A couple of weeks ago, I was lucky enough to have been chosen to work with Red Shoe Makeovers – a photography makeover studio in Chester. I already knew of the company as a fellow blogging friend, two in fact, had had makeovers over the past couple of years and I was so impressed by the finished photos, that it soon became something that I put on my bucket list of Things I Must Do Before I Turn 50.
I had mentioned on Facebook that I’d had a makeover photoshoot once before, in my 20s, and it was very old-fashioned. All soft focus and satin sheets draped over my shoulders, and I was adamant that if I ever did a photoshoot again, it categorically couldn’t be like that. And boy, this really wasn’t.
So firstly, a little introduction to Sarah, the photographer, because she is so instrumental in not just the creation of beautiful images, but to how I feel about the whole experience. And that’s what it was, an experience. I was there for the day, having my make-up done by the beautiful Nicole at Goddess Make-Up Classes, who did a stunning job, and they were women I felt a connection to immediately. Sarah and I had chatted via email a few times before the shoot because she likes to make everyone feel comfortable beforehand, and answer any questions they have, but from the moment we all met, we didn’t stop chatting all day.
WHAT TO BRING
Anything you like. My photos were only taken from waist up, so I just thought about colours and necklines, but take more rather than less. I took a selection of dresses, jewellery, a casual white top, a sexy black lacey slip that I wore under a floral blouse and a few different plain coloured tops. Sarah took them all out and created five different looks from what I’d brought.
As you can see, Nicole did a great job, but don’t worry that it looks like you’re wearing a lot more than usual, it’ll look less scary in the photos. I never do much with my eyebrows so panicked a bit when I looked in the mirror, but in the photos they look on point!
HOW TO POSE
I was worried I wouldn’t know how to pose properly, that I’d feel awkward and look ridiculous, but Sarah addresses that from the beginning by running through Posing 101 with you. She explains how she’s going to ask you to move in front of the camera, how to place your hands, your hips, how to look right down the lens and before you know it, it all feels natural. Trust me. Sarah’s job is to make you look good not silly, so trust that she knows what she’s doing when she directs you and I promise you won’t be disappointed … and by the time the photoshoot is over, you’ll want to do it all over again.
I found myself sharing my deepest secrets with Sarah, she just has that aura about her that you want to be honest and open with her, and she was with me, and as we got to know each other more during the photoshoot, we both cried because we recognised a pain and beauty within each other. Now that’s not to say that you have to be like that with her, but that’s what she brought out in me. And it felt good. I’m not a big crier, I hold onto a lot of pain still and it was so cathartic for me to let it go, just for a day, so I can’t thank her enough for creating an environment where I felt so safe.
This photoshoot was gifted to me to review, I’ve been upfront about that, but it was truly one of the best experiences of my life and one I’ll never forget. I don’t say that lightly, and I certainly don’t get any commission for sending people Sarah’s way, but I truly believe that every woman should experience this. Not just because of the amazing photos at the end, but … and it’s quite hard to sit here and explain it, but because of the experience itself. The fact that it is something 100% for you. That it’s ALL ABOUT YOU. FOR you. So that you can see yourself in a different light but still see that it’s you shining through those photos.
Anyway, here they are.
I know these photos are pretty glamorous and, as my best friend said today, totally wasted on the men of Tinder, but I guess that’s the point. They’re for me. I still see me when I look at them, not ‘soft focus, satin sheet around the shoulders’ Kate.
Was it worth me driving all the way from Kent to Chester? Hell yes. I look at these photos and not only feel beautiful and confident, especially when some days I feel anything but, but I’m reminded of the deep connection and love women can have for one another, even strangers. And that my friends, is priceless.
Prices start at £100.
Contact Sarah HERE or on : 07826 847113