A few weeks ago, I spoke with and then photographed Missy Bliss, an intimacy coach in the South St. Louis area. She actually coaches one of my clients, who recommended I contact her. Several times this year I have mentioned that 2018 is the year we need to learn to love ourselves through boudoir photos and other means. With a team behind you, I definitely think you can!
This article was written by Missy, of The Magnificent Woman.To find out more about her services, or to become a client, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Wholly Empowered Woman: I took Boudoir Photos In My Underwear and I Don’t Regret It At All.
Part of being good at what I do as an Intimacy Coach is being a phenomenal leader. That’s why, after finding myself with the opportunity to have a fancy boudoir photo shoot with a very talented local photographer, I literally jumped out of my chair shouting “YES!”
Little did I know, I was signing up for a rollercoaster ride of emotions, forced to deal with things I thought I’d already conquered. Building body confidence is no joke.
After ending my conversation with a very well known and very talented local photographer, Tracy Lynn, I was grinning from ear to ear. I had agreed to take boudoir photos in lingerie and post them for the whole world to see.
We were going to share these photos far and wide, and they were going to represent something Tracy and I are both deeply passionate about, women being proud of their real life bodies.
A few more minutes of initial excitement passed and then it hit me… I had just agreed to take photographs in lingerie and allow the whole world to see them.
Cue Critical Thoughts
I have birthed and nursed two children. My love affair with brownies is serious and legitimate. That big scar on my right knee from the bike accident in the sixth grade is still visible.
What’s my Mom going to think of these boudoir photos? Will my man be okay with this? I need to call my personal trainer and tell him we need to ramp it up big time. Shopping for the perfect outfit is a must do. Do people still tan? Will it look like I think too highly of myself? I’m proud of these stretch marks, but I have no idea if they photograph well. Wait, am I actually proud of these stretch marks?
I have spent nearly a decade teaching women to fall madly in love with themselves, but people are often confused about what I actually do.
Intimacy isn’t just about sexy time with your partner. It’s about telling the truth about who you are, even if you can be rejected, telling the truth to yourself to begin to build a wild and sustainable romance with who you are behind the smile, clothes, and lifestyle. The goal is to learn to love yourself so deeply and purely that the rest of your world naturally falls into alignment.
The Road to the Session
The weeks leading up to my photoshoot were difficult. It was so hard to determine where I actually stood with it. I love seeing women photographed in their glorious authentic bodies. I should be good to go, right?
I’m fit, but I’m fit-ish. Observation of Taco Tuesday is a religious and spiritual practice, but hey, I burn those calories. Though I am in my mid thirties, I look slightly younger. I know how to dress for my body shape, what makeup looks best on me in photographs, and I’m a freaking leader in this community. I’VE GOT THIS! Everytime a critical thought popped up I would repeat my go-to mantra “I AM ENOUGH!”
Little by little, I could feel the anxiety gently turning back into excitement. I was on a roll with my workouts, went tanning, and, to my delight, everyone I told about my upcoming shoot was deeply supportive. Whenever I stopped to look into a mirror I would affirm that even if Tracy and I only empowered one woman to love herself more through these boudoir photos, that was enough for me.
The morning of the photoshoot was cold and grey. I arrived for hair and makeup a few minutes early, thinking very seriously about running in the opposite direction. Instead, I kept repeating “I AM ENOUGH!” in my mind.
I walked in to The Blowout Bar and was greeted by my lovely hair and makeup genius, Kendra. The whole process went by without a hiccup. I left feeling so glamorous in those big makeup lights and ready for the camera! Tracy’s chic loft studio is located in one of the hippest neighborhoods our city has to offer. There was definitely a subtle energy of style and sophistication when walking up to the building.
After being buzzed in, I took the elevator up, breathing deeply the whole time, holding a bag filled with gorgeous lingerie and shoes, ready to use them. It was finally happening!
I felt right at home walking into the studio. The sky was grey outside, but it was so warm and cozy inside. She talked with me for a bit, putting some more of my critical thoughts to rest, and then gave me the tour.
We looked through my wardrobe options and then she closed the door to the large dressing room. Suddenly it was me, in my gorgeous hair and makeup, practically naked in front of the mirror.
“I Am Enough”
I don’t think I actually thought about how to pose my body once before that moment. Luckily, Tracy knew just what to do. “Turn your head a few degrees toward the ceiling.” “Lift your back” “Look at this spot on the wall” “Breathe all the way out and twist.”
After this session, I have a new respect for models! It wasn’t an easy thing to do at all. I held the poses like I would in yoga, breathing through them and listening to my body, and loving myself for being brave enough to show up.
Tracy showed me the boudoir photos as she took them. She used them to both empower me to see my beauty and to show me which poses worked best for my body. We used the in between time to discuss our shared passion for empowering women to love themselves. Several wardrobe changes and countless laughs later we were all done.
In about a day I was choosing from the proofs that made my eyes swell with tears. I actually did it and I was so happy I did. The boudoir photos were stunning. Here I was, Intimacy Coach Missy Bliss, falling in love with my real life body again.
The Lesson a Boudoir Shoot Can Teach
The lesson I re-learned from this is your real life authentic body looks like anything you want it to look like. Maybe you do workout before, or maybe you don’t. If you go tanning or wear a push up bra or not, it’s up to you. You decide how much makeup, what lingerie, and what makes you feel good about you. Don’t be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone, but no one wants you to feel like someone else completely.
These are gorgeous boudoir photos of the real you, whatever that means to you. I often tell my clients that radical self love is not optional. I am so glad I took my own advice. After two babies and a lifetime of life, I am very proud of the work Tracy and I have done.
-Missy Bliss- email@example.com.
I hope you enjoyed these words from a real life intimacy coach. Missy was absolutely amazing to get to know. She takes her career seriously and will help you know and love yourself if you are ready to take that next step! Reach out to her! You won’t regret it!
Tracy Lynn is a boudoir photographer for brides-to-be in the St. Louis area, and a mentor + coach for photographers looking to level up their businesses with better systems and processes.