Should A Christian Woman Do A Boudoir Shoot? | Boudoir Photography Portland Oregon

I am a Christian, completely devoted to my Savior, Jesus, and I am also a boudoir photographer. It’s not too often that I get asked about how I am able to be both. But it comes up every once in a while. So I wanted to share with you why I love boudoir photography, even as a Christian (or especially as a Christian) and why I believe all Christian wives, or soon-to-be-wives should do a boudoir shoot.


What is a boudoir shoot?

Boudoir is pronounced Bu-dwah or Bu-dwar, and is technically defined as, “a woman’s bedroom or private room for dressing or resting.” So in the photography world, that involves a portrait shoot that a woman does privately for her man, usually in lingerie.   Although the shoot is primarily done as a gift for her man, the women find that the shoot is very pampering and creates a space for her to feel feminine, lovely, and even sexy. Women spend far too much time comparing themselves to other women they see in magazines or on TV and feeling “blah” about themselves. Especially tired Mommies who feel more like a Mom than a woman, most times.


boudoir photography Portland Oregon

Why should Christian couples be interested in boudoir?

God created men to be highly visual. They can’t help it, it’s the way they were built. They are bombarded with images of sexy woman all the time and no matter how much they try to look away and avoid lusting after the women in those images, it’s inevitable that some of those images are going to get in, and stay there, and even pop up from time to time. How great would it be if his memory was chalked full of lovely images of his wife and the majority of the images popping up in his mind were images he could cherish and feel good about?


boudoir photography Portland Oregon


The other point to consider is that in a healthy, Christian marriage, a woman should feel sexy, desired, and appreciated for her body even with it’s imperfections. (Obviously there is a lot more about her to be appreciated, but that’s a post for another day)   But when a woman doesn’t feel good about the way she looks, she doesn’t bring to the marriage that needed energy that can really help fuel true intimacy. A boudoir shoot can give a woman that much needed confidence. It’s really amazing what a little sexy confidence can do for a marriage.


boudoir photography Portland Oregon

boudoir photography Portland Oregon


The Who, What, When of it all…

The photos are an amazing gift to give to a Groom on the wedding night. Valentine’s Day and wedding anniversaries are other occasions when a boudoir shoot would be a very special gift.


There are a lot of amazing photographers to choose from for your shoot and you should find the one that is the best fit for you. If you find that a female photographer would make you feel more comfortable, I would happily welcome you in to my studio, as we have an all female staff. My style is very conservative, as far as boudoir photography goes, so if you are more on the shy side or you just want to keep things tame, I’m the photographer for you! My images are sensual but beautiful and tasteful and not over-the-top sexual. Although you can choose how far you want to go, nudity-wise, most of my clients prefer to wear lingerie or to do what I call “implied nudity” where you aren’t wearing much of anything, but all your girl bits are covered by your arms or legs or with sheets.


Will my photos end up on your website?

It’s fantastic when a woman feels comfortable sharing at least a few of her photos on my website so that other woman can relate and be encouraged to do a shoot that will enrich her marriage. However, it’s completely understandable when a couple wants the boudoir photos to be for his eyes only and I respect that decision and would never share your photos without your permission.


If you are ready to schedule your shoot, or if you have any questions, please contact me! I’d love to talk about it more with you.

Rayleigh Leavitt : Boudoir and Glamour Photography, Portland, Oregon

27 responses on “Should A Christian Woman Do A Boudoir Shoot? | Boudoir Photography Portland Oregon

  1. Kimberly

    I am also a women’s photographer and a Christian. While I refuse to post any sexualized images or images of women in their undies I do believe all women should have a boudoir session at every stage of life. I can’t wait for my next!

  2. rshores Post author

    Hey Kayln! Oh, I wish you could make a trip to Oregon to do a shoot with me! 🙂 Tammy with True Blue Intimates is in Los Alamitos, CA. I don’t know if she’s a Christian, but she’s a fantastic photographer. She had a hand in training me in boudoir photography.

  3. sarah

    Hi I find this topic interesting. I’m a married Christian woman. I’d like to get some opinions on whether the husband should be present when taking these photos? in the same room, or wait outside in the waiting area of the studio. If a woman should go take these photos alone without telling her husband and then show him later as a surprise? and is it better to find female photographers for this. Thanks!

    1. Rayleigh Post author

      Hi Sarah! I find that having the husband in the room during the shoot can be distracting. It can also make the woman feel more self conscious because she’s looking for approval from him. So I recommend against having the husband in the room during the actual shoot. Having the photo shoot be a total surprise and surprising the husband with the finished photos as a gift is really fun! I also like when the husband can come along to the ordering session and help choose his favorite photos, since a lot of time the man has different favorites than the woman has. So you can go either way!

      Personally, I do think it’s better for a Christian woman to choose a female photographer, as her husband might feel really uncomfortable having his wife be photographed in lingerie (or less) by a man. Especially since boudoir photography is so sensual in nature. There are a lot of male boudoir photographers who are absolutely fantastic at what they do. They are very professional during their shoots and many women feel comfortable hiring them. So I don’t mean to insult any of them, by any means. I just feel that a female photographer is the appropriate choice for a Christian woman. That’s my take on it, anyway!

  4. Ashley

    I am getting married soon and wanted to do this for my future husband. I was talking with my mom about it and she feels conflicted with this idea because it might tempt your husband to look at porn. I can see where she is coming from but I also can disagree because it’s his wife he is looking at not another woman. Thoughts?

    1. Rayleigh Post author

      I agree with you, Ashley. I think the temptation to look at porn is already there in full force. But if you have a healthy sex life in your marriage and your husband sees you as a sexy woman, he will have those needs met and won’t feel as much “need” to look at other women. I’m not a physiologist or anything. LOL! But those are my thoughts.

  5. Sarah

    As a Christian, do you think it’s appropriate to give the photos the morning of the wedding? Or wait until the ceremony is finished? I want to give them before, but is that inappropriate, seeing as the ceremony makes the marriage “official” (despite the legal marriage documents.)

    1. Rayleigh Post author

      That’s a very good question, Sarah. I think that’s really a matter of what feels appropriate to the bride. I don’t think there is one perfect answer because it’s kind of like splitting hairs in the moral department. Personally, I wouldn’t say it’s wrong to give the album to him the morning of the wedding. However, when I got married, I did choose to give my boudoir photos to my husband the evening of our wedding. Partly just so I could “make sure” I was on the safe side, but mostly I wanted to give the album to him later because I didn’t want the album getting in to the wrong hands in the men’s dressing room or getting lost. I also like the idea that my husband never saw me “undressed” until after we were married. It just feels pure. It was also nice to look through the album privately, together. It was a special moment that we could share together.

    1. Rayleigh Post author

      Absolutely! Every man is different, of course. But as long as the outfits and poses are different, I would bet that most men would take as many gorgeous and sexy images of their wife as they can get. But you know what? After your first shoot you’ll find that the experience was secretly a gift for you, as well, and many of my clients love coming back for multiple shoots because of the way the shoot makes them feel. If you ever need a boost of confidence or a little pick me up, a boudoir shoot can really do wonders.

  6. Steven

    It’s sad that some people cannot see beyond the “it’s porn” aspect of boudoir. “Photographic Therapy” by Rolando Gomez is interesting reading. It talks about the reasons, and sometimes the need, a woman has to be photographed in such a manner for he own reasons.

    The Christian people I run into that seem to have an issue boudoir tend to be the ones that were raised with the old “fire and brimstone” church style. That’s how church was when I was growing up. Instead of “live life and honor the gift we’ve been given”, preachers said “better do it this way or else”. Fear was the way.

    I’ve been a photographer all of my life and have also drawn. I tend to shoot anything but people, except when asked to do so. I’ve been fortunate to be in a couple of relationships with women who are also involved in art. Those two women were Christians, but see the artistic side and beauty of it. It’s like how Europeans are surrounded with nudity in art with statues, etc; but here in America, that type of thing is frowned upon and TV filmed in Europe needs to omit that same art.

    I’ve shot nudes twice and boudior a few times upon request over the years. Trust, confidentiality, and communicating before the shoot is essential to learn the woman’s ideas, expectations, and limits.

  7. Rhonda

    Thank yo so much for posting about this. I am a strong Christian and also a pastors wife and have wanted to do this for my husband (and maybe even for myself) for a while now…but have been too “chicken” and have felt guilty that it’s “wrong”. I wish you lived in Texas because I would book you in a heartbeat. After reading your post I am ready to book my boudoir session. Any advice for this newbie?!!? What to wear? What to expect? Thank you so much for what you’re doing!!

    1. Rayleigh Post author

      Hi Rhonda! I wish I could do your shoot for you! It’s hard to know what to expect since every photographer is different. I recommend thinking about if there are any aspects of your body you are uncomfortable with and dressing to take the focus away from those areas, which moves the focus the areas you do love. For example if you aren’t a fan of your tummy (like a lot of women), don’t wear a bra and panty set but instead wear a corset that sucks the tummy in. If you are uncomfortable with your arms, then find a beautiful robe that you can wear. I hope that helps!

    2. Candace Perry

      Such a great article! As a Christian boudoir photographer myself living in the Texas Bible Belt, I constantly get judged. Nearly everyone thinks I shoot porn though my work is very tasteful. It’s really sad!

  8. Vanessa Käser

    This was so encouraging to read! Thank you. I am a photographer and a christian and I’ve been wanting to do Boudoir since I started my photography business. It just feels hard to get your name out there like “hey, i’d shoot you in your lingerie if you ever want to” also I live in Switzerland and people are kind of “prude” when it comes to this topic. I’d need to find a model who let’s me publish pictures for my portfolio as well. So all this things kept me from really doing it. But I think if people knew my heart and vision behind it (which is to speak worth, value and beauty in womens life) they’d feel differently about it. Anyways, thank you for posting this. I always feel encouraged if I see christian woman do these shoots!

    1. Rayleigh Post author

      Thank you, Vanessa! Yes, as a Christian it’s tricky to advertise for boudoir portraits because I’m understanding that it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, especially since not everyone understands the point of it and how empowering it can be for women. I try to be cautious to not offend people when I’m talking to them about what I do. I sort of feel them out and try to figure out how much detail I can go in to from, “I shoot glamourous womens portraits with hair and makeup and an incredibly fun, pampering experience,” to telling them more about how most of my clients wear lingerie in their photo shoot. I also often mention that my portraits make a great gift for a wife to give to her husband for their wedding or anniversary. A lot of my clients do the shoot just for themselves to feel more confident and beautiful. But if I think someone might not understand why someone would want to do a shoot, I mention the part about it being a gift for a spouse. I wish you well in your photography business!

  9. Amanda Kratzer

    Just shared with my boudoir group of ladies on fb. As a christian boudoir photographer, I’m waiting for the day someone asks me how I can be both. Loved your article and all of the points you bring. Thank you!

  10. Jennifer

    As a Christian photographer who is just now turning my business toward glamour and boudoir photography, I am already catching a lot of flack from family and friends about my choice. My brother is a prominent pastor in the area and he is infuriated. Thank you for stating your beliefs and sharing it with others who may be getting the same questions. It can be very difficult to explain why and how, as a christian, I can feel comfortable taking pictures that are considered “porn” and “lude” and “sinful” in nature to people who have been raised in the Bible Belt of the South. Your words give me hope and courage that I too, can face the giants (and my fears of judgement and rejection) and share my passion for empowering women and possibly even saving marriages with my lens and my love for God’s creation of beauty in each and every person I meet.

    1. Karen

      I was able to relate to your passion and even cried as I read it. I’m a photographer just getting started in boudoir and have been too afraid to face the giants. Personally, I believe my marriage was saved because of my own boudoir shoot. I found myself not feeling modest in the bedroom and embracing my true self without fear of rejection. My husband loves my new found fire and passion. He’s more attentive and loving toward me every day. As an artist I love the beauty that God has created both in landscape photography and in boudoir photography.

  11. Bailey

    It seems to me that boudoir session photos would encourage masturbation, which is evil and sinful. It would also encourage lust, which is still a sin even when married.

    1. Rayleigh Post author

      I appreciate your point of view. I believe a man’s desire for his wife is part of the beautiful plan for marriage. I don’t think of that as the same thing as lust. I agree with you about masturbation being a sin. If a man chooses that path, there is no shortage of material for him to use if he is looking for encouragement. I don’t think that images of his wife are an encouragement toward that choice any more than walking through a department store is encouragement toward stealing. Just my thoughts, though. I appreciate the discussion.

  12. Lindsay

    Hi Raleigh. I absolutely love this article . I just started offering boudoir photography (literally yesterday lol) . I’ve created a private page specifically for my clients & already have up to 75 members . My husband and I have talked A LOT when it comes to this. I also received a phone call from my mother – who is very heavily “involved” with my life / photography & doesn’t believe it to be a good idea.

    My main question to you is : do you only offer Boudoir Sessions to married women/ engaged? Or all genres? My husband and I believe that the marriage bed is undefiled – so there’s no problem with a woman wanting to feel sexy & empowered to have a healthy sexual marriage. But on the other hand . We feel that it can be a form of fortification if the individual is not married & presenting it to their SO. Thoughts on this ?? I would truly appreciate your input

    1. Rayleigh Post author

      Hi Lindsay! I’m sorry for the delay in my reply. I’m just now seeing your comment. I agree with you in that my personal opinion is that boudoir photos are a great gift to give to a husband. I primarily focus my intentions on boudoir photos being a great gift for the woman to do for herself in order to boost confidence and express her femininity. It’s not up to me to police what she does with her photos or who she gives them to. It is a valid concern, though, that an unmarried woman would share the photos with a significant other and something worth praying about for your business. It’s because of these gray areas that I’ve recently shifted the focus of my business more toward beauty photography, although I still love shooting boudoir photos, especially if the woman is married.

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