What to Wear to Your Maternity Photo Session

Choosing what to wear for a photoshoot can be tricky. Add that to the fact that you’re expecting, and possibly not feeling the most photogenic in your current state, and deciding what to wear for maternity photos can be challenging to say the least! Today I’m sharing my top tips for choosing what to wear to achieve the best results from your maternity photo session.

Choose Something that You Feel Great In

First and foremost, wear something that you feel great in! Flowy dresses are a great option in this regard. They’re comfortable, classic, and create a flattering silhouette for your maternity photos.

A couple kisses on the beach during their Malibu maternity session with photographer Daniele Rose.

Keep the Color Palette Simple

Neutrals, whites, and pastels are the best choices in my opinion. The focus of this session will be on your cute baby bump, and these colors will help to show it off. It’s also a good idea to be careful with patterns. Heavy patterns can be distracting and draw the eye away from the focus of the image.

A pregnant woman in a white dress poses in Santa Barbara during her maternity session with photographer Daniele Rose.

Dress for the Season

Be sure to consider the weather during your maternity session. If you’re pregnant during the warmer spring and summer months choose a lighter and more breathable fabric. If your session will take place in the fall or winter, warmer fabrics and textures are a great choice. You might want to consider layering a scarf or chunky knit cardigan over a dress. Fall sessions also allow for warmer colors and jewel tones as an option.

A family dressed in coordinating outfits during their maternity session at Foster Park in Ventura, California.

Coordinate Colors with Your Spouse and Older Children

If your spouse and/or older children will be participating in your maternity session it’s a good idea to choose your outfit first and theirs second to compliment your color palette. The trick here is to wear complimentary colors, but not be too ‘matchy-matchy’. Choose colors compliment each other, rather than match exactly, to create a well rounded and cohesive look.

A little boy hugs his mom's pregnant belly during a maternity portrait session with Camarillo photographer Daniele Rose.

Maternity Boudoir

Boudoir style maternity sessions are a great option if you’d like to show a little skin, and have a beautiful keepsake of your pre-kiddo body. My gorgeous cottage studio is the perfect location! Lingerie that flatters your figure and shows off your bump is the best option for these sessions.

Boudoir maternity session images of a mom to be in black lingerie during her studio maternity session with Camarillo photographer Daniele Rose.

Go Timeless Over Trendy

This is the time to stay away from trends. Fads in clothing and hair & makeup will date your images. Keep things simple and classic. You’ll look back at these images for decades to come and this is definitely one situation where timeless is best!

A pregnant mom to be in a white dress on the beach in Santa Barbara during her maternity portrait session with photographer Daniele Rose.

Consider Having Your Hair & Makeup Done

A professional hair and makeup artist will know exactly how to make your look your best in photos! It’s also one less thing you’ll have to worry about, and pregnancy is good time to get a little extra pampering in. I’m happy to provide artist recommendations, so if you’re considering having your hair & makeup done please ask and I’d be happy to send their info your way.

A couple kisses in the herb garden during their Ojai Valley Inn maternity session with photographer Daniele Rose.

Get a Mani!

Your hands (and your partner’s) will definitely make an appearance in your maternity photos. Men should trim their nails and make sure that their hands look clean and tidy. For the mom-to-be this is a great excuse to splurge on a manicure! Light pinks and neutral colors photograph best.

A couple hugs on the beach in Santa Barbara during their maternity session with photographer Daniele Rose.

Where to shop for maternity dresses…

Baltic Born

Free People

Pink Blush


Wren & Ivory

Piper & Scoot

Ingrid & Isabel

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I'm Daniele Rose, your custom portrait photographer. You'll find me capturing emotive and timeless images of newborns, babies, children and families. I would love to chat with you about documenting your most special family moments!

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