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What to Wear for a Maternity Photo Session

Updated: Jan 10

Couple poses for a maternity photo shoot holding Mom's baby bump with ocean in the background.

Wondering what to wear for a maternity photo session? Here are my 15 tips:

1. Dress for comfort but also for style. These are pictures you will want to show off for many years to come so put a lot of thought into your outfit and accessories.

2. Form-fitting, clingy clothing is good for showing off your baby bump. A form-fitting maxi dress is flattering for a dressier look. A more casual look could be a  tank top or regular top that is snug on the belly paired with a pair of jeans or yoga pants. Keep in mind that dark jeans or pants will be slimming on your legs.

3. Sheer flowy dresses or skirts that give a peek at the belly in a more subtle way are a good option also. One of my favorite sites to buy beautiful maternity clothing specifically designed for a maternity photo session is called TAoPaN on Etsy. These clothes are designed by a maternity and newborn photographer named Ana Brandt and are absolutely beautiful!

4. For women who do not want to  accentuate the baby bump, I recommend a loose maxi dress fitted or belted at the top, a short dress with an empire waist, or jeans/pants with a loose flowy top.

5. For those of you who want to completely reveal the belly, I recommend maternity dresses with a slit in the front which you can find on TAoPaN on Etsy, You can also opt for a bandeau bra, crop top or scarf wrapped around the chest paired with a long, flowy skirt. This is a very popular look and really shows off the belly beautifully!

Pregnant mom lays on the sand looking back at the photographer during a maternity photo shoot on a Big Island beach at sunset.

Aesha wore a flowy long white skirt with a scarf wrapped around her chest, a great way to show off the belly!

6. Stick with solid colors or lightly patterned clothing. Busy patterns distract the viewer’s eyes from the real focus of the photo.

7. Don’t forget the accessories! A beautiful necklace, headpiece, hat, earrings or bracelets are some to consider. Keep in mind the mood/style you are trying to convey.

Woman holds her very pregnant belly for a studio shot during her maternity photo shoot

Consider what accessories will work with your outfit. Less is usually better especially for a maternity shoot where the focus is on the belly.

8. Footwear is important. You may want to wear  a nice pair of heels or wedges to elongate your legs or you may want to go barefoot. Either way, don’t forget to plan for this. If you are doing a session on the beach in Maui, heels will not be the best footwear!

9. Plan for your undergarments!!! I can’t stress this one enough. If you bring 3 different outfits, make sure you have bras and underwear that work with each outfit. For sheer clothing it is especially important to consider your undergarments.

10. If you can, invest in having your hair, nails and makeup done. The more beautiful you feel, the more it will show in your photos. Even if you can only afford to have one of these things done professionally, it will make a difference in how you feel during your maternity photo session.

11. Avoid wearing tight clothing 2 hours before the session to avoid any lines on your skin.

12. Avoid wearing moisturizer on your face. Moisturizer can cause reflection when hit with light and will need to be edited out later.

13. For men, I recommend solid colors or a coordinating print. Simple is always better. Try to coordinate your outfits.

14. For children, I recommend solid or lightly patterned clothing and also try to coordinate their outfits with yours.

15. Have fun, relax and allow yourself to feel beautiful. Your photos will come out amazing if you are happy with how you look. So planning for your maternity photo session is worth the extra effort!

If you would like to book a maternity photo session with me while here on Maui, click here to contact me or call me at 808-344-1550.

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