The 2 Biggest Fears + 7 Reasons to Consider a First Look

First Look!  First Glance! Call it what you will, it’s a hot topic and this video shares the 2 biggest fears I hear, examples of real wedding first looks with awesome reactions.  The last one is my all-time fave, but I want to see your comments about your favorite.

Let’s get moving with the #1 biggest fear about first looks.

Fear #1: You’re worried that his aisle reaction won’t be as good if you have a first look. 

What I’m talking about here is that moment when he sees you walking down the aisle toward him at the beginning of the ceremony.  I get it. It’s a moment many of us dream about from the time we’re little girls. But! Do. No. Worry. Here’s why: His first reaction, whether it’s during a pre-ceremony first look or during the ceremony as you’re walking down the aisle, his reaction was more to do with his comfort level and personality than it has to do with whether or not you had a first look.  

Watch the video for a sweet example from Taylor and Austin’s wedding at Southwind Hills.

My experience in filming over 150 weddings is that his reaction isn’t dependent upon whether or not you had a first look.  Here’s a quick tip: If you have a first look and you want to add a little extra special something for the ceremony aisle look, go without your veil and bouquet for the first look and add it for the ceremony.  That’s what Sierra did during her first look with Tyler. Watch the video for Tyler’s reaction. Awww! And, now, see him still wiping away tears during the aisle look?

The #2 biggest fear about doing a first look is that it breaks tradition and it’s “bad luck.” 

Ok, I hate to break this to you, but there are some WACK wedding traditions. Do you know how this “no seeing each other before the ceremony” traditional got started?  Let me fill you in: Ages ago when arranged marriages were common, families didn’t want the couple to see each other before the ceremony because they were afraid if the saw each other first and didn’t have any physical chemistry going on, they might call off the wedding.  So…..yeah. Not really a problem anymore, unless of course you’ve never seen your fiance’ in person before. Like, ever.

Moving on!

If you’ve gotten over the #1 and #2 biggest fears, let’s talk about all the glorious goodness that comes from a first look.  Disclaimer: If you don’t want to do a first look, I’m cool with you. No worries. I’m a videographer and I just shoot what happens.  You do you.

Here’s 7 reasons you should maaaaybe consider a first look…be sure to watch the video for examples of each one!

  1. Privacy on wedding day is rare.  I’m talking, like, don’t count on even going to the bathroom by yourself on wedding day.  Have you TRIED to pee in a wedding gown??? You need a bathroom buddy. During a first look, you and your honey get to have a blessed minute (or 5 or 10) all to yourselves.  I mean, the photographer and I will be there, but it’s cool. We’re quietly minding our own business, making movie magic for you.  

  2. He doesn’t have 300 pairs of eyes on him, judging his reaction.  He can be himself. If he’s a crier, maybe he’ll cry. If he’s not, ain’t no thang!  He can tell you all the nice (or naughty) things he’s thinking. Seriously, guys, I’m not judging you here.  This is your first look. Speaking of telling you things, there’s not a real opportunity for him to tell you anything about how you look from the end of the ceremony aisle, right?  

  3. One word. Kissing!  Can’t do that during the ceremony aisle look, can you?  

  4. Location!  You can choose the location of your first look.  So, make it romantic, edgy, hip, whatever your vibe.  You’ll have plenty of memories and photos and video from your ceremony, your first look gives you more variety.  Alisa and David were married in a cathedral style church, so having their first look in a garden gave their video, photos, and memories another type of setting to mix in.

  5. A first look can really calm your nerves.  If you’re feeling anxiety and worry, there’s nothing quite like seeing your person to get you back in the zen zone.  Is that a thing? But, really, have a glass of champagne and see your man. Worries erased!

  6. Get photo and video that ROCKS while you still have freshly done hair and makeup.  Plus, after your ceremony, you won’t need as much time for photos and you can head on in to your reception quite a bit earlier for the party! 

  7. And, finally, and maybe most importantly, a first look gives you one more incredible memory to add to your wedding day, along with your aisle moment.  Breathe it all in. Love it all out.

If you still don’t want to have a first look, that’s cool.  Do what’s best for you. As much as I love first looks, Kyle’s might be the best reaction shot we’ve ever captured.  And it’s an aisle reaction.  You’ve gotta watch the video for this one!

If you’re looking for more wedding film inspiration, be sure to click our Films link to watch some full highlight films!


Leslee Layton