Pros and Cons of a First Look

Alyssa Ashley Photography Minnesota Wedding and Portrait Photographer

As you’ve probably noticed, first look wedding photos have been a popular trend for a while now. On the other hand, the time-honored practice of waiting to see your sweetheart is still a strong tradition. As your wedding day approaches you may be trying to decide whether you want first look wedding photos, or whether you want to wait until you walk down the aisle. Here are 10 points that I am hoping will help you weigh out some of the pros and cons of taking first look photos!


  1. Obviously one of the biggest plus sides to having a first look is that you get to see each other sooner!
  2. You get to hangout with your bridal party all together, since the bride doesn’t have to stay hidden.
  3. There is more time to take pictures before the ceremony, which means more couple portraits.
  4. You can have a private, intimate moment with your soon-to-be spouse – a chance for you both to breathe and soak it all in.
  5. Having this time can help ease any nerves you are feeling… and if you are worried about crying, you might as well get it out of the way. 🙂


  1. You may not get the traditional first look experience of locking eyes for the first time while walking down the aisle.
  2. Some couples may not want their “first look” to be photographed if they are private with their emotions or feel uncomfortable.
  3. Friends and family will not get to witness the first time the couple sees each other.
  4. Your day will probably need to start earlier if you choose to have first look/couple photos taken before the ceremony.
  5. Either way, you will still want more couple portraits taken after the ceremony with those newly married grins. 🙂

My Personal Experience:

My husband and I chose to do a first look, and I am personally happy we did! This moment was so special for us. We were able to read letters to each other, talk out our nerves, hug, and cherish the peace and quiet before our loving guests arrived. I loved the extra time it allowed me and my soon-to-be husband to take a variety of bridal portraits without feeling rushed. We were able to get some precious first look photos that I will always cherish. Here are a few of my favorite moments from our first look…

What Does This Mean for Me?

There is no right or wrong option! It’s all about what works best for you and your fiancé. I am not here to sway your decision, but I hope that this pros and cons list of doing a first look was helpful to you! Either way, the choice is yours and it is YOUR DAY. Your photographer will help you adapt your wedding day timeline to make sure that you get the pictures you have been dreaming of… whether you decide to have a first look or wait until the ceremony to see your hunny. 🙂

Searching for more wedding planning tips? BINGE THE BLOG. And as always, follow along on the ‘Gram (@alyssaashley_photography) for tips, tricks, and inspo.



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