When Jennifer Day, 28, wanted to spice up her relationship, she donned thigh highs and a garter belt, dialed up a photographer and gifted her boyfriend a series of sexy pictures.
“They were amazing — I loved how they came out,” she said. Day is not a Maxim or FHM model, but a biology student from Burlington, N.J.
Scantily clad, professionally-taken photographs used to be reserved for video vixens, bikini models and adult stars. But regular women are increasingly staging boudoir photo shoots of their own.
“I would say that the social networks play a big part,” said Port Richmond-based photographer Gregory Maxx, who shot Day in mid-January. “One of the fundamental things that makes them function is that you see a photo. If you put up a profile picture that’s real hot, you get a lot of comments and even requests from photographers who want to work with you.”
And then there’s the power of influence that’s perpetuated by sites like Facebook, Maxx said. “If you see your friend’s doing it, then you want to do it, too.”
Maxx charges $100 per costume change — there are typically three. Outfits are brought by clients, while his studio provides professional hair and makeup styling. Each package includes 40 to 50 proofs, plus three retouched 8-by-10 pictures. From there, clients can order calendars, books and posters.
Maxx, who now makes the bulk of his profit from bedroom and glamor shoots, said he’s seen a spike in popularity over the past three years, especially around Christmas and Valentine’s Day. "I think a lot of girls want to feel good, look sexy for their husband or boyfriend and make a gift at the same time,” he said.
Maxx offered some tips for women who wish to stage their own photo shoot.
Come prepared. “Bring everything you may need for the shoot: jewelry, shoes, accessories. It will give you a more complete look,” Maxx said.
Drop a hint to your significant other. “Don’t make it a total surprise — maybe an 85 percent surprise. So he may not know what he’s getting but he knows you’re doing something for him,” Maxx said.
“You’re going to be gone several hours with a suitcase full of your sexiest outfits and then come home with intimate pictures. Some men get the wrong idea.”