Should You Do a First Look?

Alright, let’s settle this once and for all. I get this question a lot from couples who’ve started planning their wedding day timeline. Instead of puzzling over this one for hours with your fiancé, I’m gonna lay it all down for you and make it real simple.

You Should Do a First look If:

– You want more time with your guests and want to attend cocktail hour

– You want to get bride and groom, wedding party, and family portraits done at the beginning of the day so everyone can relax after that.

– You’re concerned about your hair and makeup holding up all day

– You want portraits done at somewhere other than your ceremony or reception venue

– You’re intensely nervous about going down the aisle.

– You don’t have a lot of flexibility on time at your venue

Don’t do a first look if :

– You want to have the big church reveal. Keep in mind that your groom will not only see you if you do a first look, but also your family and close guests.

– Your s/o really wants it to be a surprise- respect that.

– You want your portraits at the reception venue, but won’t start your day there.

– You have enough flexibility in planning your timeline that you can just add a bit of extra time in between the ceremony and reception.


It comes down to this; Doing a first look, getting portraits done at the beginning of the day is just really convenient and can be a stress saver for a lot of couples. Things tend not to be quite as rushed and generally more relaxed.

Now, for other couples, it’s not practical to do a first look or maybe it’s their personal preference and that’s totally fine too.

My husband and I decided against doing a first look even though I knew it could make things a little simpler.

I’ve seen either way work out really nicely so long as couples thoughtfully consider their timeline.

My last little tidbit for those of you who are worried that a first look will make the walk down the aisle less special, I can tell you confidently from experience that it does not!

I hope this was helpful to you!


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