self-confidence

I was called a failed journalist and copywriter.

This post is a part of our series “If I Had Listened", in which we're reached out to strong-minded women we admire to tell us about a moment they chose to trust their gut and follow a different path despite other people's opinion.

If I had listened, I wouldn’t have founded Salty Woman.

I was called a failed journalist and copywriter, but I was just writing about the wrong subject matter.

 
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I grew up obsessed with Cosmopolitan magazines, desperate to work there one day. My dad said I was chasing fame because how many magazines are there for people to be an editor at? I didn’t have any awards in the category and no network of family or friends or mentors to tap into.

I went to New York and London chasing this dream and when I was finally in the Hearst office writing the Cosmo “look of the day” I realized this wasn’t the end for me.

I moved on to copywriting at some of the top creative ad agencies in Toronto, only to then quickly switch to strategy, taking a special focus on digital and social content. Eventually I built up my own department, my own team, and a whole new line of business working with influencers. I guess you could say I “made it” and all I wanted to do was step away from it all and bartend or something.

After years of fighting to get to where I was, it was the scariest thing telling my dad that I wanted to throw it all away.

It’s been a year since I walked away from my career in digital marketing. I’ve started bartending part-time, expanded the Salty Paloma business to add cocktail classes and bartending services for private parties and events, and freed up some time to dig deep into myself and find a new venture that spoke to my heart - Salty Woman.

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Salty Woman was born as a passion project to just meet a bunch of women I wouldn’t normally get the chance to meet in my daily life, hear their story and share it.

All I’ve ever wanted to do was tell the stories of women. The full story. Not just the good part, but every inch of it.

I think I really needed to hear it for myself and realize I wasn’t alone in my journey of not knowing where I am, who I am, or what to do. From then I couldn’t help but share the beauty of it all, and now I’ve committed to a monthly series involving an integrated workshop element and speakers. I’ve since then reached out to local non-profits and am working more closely with the Barbra Schlifer Clinic, that provides legal counsel for women survivors of domestic abuse.

They called me crazy for leaving my super successful, super respectable, super comfortably salaried full time job to bartend at 30 years old. Now I only work 4 days a week, never on Mondays, and I’ve never been happier. I spend a lot of my free time for myself, and that includes meeting a bunch of beautiful women in the city. I could do this all day for the rest of my life.

Looking for happiness? Start with self-confidence

You guys, it's summer. The beautiful weather is finally here to lift our spirits. Everything has a gold filter on and yet, you can't seem to fully enjoy it. It happens, you just spent months in the cold hibernating.

It is time to shed your dreary skin and embrace your brand new one full of colorful ideas and accomplishments. The good news? You already have all the tools in you.

Aim for long-term happiness

In case you didn't know, the true form of happiness isn't in the things you own. Maybe you will get those butterflies in your stomach because you just bought that pair of shoes, but it will only last for a couple of hours at the most. The real happiness is something that grows over time, to stick around for your entire life. It’s waking up with a soft and light feeling, and start your day with a smile on your face. And this requires constant work. If you don’t know where to start, we have some tips for you.

 
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Cultivate self-love

If you want to reach happiness, you have to treat yourself like you would do for your best-friend. Be grateful for everything you are and everything you already have instead of focusing on what you think you lack.

Don't talk down or belittle yourself. Your mind and body have been carrying you for a while and if you're still standing, you're already on the right path.

Self-love implies that you can peacefully be alone with your thoughts and don't have to constantly take care of other people. It is putting your needs first because you know you deserve it.

here comes self-confidence.

Happy people can see what they have accomplished, big or small steps. They don't dwell on the past and they don't see mistakes, they see lessons. We all need to f… up a few times to get something right. By learning to grow your self-confidence, you will be able to take the positive out of every situation, pick yourself back up and try again.

You need to learn to celebrate yourself often, to be proud of your accomplishments and most importantly: to acknowledge your self-worth.

If you are thinking “Blah, I haven't accomplished anything", we are gonna slap you silly because we know 100% that it is not true. Shift your mindset, if you made it this far, you have probably been doing something good, and this is what you need to focus on.

Talk to professionals

 
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If you feel like you are too deep in negativity, you may need help, and that's totally okay. Thinking happiness long term and putting all of the efforts required to get to it is a freaking ton of work.

Asking for help from someone who knows their sh*t is far from being a weakness, it’s actually giving yourself a chance and taking a step in the right direction for a better you.

That’s why we actually decided to partner with a lovely mindset consultant to help us elevate you as high as we can, so you can keep going forward in life with a light heart and get the tools to face the curveballs it throws at you.

We will be launching our new program with Eden soon, sign up to our newsletter to get all of the details! We hope to be a part of your journey towards long-term happiness!

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Take control of your self-image

Originally written for The Beach Psychotherapy in Toronto

We never see ourselves the way we really are. And that could be okay if we didn’t have a tendency to turn towards negative feelings about our own image. Let’s be real, rare are the people who don’t fall into self-criticism.

Three years ago when we started Scandaleuse Photography, we didn’t know how much we would help women struggling with their self-perception. Women that can’t stand looking in the mirror and end up avoiding them at all costs. Women who think they are never good enough or who got their self-respect stolen from them. Women who feel stuck, who lack the amazing feeling of accomplishment that gives you butterflies and the motivation to keep growing and improving.

Because the relationship you have with yourself starts on the physical aspect and can impact everything else in your life.

Your femininity is a source of positive energy you need to tap into.

 
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First things first: you are not alone. At least 1 out 5 Canadian women are not happy with the way they look. That is huge. There is a certain pressure society lays out for us that implies, or rather screams at us, that the definition of beauty is to be thin and flawless. Seeing this very day, It is very difficult not to compare yourself to these standards and feel miserable if you think you don’t match them.

You are your best ally and your worst enemy. Getting in touch with yourself is essential for a positive mind growth and it starts with celebrating your own kind of beauty and femininity, your way.

That’s right, your version of being feminine. Because there isn’t just one perfect way, you can twist it and morph it making it your own.

Let us tell you a little story. When we photographed Lea, she told us she refused to see herself as attractive. She could see it through her partners’ eyes, but couldn’t believe it from her own perspective. Through her session, she finally managed to see that she was beautiful with every aspect of her body. Things she had considered “flaws” such as, “her asymmetrical breasts, soft belly, cellulite and hair”

Sometimes you need to see yourself from another pair of eyes to ditch the distorted image you have of yourself.

If you have one day in which you feel even a tiny bit good about yourself, channel it 500% and use it as a constant strength. Because while we all have moments when we feel not so good about ourselves, we also have days when, hey, we’re actually okay. It could be as simple as having a good hair day or a little success like changed that light bulb that had been burnt out for months. Take this feeling, hold it tight and nurture the hell out of it.

Take Katie as an example, a lovely woman with a physical disability. She decided to not let this get it the way and to celebrate her true self. It started slowly, one step at a time with a better diet and focusing on improving her range of motion. She put herself on a good path, wanting to make of her goals come true: showing it to the world. That’s when she called us. She said it herself “I am ready to challenge what people expect. You are not invisible, you are worthy.”

 

If this speaks to you already, join us in our next event in Toronto!

 

What about when someone stole and damaged your self-love?

 
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This is Erica’s story. Erica suffered from the hatred of a man, a family member for years. While she managed to escape, it wasn’t without consequences: this experience completely destroyed her self-esteem. She told us she didn’t have control of her own image anymore. We met completely randomly and she gathered the courage to challenge herself with a boudoir session.

It wasn’t easy. We saw her shake, hesitate and even tear up but she did it. Posing in front of the lens made her realize that the qualities she was admiring in others were also part of her.

She was able to win back what she thought was gone forever and shout out to the whole world “I will never feel ashamed to be me anymore.”

This feeling of accomplishment is a great push to keep going, you end up craving it and you’ll do anything to keep creating and experiencing it.

The truth is: once you get the courage to show yourself and vulnerable in lingerie in front of “strangers”, you’re left with an empowering feeling of “I can do anything”.  Everyone needs to challenge themselves on different levels. It makes you want to keep going, it helps you grow and become more assertive, thus more confident. You end up creating a cycle of positive vibes which will lead you to move mountains.

Treat yourself like you would treat your best friend, because after all, YOU are your best friend. If there is one thing you need to take away from this post is that you only have one body and one mind; it’s YOURS to make use out of it.

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Do not let procrastination take over!

Procrastination is a big and scary word, nobody likes to be told or think they are being lazy. But we all know how easy it is to let ourselves go in any aspects of our life: relationship, life goals, business… It does not mean we are actually lazy or we do not care anymore, usually it is something we build with time and without noticing. Slowly but surely we have been developing bad habits and at some point it just hits us, trust me when I say it is an awful feeling!

Starting 2019 with "Panache”

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I wanted to start 2019 in style, so beginning of January I wrote down a lot of new goals in my notebook, I especially wanted to work on being more self-disciplined and I was 100% motivated to achieve it. One of the first one was to travel alone: BAM! Two weeks later I was in Costa Rica by myself, celebrating my birthday and making new friends (I even met a new gorgeous scandal for a boudoir shoot). I came back to Toronto with clearer thoughts, new ideas and ready to conquer the world!

By the way, this feeling happens when you get out of your confort zone and try new experiences. Yes it is scary at first but once it is done, you feel so powerful and confident; you can do everything.

Hit me baby one more time

I kept that fire inside me until about two weeks ago when I started feeling down, unmotivated and not really healthy. Then few days ago it just hit me (and man, it was painful, I felt guilty!): I realized I have been letting myself go for a few months. Yes I was full of ideas and new goals but I wasn't working to make them happen. Business was busy, which was a bit unbelievable for winter time, so I focused on the tasks I had to do, I focused too much on the short term and forgot about long term plans. I have slowly been pushing back projects I was supposed to work on or business skills I wanted to learn. Those bad habits affected not only my business life but my personal one too:

  • I stopped cooking healthy meals (I am a vegetarian so I have to be careful to replace properly the nutrients I don't get from meat anymore), the result: iron deficiency = a week an a half of intense migraines and fatigue.

  • I replaced reading by watching tv shows (Netflix is temptation!).

  • My workout has been the same for the past 2 months instead of learning new fitness and aerial silk tricks.

  • Do you remember my 2019 goals I was talking to you about? Well I haven't opened that notebook since I wrote them in!

To make it short, I STOPPED LEARNING…

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Your brain is a muscle

We always remember to feed our body. If we don't, it doesn't take too much time before having a low energy, headaches, dizziness… But we have the tendency to forget our brain is a muscle we need to take care of. We need to work it out and feed it with knowledge if we do not want to see negative effects on the long term.

When you make your passion a business, unfortunately you can easily lose your creativity, you have to challenge yourself all the time: I am not gonna lie, it can be very tiring… So you take a break, you relax. And it's when you let go too much you start building procrastination. All it takes is to find the perfect balance between work and pleasure. I am not able to remember the last time I watched a documentary, discovered a new photographer, went to an art exhibition or learn something new. I am not a lazy person, I am the opposite: always working hard, curious and motivated. But somewhere and for some reasons on the road, procrastination showed up and stayed warm and cozy.

The first step is to notice

Procrastination's guilt is an awful feeling. So when you catch yourself procrastinating for too long you have to change your activity right away, just stop and do something that feels right! If this step is too difficult for you then ask someone in your loved ones who will let you know if you f**k up. I try to not beat myself up because nobody is perfect but I refuse to use it as an excuse to stay in this vicious circle.

The secret against laziness:

Some of you are probably gonna feel disappointed because I know you are waiting to read an advice which will change your life… Please do not hate me but unfortunately there is no magic trick! You have to force yourself to do stuff! Whatever it is you try to achieve, you have to kick your own butt to be successful. FIND YOUR OWN MOTIVATION.

 
 

Use your brain!

Never stop learning, think, have ideas, keep yourself active, build up your energy and consider your body as a temple because if you are not healthy then it will be difficult to be proactive.

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VIDEO | Is it wrong to want to feel sexy?

Short answer: Absolutely not.

The truth is: there shouldn’t be anything wrong with the word “sexy” nowadays since it can mean a lot of different things. It is perfectly normal to want to sexy, and you can learn why in the video below:

Don’t be scared to say it out loud, sexy beast!

The Unstoppable Project

Here it is. One of our most nurtured projects is finally seeing the light of day! Let’s welcome: The Unstoppable Project.

 

Because every woman deserves to be herself loud and clear. Special thanks to Florent Magere who created this awesome music and Jonathan Delgado for animating the tag lines for us!

 

Don’t feel like reading? You can watch the making-of video!

What’s that now?

Scandaleuse is in its second year now and one of its main purpose is to encourage women to be openly proud of themselves and to stop caring about other people’s opinion in their everyday lives. About a year ago, Fanny and I started to hear multiple sentences which just didn’t sit well in our minds.

“I could never show those, I am a lawyer”
”I love these but my family/friends/husband/boyfriend would totally disapprove, I don’t want to make them upset”
”People are going to think I am a slut”

We are advocates of the “no hell given” movement. We truly believe you should be able to do whatever you want and whatever makes you happy. It is safe to say that absolutely all of our clients leave their boudoir experience with us feeling happy, confident, strong and determined to make their world their oyster. Some share their photos right away, after a slight hesitation, others cannot go pass the potential judgement from others.

The sad truth? as women, we work a lot harder to build a strong reputation. And There is a risk of being taken less seriously from coworkers, friends, family members if some of these pictures were to see the light of day.

And that’s killing us. Why sharing photos of you in a boudoir set up, in which you feel fantastic and beautiful, should have an impact on anything else in your life? There is nothing wrong with those photos; it is the people who are too narrow-minded who create the actual problem.

So we gathered our little army of Scandals…

All from different backgrounds, different paths and careers. All badass in their own way. Women who decided to say “screw it”. Women as determined as we are to stop the hypersexualisation of the female body.

We don’t know about you, but when we see these women, we don’t doubt their abilities to keep rocking their lives because we just saw them half naked. If anything, we applaud them for owning who their really are.

 
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Becky is still a kick-ass business owner, Caitlin is still a qualified environmentalist, Victoria is still a talented goldsmith and Sonia’s talent as a super mom is still off the charts.

Now remember: Showing your true self should complement your image, not compromise it.

Watch our making-of below!

 

Before we end it here, let us go against the comment we know we will get…

”Yeah but you don’t need to put yourself outhere naked to prove that, ugh, there are other ways”

Yep, you’re right. But we are boudoir photographers so we use our skills and our work to defend a matter that we care about. If your talent is to bake cookies, you are welcome to start your own campaign with pastries. Just make sure you share it with us! Bisous, bye!

 

Should I keep my pictures private?

A lot of people are hesitant about doing a boudoir shoot because they do not really know how they will be using their pictures. Some can't imagine sharing them and the idea of other people seeing their photographs is sailing away the boudoir shoot boat, no matter how bad they want to try it..

 
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Before we start, if you are still looking for a reason to try the boudoir experience, I suggest you read our two previous blog posts here and here.

Sharing or not sharing

I have to start by saying the choice is and should be 100% yours. The most important is how comfortable it makes you feel: if you want to post them on social media, this is your decision and nobody (including partners, coworkers, family, friends) should tell you not to. And on the other hand, if your desire is to keep those pictures private, then it is your right. For example, some of our actual clients wants to keep their photographs private mostly because of their job. They are afraid to not be taken seriously if coworkers were to see them in lingerie, especially women.

Even though, we think this initiative should be applauded and not shamed, because  it takes a lot of courage to reveal and own what is usually hidden!

- Side note: we are working on a cool project about this topic, it's not ready yet but we plan to have it live in the next months. Stay tuned! -

That being said, we do suggest sharing your pictures with at least your loved ones and here are the reasons why:

Inspire Other People with real bodies

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You might not realize it but a lot of women and men are looking to be motivated and want to push their boundaries. Visuals are very important in our everyday life  and when you can identify with it, it is a lot less scary.

That is why getting a chance to see real bodies - and not the generic body type we see in the media - is extremely inspiring. You can relate and it is a pretty powerful feeling.

Each of our clients inspired another one, we are in a sense all connected by the love of boudoir photography. How does it feel to be someone's muse?! 

Boost Of Confidence

The way you see yourself is different than the way others see you and sharing your pictures on social media can seem superficial but it is actually a great way to boost your confidence. Not that you need approval from people but it always feels good to get compliments on either the way we look or the fact we did a boudoir shoot. And true fact, none of our Scandals ever got negative feedback.

It's Like Wearing A Swimsuit

Why is it politically correct to be in a swimsuit in public but not in underwear? Just because lingerie is suppose to be more erotic... But it shows the same amount of skin than bathing suits. Juliette and I have a deep love for bodysuits and we don't want to keep them hiding in our closet, so we decided to wear them as everyday clothes. Ladies and gentlemen, if you share with the world your beautiful body in a swimsuit than you might as well do it in lingerie... Do you accept this challenge?

More Scandals For Our Portfolio

The last reason is more for Scandaleuse. We love sharing our creations with our followers and help women, men and couples to feel 100% themselves. As previously said, we need more examples to be able to inspire more people. 

To conclude, it is your decision whether you would like to share your photos or not. It shouldn't be influenced by others. Follow your desires. So.. should we see you soon?

Give us your opinion: Are you for or against sharing pictures on social media?

 
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I stopped wearing bras and something cool happened

About a year and a half ago, I stopped wearing bras. Mostly because first: I don't have much to support and second: because bralettes became trendier and trendier. And guess what? I only got a positive outcome out of it.

Disclaimer: I am team small boobies. I don't have any back issues. If you do, you may want to try it slowly before burning all of your bras. Just saying.

 
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Put the stereotypes down and turn off the slut-shaming.

I started wearing a bra way before high school just to do like my friends and followed this vicious cycle for over a decade. People tend to think you are a tease if you walk around without one. Like your breasts are here to turn on people only and how dare you exposing them like that? Don't you see strangers can see your... your.... *whisper* nipples?!

NEWS FLASH: we all have nipples. Mind blown.

Between you and I, a few years ago, even I was slightly uncomfortable  when I noticed a woman not wearing a bra in a public place. Why? No freaking clue. Because, seriously, there are no reason to feel that way. I realize today how stupid it was but I guess I was conditioned to see strictly maintained breasts and BOOM, these ladies were't following "the rules". God they were right.

The best feeling in the world? Taking your bra off.

We all did it. You get home, you have this thing strapped around your torso and the minute you snap it off, you have such a good feeling of freedom that you can almost get a tiny orgasm. I did this for many years.

I remember reading more and more testimonials about how some women stopped wearing these very uncomfortable things and how no one died and the Earth kept on spinning.

It slowly made its way in my head and it hit me: why the hell am I even bothering wearing one if it's so uncomfortable to begin with? So one day, I bought... a bralette. I am not that brave (yet), the idea of walking around without anything at all still makes me uncomfortable. One step at the time.

Bralettes are LIFE my friend. They are cute, they are cheap and HOLY MOLY they are COMFORTABLE.

I can safely say now that I ditched my old painful bras for a sweet collection of these little things. And then, something quite unexpected happened...

 
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I actually started to like my boobs the way they are.

Truth is, I never really liked my girls until last year. My bras were actually a way to change their shape, hide them, lift them, you name it. Because of course, I only owned the push-ups, pretty thick, underwire bras. Again, I am team small boobies and the lifting is not an issue I need to worry about.

I was very self-conscious and wearing bralettes with absolutely no support or thickness made me see them the way they are on an every day basis. And I did better than getting used to them: I started actually liking them.

I have reading articles saying that if you wear a bra constantly, the shape of your breats is affected by it. Not wearing them allows your boobs to support themselves and they get in the shape they are supposed to be. To be honest, I don't even know if it's true, but I do believe it made a difference on me.

Don't get me wrong, I still like lingerie

I do think lingerie is awesome and can give you a boost towards your sexiness. I still have a couple of classics for when I want to spice things up and I will very likely get more. But it is not out of necessity anymore. It is because it makes me feed good.

Wanna try? Here are a few tips:

• You don't have to stop everything at once, every day. Start with a few hours or even one day a week when you are home, just to test the waters.
• Get a few bras without underwiring, or again, bralettes to help with the transition.
• Nipple conscious but ready to rock the no-bra? You can get those little pasties to hide your nipples until you are ready to... stop giving a f*ck.

I can't tell you the amount of tops I can't wear a bra with because of the design that I now own proudly. Free the boobies.

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We can improve your sex life.

It's getting hot in here (so hot!) …
Now that we all have this song stuck in our heads, tighten your seatbelts and hold on to your panties, we are going to talk about sex and how a boudoir session can actually help improving your sex life.

Sex should be good.

Thanks Captain Obvious.

Whether you are sexually active (or not), with a partner (or not) and you are just curious, we can assure you that sex definitively has some perks. If you do it right, with consent (always), with someone you can trust, it's one of the best adventures in life. For some, it comes easy - no pun intended - for others, the road is a little bumpy, and guess what? It's totally fine.

If there is one thing to know about sex in general, is that you need to feel comfortable in order to fully enjoy it.

 
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Our bodies and minds work a certain way, and usually if your mind isn't at ease, the rest won't follow. Especially for the ladies it seems (yay). Have you ever had your entire body wanting to seriously get intimate with a specific person and no matter what you do, it's like there is a "NO PASARAN" sign by your vagina? If so, you know what I am talking about. Conclusion: happy mind = happy sex time.

You come first

No pun intended, again.

We are going to let you in on a little secret here: to be fully comfortable with someone, you have to be comfortable with yourself first.

We have received many inquiries from women saying they are sexual beings and yet don't come off that way even though they want to. They see themselves in a way that they are not comfortable with, which leads to them feeling the opposite of sexy and thus, they never let go.

Spending your intimate time with your partner wondering if he/she finds you attractive is definitely counter productive. Especially since 99% of the time, your partner does find you extremely attractive, because hell, you probably wouldn't be sharing sheets if it wasn't the case. And honestly, life is way too short to think about turning the lights off of hiding any parts of your body during sexy time. Focusing your energy on something else will only be beneficial. (And if you are dealing with the last 1%, run, that guy/girl is a douche, doesn't deserve you and you don't want to be there.)

 
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What the hell does it have to do with boudoir then?

As boudoir photographers, we change the perception you have of your body. Yes mam. When do you get the chance to see your entire naked/half naked body from every angle? Never.

You only see yourself from one point of view and depending on your mood, that view can seem terrible because we all know we are our worst critics.

Trusting a professional and getting a chance to see your body the way it is, in beautiful setups, flattering poses and gorgeous light is a huge step towards self-acceptance. Of course, if you go with someone who is going to edit the hell out of you, it is kind of killing the purpose, which why we don't change bodies during our sessions as discussed here. The goal here is to see the real you. And to start loving it.

And then what?

Then, reality is hitting you in the face, in a very nice way, like a warm summer breeze.

Seeing your photos will trigger different very positive emotions such as "is that me?" "oh god I didn't think I could look like that" "I would have never thought of that". You will start seeing yourself completely differently, and you now have a little reminder (aka the photos) of how great you look when you are feeling down. Hell, I look at my photos here and there too!

From there, you can make peace with yourself. Suddenly, you don't want to turn the lights off. You feel like trying new lingerie from your wildest dreams. Your first reflex isn't to hide your breasts when you are with a partner. You are not dodging your reflection. You are letting go.

And guess what? Letting go leads to the best orgasms. Isn't it what we all want? Now go have fun.

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Things to know before your boudoir session

Maybe you've thought about doing a boudoir shoot.  Maybe you're about to get one done. Or maybe you went straight into "no" mode and decided that you would never be able to do it, because who would be crazy enough to get naked in front of a stranger? Buy me dinner first! Yet, like one of our lovely client said, "everyone should get the feeling of a boudoir session once in her/his life". She couldn't be more right.

 
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Whether you belong in one of the categories mentioned above or not, here is a list of things you should definitely know before booking a boudoir session (or any sort of shoot for that matter).

Being sexy is very versatile

We are conditioned to think that sexy is personified by a 5'8 woman, thin but with curves, likely with big breasts, super feminine. Wrong. I mean, you can be sexy with that list, of course. But you can also be sexy eating your cereal in the morning, with your hair still screaming "anarchy!", wearing a Mickey Mouse t-shirt.

Being sexy is about your attitude, not the way you look.

Have you ever met a confident, strong-minded women that isn't sexy in any way? No. We are tired of hearing "I am not sexy enough". There are no levels. The sexy etiquette is much better when it comes from yourself.

You don't need big breasts to go topless.

I would never forget when Fanny asked a client if she wanted some pictures topless and she whispered "I don't have boobs" and Fanny responded straight from the heart, loud and clear: "well neither do I, so what?". Spoiler alert, this lady got her topless photos and loves them.

It is the same for you if you have been gifted by mother nature on that side! Big breasts doesn't mean they should always be trapped in bras.

Hell, posing topless has even helped me to get rid of uncomfortable bras and actually to start loving my boobs just the way the are!

You don't have to look a certain way

Isn't it surprising? You don't have to be skinny, curvy, white, black, blue, tall, short for a shoot. You don't have to start a drastic diet before your shoot or lift a crazy amount of iron whereas you would never do it normally.

Do yourself a favor and buy some nice lingerie that will make you feel great with your current body.

It's okay to be nervous.

Posing in general in front of a photographer is hard, but doing it when you are in your birthday suit is worse. The first pictures will be awkward, even if you're Beyoncé. Then you warm up and boom: magic happens.

If you are having anxiety just of the thought of a session, ask a million questions to your photographers (aka us uh ? ;) ) before making any decisions. You are definitely allowed.

 
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Let go of Facetune, you'll thank us later.

We bumped into a very nice lady recently who told us she'd never do a boudoir shoot because she edits her own photos and couldn't publish one without doing so. She is making herself thinner, or adjusting whatever she doesn't like. This is exactly why she should do a boudoir session. To prove to herself that her natural body is beautiful. You don't need any sort of editing and if you think you do, we need to talk.

Bonus tips: practicing your posing is a great idea

When you're alone in your home, feel free to practice your posing. Blast your music, play around, see what you like, maybe you're happier with your left profile than the right, or your legs look great this certain way. No negative comments allowed.

So... shall we see you soon?

Hello, World!

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We have an empire of confident women to build.

When you are building a business, you need to figure out the big "WHY" you are doing it. It may sound simple at first, but putting it on paper and being able to explain it clearly takes a lot more work than you'd think. Our message wasn't clear enough.

 
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The Soul Story

If you follow us on Instagram & Facebook, you may have seen that we went to a workshop without any big expectations and it kinda shook us up. It was led by Odette Laurie, very interesting woman may we add, and she was talking about finding your soul story to explain your business. Hers was based on her painful family past and harsh moments. It made us question about ours.

We were encouraged to be strong and to not take crap from others.

By our families, who raised up right. Our parents believe we could be whoever we want to be and that we have what it takes to do so. They taught us not to give up, be creative, be kind and not be a doormat because of our gender.

We mentioned it in one of our first blog post back in the day, we have dealt with sexual harrassement. We have heard the "you shouldn't do this, you're a woman.". We have dealt with awful men grabbing us in the streets. I have personally spent an entire job interview with a man twice my age staring at my breasts the whole time, when I was 18. Or that other man that told me I must spend a lot of time on my knees as a French girl. I have heard "whore", "slut", "how much" so many times I can't even count anymore. Directed to myself, but also to others.

I remember the anger for these specific moments. What I didn't realize, is that this turned into so much more. It turned into Scandaleuse.

Don't get us wrong, yes, we are all about body-positivity like 100% of boudoir photography studios in the city. It's a given to us. But we don't want to limit ourselves to just that.

We want to make women feel free.

It is absolutely killing us that some women are still stopping themselves from doing something because it's frown-upon. It makes me so angry when I hear "I could never do that, no one would respect me/take me seriously". They will, if you make them.

I just want to give you a hug if that thought has crossed your mind before. And encourage you to change that thought by "Screw them. I want to do this and I will go for it. I don't owe sh*t to anyone" , because guess what? You don't. For real.

 
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We want to make women feel badass.

Because being free is awesome, but not enough. We want to make YOU feel like you can conquer that freaking mountain in front of you. Because we KNOW you can. If you are already doing it, we want to encourage you to keep going until you've reached your goal. And then find a new goal because a powerful woman like you does not stop there.

We want to bring up the "good hair days"

Don't go, I'll explain: you hear/read a lot about bad hair days. And by that, I mean when someone you know woke up on the wrong side of the bed, when nothing is going well and everything sucks. We don't talk enough about the days when you get up one morning and you feel like it's gonna be a good one. You feel gorgeous, you have a great smile on, you are ready to rock your day. This is exactly the feeling we give you with our boudoir photography. Let me tell you, your inner Beyonce is about to shine!

 
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You deserve to be confident. You have every right to express yourself by any way your wish. It's already in you whether you know it or not. We chose to express it by boudoir photography. Now that you know everything, just one more thing: We're game if you are.

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"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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How a boudoir session turned into so much more (feat Madmoizelle.com)

Scandals, we just had our first press publication. Buckle up because what's to follow is even better: it's a comic strip. Drawn by one of the coolest illustrator on the planet, from one of the best online women magazine. How cool is that?

During our trip back to France, we didn't only eat a lot of cheese and notices how many times French people are saying "oh hé oh hé ooooh" when they speak. No Mam', we worked.

We have been reading Madmoizelle since it opened, over 10 years ago. They target young women from 15 to late 20's. What we love about them is that they are not afraid to speak the truth, kill taboos loud and clear and share body positivity in every way they can. We naturally thought of reaching out to their office in Paris to offer a boudoir shoot to one of the writers.

The lovely Léa took on our offer and we had the best time with her. She's is the main illustrator and graphic designer there. Try putting 3 creative women in one room, we just made magic.

Enough talking, here is the strip, translated from French to English for YOU scandals!

 

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Nota Bene: all facts Léa stated in this strip are.... true. Yes we make bad jokes, we laugh a lot, take odd positions.... That's part of the package you get with Scandaleuse. 100% accurate.

Thank you so much Léa for this. We were SUPER excited to see ourselves cartoony too, it is off the bucket list!

Now Photo time....

Keep in touch

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