These Adorable Photos Make the Case for Having a First Look on Your Wedding Day
The first time you see your future husband or wife on the wedding day, you're bound to be filled with emotion. That's why so many photographers recommend making a mini event out of it. While there's nothing wrong with locking eyes at the ceremony, many couples choose to have a first look before their vow exchange. It's a little more private, it can calm pre-wedding jitters, and it often results in some truly incredible portraits. To show you what we mean, we've gathered some of our favorite first look photos and shared suggestions for optimizing yours.
No two couples are exactly the same, and neither are any two first look sessions. In fact, that's what makes them so beautiful. How you and your partner approach your reveal will say a lot about your relationship. In turn, whatever reactions you have in that moment will help personalize your photo album. That being said, we're all for offering inspiration. The following couples' poses, first look venues, and more provide plenty of that, as do our accompanying tips.
If you've already decided to incorporate the tradition into your big day, these first look ideas will help you make the most of the special moment. On the other hand, if you're still uncertain if you want one, these snapshots might just sway you. Whatever the case, we hope these images get you excited for your wedding. If they're any indication of how blissful marriage can be, you've got a lot to look forward to.
Behind Closed Doors
Ensure you're hidden until the big reveal. These brides appeared from behind closed doors to amplify the effect.
Tears of Joy
Don't be afraid to shed a tear—the pure emotion only enhanced these photos.
Rain or Shine
Mother Nature is no match for true love. This couple's rainy portrait session proved that their relationship could weather any storm.
Love and Laughter
Go ahead and have fun during your first look. This couple's photo session was full of laughter, and the photos were all the more adorable because of it.
Hand in Hand
These two held hands as they soaked in the moment. We're all for incorporating touch into your first look—it's sure to calm any pre-ceremony nerves.
Put some thought into your first look venue: The right lighting can make all the difference (as shown by this couple's romantic spot).
Sight and touch are just pieces of the puzzle, so try using all your senses to fully engrave the moment in memory. This groom kept his ears perked, for example. "When she was walking up behind me, before I turned around, her dress sounded like a ship's sail coming in," he recalled.
These two fell into each other's arms during their first look, which made for an amazing photo.
Love's a Journey
For a dramatic entrance, try descending down a scenic path to your bride or groom. In this case, that meant a dock ramp.
Let your body do the talking—this groom buckled over with excitement.
Down the Aisle
These two chose to simulate the bride's walk down the aisle for their first look—only this time, the moment was beautifully private.
When the waterworks start, you'll want backup. We recommend bringing along a hankie, as this smart groom did.
All Dressed Up
Take a cue from these two and get a gander of each other's outfits. After all, the ensembles are bound to be special.
You have every right to take the opportunity to show off your looks. This couple proved that point further.
Act like no one's watching for truly authentic images. This couple only had eyes for each other.
Calm and Collected
There's no better comfort than a hug from your partner before you exchange vows. This photo radiates the ease these two felt as soon as they saw each other.
Ask your photographer to capture your expressions before the first look, too. We're sure this couple will love looking back on the adorable anticipation they felt.
Look of Love
This groom's excitement was obvious as he shared a first look with his future wife.
These grooms flashed the biggest smiles for the camera—and for each other.
Too Good to Be True
The groom's hand gestures made this photo.
Go the Distance
If it feels more comfortable, ask to be photographed from afar. These brides proved the result is just as gorgeous.
Make sure you give yourselves enough time to really process what's happening. You never know how many tissue breaks you'll need during the first look portrait session. (We know this couple had a few!)
Love's in the Air
The emotion was tangible in this first look room.
Catch Your Breath
Trust us, you'll have all the feels. Take it from this couple.
Lend a Hand
This kind groom was quick to dry his bride's happy tears.
Here to Help
On the flipside, this bride was there to wipe away her groom's.
Here's another example of the beauty of a little privacy. We're obsessed with this perspective.
Complements to this photographer, who gorgeously captured the magic of the moment for the soon-to-be husband and wife pictured.
Soak It In
Our best advice is simple: savor the first look. It's one of the only chances you'll get for some "alone time." (And, of course, savor each other—that's what these two did.)
Here are more smiles to warm your heart. We're not crying, you are.
When Jaws Drop
Timing truly is everything—you'll want snapshots of every great expression on your faces. For example, we're glad the photographer captured this bride as her jaw literally dropped.
We love how these two mirrored one another as they awed over each other's outfits.
You might just be surprised by your partner's happy tears—especially if he or she rarely cries!
Overwhelmed with Emotion
This ecstatic groom pointed to his beautiful bride in disbelief.
Winds of Change
A breeze gave this portrait an ethereal feel (no wonder the groom looked at his bride like she was sent straight from heaven).