What do I wear to a plus-size boudoir photography session?

A maroon square with a circular photo of a plus-size woman in lingerie inside a chat bubble. Text reads, "What do I wear to a boudoir session?" Lindley's logo is at the right.

Image description: A maroon square with a circular photo of a plus-size woman in lingerie inside a chat bubble. Text reads, “What do I wear to a boudoir session?” Lindley’s logo is at the right. End image description.

One of the most frequent questions I hear about boudoir photography, especially for plus-size women and femmes, is “What do I wear??” As larger people, it’s particularly challenging for us to find fancy lingerie that fits, but the good news is that you don’t have to!

One of the nifty things about boudoir photos is that you don’t have to have a huge wardrobe to look great!

A plus-size woman with brown skin, thick wavy hair, silver jewelry, tattoos and a plaid shirt lies on a teal couch.

Meet Ms. H, who has Pacific Islander heritage and came to me for a fabulous fat-positive boudoir session. Isn’t she beautiful? Ms. H didn’t really have any lingerie she liked, so instead she brought some tight jeans, her hubby’s flannel shirt, a few pairs of undies and a few tight stretchy tops, and she looked fabulous.

A plus-size woman with brown skin, thick wavy hair, silver jewelry, tattoos and a blue shirt pulls the shirt away from her chest and gazes to one side.
A woman with pale skin, dark pink hair, tattoos, a skulls-and-roses bra and a white button-down shirt sits in a floral armchair and gazes at the camera.

Some people don’t happen to have intricate lingerie, and some people just don’t feel like themselves in it, and it’s all good. Pretty lingerie is fun to show off, but in the end it’s at least as much about posing and suggestiveness, and if you’re having fun and feeling sexy it shows no matter what.

A woman with pale skin, long blonde hair and red lace babydoll lingerie sits in a chair in a room with dark wood floors and dark blue walls and gazes at the camera.

That said, if you want to indulge, getting fancy with sexy lingerie can be a lot of fun! I’ve created an entire guide on what to wear to a boudoir photo session for people who wear plus-size and extended plus-size clothing on where to find lingerie, bras and panties that are great for both photo shoots and everyday wear.

I’ve listed the largest size each store and website carries so you don’t have to hunt for size charts, plus a brief description of what the business carries. I’ve broken down your options into three categories: Large Fat (size 32+), Medium Fat (24-32), and Small Fat (18-24). Some people in the “large fat” arena also identify as superfat, infinifat (coined by Ash at The Fat Lip), or deathfat (because of the difficulty those of us at higher weights have in accessing healthcare, and to thumb our noses at the concept of being so fat we should have keeled over dead five minutes ago).

Some people who wear plus sizes identify with these labels, and some don’t. Either way is fine!

Ms. H brought along a beautiful purple pareo, a traditional Tahitian fabric wrap. It complemented her skin tone perfectly!

A woman with brown skin, thick wavy black hair, tattoos and a purple tropical wrap lies on a white bed and gazes down.

Also, keep in mind costumes and themed shoots if you’re not into lingerie. Here are a few more ideas you might have a lot of fun trying:

» Are you handy? Bring a hard hat, tool belt, and uniform shirt.

» Try a pinup look with short shorts and a plaid top or a vintage-style dress and heels.

» Find a great bikini and hop in the bathtub or hot tub for another pinup-style idea. (We have both here at my studio!)

» Rummage in your significant other’s wardrobe for ideas, and surprise them with photos of you lounging sexily in their clothing.

» Go all out on last year’s sexy Halloween costume. For this one, you’ll really want to embrace the costume plus all the accessories!

» Have an interesting outdoor hobby, like flying kites or surfing? Bring that kite or board along!

» Embrace a geek girl theme and bring along your D&D manuals, dice, and DM screen.

A trans woman with pale skin and long ombre hair lies face up on a wooden floor with her hands cupping her chest and gazes at the camera.

Hi there! I'm Lindley. I create artwork that celebrates the unique beauty of bodies that fall outside conventional "beauty" standards at Body Liberation Photography. I'm also the creator of Body Liberation Stock and the Body Love Shop, a curated central resource for body-friendly artwork and products. Find all my work here at bodyliberationphotos.com.