“It’s about being given permission to like yourself”

Every woman who comes to us for a Boudoir Shoot has an incredible story. The motivations and reasons behind doing Boudoir are diverse and, most often, hugely profound within their life. It’s our privilege that we get to be part of these women’s stories.

We recently had the pleasure of meeting Donna and this is her story.

Tell us about yourself? 

I am a 42 year old woman who has got into the habit of self doubt, self deprecation and often putting myself low on the list. I’m a Carer to my two wonderful daughters who make me incredibly proud, but as a single Mum life is often challenging. I play it safe

I stick within my comfort limits and I realise this is not a good thing.

What inspired you to have a Boudoir session?

I thought about it and made contact a year before actually having my photo shoot, but then I totally bolted with fear and ignored all phone calls. No way could I go ahead with it. I put it to the back of my mind and thought it was more suited to other people, more confident women maybe. I then continued following the Facebook page, in awe of the ladies who had their photo shoots, I looked on with envy that I didn’t feel brave enough.

How did you first become aware of Divine Divas?

Facebook!

What was your biggest fear before coming in?

Well I felt so surreal driving over, I was acting totally out of character, I had no idea what was making me turn up there but I did. My biggest reservation was that I would not be able to pull off the sexy look; I couldn’t pout to save my life and I couldn’t relate to feeling attractive at all. I shared this doubt as soon as I arrived and was immediately put at ease.

How did you feel when you arrived at the studio?

I felt oddly calm but almost accepting that, although I was there, I wouldn’t take a good photo. I’m a ‘scrape the hair back in a pony tail’ or ‘leave it down’ type of girl. My daughter lectured me recently about needing a better beauty regime. It is easy to give yourself little attention when life is hectic. It becomes a habit.

But I was so quickly put at ease. I loved Emilie’s sense of humour – very similar to mine. This was a tonic and very helpful. It was very Miranda-esque which I loved. I actually felt like we were old friends which was lovely and all credit to Emilie.

What was your favourite thing about being pampered and having your hair and makeup done?  

Oh it was divine. The lady who did it was so friendly, down to earth, chatty; she totally put me at ease. I felt so pampered. I loved having my hair curled and asked for the smokey eyes look, which I was given. I loved it!

Who was your photographer? Neill, Jesse or Emilie?

Emilie and she is, without doubt, one of the loveliest ladies I’ve had the pleasure to meet. So friendly, like a life coach – so empowering and confidence boosting. Everyone needs an Emilie in their life.

How would you describe the photo-shoot to others? 

Completely amazing!!! Such a massive confidence boost. Such a reminder that yes, I am a mother and a Carer 24/7, but I am also Donna and I deserve to feel empowered, capable and confident. And I deserve to stop critiquing myself and focusing on my flaws – and to feel beautiful. All women do!!!!! We’re often so intent on putting ourselves down and society and the beauty industry put an incredible amount of pressure on women to look and be a certain way. The shoot was just so liberating.

When you came back for the viewing, how did you feel seeing yourself? 

Well, actually, more nervous than having the photos taken! We’re conditioned, really aren’t we, to be all coy and self critiquing but here I was looking at photos of myself in my underwear thinking, wow!!! Is that really me?!!!!!

What was your favourite part of the Boudoir Experience? 

The being made to feel special and important and beautiful . That message that I am deserving. The message that your body is fine as it is, stop hiding it away, stop focusing on the bits that bring self doubt, embrace yourself for all that you are. It makes me emotional even writing that. We all deserve to feel that way don’t we? Regardless of our shape or size, whether we’ve got imperfections or not.

Do you feel any different about yourself since having your Boudoir shoot?

Yes! I’ve not worn a sports bra since that day, instead I’ve been wearing pretty bras, just for my own pleasure. I looked at myself in the mirror the following day and didn’t feel self loathing, I thought – get you Donna, feeling alright in your birthday suit. Because yes, I suggested taking my bra off mid shoot!! Still can’t believe I did!

What would you say to other women considering a boudoir session?

You deserve to feel good about yourself. I totally recommend this and think it should be available on the NHS! I felt more empowered that day that in many counselling sessions I’ve attended. It’s about being given permission to like yourself, and to embrace yourself as you are – imperfections and all – and after that, to feel beautiful.

And last question! Are you going to make sure you get your gorgeous legs out this summer?

100 per cent yes. Many, many thanks to you xxxxxxxx

Thank you to Donna for so kindly sharing her story! 

If you’d like to tell us more about what motivated you to do a Boudoir shoot we’d love to hear it. Just Facebook us!