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How to Stay Cool for your Summer Maternity Session

The best time to schedule maternity photos is when you are between 28 and 32 weeks pregnant. This is when your baby bump is prominent but you aren't too close to your delivery date. This time period may fall right smack dab in the middle of summer for some expecting moms.

Let's be real. When you're growing a human inside your body, your body becomes very warm. It's called "a bun in the oven" for a reason, right? Add 100 degree temperatures and some humidity on top, and you have a very uncomfortable mom-to-be. The idea of taking photos outside while looking beautiful may seem daunting when experiencing sweltering temps. But you also want to capture this time in your life.

So how do you beat the heat for your summer maternity session?

(1) Wear less

Who says you need a beautiful flowy gown that you'll only wear once for your maternity session? Even if you rent or borrow from a photographer's client closet, it may be too hot to wear a long gown and be comfortable during the middle of summer. Instead of wearing a dress, opt for less clothing.

Wear a bra for a top!

By choosing a location with less people around, and more privacy, you can wear less clothing. You can wear a pretty lingerie styled bra, a bralette, or a sports bra for more coverage.

When you loose the top layer of clothing you not only will be cooler (and won't have to worry about sweat), you can show off your bump. What better way to document the amazing transformation your body undergoes, than photographing your skin - stretch marks and all. Every inch of you is beautiful, so why not show it off?

Your bottoms can be undies (briefs or not), loose fitting jeans or shorts, or a flowy skirt that lets air in as you move.

If you choose to wear intimate apparel, but still want some coverage, you can add a dress that acts more like a robe, cover up or wrap. These are light weight or made from lighter materials than can be taken on and off easily.

(2) Move Indoors

If being surrounded by nature isn't your thing, or you want to wear less but not risk being seen by the public, or you just prefer to be where the air conditioning is, then consider having your maternity photography session indoors.

You can have your photos taken in the comfort of your own home, a rented home like an AirBnB, or at a studio.

If you rent a studio and want to wear intimate apparel, let me know at booking so I can rent a space with your privacy in mind. Many studios will prepare a Boudoir Set Up for you and ensure no one else will be using the space.

In the images below, an enclosed pack porch was used. An air mattress was added to create a more intimate environment. But your photos can take place on a blanket, in a kitchen, in your bedroom or even bathroom. Your photos can take place wherever there is good light.

Still hot? Add a floor fan and create some wind blown looks.

(3) Just add Water

Best way to keep cool during your maternity photography session? Add water!

Choose a location that has a body of water - lake, river, ocean. By simply standing in water, your body temperature will drop a few degrees making you feel more comfortable when the temps outside are near triple digits. But don't stop with just getting your toes wet. Allow yourself to get all the way in!

Can't make it to a water location? No problem! Add water at home with a sprinkler or outdoor tub. Have an outdoor shower? Put it to use! All you need is a space with beautiful light and a willingness to let your hair down and have fun!

Wear your undies or bathing suit to match the setting. Nothing is more beautiful than skin-on-skin, except for skin covered in water.

The images below were taken in the front yard of a fellow photographer's house. The front yard is where the light was best as the sun was setting. All we used was a hose and sprinkler attachment to create these images. As the sun set, we moved to another spot in the yard and created a rain shower effect by holding the hose in the air. The same effect can be created using a Hi-rise sprinkler if you have one.

Are you ready to book your summer maternity photography session? Click here!

Let me know in the comments how you would want to stay cool during your maternity session!


Images taken at Southern Love Workshop in Austin, Texas in June 2022.

Models: Valentina Bay Photography

Lead Photographer: Chuy Photo


Laura Tannenbaum is a lifestyle family and portrait photographer in San Antonio, Texas. She loves capturing real life, loving moments between loved ones and showcasing personalities. To learn more about Laura visit her About Page.

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