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  • Writer's pictureMonika Szmidt

How to Prepare for Your Maternity Photography Session

Updated: Jan 18, 2022

Tips on how to look beautiful for your maternity photoshoot

Look beautiful for your maternity photoshoot! Pregnancy is a special time of your life and for many women, (although you may not feel like it) you are at your most natural, feminine and beautiful self. During your pregnancy, your hair is rich and thicker, your breasts are fuller, your skin is glowing and your body has more curves. For many expecting mothers, there’s no better way to remember their pregnancy and chronicle their journey to motherhood than a professional maternity photoshoot. Here are a few tips to help you look and feel your best in your maternity photoshoot.

Pregnant women in beautiful blue dress


For expecting mamas with singletons, a good time to do your maternity photos is when you are 28 – 32 weeks along in your third trimester (around 7 – 8 months pregnant). Your belly is showing beautifully round but you are still comfortable to pose. For expecting mamas with twins (or more), come in earlier around 26 – 30 weeks as twins tend to arrive much earlier than singletons.


I highly recommend professional makeup and hair. Not only will this make your photographer’s work easier, but you will also feel beautiful and confident at your session. Speak with your makeup artist about how you would like your make-up done. Generally, professional makeup is a bit heavier and colourful than your day-to-day makeup and that’s OK! Whether your photo session takes place in natural light or studio lights, your make-up will look very flattering. However, if it’s not in the budget, your going-out-on-a-hot-date makeup and hair are fine too! Natural-looking fake lashes can really flatter your eyes.

The day before the photo session get yourself pampered. Enjoy it while you can and this is the perfect excuse for it. Make sure you are exfoliating your skin and moisturising. Get your nails and toes ready for the shoot. And drink a lot of water, your skin will look much better!


Trust your photographer to direct you in posing so you can look your best. What makes maternity photos different from other portraits is that the images focus on you, your personality, feelings and the bond you have with your much-awaited baby. Many maternity poses such as hands-on the belly and eyes looking down express emotions and connection to your belly. Other maternity poses empathize with the beautiful curves of your body.


Wear whatever you feel comfortable and pretty in. Here’s a list I provide to my clients: the first one is mandatory, the rest of the list are suggestions.

  • Neutral strapless bra and seamless underwear

  • Black bra and panty set (for those black background belly shots)

  • White/ivory bra and panty set (for those white background belly shots)

  • Long, flowy or form-fitting dress (e.g. tube dress or a summer maxi dress)

  • Coordinating outfits (for significant other/husband and/or children. Choose a colour palette that you like and coordinate your outfits accordingly. Visit my Pinterest Board to get some ideas!)

  • Any favourite scarves, accessories, jewellery, etc.

  • Any sentimental items (e.g. baby ultrasound image)

I specializes in maternity for many years and I have maternity dresses, wraps and accessories in my studio available to use. The benefit is you don’t have to buy maternity dresses that you will only wear a few times. One dress can run you anywhere from £100 – £1000 each! There are no extra rental and/or dry-cleaning fees.


Consider the location of your shoot and the advantages/disadvantages of them.

INDOOR (e.g. in the home)

The advantage in the home is comfort and connection to familiar surroundings. You don’t have to worry about the weather outside. The disadvantage, you have to clean your house so it will look good in the photos. The lighting may not be optimal. Please check with your photographer on how they will address this. Seasoned photographers will use portable flash if necessary.


The advantage is convenience and control. You can shoot anytime regardless of the weather.

You have access to all dresses and props.


The natural beauty of a pregnant woman in a beautiful outdoor backdrop is simply breathtaking! The parallel of a mother about to bring to life into the world and Mother Nature is a powerful one. The disadvantages are that the shoot is weather-dependent and shooting hours are limited to the golden hour of sunrise or sunset when the quality of natural light is at its best. Reschedules can happen and may trigger the rescheduling of other related appointments (e.g. professional makeup and hair artist, florist, venues, etc.) Remember your sunscreen and bug spray! Be prepared to walk/hike to the location and change outfits outdoors.


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