How Can I Look Good in My Wedding Photos?

Updated January 4, 2023
How Can I Look Good in My Wedding Photos?

Every bride wants to look good in her wedding photos.

The entire preparation, including hours of dress shopping and professional wedding makeup, is necessary not solely for the ceremony and reception.

Your look will be documented for decades to come on the pictures, and that can be intimidating.

Modeling for wedding pictures involves more than standing still like a Barbie doll. You should know your best angles and poses but not care about the camera too much. Best photos are ones where you look relaxed and confident.

Let’s not forget that another human being takes photos, and communication is crucial. Therefore, you must inform your wedding photographer about your vision and preferences in advance.

You won’t be alone in all the pictures either. Brides-to-be often neglect group and couple photo posing. However, looking good on photos alone is more manageable than being surrounded by other people.

“Look good” is a vague concept. You’ll never look good enough if you’re too critical of yourself, which is a common issue with novice brides.

Thus, remember – your best weapon in capturing the hearts of wedding guests and looking astonishing in pictures is a sincere smile.

The Dress

You’re free to choose any dress that makes you happy. But specific rules apply if you want to look good in wedding photos.

First, you should mind your dress size. Of course, your dress shouldn’t be baggy, but it also shouldn’t be too tight. Let yourself breathe. You don’t want to find body folds you’ve never even noticed on your wedding pictures.

Plus, it’s hard to look relaxed when you can’t move freely. Please spend some time and money on professional alteration, as it’s worth the hassle.

The fabric and dress silhouette matter, too. Remember that a professional camera visually adds a few pounds. Tight dresses from shiny satin with open body parts generally look better in real life than in photos.

Your dress should fit your figure. Make sure that the dress silhouette enhances your advantages and covers up imperfections.

Lastly, you won’t be cut out of the pictures and photoshopped to a plain background. Your dress should follow the overall event and venue style.

For example, a country-style dress may look inappropriate for a castle, and a princess-style dress may look strange on a beach.


Makeup for a photoshoot differs from your regular daily makeup. You’ll likely hire a makeup artist who knows their job but knowing some rules yourself is beneficial.

First, take care of the foundation: it should be moisturizing to prevent your skin from looking like a cake but long-lasting. Contouring is essential to prevent your face from seeming flat. Finally, careful blending is a must.

You don’t want to look unnatural even if you carry three layers of makeup. Cameras flash highlights blending issues.

To make your eyes seem larger, fill in eyebrows and use multiple eyeshadow colors to outline the shape. A wedding is an excellent time to try out fake eyelashes.

Moderate volume fake lashes won’t be noticeable in pictures, but your eyes will be more defined.

You want the lips to be symmetrical and moisturized. Choose any color you prefer, but bear in mind that dark and bright shades make lips seem smaller.


The wedding hairstyle must suit your face and style, but it’s easier said than done. Indoor venues are more accommodating for loose hair.

In addition, you won’t get under rain or wind that may ruin your look. For outdoor venues, consider up-do hairstyles, which you won’t have to fix constantly.

Sometimes, a complicated wedding hairstyle may lead to you looking overdone. Simpler alternatives typically look better on photos and don’t draw attention from your face.

That’s unless your entire wedding follows a baroque theme that requires the hairstyle to conform.


Your efforts to look good in wedding photos should start a day before the event. The first thing is to get good sleep to eliminate dark circles and brighten up your skin.

No matter how nervous you are about this special day. Even makeup can’t cover sleepless nights.

Don’t eat salty, spicy, and sweet foods a couple of days in advance to prevent edema. Then, you can finally relax and let yourself enjoy your favorite crackers during the reception, but not the night before it.

Rehearsing your poses and angles in a mirror helps to feel confident in front of a camera.

Don’t forget that poses that look great in your home clothes may not look all that great in a wedding dress. Try it on when rehearsing if you can.


Anyone can look good in wedding photos. But, if you think you weren’t born a model, you simply don’t know professional posing tips. Thankfully, you can learn these.

Keep your posture. Slouching makes you seem insecure and creates unwanted volume on the belly and in the arm area. Keep your chin high to avoid double chin on pictures and look confident.

Place one leg in front of the other to make them look slimmer and longer. That’s if your legs are visible under the dress, of course.

To make your waist thinner, pose at a 45-degree to the camera. In addition, you can shift your hips from the photographer and shoulders in his direction to further enhance the effect.

Finally, don’t press your arms to your body. Instead, bend elbows slightly. Don’t show your elbows straight into the camera. Rather, keep them at an angle to avoid the short arm effect.


Everyone has their best and worst angles, and you should find out yours well before the wedding. None of us is perfectly symmetrical.

As a rule of thumb, most people look better at a 45-degree angle to the camera rather than from a front view.

If you wish to hide your cheeks, ask the photographer to shoot slightly from above. On the opposite, if you have a small chin, you can raise it to balance the proportions.

Don’t forget that camera visually adds weight, and every lens has a certain deformation. The closer you shoot, the stronger is the effect. Avoid close-up pictures if your photographer has a wide-angle lens.


Lighting is merely the photographer’s concern, but you must know basic rules, too. For example, bright sunlight creates harsh shadows and highlights skin texture. Therefore, it’s best to choose indoor locations during the day.

The best time for outdoor shooting is a cloudy day or the golden hour, which is at sunset. Such lighting creates a natural blur effect and eliminates the need for skin retouch.

Shooting indoors is a complex topic for photographers. All you need to know is that yellow light that’s often found in wedding venues isn’t your friend.

Don’t be surprised if the photographer uses a portable white LED light or asks you to shoot outside.

Know Your Photographer

Great photos are born from great teamwork. First, you must communicate with the wedding photographer to share your preferences and ideas. Listen to their tips, too.

A professional who has shot numerous weddings likely knows which poses and angles work the best.

If you haven’t done this yet, request the photographer’s portfolio to ensure their style aligns with your vision. Even if the pictures are of high quality, you may want a different atmosphere.

It would be best if you also talked with the photographer a bit to eliminate unwanted tension. There’s no need to become best friends, but you must at least feel they’re a nice person.

Couple Photos

Your wedding isn’t solely about you. It’s about the two of you. So both of you should know some couple posing tips.

When standing, don’t just stand still unless you’re recreating retro pictures. Those photos were made this way due to old camera requirements, not because people wanted to look like mannequins.

So instead, look at each other or in the same direction, hug him, hold his arm. Use your imagination.

To make yourself look even slimmer and him more masculine, tend to stand slightly behind him. But, of course, you can also sit down while he’s standing.

Statical pictures aren’t your only option. Walk, run, dance, laugh – such pictures look natural and have a unique atmosphere.

Group Photos

You’ll likely want to pay tribute to all the wedding guests who found time to support you on this important day. Of course, group photos are an integral part of any wedding photoshoot. But posing with others isn’t a simple task.

Don’t follow the group in terms of posing. None of us look the same, and taking the same angle and pose doesn’t highlight everyone’s advantages equally. Furthermore, it looks boring.

Group photos where the personality of every guest is shown through the pose and facial expression are much more exciting and natural.

Find locations where guests can stand on different heights, such as stairs or a hill. A mix of sitting and standing guests also looks lively and makes posing easier.

Some group shots must showcase your relations with the people standing next to you. When being photographed with friends, you’re free to make something childish and foolish.

When it comes to pictures with the groom’s grandparents, most brides prefer traditional poses and calmer face expressions. You should feel what’s appropriate when photographed with each guest.

It’s best to make different group pictures – some conventional, others fun, or even a bit crazy.

For instance, throw your bouquet in the air and capture your maids of honor running to catch it. Such shots are full of life and inevitably bring back good memories.

Image credit: Unsplash