The Great Debate: First Looks

A pint-size flower girl methodically placing rose petals, a handful of beautiful bridesmaids floating through the church, the bride’s proud parents walking down the aisle…


Those are all sweet & whatev, but you know what we’re all waiting for?

The groom’s reaction.

That’s why “first looks” are so controversial. If you don’t know what a first look is, it’s a new photography-based trend in which the bride presents herself (in her wedding dress) to her groom, pre-ceremony, in a secluded area that allows the couple to express themselves privately. Many people adore the idea – wouldn’t it be nice to savor your groom’s genuine reaction without having to avoid ugly crying for the sake of the hundreds of people watching your every move? It makes for some incredible photos and videos, too – check this out!

The downside to a first look is that the groom’s second reaction might not be as monumental as you walk down the aisle (although I’m sure it will be just as sweet!) But many brides aren’t willing to give that *aisle moment* up. I get it! As a wedding guest, that (in close competition with raiding the dessert bar) is my absolute favorite moment of attending a wedding. In the glimpse of a minute, it’s like you can see the couple’s love for each other unfold in such a vulnerable way – it’s beautiful! However…I believe I’ll be opting for the first look, and if anyone knows my emotionally absent, robotic, brick wall-like stoic fiancé, you know why. Choosing whether you’ll do a first look or wait for the aisle is a big decision! Many brides go back and forth on the topic – but you can have your cake and eat it, too! I’ve compiled my favorite ways of experiencing a first look without totally losing the aisle moment:

A Pep Talk (& Touch)


You don’t have to see each other to spend a private moment together pre-ceremony. On your big day, your palms will sweat, your heart will race, and you’ll enter the holy covenant of matrimony with your soulmate – THIS IS GONNA BE BIG! Take a moment, exchange your I love you’s & hold hands for a few minutes, the final minutes as fiancés.

 Words of Wisdom


Think you’ll be rather emotional before your ceremony? Opt for exchanging letters (or your vows!) and read them together silently. What a romantic way to start the best day of your lives.

{No-Peeking} Prayers


Pray together (1 Thessalonians 3:12) as you get ready to commit your lives to one another in front of your dearest friends, family and God. You don’t even have to spoil the surprise – just blindfold your future hubby and pray away!

A Love Song


If you or your groom are musically inclined, PLEASE write each other songs! I can’t imagine a more heartfelt way to commemorate the day. You’ll be hearing a lot of music on your wedding day, but none will be as special as the music created just for you.


A Surprise

Dinosaur costumeHilariousDinosaur

This bride told her future hubby that they were doing a first look but surprised him (in the best way EVER.) This first look went viral – and it’s no wonder why.

In Your Sunday [Morning] Best


Another fabulous surprise! This bride surprised her fiancé by showing up to their first look in an oversized cat t-shirt and sweat pants! She said her groom was incredibly confused but laughed throughout their first look photoshoot. This is my kind of bride. I bet she’s the cat’s pajamas (heheheh)

With the Man Who Loved You First


I saved the best for last! Whether you’re planning on doing a first look with your groom or not, definitely consider taking a moment to relish in your wedding day with your dad. No matter what age you are, I’m positive your dad still considers you his baby. It’s an emotional day for him as well, allow him to express himself, just the two of you (or with mom!) in a moment you’ll never forget.

Are you planning a heartfelt first look or opting for a traditional aisle moment? Comment below!


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