Let's face it, we're women, and we are self conscious even without a baby in our belly! But don't let that be the reason you don't document this moment. I mean think about it - your child, who will soon be earth-side, is INSIDE of YOUR belly! ...Sit there and think about how truly amazing and beautiful that is. Of course, that warrants some weight gain and major changes to our bodies, but it is 1,000,000% worth it in the end!
As a portrait photographer, I can't even tell you how many times women tell me they aren't comfortable in their body and say they, 'really don't want photos, but know I need to.' ... Is this you? Do you not want to take maternity portraits because you don't feel like you are your best self? GIRLLL. You ARE your BEST. SELF. when you're pregnant ---- you're making a HUMAN BEING. And trust me, as a mom, even if you're having a tough pregnancy (or even if you're having your best pregnancy) you will miss that baby being inside of your belly and one day, the pictures are all that you will have to look back on that small period of 9-months that you were pregnant. I am 30-years old and, to this day, I still LOVE looking through my mom's photos of her pregnancies with both me and my older brother (...there are more photos of her pregnant self with my brother ...but that's a conversation for another day! LOL)
...Ok, ok...enough with the pep-talk (...but seriously...you're pregnant, you're glowing, and you're amazing and you deserve to have professional maternity portraits done! ...Your kids will thank you in the future.)
So whether you've decided on maternity portraits or not, you're here reading this post for tips on how to prepare for your session! Read on for my do's and dont's on preparing for your maternity session!
1. Schedule a professional hair and make up appointment. This is important for so many reasons. First and foremost, you don't have to do it yourself! You can RELAX on the day of the session and get a little pampering in. Professional HMUAs also, for the most part, are amazing at what they do and will know certain tricks for when you're in front of the camera (i.e. contouring, not adding too much highlighter, etc.) that will really stand out in your portraits.
2. Schedule a nail appointment. It's a maternity session, your hands and belly will be in a LOT of photos. Chipped fingernail polish can steal the show from the belly in a negative way and we certainly don't want that to happen!
3. Invest in a pair of Spanx - even if you're already small framed. I stress this to all of my clients before their gown consultations and during their consultations. Spanx not only help to smooth out the body, but it creates a beautiful, smooth surface for the dress to lay on.
4. RELAX. This is the most important one. Just relax and try to enjoy yourself during your session. It's a wonderful experience and with the direction of your photographer, you will have images you will be sure to love forever.
...Now for the DONT'S:
1. Don't get a brand new spray tan the day of your session. Here in the South, you will be guaranteed to sweat it off during your session unless its in January. Also, if it comes our orange or streaky, your photographer may not be able to reschedule your session.
2. Don't dye your hair the day of your session. If it doesn't turn out the way you like or the color that you wanted, you will be stuck with it in your portraits.
3. Don't eat a big meal that has an abundance of salt within 48-hours before the session. Our bodies already retain water when we eat a lot of salt resulting in swelling which is natural. However, when you're pregnant - it can mean swelling and water retention on a whole other level.
4. Don't wait too long to schedule your session. You could run the risk of your photographer not having any availability in their schedule OR having your baby early, completely missing out on the opportunity to have these special portraits.
The most important thing to take away from this post is to do your research. Finding and hiring a professional maternity portrait photographer will certainly be beneficial. You will want to not only love their work, but trust their vision and experience. There are aspects that go into maternity portraits such as angles, poses and lighting that some photographers may not know for a pregnant momma'.
Visit www.bellytobabyphotographs.com/contact to schedule your maternity session consultation today!