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It's Getting Hot In Here

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With boudoir, preferences vary. There are those that love to be photographed in natural light and surrounded by white (light and fluffy as Jenn calls it), and there are those that prefer to be edited and shot with a darker more moodier feel; but what exists between black and white?  Enter our newest set at Mirrored Images Boudoir:  50 Shades of Grey.

As women we are taught to be demure and modest in our interests. Rarely are we allowed to express we may want “more” or would like to “experiment”. These adjectives seem reserved for our other halves as they are permitted to speak about it publicly. So, when the book/movie 50 Shades of Grey was released women [and men] were either introduced to a world unknown and/or faced with an emerging truth that they may just be interested in exploring more behind closed doors.

Adult shops can be intimidating for the newbie; words like flogger, paddle, tickler and spreader can be a bit much, but with all things the more you know the less overwhelming it is.  After all these are just toys, so it’s time to have some fun! There's nothing wrong with letting your inner bad girl out a bit. She probably hasn’t seen the light of day since that one night in college you never speak about. Well, it’s time to have a conversation with your inner diva and perhaps give her the reigns, or crop for the day.

Still unsure about all this? No worries, our team is here to support you during your 50 Shades shoot. Our set that has something for everyone, so let me walk you through.

The Basics:  Think back to your bachelorette party, or any bachelorette party like…ever. You’ve seen the handcuffs, satin masks and maybe even a small crop/flogger. The intro items are fun to play with and are perfect for those who just want a little extra.  Another intro add is the sex swing. It’s a real swing so whether you want to use it alone or with a partner it’s fun all around.

The Playroom: These items are a bit more adventurous, but if you’ve ever read the book you won’t be surprised to see a paddle (just like it sounds, but leather), a tickler (think of a sexy feather duster) cuffs, collars and ropes. These all hung in Christian’s room and he used them to explore the levels of excitement with his companions. If you’ve already taken the Basic class, this may be more your vibe.

The Red Room:  These aren’t for the novice, even Christian waited a while to introduce the leg spreader.  If this is more your speed, then try out the St. Andrews Cross. It’s a standing X, which allows you to use a combination of items from your basic or playroom toy chest to explore the levels of pleasure with your partner. Giving up control can be thrilling, but remember trust is must if you are using these toys.

If you aren’t ready to dive into the deep end personally you can still have fun with a non-kinky Mirrored Images session.  The 50 Shades set allows you to showcase your inner bad gal while you to get used to some of the toys the set has to offer at your own pace.  We will have you feeling like the diva you are whether you use everything in the room or nothing at all.  Who knows, maybe you’ll get inspired and get a few toys of your own!

Just remember there’s power in knowing what you want in life, whether it be in the boardroom or the bedroom.

Don’t be afraid to explore new possibilities.


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Our new set is available for an additional $100, which includes use of the set & props as well as additional time shooting.

Keep it Spicy | Valentines Day


With Valentine’s Day quickly approaching the supermarkets and stores have turned their white walls red and pink awash in celebration of Valentine’s Day. Sponsored by Hallmark and the FTD the holiday can make some of the more cynical of us a bit overwhelmed. Especially if you are in a long-term relationship all this fuss can seem pointless, but it’s not.  Rekindling, rebuilding or retaining your spark in a relationship doesn’t take an over the top rom-com gesture. There are many ways to keep your relationship fresh and add some spice this Valentine’s Day and year-round.

Get Nostalgic: Reminisce about the fun things you did when you first started dating. Leave a few “Remember When…” notes around where your mate can find them and be reminded of your greatest hits.

Prioritize Your Connection:  When’s the last time you sorted through your lingerie drawer? Are you keeping it spicy or keeping these for a “special occasion”?  I know life gets in the way, so you must prioritize your connections. Slip into something slinky on a random weeknight to surprise your mate and see where the night takes you.

Gift Yourself: If you have already had the experience of a Mirrored Images Boudoir shoot and have the images (and rights), why not make them into a calendar so your mate can have a bit of naughty all year long?  Or, if you have an adventurous lover, why not schedule a couple’s session for a future date? You can build the anticipation with lingerie “date night” and choose what you’ll wear before the photo shoot.

Role Play: If you are at the point in your relationship when you think you know all there is to know about one another, switch it up and become someone else, even if only for one night. Schedule a night away at local hotel of your choice.  Try out a new look and sit at the bar.  Tell your partner nothing more than what you are wearing and let the night unfold.  Heighten the experience by using an app such as Kik or Google voice to coordinate the meet up (and maybe send some steamy texts beforehand). Whether it’s an experience to relive or redo a first date, it will be a night to remember.

Try a New Skill:  Dancing together is one of the most intimate things you can do as a couple. Learning to tango, salsa, or fox trot together can be just the trick to give you two some alone time while you work on your form and footwork.  Dancing not your mate’s thing? No worries ladies why not take a class FOR your mate. Pole dancing classes are no longer taboo. Not only does it help with fitness, but it’ll awaken your inner bad girl as you learn a few new moves to warm up the cold nights this winter.

Explore your senses for Valentine’s day or any other day for that matter, tease your mate’s senses with a gift for each.

  • Taste: Schedule a cooking class or clear out the house and try a new recipe out at home.
  • Smell: Take a scent building class and define the scent of “you’ with your partners help. Spray a teddy bear or keep sake with the new scent for those nights you are apart.
  • Touch: Plan a night for sensual massage or book a couple’s massage for you both.
  • Sight: If you have a yard or similar space, plan a drive-in movie night. Choose a film that is important to your story. Lay out a warm blanket or heater, a bottle of wine and some apps to take in the show.
  • Sound: Make a playlist of sounds that have meant something to your partner or you as a couple.

Keeping a fire burning takes time and tending, otherwise it will go out. Our job is not to allow the day-to-day responsibilities we carry to take away from the spice of life.

Head to Toe shopping guide

I am in month six of IF (Intermittent Fasting) and as a treat, I decided to put some of the subscriptions I’ve been paying for to use and dress myself from head to toe for my holiday Zoom parties!  Given my recent luck with Stitch Fix, I figured I didn’t have much to lose.  Well, Ladies you are my tribe, so I will not lie to you, so I am going to tell you the real about my personal experience both the good and bad.


Because every good outfit begins with a great foundation, the first stop on my journey had to be my shoes.  I reset my long-forgotten password and signed into my JustFab account, because if you can get a foundation on a budget, all the better. JustFab offers an ever-changing inventory thanks to trends and celebrity sponsors. With an introductory offer of $49 for their VIP access and $10 shoes, it’s hard not to fill your cart with tons of JF pink boxes.  I bagged a few pairs for holiday Zoom parties and when my doorbell rang, I was in shoe heaven.  The shoes met my expectation for the price; trendy and sturdy enough, but I don’t expect them all to make it through another season.  It’s like IKEA, but for shoes. Most items are good enough for now but look elsewhere if you want longevity.

Shoes done I turned to Rocksbox for some bling. I was really excited about this box, as I hate shopping for trendy jewelry. Too many options.  Rocksbox took on the heavy lifting and delivered a box in trend and on par with my style choices.  I played my way through the box, but most of the baubles didn’t justify their price point. I opted to keep a classic pair and send the rest back. They will find a home with someone who loves them.

For my face, hair and nails I turned to Birchbox.  A monthly subscription offering makeup and grooming options curated for you based on your enrollment quiz. It’s a great way to be introduced to new products without a large initial investment. The only drawback is that most, if not all, items are trial size, so if you love the item you will need to purchase a full size from Birchbox or an alternate provider.  I found a few items that made it into my travel bag, but unfortunately nothing wowed me enough to keep the membership. But if YOU love the options, keep them!

With my hair done, nails done, everything did – I needed an outfit, so I turned to Amazon hoping to avoid the in-store holiday mania and USPS shipping delays.  Amazon has long been my go-to for options I’ve found on social media via #founditonamazon so I’ve seen the option to Try On-at-Home before while casually shopping, but I never tried it. This time I decided to give Amazon Prime Wardrobe a chance so I enrolled for a 30-day trial, selected a few options (you get 8) and I waited…and waited.  Nothing came.

What I didn’t know is, unlike the many Amazon items that arrive via courier, Amazon Prime Wardrobe is mostly shipped via USPS.  The holiday timelines were going to play a part despite my best efforts.  I spent over a week watching my box be routed and re-routed through neighboring states while my “try-on” week whittled away.  When my box finally arrived, I was scheduled to leave town, so I just returned the box unopened.  The shipping had taken up my time to review and I didn’t want to pay for clothes I hadn’t seen or used.  The return process was also via USPS and weeks later I received an email from Amazon asking if I’d returned the box. It was lost in transit. Luckily, I was able to remedy the issue because I had my tracking information.  Keep in mind if you decide to give this a try, be sure to keep you receipts. For now, I think I will stick with Stitch Fix for my major clothing items and add some Amazon picks in on occasion.

All in all, I find that these subscription companies have something to offer. Depending on your needs as a customer you might find them to be permanent additions or temporary fixes.  I hope to give one or two a second chance in this new year, perhaps without the pressure of holiday timelines. Until then, I’d love to hear about your experiences.

Happy shopping!

xoxo, Marissa

I'm saying F U to the "New Year, New You."

2020 has had its trials and come 11:59PM on December 31st I am sure you will be among those hoping 2021 will offer a better outlook. Yet, somehow this year, despite all its differences, many will fall into the habit and make resolutions to be “new” and improved in some way. Oaths to save, travel more, and eat less will be made. Followed by the first quarter of the new year during which many of these promises will be broken and gym memberships unused. This year I am saying TO HELL WITH THAT!

2020 has been difficult, but not the worse year for me, there have been other years in which I’ve lost more; more money, more people, more everything. Specifically, 2012 in which my husband lost his mother, and I lost my best friend. Yes, my mother-in-law was my best friend and for you married ladies out there you understand this is like catching lightning in a bottle.  I hated that year and was happy to see it go. We threw a New Year’s party in our small NY apartment themed – “F U 2012”. It was epic! We said goodbye to all that happened that year and opted to start the new year on a better foot.

This year I am following suit and hosting a (small) Roaring 20’s NYE party. I think this is a fitting tribute. The ‘20s were the era of prohibition and 2020 has been a VERY prohibited year.  In 1920 they weren’t allowed to drink, and in 2020, in some states, we aren’t allowed to drink indoors, within 6 feet of one another or after 10PM.  I will take all the precautions ahead of time so I can lose all my inhibitions the night of AND the next morning I am not going to have one regret, one resolution or one broken promise, because I am not going to make any.

This year I urge you to reflect rather than restrict. Look back at all you’ve learned about yourself throughout the year. Pat yourself on the back for what you’ve accomplished and say F U to the rest.  Remember selfish isn’t a bad word, remember to give yourself permission for self-care and to take up room.  This year has been one of firsts, change and “the new normal”.   Forget the New Year New Me mantra!  I have had enough of the “new”. If 2020 has taught me anything it’s that I like who I am, for good or bad and I am keeping her around.

When the clock strikes 12 on all this craziness, 2021 is on schedule to mimic the early 80s – debauchery, decadence and overindulgence is all I have planned.  I will eat that brownie that is a bazillion calories, because after this past year Athleisure is now acceptable work attire. I will use accrued PTO and I will take that trip I’ve been saving for, but never found time to go (some place must be open).  And when I get there, I will go to the beach with my added brownie weight because that’s why God made one-piece bathing suits.

The only resolution I am making is a promise to myself that I will enjoy every minute this new year has to offer in whatever way I can, to the fullest extent I can.  I am not going to fall into the trap of last year and put added pressure on myself with plans that this will be the “best year ever” for me, because I have no idea what’s ahead.  What I can promise is I am going to enjoy 2021 for whatever it is and whatever it brings.


Happy New Year - Marissa xoxo

Holiday Gifting

With Christmas approaching and Black Friday behind us, holiday shopping is in full swing. Your wallet and brain are both taking a beating as you work your way through the list. If you are like most of my friends and family, you hit a small speed bump when it comes to that “special” person in your life. Special could be the new boo you just started dating, a long-term love, or if you are of the millennial or Z generations - this could be someone you’re just hooking up with on a recurring basis.   Either way the looming question remains - do they go on the list (hook-ups) and if so, what do I get them? With the help of my husband (under duress and fear of making the naughty list this year), I compiled a few ideas for the new and the long term loves of your life.  


The WAW (what are we?) Stage 

Whether you're young, single, newly single, or returning to the dating game there is always that starting point. That point in time when you aren’t defined, yet you find yourself in each other's space more than not.  So, do you include him/her on your list? Will this scare them off if you include them or piss them off if you do not? The answer: If you haven’t shared a holiday with this person, then don’t go spending your holiday cash on a gift but plan a post-holiday hook-up (outside the bedroom), also known as a date for generations X and up. Pick a day/time between Christmas and NYE and have a blast. You might just end up with a new bae for the new year.


The New Bae 

So, you are a grown woman with the title “girlfriend”. Who cares! You are defined now, so what the heck are you going to get your boyfriend? Here’s a hint from my bae: MEN LIKE WHEN YOU LISTEN.  In the last months he’s probably dropped a few hints about his favorites, so pick them up! Get him a gift card for one of his favorite activities. BE SPECIFIC, an Amex or Visa gift card won’t cut it.  If he’s a gamer, sport fan, or chef- there’s a gift card for it.  Be creative with the presentation, if he’s a golfer present him with the gift of a tee-time at a local golf course, complete with personalized golf balls.  


If your man’s interests are even more specific, try a one of kind gift from a small business like Mancrates who offers curated crates for masculine interests, or visit Etsy and Amazon Handmade for gifts aimed at your bae’s hobbies and interests.


The Honeymooners

A gift card isn’t going to cut it anymore. You now have permanent pet names and have been through at least one holiday. Since you know he’s worth it, dig a little deeper. With 2020 keeping us sidelined, events are the way to set off 2021. Plan a short trip and take him to an away game. If he has a favorite band, check and see if they are playing smaller venues right now and buy some tickets.


Not a planner? No worries. If you are adventurous, Packupgo  is the way to go. They do ALL the planning with options spanning from the staycation to the surprise road/plane/train trip. You set the budget and travel parameters and the rest is a surprise for him and you!  


The Long Haul 

When you’ve gifted everything from ties to diamonds it’s time to step back and use the knowledge you’ve obtained over the years to think outside of the box. A gift that provides more than one experience helps keep the coming year exciting!  The Couples Bucket List is the perfect gift for a long-term relationship that provides some inspiration for dates and adventures.  Gift it on Christmas and work your way through your top 12 choices throughout the new year. 


Or you can return to the basics and keep it simple. Gather a few of your loves favorite things in multiples and give him 12 Days of Christmas! Each day presenting him with one to twelve of his faves. You can wrap them individually for a daily drop off that will keep him counting the days, or gift him a HUGE box of holiday spirit on Christmas day.


Regardless of where you are in your love story – do not lose sight of the point of the holiday and the importance of one another.


Image of our fav new cover option from our luxury album company

Finding Gratitude

In our effort to put 2020 behind us and ring in 2021, the holidays may seem even more important. Jack o’ lanterns have quickly been replaced with wreaths, and holiday music is on repeat. It’s almost easy to overlook Thanksgiving in the rush toward the end of the year, but I invite you to slow down. The holiday that urges us to give thanks for our blessings may be a sore note for those of us particularly affected these past months. I understand, trust me, my family has also felt the strain of this year, but as the year nears an end I am beginning to remember some wisdom that was once handed down to me. While November 27th is Thanksgiving, living a life of continued gratitude keeps you in the spirit all year round.  Yes, I know this sounds a bit like a bad self-help book or a Hallmark Christmas card you found in the back of your junk drawer - but hear me out.


At the beginning of the year, at the onset of Covid, I was online and I spotted a book I had to have “I NEED A DRINK, an inner truth journal”. I intended to use it as a means to vent about all that was going on in the world. Yet, as soon as I purchased it I was challenged by a friend to begin a gratitude journal. This is the same friend who suckers me into making a vision board every January. Given Covid-19 wasn’t on any of our vision boards, I wouldn’t say I had much faith in this suggestion. Not one to back down from a challenge (and I was in quarantine), I accepted.


Each day I had to search for something to be grateful for, and sometimes I couldn’t find it in me to write anything more than a line or two. The economy, COVID, the ongoing news cycle all made it hard to see straight. I started off small and somedays I had to stretch it (“I am grateful for coffee, so I don’t doze off during this Zoom meeting”). It sucked but somehow I stuck with it and slowly I began to see things differently. My perspective began to shift and my journal entries grew longer. My need “for a drink” decreased as I started to look at the positive much easier than I had before. 


Listen, I am a cynic who acknowledges I need self-improvement. I mean, you won’t’ find me in the Self Help section of Barnes & Noble (because I have a Kindle), but there is something to be said about an attitude of gratitude. My friend gave me a gift that I didn’t know I needed and could never repay, so I’m paying it forward. 


I invite you to purchase a journal, something you want to write in, and take a moment a day to reflect. What do you have to be grateful for this year, and just the big things that we so often say around the Thanksgiving table. Take a moment and highlight the small things - those often overlooked. You’d be surprised how small things can make a big difference.


Try it.


You can thank me later.


That's What She Said: Marissa

I wasn’t a stranger to Mirrored Images; I have friends who are ambassadors of the brand; heck, I’ve even modeled for their Shameless collection. However, I never thought I could or would book an actual session. I always made the excuse of the costs, but would quickly find myself spending the same money elsewhere. Even when Mirrored posted a holiday deal or other incentive, I’d find another reason (I can’t get off work, I need to lose another # pounds, etc.). Finally, I was honest and admitted as a wife/partner, I’d lost myself. My self-esteem paid the price and it oozed out of me into my sexual, personal, and professional lives.  I needed to do something to bring my sexy back.

The Decision:

This time I wasn’t going to give myself time to back out, and I typed When the page loaded, I quickly chose Book a Shoot, and there in black and white typeface on the website were the words I needed to hear..THERE’S NO BETTER TIME THAN NOW.  So I selected the 1-Hr package and completed the questionnaire.  I made mention of what I wanted to see from the images and the experience I wanted. Jenn is great at both light and dark imagery, and I specifically wanted a Boss Bi*ch feel to my shoot. I needed to remember who I was.


The Prep: A few days later, I got an email from Mirrored Images. A complete soup to nuts guide on what I could expect the day of, hair and makeup timelines, my e-invoice (for deposit or payment in full), and a helpful guide on where and what to purchase for the shoot if I chose.

In the following weeks, I got lost in purchasing lingerie and emailing back and forth with Jenn/Jamie about my makeup and photo ideas. While professional, the banter was more like speaking with my talented friends rather than a hired vendor. So, it didn’t surprise me that the weeks leading to the shot flew by and before you know it, I’m shotgunning water by the liter to ensure I’m not bloated for my call time the following day.


The Shoot:  It was the first shoot of the day, and the ladies at Mirrored Images helped me rev my energy with a great playlist. You can bring your own playlist, but Jenn’s selections were a vibe. Jamie and I played with colors, and my final look was fun and fierce! I laid out the lingerie I’d brought along for the day and, with Jenn & Jamie’s cheering, made some daring additions from the studio’s in-house selections of lingerie and stilettos.

I was nervous and took direction from Jenn to “breath through my mouth” as a knelt on the studio’s blue sofa. From then on, it was a blur, not rushed, but in that way on your birthday or wedding day when you’ve planned all you can and the day has finally come. You can now let go and enjoy it!  I knew I was in good hands and just had a good time. The hour flew by.


The Sneak Peek & Photo Review:

Within 48 hours, there was another email from Jenn in my inbox; this time, it included a bonus, a sneak peek of my shot. With those two images, I knew I was in trouble - hide my wallet, having only seen the two, I knew I wanted them ALL.

A week later, we reviewed the images (nearly 100) during our scheduled appointment, and I Yes/No’d my way down to my top 20 picks. It wasn’t easy; Jenn’s lens caught so many great angles and images - some we’d discussed and some sexy surprises. Somehow she’d highlighted all the best parts of me (my soul included).


The Final Result:

There are many affordable options to memorialize the images - a bound book, a metal wall hanging, a painted portrait, or just the beautiful digital images. Since the photoshoot and the photos were for me, I chose the latter, with the right to print them in the future. When I have a special spot for them, I will showcase my art, front and center. For now, they will be my little secret, a battery for me to draw from when my sense of self depletes.

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Stitch Fix Review

If you are like me and have given seconds to google a new product, watch a pet video or explore a travel destination, your social feeds become flooded with sponsored ads enticing you to make your slight interest a purchase reality. Normally, I scroll past. I don’t have time to fill out another from or remember another login. 


Thankfully, over the past few months I’ve started to learn the value in slowing down a bit. So, with my eyes half open one morning I SLOWLY scrolled by an ad I normally ignore for STITCH FIX. Stitch Fix offers curated clothing selected by a stylist and sent to your home. Sounds great right. Well, normally NO.  Don’t get me wrong, I hate lines and actively avoid brick and mortar stores when at all possible for fashion purchases. Online shopping is my go-to, but turning over my style choices to someone I don’t know? I wasn’t sold. 


There are many of these companies out there now, so selecting one is a daunting task. However, there is so much athleisure a woman can wear and there comes a time to face the music, or rather my closet and the realization I was missing a few pieces for the Fall season. I looked at the $20 styling fee required and in the words of Park and Recreation, I thought “Treat Yo’Self” and I did. 


EASE: Thanks to the power of Facebook, I bypassed the added memory required for another login; closed my eyes while paying the styling fee and completed a series of small questionnaires about my sizing, budget and personal style. I went about my day and truthfully, I didn’t think much of it. Until the box arrived. 


STYLE: I expected a few items to either fit poorly or not fit my personal style so I prepared myself. I opened the box to find a selection of blouses, a sweater I LOVED, a shade of denim I didn’t own and a colored denim jacket I didn’t know I needed until I got it and NOW I must have it. The color selections were in season. The choices were smart and things I couldn’t find myself. The jacket and sweater were transitional and considerate of my state’s weather. 


FIT: The items all fit. PURRFECTLY and this is hard. I am a pear shape, but just so. I have a short torso, wide hips, smaller waist and broad shoulders. I love luxe items, but I live on a budget. I will normally purchase more affordable denim, etc., but find myself needing to replace them yearly because of normal wear/tear. Yet I never do and my wardrobe suffers. Enter Stitch Fix, or rather Stitch FIT!  When the questionnaire asked about my waist size, preferred fit and the profile of my tummy, yes, it asked that I was a bit offended, but when I tried on the clothes, I got it. The jeans fit me perfectly without a belt, but wear loose enough for all day comfort. The sweater was fitted, but flattering. The jacket zipped! [applause]. The blouses were basics and items I had in my wardrobe, so though they fit well they will be returned. 


PRICING:  I set the parameters for the costs for the stylist to choose, and each piece came within range. However, I compared the costs of each piece via Stitch Fix with online vendors and they were comparable, if not less. The quality of each made me more accepting of the slightly higher price tag per item than I am used to shopping at local chain stores. Also, when I consider I most likely will not need to replace these items next fall, that is worth the added cents.  So with a few clicks the jeans, jacket and sweater are now mine to keep for under $200. 


As I place the items I didn't select in the mail for return I am already planning on debuting my new additions during our holiday visits. Surprisingly I do not have buyers remorse secure in the knowledge that I will not have to unbutton my jeans when it’s all done. In the meantime I can’t wait to see what my next box has in store for Winter.

Ready to see for yourself?  Use this link and get $25 off your first order.  

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Selfish Isn't a Bad Word

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To be a woman in today's world you need to be a three-ring circus act.  A juggler for your daily responsibilities, a contortionist for your evening show, and if you are a mom, you can add on an entire tent to your troupe.

Women are expected to be nurturers, kind, and open, the heart of the family, and strong support for our children and our spouses.  From a child, we are taught to make ourselves smaller.  Cross your legs/ankles, keep your posture tight [don't slouch], speak when spoken to….and the list goes on.  We are taught to build friendships early on by sharing, exchanging, and bonding and we build ourselves around these relationships.

Eventually, you wake up one day and you realize between the kid's schedules, your spouse, your job, and your friends/family social obligations you don't have a moment to yourself.  During these past months with Covid-19 and everyone being home, I am sure these responsibilities have only multiplied. I know you are sitting here reading this blog while [figuratively] spinning plates on your head, but I ask you to STOP for a minute and ask yourself...

"What have I done for me lately?"

[think about it; I'll wait].

See the problem with that question is that though we don't like to admit it, it sparks the feeling that in some way SELF-CARE is SELFISH.  I am here to tell you it's not!

Board a plane and the flight attendant will tell you that in an emergency you must put your mask on before you help another.  But why do you have to wait until an emergency to put yourself first?  I think the difference between selfish and self-care is just a matter of how you balance it.  If you don't believe me, just watch a man.

Men, single or married will make time for themselves.  Whether it's a boy’s night, sports, going to the gym, or just hanging out in the backyard, they make the time.  They don't apologize for it, they prioritize it.  They make room for themselves.

Ladies, you must make room for yourself.  You need to take up more space.  Whether that means you pencil in some time into your daily, weekly, or monthly schedule, or you simply steal a few minutes here and there.  YOU need to be a priority for YOU.  Don't sit around waiting for someone to give you permission.  You are the star of this show, not a supporting character. Self-care and self-love aren't selfish, they're just smart.  Treat yourself accordingly and everyone else will benefit.

For many of us that have taken the plunge and scheduled a session with Mirrored Images, the initial poses are a bit strange, but it's the exploration of self that is awkward.  Placing your hands on your hips, popping your booty, or simply connecting with Jenn behind the camera feels foreign when you have trained yourself to be small. But that must stop.  The year is coming to an end and the holidays are approaching.  Before you delve head first into everyone and everything else, I challenge you to take some ME time, because there's only one YOU so take care of her.


eating disorder, mental health, body dysmorphia disorder, therapy, writer, journalist, self love, journey, empowerment, boudoir, boudoir photography

Body Dysmorphia Disorder

To the Me I See…


You could stand to lose some weight, those 5pds have been around 5 years too long.

If only you were taller/thinner, this outfit would look better

If you looked like the woman on TV/mags you’d have a man by now

If only your wave would end with your hand and not extend up your arm. You need to wear a jacket.

This was my inner dialogue while dealing with BDD.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder (or BDD) is an anxiety disorder that nearly ruined my life and continues to affect millions of women like me daily. Many people experience moments of insecurity and moments of vanity. It’s hard being a regular person living in a world in which we are bombarded with images where everything is photoshopped or enhanced in the pursuit of perfection. For most, they can make the distinction between what they see in the mirror and what’s real and these moments pass.

It’s not the same for someone with BDD.

I’ve cancelled on friends because I looked or felt too fat for everything in my closet. If I went out, I would go out and spend the entire evening obsessing about my outfit, hair or skin. Readjusting and picking at myself.  When I was home, I would spend hours researching plastic surgeons with hopes one could “fix me”. I hated shopping in stores, always afraid to come out into the main dressing room for fear someone would see. Oh, and summer! Summer would give me anxiety because I didn’t look like “others” in swimwear, so I would hide all season.

It took me years to realize that the me I see when I look into the mirror doesn’t have to be a destination, it’s a journey. It tells the story of me. Every scar, every bump, every wrinkle is me. It’s a trial, a triumph, a struggle, a victory that I got through.  I learned I needed to embrace this woman and give her the love and forgiveness that I would give one of my girlfriends if she were to speak about herself the way I thought internally. I decided to love myself and do the work to change. I’m still on the journey every day, but I’m much further along and I got there through lifestyle changes and therapy.

Speaking with a therapist who truly understood BDD and realized that my thoughts were more than just vanity, they’d become the soundtrack of my life.  Being validated rather than reprimanded or reassured, was a major turning point for me. My therapist helped me make changes to my lifestyle and challenged me to make decisions that would make me uncomfortable but stimulate growth.

Eventually...I decided to wear the bikini, NOW, and not 5pds from now. I chose to be kind to myself at every stage and every weight rather than delaying the love for a day not promised. I realized tags were sewn on the inside for a reason, it’s no one’s business, but your own. I decided to put my money where my mouth is and schedule a boudoir session, for no one else but ME.

And...yes, Jenn and her team made me feel like a queen for the day, but I felt empowered by the decision to even be there.  When the images came through for my review, I really looked at them, every inch, every curve, every wrinkle. I am now at a point in my life that when I see those images up on my wall, I will finally see ME.


I want that for you too. If you are still unhappy with the she you see and would like to speak with someone who understands there are some great options out there. Let’s take the journey together.


eating disorder, mental health, body dysmorphia disorder, therapy, writer, journalist, self love, journey, empowerment, boudoir, boudoir photographyeating disorder, mental health, body dysmorphia disorder, therapy, writer, journalist, self love, journey, empowerment, boudoir, boudoir photography