5 Things to Know About Nude & Lingerie Modeling Online (Interview with Dekilah)

[Image: Dekilah with red garter, stockings, and black thong]
Modeling has changed drastically in the time of COVID-19.

Due to social dis­tanc­ing mea­sures, my for­mer day job (pos­ing nude for art class­es) isn't much of an option any­more. Nor are col­lab­o­ra­tive photoshoots.

Because of these changes, there's an influx of peo­ple try­ing boudoir mod­el­ing or adult work online.

There's no cir­cum­vent­ing, how­ev­er, that it's a form of work with pros and cons. It's like how any­one can start a sex blog, but most blog­gers stop post­ing with­in a year. Doing it for fun is okay, but gain­ing enough traf­fic to make mon­ey takes time.

I inter­viewed Dekilah, a super expe­ri­enced model/​creator of sen­su­al pho­tos and video con­tent, about what you need to know to start lin­gerie or nude mod­el­ing online.

Her style is more fine art nudes, but you can adapt this infor­ma­tion to any online sex-​positive work, includ­ing sex toy reviewing.

1. You can get started with things you likely already have.

"The main thing would be a smart­phone for pho­tos and videos," says Dekilah. "I would rec­om­mend a tri­pod for your phone as well, which you can get for about $20."

Personally, I use a tri­pod with either nat­ur­al light or an adjustable LED ring light. For self-​portraiture specif­i­cal­ly, I like using a Bluetooth phone cam­era shut­ter. The results feel more nat­ur­al because I'm not wait­ing for a self-​timer to go off.

Your set­up may be more elab­o­rate, espe­cial­ly if you choose to mod­el for an adult live chat site.

"You can real­ly get into invest­ing in wardrobe/​outfits, lights, props, etc. but those things aren't required."

2. The investment in time will almost always be more significant.

[Image: Dekilah modeling gold satin lingerie and black lace-top stockings]

I think peo­ple have this mis­con­cep­tion that sell­ing nudes online is as easy as being naked in front of a cam­era or snap­ping mir­ror pho­tos. That's only part of the truth; mak­ing mon­ey on OnlyFans, Patreon, and sim­i­lar sites demands skill with both cam­eras and busi­ness.

"You'll need to exper­i­ment with cam­era angles and set­tings," says Dekilah. "At min­i­mum, you'll at least need to spend time learn­ing to fig­ure out a set­up that works for you."

If you're not super experienced with doing a variety of poses, here's a suggestion:

Try a phone app that you can pro­gram to take a pic­ture every few sec­onds. DailyRoads Voyager is a dash­cam app for long dri­ves, but I've used it for por­traits and yoga pho­tos galore.

Let it run for a few min­utes while try­ing out the pos­si­ble posi­tions. Then review the pho­tos, note what you like and what could be bet­ter, and make adjust­ments as need­ed. As well, my post about mod­el­ing nude for art class­es has sug­ges­tions for find­ing new pos­es to try.

You'll also need to spend time cultivating a fanbase.

"That's the #1 thing you need to do to be suc­cess­ful," says Dekilah. "Usually, that will mean build­ing a sol­id social media pres­ence on at least one platform."

For me, that's been FetLife in the past and now Instagram (main: @super­s­mash­cache + back­up: @smash​.click). For Dekilah, that's Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.

3. Find your niche; you appeal to a specific group of people.

5 Things to Know About Nude & Lingerie Modeling Online (Interview with Dekilah) 1

"You can't try to make every­one like you or your look/​style," says Dekilah. "Instead, you should focus on find­ing the peo­ple who already like what you do. That's where learn­ing to tar­get your pro­mo­tions comes in."

And because every­one has a slight­ly dif­fer­ent audi­ence, she adds that she doesn't find it excep­tion­al­ly competitive.

"It is, but there is so much cross-​promotion and sup­port between creators/​models that it doesn't feel like it. I learn a lot by fol­low­ing oth­ers, and many of us open­ly share tips & advice."

4. Progress isn't linear, though. You don't always know when a platform's algorithm or censorship policies will change.

"The biggest frus­tra­tion I've had was last year when I woke up one morn­ing to find my 45k fol­low­ers Instagram just gone," says Dekilah. "I had worked so care­ful­ly to build my fol­low­ing organ­i­cal­ly and to try to fol­low the rules, and I'd had absolute­ly no warn­ings at least months before that."

She's not alone — my fellow sex bloggers have dealt with something similar, too.

Kate Sloan has had thou­sands of dol­lars frozen in her PayPal account. Quinn Rhodes has been cen­sored on Patreon. Dangerous Lilly saw no point in post­ing on Facebook if its algo­rithm wasn't going to show her con­tent to read­ers, anyway.

"While many mod­els with sim­i­lar expe­ri­ences were even­tu­al­ly able to get their account back, I nev­er was able to get mine back," adds Dekilah. "That was a seri­ous hit to my income."

She's also had issues with YouTube.

"Creating videos as 'teasers' for con­tent on oth­er sites is not allowed on YouTube. Even though they build in the func­tion­al­i­ty to link to Patreon, for exam­ple, if you use that to encour­age peo­ple to view more reveal­ing videos on anoth­er site, they may flag your account. If they flag you, you can lose your account."

As such, it's a good idea to diversify on social media and make your own website

That's why I moved my blog from WordPress​.com to an adult-​friendly host. Even if you're work­ing on a web­site specif­i­cal­ly for live web­cam girls, poli­cies on "vanil­la" sites may still affect your mar­ket­ing strategy.

5. Nude modeling online is real work, but some work is more enjoyable than others.

[Image: Dekilah modeling black lingerie and heels]

It has its ups and downs, for sure. Sometimes, main­tain­ing mod­el­ing inspi­ra­tion as a cre­ative for cap­i­tal­ist con­sump­tion is dif­fi­cult. And, "as with any oth­er small busi­ness, it's on me to present myself appro­pri­ate­ly," says Dekilah. "That means cus­tomer ser­vice and deal­ing with neg­a­tive and inap­pro­pri­ate mes­sages & comments."

When I asked what she loved about her work, though, she respond­ed, "I love that I have a way to cre­ate both by myself (self-​portraits) and with oth­ers (by pos­ing for oth­er pho­tog­ra­phers). I love that I get to cel­e­brate my form & fig­ure, fund my lin­gerie addic­tion, and helps me sup­port myself."

"But I think the thing I love the most is that I get to connect with people. I'm told my content is a bright spot for many people, and that is something that is so incredibly satisfying."

Where to find more of Dekilah's modeling online

Heads up! This post was spon­sored. As always, my thoughts are freely expressed and compiled.

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