Maybe Glamour Shots Weren’t So Ridiculous After All


Truth time.

How many of you remember Glamour Shots? (Yes, this dates those of us who do.)

For those of you who have no idea what I am talking about, Glamour Shots entailed heading to the mall, getting your hair and makeup done, and then a photo shoot. For some reason, there always seemed to be a feather boa involved. (I am still not entirely sure about that one.) Glamour Shots were all the rage when I was a preteen/early adolescent. I never actually got to have one done, but man, did I want to! Many of my friends had this opportunity and I remember thinking the pictures were… well… glamorous.

Fast forward and now those images are a bit of a cheesy glimpse at what it was like growing up in the 80s and early 90s. I laugh at the young me who wanted so badly to have her own photo session. Seriously, what was I thinking?

You know what though… after a recent experience, I get it now. I understand why those pictures were so appealing to the young women around me. It’s not about the picture, the feather boa, or the pretty hair (if 80s hair can be called pretty). It was about the feeling that came with it, especially during a time in our lives when we often feel uncomfortable in our own skin. I will be the first to tell you that external beauty is not where it’s at. It’s the person’s mind, personality, kindness, and more which really matter, but wanting to feel good on the outside isn’t as awful as society makes us believe it is as long as it comes with a healthy side of perspective. It is completely possible (and healthy) for them to walk hand in hand.

[quote]Do you know a girl that struggles with self-confidence? This is for her.[/quote]

I was in tears recently when a dear friend and local photographer, Ali Wolfe Photography, offered to let my oldest daughter (who has experienced a year with some challenging social transitions) participate in what she was calling Mighty Girl Minis. We got to spend an hour focused on showering my daughter with positive attention, while she got her hair and makeup done by Kellyann Tracy and then participated in a photo shoot, modern-day Glamour Shots-style, with a significantly higher level of talent in the finished product.

Photo Credit: Ali Wolfe Photography / Hair & Makeup: Kellyann Tracy

And while, yes, the external beauty was on display, that wasn’t the takeaway. My daughter left feeling GOOD about herself… her whole self. Yes, she felt pretty on the outside and reflected on that the rest of the day, but it was the confidence she walked away with that was palpable to me. She didn’t stop smiling once and I don’t believe that was because we did her hair and makeup and made her the center of attention like a supermodel. I think it’s because the women in the room honored HER. Her opinions, her preferences, her personality, and spent the better part of an hour telling her she was incredible in all kinds of subtle ways.

[quote]Are you an entrepreneur who hustles every day with the hopes of achieving something great? This is for you.[/quote]

Photo Credit: Ali Wolfe Photography / Hair & Makeup: Kellyann Tracy

It was later that evening when a friend posted an old picture of her Glamour Shots session that it clicked for me. The pictures are memories and keepsakes, but it’s not about that. It’s about being seen and feeling good about yourself. Giving people authentic attention can be magical. Recognizing strengths and admirable personality traits is empowering. These Mighty Girl mini-sessions did that for my daughter and for women of all ages. A simple session in front of the camera was actually a way to say “you are incredible and incredibly unique and worth the time and attention being showered on you in recognition of that”.

[quote]Do you know a mother who gives everything she has to her role? This is for her.[/quote]

We are surrounded by beautiful women and it isn’t one thing that makes them that way. It’s 100 different things from basic determination to get through challenging times, to giving of oneself to others, to smiling at a stranger. There is so much that makes us beautiful, but sometimes it takes something external to help us see that. That is what these pictures stand for and why so many of my peers have those feather boa pictures hidden somewhere in their house.

Everyone could use some “Glamour Shots” moments in their lives.


Special thank you to Ali Wolfe (Photography) and Kellyann Tracy (Hair & Makeup). This post is not sponsored by these two women and their businesses but is my attempt to say thank you for what they did for my daughter that Saturday morning. The experience was as amazing as it was because these women are amazing, not only in their professions, but as human beings.


  1. I absolutely love every bit of this! I know firsthand how beautiful your daughter is on the inside, but I love the glow of her feeling good about herself inside and out in these photos! Ali is truly incredible. I had to smile to myself in your opening remarks, as I had an older cousin in New York that got Glamour Shots done in high school, and I looked up to her so much. I thought she was the most beautiful thing and that I would never be as pretty as she. As an adult, I visited grandparents, and they still had some of those glamorous Glamour Shots up on the fridge and framed on the wall. I thought it was ridiculous as a young adult – that feather boa and all… It only seemed so crazy, because my cousin is so down-to-earth and a teacher, and she would probably laugh at herself as well all grown up. I’m sure the fact that my Aunt did that for her made her feel beautiful as she started out high school and probably gave her some healthy self-confidence she might not otherwise have had. Thank you for sharing this and all the lessons!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here