Heidi, when strength meet kindness

Hello dear scandals,

We all feel how winter in Canada can be tough sometimes, the lack of heat and sun after few months starts to have a negative impact on our mood. So it can be a great idea to take few days out of the country: one of us went five days to Costa Rica and it was incredible. The goal of that short trip was to get away from Toronto and take some me-time… You guys know how hard workers we are and how it is difficult for us to disconnect from work. Well we have to confess, it was hard to not take the opportunity to do a boudoir shoot in paradise and work with a new lady… So we had to do it :)

We posted a message on a facebook group about a boudoir shoot idea and Heidi was one of the first to reply. Even though we did not know her, she was the one who stood out and we new from the start we wanted to shoot with her. What a meaningful encounter: her story was inspiring, we always love to hear about other business owner's experience and life. Plus she has an incredible personality, beauty… PERFECT COMBO!

 
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Meet Heidi

Everybody has a story, I think that’s one of the things I enjoy the most about meeting people in Costa Rica. Here we are in this little beautiful country, together, talking and forming friendships, discovering how much we have in common and yet we all have a different back story about what led us here.

Costa Rica, 5 years ago

I went there for the first time to celebrate my partner’s and my 50th birthdays.  We planned a double vacation – some skiing and boarding in Whistler for the first week, and then straight to Costa Rica to learn to surf. Tamarindo….such a neat place! My partner could already surf and had tried it in many other exotic locations, but this was a first for me and I don’t even skateboard or snowboard… Yikes! Well, I survived surf camp and could actually say I could surf afterwards!

That first trip led to another and another and another, at least twice a year, enjoying the beach, training every day, surfing and always pondering eventual retirement and speculating about what little business could be started here to fill a niche.

At first we thought about a coffee shop, or more specifically, a mobile coffee cart – because at that time there were only a couple in town. Needless to say in 5 years there are probably 14 now…. so that was a good pass!

How Gilliepops was born

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One thing that seemed to be lacking was treats of any sort that weren’t laden with sugar or milk and specifically cold frozen treats. Popsicles… Yes, that became the focus and ultimately Gilliepops was born, named after my late daughter, who passed away a few months after our first trip here.

Lots of brainstorming, creative thinking and marketing ideas, and in November 2017 I arrived in town with a bicycle, a cooler, my Vitamix and a couple of giant duffel bags filled with popsicles sticks, moulds, labels and packaging supplies. It was new and exciting, and at times very disappointing and stressful. I ate a lot of tuna and eggs that’s for sure but what an amazing experience! I even added gluten free baked goods to my repertoire and it seems the tourists and even locals can’t get enough of them. It’s awesome!!

Thanks to social media

Business here in Costa Rica is done differently that in North America.  It’s less formal and much of the communication is done either on Facebook or Whatsapp.

Because of the dependency on Facebook for business, I’m forced to check it daily and post often to encourage awareness of the availability of gluten free products here. This is when I saw Fanny's post about her visit to Tamarindo. I sent her a few suggestions, I think because I knew she was from Toronto. When she mentioned being a photographer and looking for someone to photograph while she was here, I jumped at the opportunity – there are almost no pictures of me here because I’m on my own. And what a beautiful place to be photographed.

Its been a couple of years since I’ve done a photo shoot and never when I wasn’t ready to compete (I’m a physique competitor), but I thought it would be nice to be captured as my regular self, my natural self, a little smoother and softer… tan lines and all…! The shoot was amazing – the view from the location we chose was so beautiful and the pictures she took are so flattering and beautiful.

I’m so grateful for the opportunity to have met one of the Scandaleuse's team, the time we got to spend together talking an sharing our stories.

 
 

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Dealing with trauma via boudoir photography

A few months ago, we flew back to our home country, France, to do one of our Boudoir Bash in Paris. We met a lot of wonderful Frenchies there, including the exquisite Nora. The first time we talked with her on Skype, she opened up right away about her motivations to do a shoot and her story moved us.

 
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Having someone telling you about her past is quite emotional and this is why we love being boudoir photographers. It gives us the opportunity to work and help people to win back their confidence and even better, their self-love.

We are no therapists but we know that in some cases, photography can help heal consequences of a traumatic event such as abuse, assault, harassment and other traumas who have left you confused about who you can see yourself.

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My name is Nora, this is my story…

“Let's start talking about my fear… I know, pretty unusual for people who know me!

My biggest fear is actually one of my family member, so it makes it really complicated to move forward, to liberate myself from this situation. Even though I haven't seen this person in years, I know that, deep inside, we might see each other again.

Yes, I grew up but I still have that fear to see his face, the way he looked at me, or even worse, to awake those bitter memories of his physical and psychological hits.

All of those years by his side can be summed up with tears and this feeling of helplessness against a man way stronger than me. To me, it sounds like a trivial story, so I tell myself “there is probably worse stories than mine.”

I grew up surrounded with machismo & the “alpha male” spirit. One day I had no other choice but to escape this life. I gathered up my strength and I left. I needed to get away as far as I could from this person, this source of fear. It was love that helped me to take this first step and put a temporary "band-aid” on what was haunting me.

Inevitably, the consequences of this sitution with this member of my family remove completement all of my self-esteem.

Being constantly put down during the first decade of your life makes you forgetting about who you are very quickly. However, time goes by and we try to rebuild ourselves after all, even if we have to put our loved ones aside.

I do not have this person in my life anymore. I have been with someone who listens to me and understands my past, who pushes me to thrive as much as I want for the past few years.

With time and maybe without noticing it, I was attracted by those women who are self-confident and whom by art, politic and culture were able to accept themselves the way they are. This is how I had the idea to use boudoir photography as a way to heal myself.

 
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The Boudoir Shoot

What an unforgettable experience! A moment of peace where I was able to forget about my problems, all of my "flaws” and more importantly, my demons. It was just a magical therapy!

Posing in front of the lens made me realize that the qualities I was admiring in others were also part of me. I was able to win back what I thought was gone forever and shout out to the whole world “I will never feel ashamed to be myself anymore.

This magical moment had a real positive impact on my life and I don't want to stop here as I have more ideas to keep feeling unstoppable. I have to say it would have been much harder without Fanny and Juliette's help.

“I am beautiful”

Thank you to the man who I have been sharing my life for the past 5 years, it is because of him I am still thriving!


FRENCH VERSION

Je m’appelle Nora, voici mon histoire

Commençons par parler de ma peur, chose inhabituelle pour ceux qui me connaissent je sais.

Ma première peur, la plus grande, est un membre de ma famille. C'est donc compliqué de s'en défaire, de s'émanciper, car même si je ne l'ai pas vu depuis de nombreuses années, je sais qu'au fond de moi nous nous reverrons un jour sûrement.

Oui, j'ai beau avoir grandi, j'ai toujours cette hantise de revoir son visage, son regard et surtout de réveiller amèrement les souvenirs de ses coups tant psychologiques que physiques.

Tout ce temps à se côtoyer durant toutes ces années se résume aux pleurs ainsi qu'à un sentiment d'impuissance face à un homme bien plus fort que moi. Mon histoire me parait banale et je me dis alors "qu'il y a certainement pire que moi".

J'ai donc grandi dans ce contexte de machisme, du "male alpha" à la maison. Un jour j'ai eu la force de m'enfuir loin de cette vie, je n'avais plus le choix, il fallait mettre une réelle distance avec ce qui incarnait cette peur, une rencontre amoureuse m'a confortée évidemment dans cette démarche. Ce qui m'a permis de mettre dans un premier temps une sorte de "pansement" sur ce mal qui me poursuivait. Fatalement, ces déboires familiaux, dû à cet individu principalement, m'ont enlevé toute estime de moi.

Être constamment rabaissé durant vos premières décennies de vie vous font "très vite" oublier qui vous êtes, mais le temps passe et on tente malgré tout de se construire même si cela implique de (se) priver (de) ses proches.

Je ne partage plus ma vie avec cette personne avec qui j'étais partie à l'époque. Depuis quelques années je suis avec quelqu'un qui m'encourage à m'épanouir comme je l'entends, il a particulièrement su m'écouter et me comprendre. Inconsciemment peut-être, je me suis doucement intéressée à ces femmes qui s'assumaient, s'acceptaient au travers de diverses façons (art/politique/culture). L'idée d'accepter mon image et de faire un shooting photo m'est alors venu.

La séance Boudoir

Une expérience inoubliable ! Un moment où j'ai oublié tous mes soucis, tous mes (potentiels) défauts et surtout, tous mes démons ! Ce fût ni plus ni moins une thérapie magique.

En se prêtant au "jeu de l'objectif", j'ai pu constater que ce que je pouvais admirer chez les autres, je pouvais aussi l'apprécier et le retrouver chez moi. Je pense avoir, presque malgré moi, crié aux monde entier "je suis moi et n'en aurais certainement plus honte !".

Ce moment "magique" m'a réellement fait du bien, m'a donné d'autres idées encore et rien de tout ça n'aurait été si parfait sans Fanny et Juliette.

" Je suis belle "

Un énorme merci à l'homme qui partage ma vie depuis plus de 5 ans, grâce à lui je grandis encore!

"You're Pretty For a Girl in a Wheelchair"

Last September we received an email from an incredible and gorgeous woman who push her boundaries and decided to talk to us about her disability. She wanted to use boudoir photography as a gift for her 35th birthday, a way to celebrate and treat herself.

 
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What a beautiful soul!

What a pleasure to receive her email and read about how self-confident and proud of herself she was! Katie is for sure an inspiration and we were really happy when she agreed to share her story. She made her disability a strength in every aspects of her life and we cannot wait to do another shoot with her.

Meet Katie

“I wanted to have a photo shoot to celebrate me finding beauty within my own body.

It took me a while to reach self-acceptance. In high school, I remember there was always this pressure society laid out for us that implied that the definition of beauty was to be thin and flawless. I was also a teenager with a physical disability.

I remember being at a mall, shopping with my friends and someone saying to me “You are very pretty, for a girl in a wheelchair”. It really got me to thinking that not only does my physical features go against social norms but so does my disability.

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Have we built up such an image in our heads about the ideal look of beauty that we can’t think outside the box?

Why is there a box in the first place?

Why is my attractiveness contingent on the status of my abilities?

Years pass, my body changes, as naturally as a woman’s body would do. I started to carry myself with more confidence as time went by. I made a decision a few times along the way to choose a healthier eating lifestyle.  My weight fluctuated here and there, but I continued to maintain a positive image of myself and I chose to become more active.

As a young woman with a physical disability, exercising routines had to be modified. I started including weekly swimming sessions, seeing a physiotherapist to see how I could optimize increasing my range of motion, and I use a hand bicycle three times a week. In addition to exercise, I found and implemented a diet that suited me, personally. I was able to eat healthy and still eat the foods I enjoy.

Now that I was on a good path, it was time to focus on pampering myself.  Display to the world, how I am feeling on the inside.

“Yes, as a curvy woman with a disability,

I embrace and celebrate my sexuality.”

But I wasn’t always brave enough to share it openly on such a public platform. I am ready to challenge what people expect.

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I am Katie, I’m thirty-five years old, single, curvy, sexy and beautiful.

Thank you, Juliette and Fanny, for helping me to bring out a side of me I wasn’t sure existed. I have a feeling the journey has only just begun…

“You are not invisible! You are worthy!” 

A big part in making my decision to do a shoot comes from this breathtaking piece of poetry by my dear friend Forest Blakk: SWIPE RIGHT

 
 

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Birth Control Pill: A little devil

Disclaimer: In this post I am talking about my own experience and feedback about the birth control pill. I am not a doctor and this should not be considered as legal advice. You should seek appropriate counsel for your own situation.

Ladies and gents (I do have some hope that men can also be interested by that topic!), today's blog post is about my experience with the birth control pill, why I decided to stop it and it's impact on my body 11 years later…

When I Sold My Soul For Beauty Purpose

2007 was a great year: first boyfriend and sexual blooming, beginning of adulthood… This was the reason I started taking the birth control pill, “Jasmin” if I remember correctly. Unfortunately when I was 17, I had a lot of migraines and also a strong acne, “Jasmin” wasn't strong enough for my body. So I decided to follow my gynecologist advice which was to go for one of the strongest hormonal pill, perfect against acne and migraines: Ladies and gentlemen, the famous “Diane 35", let's sadly acclaim it.

Big mistake! But I was young and looking for an easy way to feel prettier. I was really ashamed of my acne, all I wanted was to get rid of it. I just wished my doctors would have told me about the risks and side effects of those pills…

 
Before taking the pill

Before taking the pill

5 months after taking the pill

5 months after taking the pill

 

The Results Were Beyond Expectations

If there is something I cannot complain about, it is the result and efficacy: my acne was gone few months after I started taking it and the migraines were less intense, it was honestly a relief. On top of that, they helped regulate your menstrual cycle and the main purpose of that pill was also a success, I never got pregnant. You got it, I am not complaining about their efficacy against pregnancy. The birth control pill is a great contraceptive as long as you don’t forget to take it. Unfortunately the side effects and risks on the woman body are pretty scary.

But for 11 years I was never aware of those side effects. This is why the "pill” is sneaky: you usually do not feel how unhealthy it is, at least I never felt it.

So why did I stop?

As you may know, two years ago I became vegetarian and it is now important for me to take care of my body and be careful with what goes in and out. It is my way to feel confident and respectful of it! Stopping the pill was obviously another step towards taking less chemical, since I did not want extra hormones in my body anymore (If you wanna learn more about this topic, I found this very interesting article).

To make it short, the birth control pills is a combinaison of two hormones: estrogen and progestogen, that eliminate ovulation and prevent pregnancy. It changes your natural hormone balance, tricking your body into thinking it is pregnant all month.

I also never like having to take a pill every day because I have sometimes forgotten to take them (oh and I guess reading about those women who died from blood clotting in their legs, sudden blockages in their lungs, bleeding in their brains and chest pain before death, did help me with that decision…) Anyway, in January 2018, I took the decision to change contraception and go for a non-hormonal copper IUD. I went to my family doctor to talk with her about that decision, her advice was to stop the pill and wait until my next period to have the IUD inserted. Which I did…

Another big mistake, I should have never ever stoped the pill right away! In one month, I went from 11 years of intense synthetic hormones to natural ones. Of course it was a shock for my body, my doctor should have told me about it. The consequences? I developed a strong acne in a couple of months and my menstrual cycle was all over the place. I feel like a teenager again and I now have a lack of confidence because of that acne. It has been less than a year I changed contraceptive and my body is slowly getting use to it, but it will take few years before the level of acne decrease.

 
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Why I like non-hormonal contraception

First of all, big shout out for the Copper IUD, it is so convenient. I am not gonna lie, the insertion was painful but it lasted only a couple of minutes and I do not have to worry of getting pregnant for the next five years. What if I want a baby in two years? The doctor will just take it out!

My body has changed a lot since I switched birth control method and I have now “real” and natural cycles, which includes unfortunately: cramps and irregular, heavier and longer periods. But it also had 3 positive impacts that are really worth it: I am feeling less emotional, my sex drive increased a lot and I am more lubricated (don't laugh, it was pretty frustrating in the past!).

I have no regrets of that change and do not plan to go back to birth control pills. There are so many contraceptives on the market, you should not have any problem to find the perfect one for you. Talk with your doctor or gynecologist about it and most important: do your own research.

Now go make love and viva la sexualidad!!

 
 

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Kiss your body insecurities goodbye

Isn't it a great feeling to feel the positive evolution in body positivity? Do you guys see it too? From articles I read or friend's conversations, I have the feeling that people and especially women are more self-confident. Man, how powerful is that?! Even though we still have a lot of progress to make, we are slowly getting there.

The importance of confidence

Most of the people I meet know about their qualities and are confident about either their sense of humour, their kindness, their intellect… But I have never met a single person who is in love with 100% of his/her body. We always feel judged, always have the impression people are looking at us. Do you want to know the truth? People don't care… or at least most of them don’t (honestly who cares about judgy people). If you love the way you look and accept what mother nature gave you, it will be easier to conquer the world: being self-confident shows charisma which is a powerful quality to be successful in life.

I never said it will be easy

I am not 100% confident and writing this blog is making me think about the parts of my body I do not like and why I don't like them. Our past traumas are usually the reasons why we are so picky with ourselves.

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There are two things I do not like about my body. The first one is my wrists (oh gosh I know it sounds stupid but it is a fact). I see them so tiny and I never been able to like them. Not that I am ashamed and try to hide those wrists but I never felt confident about them. Why? If you have been following us for a little while, you may have read the blog post in which I was writing about my teenagehood and how photography changed the way I see myself. I was a skinny and insecure teenager and kids in my middle school were mean so I got a lot of insults about anorexia. Their words still resonate in me sometimes.

The second thing I do not like is my recent acne. Last February I decided to stop taking my birth control pills to switch for a non hormonal birth control device because I want to take care of my body, go for something more “natural” and stop ingested those crappy hormones. Well I wanted to go natural: I got acnee… Yay! (unhappy smile). Two months after I stoped those pills, I developed a severe acne and felt awful about myself. I totally lost my confidence and sex appeal. Why? Same as previously written, it reminded me when I was fifteen and brought back all of those bad memories.

How to change your mindset

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The only way to accept those parts of your body you like the less is to look a them, stop hiding them and talk positively about them. When I look at my wrists I stop telling myself they are too skinny, instead I decided think and say loudly they are cute. For my acne, I try to not use make up to cover the pimples. Every time I look at myself in the mirror, I look at every pimples and tell myself it is not so bad and they will eventually disappear with time.

You can also learn how to highlight and showcase your imperfections. the good news is that it could be fairly easy: you just have to decide to change a negative mindset to a positive one.

GIVE YOURSELF A BREAK AND GO LOVE EVERY FREAKING INCHES OF YOUR BODY!

Coffee Talk - My childhood in a psychiatric clinic

I have lived in a psychiatric clinic for 10 years and I had a wonderful childhood... I know what you are asking yourself: WHY. HOW. I can feel your curiosity growing. I am very tempted to keep the mystery and not giving you any details but if so, it would not be a blog article.

Let me put your confusion away... Hi, Fanny writing here and this is my story!

 
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How it began?

My mom was working in this clinic in France for over 20 years. Her job was to help patients with their creativity, through arts and relaxation. She was working with people suffering of alcoholism, anorexia / bulimia, schizophrenia, dissociative identity disorder and other mental illnesses. The clinic was a big property with a park, a little forest, two manors, few houses for employees and other structures.

A benefit from her job was to be able to rent, for a very small amount, one of those houses and live on site. I was 5 when we moved in. The house was very small, I had my own little bedroom but my mom was living in the living room, not the best but we were happy.

The mystery is over, as you can read I wasn't there because of mental issues. My only problem was to be an heavy sleepwalker when I was young (which made me several times getting ready for school at midnight and even made my mom running after me at night in the street).

I was never bored

Even if we were living in the city, the clinic had a lot of greenery and I spent my time outside as much as I could. From climbing trees and building shacks, to rescuing little animals such as birds, mice, cats and even a dog once (you could have called me Snow White without the great voice), I could not get bored. I remember exploring the clinic like if I was adventurer or hiding from people I was on a mission. I build slides from wooden boards, which wasn't a success: my friend ended up with a 1 cm splinter in his bum.  And when I needed some quite time to relax or sulk, I was always going to the same tree. That was my spot, my peaceful location and it broke my heart when I heard they destroyed it few years ago.

Even if the patients there had severe mental illnesses, everybody knew me and I never felt any insecurity, never got into trouble even though I was creating them sometimes. As an only child, it was pretty easy for me to find creative ways to spend my free times when I didn't have my friends to play with me. My favourite activity was to block the paths people where walking on, hide in trees and scare them when they were close enough. Did people kept calling me a sweet angel after that? Actually yes they did!

Colourful personalties

 
 
  • The other galaxy: One of the patient believed my mom was the queen of an alien tribe from an unknown planet, far away from our galaxy. But she sweared to never revealed my mom's secret!

  • Power rangers: Another person believed he was one of the Power Rangers. I remember hearing that guy every morning in the park, screaming one of their famous lines and fighting against the air. This guy always made my mornings brighter!

  • The one with the big heart: My mom had the authorization to bring a small group to the farmers market every Wednesday. One day on the way to the location, one of the patient fell in love with a big red strawberry stuffed toy and decided to love it for the rest of his life!

I remember people being happy but unfortunately I also heard and saw some dramatic moments, things such has death and violence I was too young to fully understand.

Acceptance you will learn

The great part of growing up in this type of environment, surrendered by psychological illnesses was I had to learn and understand that sometimes the brain does not work properly and people are suffering from it. I learnt to smile at instead of making fun of people who are different. It taught me acceptance, kindness and opened my mind on topics that can be quit taboo. 

I am so grateful to have had the chance to experiment it and build all of those beautiful memories of my childhood!

 

My favourite song about mental disorders: Olivia Ruiz - Le Tango Du Qui

 

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Eyes sparkling and heart racing - How boudoir pushes your limits

Boudoir photography is definitively an art, a beautiful way to use light, framing and background composition to highlight the human body. But it also has a therapeutic purpose. Most of the women who finally dare to book their boudoir shoot are usually looking for more than a regular portrait session.

 
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Why does it create such a great feeling?

When was the last time you actually looked at yourself naked or even in your underwear? And I mean, reaaaally look at yourself, not a quick glimpse before hopping in the shower? Rare are the people actually doing it, us included.

The human body, especially the woman one is taboo. Nobody at school teaches us to truly love ourselves the way we are. If anything, we are taught to hide it and sometimes in the worst cases, to be ashamed of it. Only a minority of people know every inches of their body even for the parts that are the most intimate.

On top of that, we focus so much on its physical aspect that we tend to forget our bodies are shells that actually makes us human beings to begin with. And that is something to cherish and treat well.

Being able to see your body from different angles, posed beautifully in a stunning environment, surrounded by a warm light is a rare opportunity you shouldn't pass on. Hell, even from the back, because seriously, we never get to see ourselves from the back! (unless you can twist your head 360 degrees but in this case, we need to talk)

It is not just about getting pretty photos.

Truth is, when you sign up for a shoot, you will get way more than that.

You will learn to push your limits, put your boundaries down. And this will make you stronger not only in your own head but also on a physical aspect.

You will be standing straighter. you will start having a better posture. you will walk with more confidence.

Because you managed to push yourself through a quite challenging adventure, your everyday life is taking its benefits too.

We are not saying that based on our own beliefs. We are saying it because we saw it. We've had a chance to work again with some of our past Scandals and the difference between the first and second shoot was drastic. The beautiful intimated women we saw became these strong-minded, ready to own it, supermodels. They were posing themselves so confidently that even us were blown away.

 
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It is perfectly normal to feel nervous

You guessed it, a boudoir shoot is full of various feelings. While it is an extremely positive experience, it does make you face some of your fears For example: the fear of being judged, not good enough, or being in an unknown situation. Most of our clients are a little anxious before the big day because they do not know what to expect and they are out of their comfort zone. 

But like every challenges, it gives you these butterflies of excitement we all love so much. The little butterflies that make us grow and take on even more challenges.

And then the magic happens

The hardest part is taking the initiative to book. After this steps, the fun stuff officially begins. You can go shopping for new lingerie or use outfits you wore only once. You can brainstorm makeup & hair ideas with our makeup artist who is going to take care of you. If you are also doing it for someone, you can even imagine the joy of this special someone, when he/she will see your photos.

When the session is finally here, our favourite part begins: the changes in our client's attitude.

From the moment, they pass the door until the time they leave: they are two different people. They start with the usual shyness, feeling a little intimated, probably doubting themselves. Some of them have the face of "what did I get myself into?". But after an hour, here they are, walking around like the world is their oyster, ready for topless and full nude. Free the nipples in all its glory!

eyes sparkling and heart racing.

The after shoot is usually the best with the big reveal. It's when you can finally see & choose your photographs. This is the moment when everything comes together. The before booking thoughts, the getting ready, the actual shooting... And this is when you realize how stunning you are and how much you are killing it. This is when we see you letting go  and taking it all in with a laugh, huge smiles and sometimes a couple of tears. .

It can be quite a feeling of freedom and surprise and it is for sure a wonderful experience! the real question now is: are you ready to start your boudoir journey?

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You can let your hair be.

Get ready for this universal truth: we all have hair. Everywhere. And you've probably heard at least once in your life "you should remove it", "it's gross", "why do you care?" "all natural baby!" "Aren't French people hairy anyway?"(oh wait, that one is for us eheh). It's time to unleash the truth.

We get asked quite often by our clients, men & women, if they have to shave or not before their shoot. So here it is:

 
 

Is it better to be shaved/waxed entirely before your boudoir session (or anything in life for that matter)?

No. Hair or no hair, it doesn't make one single difference. It's that simple. And if people are telling you the opposite, don't work with them. And it is because of a very simple reason:

the decisions concerning YOUR body belongs to YOU and you ONLY.

And that goes for everything concerning your body: tattoos, hair colour, piercings, you name it.

 
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Why are you doing it to begin with?

Here is the second gigantic tip that will help you for the rest of your life:

These decisions you just took about your body? They have to be based on your opinion, not others.

Meaning that if you choose to get waxed every 3 weeks or not, it should be because it makes you feel great that way and not because you feel like you HAVE to do it.

Story time: a few months ago, we had a wonderful photo shoot with Léa Castor in Paris. She stopped removing her hair a couple of years ago now, because she realized that she wasn't really doing it for her, but for her lover at the time. She said that she wanted to start loving her hair the way it actually is, even though it is quite difficult, not because she thinks it looks ugly but because of the society. She felt like people will juge and criticize her.

When we first talked about her session, we really wanted to showcase and do close-ups of her hair to tell the world "hey see, it's not bad at all!" but it turns out that we just focused on her like we always do. And guess what?

No one actually noticed her hair and for the few photos where you could actually see it, it just looked great. not "eeeew" like some people can think. Isn't this super cool?!

So what if we just stop caring about what other people think and start taking care of our hair the way WE want to?

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Don't be embarrassed about your hair

When people ask us if they should get waxed or not, there is always a weird feeling of shame flying in the air, like it's such a nasty little secret.

Truth is: if someone is judging you or giving you attitude because of hair and any other aspects of your body, you are not the problem, they are

Isn't it about time for people to be able to treat their bodies the way they want to and say it loud and clear without feeling embarrassed?

A little recap for the road:

  • Decisions about your body are only yours to make
  • Don't let others influence these decisions.
  • You don't have to wax/shave entirely if you don't want to.
  • There is no reason to feel gross, ashamed, embarrassed about your hair. It's actually pretty useful to protect your body but that's another story.

So hair or no hair, if you feel comfortable and happy, it's all that matters. You will look beautiful either way.

PS: From what we've seen and our experience: French people are definitely hairier than Canadians and honestly, we don't care.

"You are morbidly obese" - Marine's Story.

We meet wonderful people all the time during our sessions. Each of you have a very specific story, and you are always so willing to share it with us, which we are extremely thankful for. We are not going to write a blog post today. We decided to let one of our most recent Scandals tell her story, in hope that it will help you if you need to.

• Version Originale Française Disponible dans la deuxième partie de l'article •

 
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“You are morbidly obese”
This is the sentence that changed my life. My name is Marine, I am 26 years old and I lost over 90 pounds.

This visit at the doctor's office changed my entire life. The word "morbidly" is pretty hard to hear when you still have your whole life ahead of you. But for some reason, here I was. It was iduring this split second when I finally decided to put my life back on tracks.

Everything started when my brother passed away when I was 13. That day, I lost a piece of my soul and  heart too. This is pretty much when the whole overweight phase happened: I was eating to compensate my loss. While I was at an age when you're supposed to start understanding your body and learning to love it, but my part, I just hated it.
Years came by, so did multiple diet plans... I am losing weight one day, gaining twice as more the next, until it hit me:

I am 25 years old and I weight over 220 pounds.

It was such a shock. I start seeing specialists who tell me that together, we can beat that obesity, that the secret is not drastic diets, it's a good BALANCE. Balance is what you eat, sure, but I also learned to exercise again (and trust me, that's not easy!). I also learned that indulging myself sometimes is not the end of the world. I just think they taught me how live properly again.

It took me two years to lose those 90 pounds.
Two years of doubts, tears, reassessment, anger... But also hope, self-acceptance and pride!

Boudoir photography, a rewarding challenge

While browsing online, I stumble upon one of my former highschool comrade's photography website. She and her partner take beautiful boudoir photographs and I jump on the occasion to ask if I could book a session during their trip to France.

I had a meeting with Juliette to discuss it. She was very welcoming and managed to make me feel comfortable right away. I am still having a hard time to accept myself, so taking pictures in which my body was the main focus was scaring me.

We had a chat, booked a date and worked on what atmosphere we would be going for and off we go!

The day of, I was super excited but also very nervous. Juliette started coaching with a smile right away which made me feel comfortable despite my non-experience in this field whatsoever. The session flew by and the woman I have been wanting started showing up bit by bit.

This session gave me a chance to appreciate my new body, but also to accept it. I felt sexy for the first time ever, and I never thought I would feel that way.

There is still a long way until I accept my new self completely, but this session gave me confidence I never thought I had.

So thank you so much ladies for this moment. I hope that I will be able to do it again one day and I know it will be with Scandaleuse.

 
 
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« Vous êtes en obésité morbide… »
Voici la phrase qui a changé ma vie. Je suis Marine j’ai 26 ans et j’ai perdu plus de 40kg.

Ce jour chez le docteur qui a changé ma vie. Le mot morbide c’est plutôt dur surtout quand on a encore toute sa vie devant soi. Et pourtant j’en étais là… C’est à ce moment là que j’ai décidé de prendre, enfin, ma vie en main.

Tout à commencer lorsque mon frère est décédé alors que j’avais 13 ans. Ce jour-là j’ai perdu une partie de mon âme, de mon cœur aussi. Mon surpoids est arrivé à ce moment, je mangeais pour compenser ce vide. L’adolescence c’est le moment où notre corps se réveille, on l’apprivoise, on commence à l’aimer. Moi je l’ai toujours détesté.
Les années passent, les régimes s’accumulent… Je perds des kilos, j’en reprends souvent le double et puis un jour je me réveille…

J’ai 25 ans et je fais plus de 100kg.

Là c’est le choc. Je vais voir des spécialistes qui me disent qu’ensemble on peut vaincre cette obésité, que le secret c’est de ne pas faire de régime mais l’EQUILIBRE. Équilibre de la nourriture oui, mais pas seulement: j’ai appris à faire du sport (et c’est pas facile!), j’ai appris que se faire plaisir de temps en temps ce n’était pas la fin du monde, bref je pense que j’ai réappris à vivre.

Il m’a fallu 2 ans pour en arriver à ces -40kg.
Deux ans de doutes, de pleurs, de remise en question, de crises de colère… Mais aussi d’espoir, d’acceptation et de fierté !

La photo boudoir, un challenge enrichissant

Et un jour, je tombe sur le site d’une ancienne camarade de lycée qui fait des photos boudoir magnifiques avec son associée, je saute sur l’occasion et lui demande si c’est possible lors d’un passage en France de faire une séance.

Juliette est tout de suite très accueillante et me met en confiance. J’ai toujours du mal à m’accepter alors prendre des photos où mon corps le centre de l’attention me fait un peu peur.

On discute, on pose une date, on voit ensemble la direction que les photos vont prendre et nous y voilà !

Toute excitée mais aussi nerveuse, me voilà devant l’objectif ! Juliette est tout de suite très souriante et douce et me permet de me mettre à l’aise malgré mes maladresses de débutante. La séance passe super rapidement et je fais ressortir peu à peu la femme que j’ai envie d’être.

Cette séance m’a vraiment permis de me mettre en phase avec mon nouveau corps mais aussi de commencer à m’accepter comme je suis. Je me suis sentie sexy chose qui ne m’était jamais arrivée avant!

Le chemin sera encore long avant une acceptation totale de cette nouvelle image de moi, mais cette séance m’a vraiment donné une confiance en moi que je n’aurais jamais pensé avoir!

Alors merci merci merci à vous pour ce moment. J’espère qu’un jour j’aurais l’occasion de repasser sous l’objectif, et ce jour-là, je sais que cela sera avec Scandaleuse Photography!

 

Thank you so much Marine for sharing your story. Boudoir photography is not only about getting pretty pictures. It's also about facing your body, challenge yourself to see it through's someone else's eyes.

contrary to what you may think, it is accessible to all shapes, sizes & genders. Don't be scared of jumping in, we can guarantee you will feel like a queen (or king).

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