Should you do a first look? | Philly Wedding Photographer

As your wedding day comes closer and closer you may be wondering whether or not to do a first look. Is it worth it? What are the pros? What are the cons? Should you wait till the aisle for the big reveal or do it with just you and your partner (and photographer of course). Worry not friend! I’m here to give you some key pros and cons to help you make this decision.

Pafa wedding first look

Firstly, let’s quickly cover what a first look is.  A first look is when the couple sees each other, for the first time, before the ceremony. We arrange a time and place (away from the eyes of family and friends). We get the groom into place and then the bride will walk up to him and will tap his shoulder as a signal for him to turn around and see his bride for the first time on their wedding day.

Let’s start with the Pros:

The biggest reason I suggest first looks is so that you can get many of the photos of you and your boo taken before the ceremony and even full wedding party photos and family formals all before the ceremony!! This will free you up to actually be able to mingle and enjoy your cocktail hour since that’s when these photos would normally be taken if you don’t do a first look

It can help settle nerves before the ceremony. It’s totally normal to have jitters leading up to the ceremony. All eyes will be on you and you want everything to go perfectly. Seeing your Fiancé beforehand helps settle down those butterflies and reminds you of why you’re doing this in the first place, to marry the love of your life.

The first look will be more private than the ceremony. You’ll be able to have this special moment without the crowd. Granted you’ll have the photographer and videographer there, but that’s a lot less people than your guest list. And if you hired the right photog they’ll be as unobtrusive as possible during this moment.


You’ll have to be ready earlier – A first look means you can’t finish getting ready right before the ceremony. You need to be ready probably around 1.5-2hrs before the ceremony. If you only want to do the first look and not the wedding party and family photos before the ceremony then you’ll only need to be ready an hour before.

You won’t have that moment at the alter – If you’ve been imagining having this moment when you first see your fiancé at the alter and everyone else fades away and it feels like its just you two there and you can’t wait to get down the aisle and touch them then yeah a first look might not be your vibe.

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