now in person sales. You pay for the session, that covers only the photographers time for the session and the makeup artist. Then you come to see the final results and purchase your photos. Many people do not read the process and think it is only the session fee.

As a customer, I like knowing exactly how much I have to budget for, and exactly what I am getting.

I make it simple my package include 20 images and you can have me do your book and just take the images and do it yourself, or I do have other options and marathons available.

Also, take note, processing your images requires time, usually at least 48 hours, to take a raw file, download it, delete the funky ones, process the nice ones make it pretty and upload images for you to choose. (While the kids are in bed) And that is not including the time to retouch the chosen image. My job is only one third done after the session, the not-so-fun part starts right after. The average set up- session and processing is something close to 12 hours.

So here it is- a little rant about the boudoir industry- and a little justification on how much it costs to get your naked on. Yes, it’s a treat. But everybody should do it at least once.

Don’t forget to add to the cost of the package little extras like:
New lingerie (I tell people to get a nice teddy from winners for $20) no need to go crazy
The waxing

But all these things if you do not get them done regularly, then why not enjoy the whole experience. I am sure no one is going to complain you waxed the bush and stripped the rough skin from your feet that was getting caught in the sheets. yeah…

       And the last thing I pride myself in- besides my awesome photoshoping and dorky personality is with experience. Holly crap I’ve been around the block. On my tenth year doing boudoir and about 16 in the biz- the weddings, the babies, and everything in between. And I will stop now before I feel old.

The secret

People have asked me: how do you make somebody feel comfortable naked?

First of all- I have to say that the secret is that I understand that is not easy to feel comfortable in front of somebody fully dressed clicking away.
I know what it feels like! I’ve done it a couple of times myself, and mostly with guy photographers and I’ve learned what and what not to do, the naked way.

I find that 90 percent of my clients are really nervous about it- only a handful go like- ok! let’s get everything off now! I start the session slowly and it helps if I am doing the make up because it gives us time to chat a bit. You’ll soon realize I am silly. I am a goof. I am an ultra nerd trying to be cool.
And I almost get away with it. I can not say ” squeeze your boob harder” with a straight face. However many times I say it.

more FAQ’s Wedding edition

First of all, yeah! I know! I need to update my galleries. I have some cool new shots and they are still not up there. Ok, soon I promise.

Now- since is the season, and everybody is in love and feeling the preassure to fit in to a wedding dress, I am collecting some interesting information for brides to be. Because grooms don’t really care. Unless your name is Lindsey. (I apologize for the joke at the expense of my boyfriend- yes that is his name) he will be a groomzilla, I’ve been warned. All I care are about the pictures anyway. And that is fun. And the booze. Oh and the food must be good.

Ok! enough of that. Here are some of the most common questions.

What are the advantages of hiring a professional photographer?

One of the main reasons is experience. A professional wedding photographer will have all the right equipment.
And here is my kicker- “my cousin just bought and new camera and he said he will do it for 250.” Or, ” I saw an ad on craiglist, my whole wedding and gazillion prints for 399″.
I can say so many things here, but I will be polite. Do you want the pictures that will forever capture one of the most important moments of your life to be done by a newbie? Do they even have back up gear? Extra lenses? Or can they herd your aunt to the family portrait with authority and conviction? Retouching? Light? Composition?
Hell I have 3D pictures of my son’s birth! I can’t wait till his old enough so I can scar him for life!

What questions should I ask a wedding photographer?

First availability, then negotiation of the package. I am pretty flexible in this area- since my main focus is boudoir, the most important thing for me is that the couple likes my work and are
passionate about having the traditional and the not so much for their wedding. I’m supper excited about this couple that want Yoko and John Lennon style pics for their engagement shoot.
Woo me, and I will put out. ๐Ÿ™‚
Also personality is super important- go for the photographer that makes you feel comfortable. Meet a couple, it is a lot like a blind date. Remember you will have this person the whole day of your wedding telling you to put your shoulders back and suck in your gut, so you better like him/her. Ask anything- don’t be shy.

How can I help the photographer on the wedding day?

One of the main things is to help the photographer organize people. Herding I call it. This I think is a Maid of honor chore. Give her a list of the pictures you want for the group shots and let her help me with he herding.

Should we provide lunch or dinner for the photographer?

This one I know is a bit tricky for couple on a budget. Some photographers have it in their contacts that they must sit in a table close to the couple and have full service. But it is not always possible int the real world. Most places o
r caterers provide you with a Vendor meal option for us minions like the dj, musicians and photographer. I love buffets.

I too like to bring an assistant for weddings over 100 people. Again this is up to the couple. And no, is not my date, I actually need a slave to carry all my junk and take some extra candid shots and in generally keep me hydrated. Once my camera jammed and my assistant came to the rescue of shooting the couples kiss during the ceremony. I still have nightmares about it. Super assistant to the rescue.

Deposit and refund policy.

A professional photographer always requires a non-refundable deposit in order to hold your wedding date for you. This provides security for you, and provides a way to break up the cost of a wedding photographer. Even if by some emergency the photographer can not make it, he will provide a back up.

And in certain occasions that the couple breaks up or is very sick or something. But really, this is to save the date for you, and if something happens, the photographer can’t book this date again and is loosing money. Other photographers have a refund only if they can book the same day.

My FAQ’s

Or what I like to call my Faaaawks. You can almost hear my accent.

1: What to wear to the photo shoot?

If it were solely up to me I would only let people wear black, white, red and hot pink. Pastels remind me of ice-cream. Uhm, well maybe that is a good thing. Avoid fussy prints, and flower motifs. I encourage animal prints.
Bring a special dress and two lingerie items. One can be a simple t and cool boy shorts and another one something more naughty. Transparent, lace, vinyl, leather, all welcome.
2: What should I bring with me?

If you are having your makeup done by me I encourage your own foundation if it’s really awesome, and your own mascara. But I have lot’s here, I am an addict.
Jewelry the bigger the brighter the better. Necklaces, Pearls, his tie.
Shoes- the newer and the sluttier the better. Clean them really well, even bottoms.
Your outfits of course.

3: I have a pouch/flabby area. I’m worried about x not looking nice in the portrait.

Guess what, me too! And all the women I see here. I highlight the nice bits and I am on the look out for anything that wouldn’t be a nice composition.

4: What’s the extent of the retouching? Can I have my head on Demi Moore’s body? (jk)

I did that once though, for a friend’s baby shower I put her head on that famous vanity fair, pregnant shot of Demi. It was funny.
Anyway, the retouching is to enhance the portrait, not complete change it. The final prints will be retouched for skin blemishes, extra folds (self explanatory I think :), brightening of the smile and eyes and some extra little things I call the Marlen touch. Yes, that is exactly what I call it.

5: Can I bring my friend/boyfriend/assistant with me?

Sure. If you are sure you could squeeze your boobs in front of that person, I have nothing to complain about. Some start in the bedroom and then decide to go to have a beer at Murphy’s Law down the street or wait on the couch. If your other half is coming we could even do a some couple shots. Topless works for me.

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