I’m going to be honest, I am writing this post for selfish reasons (that sounds awful, am I right?) but my selfishness stems from wanting to give you the best wedding day ever and to have those images that you will pass down from generation to generation. Beyond questioning if I should hit “publish” on this, I know that some people might not agree with what I’ll be saying and to that, I say: hey, you rock, it’s all good but here’s what I think about this wedding day phenomenon and why you should truly consider it. You ready? Awesome, me too! So, what is a first look anyways? Good, I’m glad you asked. It’s a special time for a groom and bride to see one another in their wedding day attire before the wedding day takes over. This can be on the day of, or days before during a bridal session! Whoa, what? He sees her before she walks down the aisle… that’s crazy talk. No, no, actually it isn’t. Here’s why you should consider doing a first look during your bridal session days before your wedding, or earlier on that wedding day of yours!

1. This is your first memory together as bride and groom

This is probably the most important reason. Can we talk about how romantic and special this idea is?! What an amazing way to create this tender memory together as bride and groom. This moment can bring huge smiles that hurt your face, shouts of joy from surprise, and even some happy tears making it that much more real. You may not experience the same reactions toward one another down the isle. Maybe because you might be distracted by Aunt Lucy trying to take a photo of you, or your nephew running around with the ring box. All i'm saying is, you are both getting the freedom to really show your true emotions, your true happiness in this moment when it is just the two of you. These photos allow for that experience of the groom to be blown away by his stunning bride. A first look is tailored toward the couple, not the family. This is telling your story, your feelings, your happily ever after.

2. You won’t waste your wedding day hiding from one another

No, serious, I won’t have to hold up a sheet to hide you when you need to use the restroom. We won’t shove your groom into a coat closet to avoid seeing you and you won’t waste precious hours of your wedding day avoiding the person you’re about to spend the rest of your life with. Do you think I’m kidding? I have literally done all of those things in an attempt to keep the suspense for that aisle moment. Why would you want to spend so many hours avoiding each other? Your wedding day is here! Don’t wait until 4pm to get the party started. If you do a first look, you’ll get to spend more precious moments together and you won’t have to hide in a coat closet (that’s reason enough, if you ask me!)

3 This might be your only chance to be alone together on the big day

What? You think you’ll get a ton of alone time when your wedding day is here? Think again. You are going to be documented, surrounded, and consumed with guests, wedding party, vendors, and everyone in between. When will you be able to pull away and just bask in the fact that you are a bride and he is a groom and today you are saying “I do.” When I shoot first looks on the day of your wedding, I set things up to help the photographic opportunities rock, then I step back and give you a few minutes alone. Whether you talk about what you ate for lunch, cry tears of joy, and make sure your fiancé brushed his teeth is up to you but doesn’t a few minutes alone sound pretty amazing? I think so, too!

4. It takes the pressure off

Let’s be honest, men are visual but they could care less about what designer made your dress. Chances are, you are swearing you won’t be nervous on your wedding day. I’m here to call your bluff. It doesn’t mean you are nervous about the actual marriage, it just means you are anxious about making sure the day goes smoothly. Let me tell you this secret: nothing, I mean nothing, will ever take away from the moment when you are walking down the aisle. Your husband won’t be inspecting if you have French or English lace, they won’t care if you went mermaid or trumpet on your dress, they will be staring into your eyes. I promise you this, I have never had a first look take away from that moment. If anything, it enhances it because the dude isn’t trying to take in every little detail you’ve been talking about for the 8+ months, he is just basking in the fact that you are his and he is yours. Seeing one another before the ceremony takes the pressure off, gives you time to react, spin, laugh, cry, and hug without a few hundred people watching it happen. Seriously, just think about that.

5. It’ll ease up your schedule - more time for celebrating!

When you have your bridal session and first look days before, this can really go a long way with your wedding day schedule. It opens up so much time for you to relax, grab a drink, and enjoy your wedding day with the people you love. For example, if you have planned having drinks after the ceremony and you are paying for it, you better believe you will get to sip on your signature cocktail or Dirty Diet Coke, rather than taking those few hours away to take photos with family, friends, the wedding party, and then your bridals. Does that sound a bit exhausting? When you do a first look earlier in the wedding day or during your bridal session days before, you allow so much time for a lot of the necessary photos to be taken prior to the ceremony. These include: wedding party images and family photo time! This also allows your friends and family to have that quality time, who are at your wedding to support you and love you. I mean, there’s nothing worse than an absent bride and groom at their own party. Your wedding day isn’t a photo shoot, it’s a living, breathing phenomenon that just happens to be captured. And who knows... you might even get some time to sneak in a more "unique" way to do a first look, like the one below!

I know, I know, you thought it was SO romantic when your groom told you he didn’t want to see you until that major aisle moment, but the truth is the tradition of not seeing one another dates back to the days of arranged marriages, when people were fearful if they saw one another before the ceremony, it would offer them a chance to back out and change their minds. You’re not having an arranged marriage, right? Whew. Now that that’s settled, I love to talk to clients about this, I love to share our own wedding day experience, I love to tell the tales of first looks and beautiful days and easy schedules. If you want to talk more about this, holler at your girl but I beg you, plead with you, to at least consider this. It isn’t for everyone, but it does work for so so many, and is one of the hottest trends of 2020. I have never, ever had a couple regret it… ever. So, should you do a first look? You know how I feel! Did you do a first look? Comment below and tell me about your experience and if you’d recommend it!