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Tips to Look (and Feel!) Your Best at Your Engagement Session

February 16, 2021


Engagement sessions can be intimidating parts of your wedding planning season. Oftentimes, these are some of the few professional portraits you’ve ever had taken, and you don’t know what to expect! My goal is to help my couples feel educated and empowered throughout the entire engagement planning process so that by the time we snap the first picture they feel at ease in front of the camera!

Below are a few of my favorite tips I share with my couples to help them prepare for their engagement session.

location, location, location

golden hour is your best friend

If you want to look your absolute best in your engagement photos, there’s only one time of day for you: GOLDEN HOUR!

Golden hour is that magical hour just before sunset, when the sun is at its lowest, softest and most flattering angle! This time of day is a photographer’s dream, and you won’t regret prioritizing this part of the day for your portraits!

Not sure when golden hour is? Ask your photographer! We are avid followers of sunset times and weather patterns.

choose locations meaningful to you

When selecting your engagement session’s locations first think about any places that are meaningful to you two and your relationship. Places like your first date night spot, your favorite park, or the spot where you got engaged are great because they’re personal to you and they help tell the story of your relationship.

My favorite locations to photograph portraits are beautiful parks and classic architectural backdrops because they’re timeless and elegant!

outfit inspiration

plan your outfits ahead of time (with help from your photographer!)

When it comes to engagements sessions, often the biggest concern for my couples is choosing their outfits! And I totally get it. On your wedding day, your outfits are pretty much picked out for you, but engagement photos are a whole other ballgame. The sky feels like the limit. Anytime Vince and I have had our portraits taken I’ve felt this worry as well. And I help style my couples for a living!

My biggest advice to help relieve the stress of picking out your outfits for your engagement session is to lean on your photographer. We know what colors, styles, silhouettes, and accessories photograph best, and we’re more than happy to help you navigate this decision!

I provide all of my couples with a complete engagement session styling guide, and I’ll share a few of my favorite tips here 🙂

when in doubt, dress it up!

There is no such thing as overdressed when it comes to your engagement session, so don’t be afraid to have a little fun! Remember, these images are celebrating this milestone moment in your lives, and we want them to stand the test of time. So skip the shorts and flip flops and dust off that sequin gown you’ve been dying to wear!

If you don’t want to add a new permanent piece to your collection, consider Rent the Runway so you don’t have to spend a lot to feel like a million bucks. Or splurge on that outfit you’ve been dying to add to your wardrobe!

neutrals are your best friend

Whoever started the myth that neutrals wash you out in photos couldn’t have been further from the truth. I myself spent a large majority of my life believing that I should never wear neutrals and I was missing out! The truth is, neutrals are the most photogenic palette for portraits. They’re timeless and elegant, they make your skin tones POP, and they don’t distract from the connections and love captured in your images! My other favorite colors that photograph well are pastels, pinks, and blues. These pair great together too.

go pro

Why not pamper yourself a little before your engagement session? Whether it’s lash extensions or perfectly styled hair, professional hair and makeup will give you an extra boost of confidence in front of the camera, and it always photographs like a dream. 

during your session

give yourself some grace

If you’re feeling a little anxious about this whole picture thing, you’re not alone! I receive so many messages from my couples about this and I have great news for you: you both are more photogenic than you think!

Unless you’re a model and you pose in front of a camera for a living, portrait sessions always feel a little awkward at the beginning. That’s 100% normal and I promise that as we get further into the session, you’ll feel more relaxed and confident. Just give yourself a little time and a little grace to get the hang of it.

show off a little!

Don’t be afraid to let your personalities shine through in your photos! The entire point of engagement photos is to celebrate this short period in your lives before you tie the knot. We want to capture and celebrate how far your relationship has progressed and your excitement for what’s to come!

Are you two bubbly snuggly lovebirds? Amp that up at your session! The camera loves connection and emotion. And if your love language is softer and more romantic, I know the perfect poses for you too 🙂

trust your photographer

You and your fiancé have a lot on your plates while planning your wedding. So let your engagement session be an opportunity to step back, relax, and celebrate this time in your lives!

Now that you’ve selected your session date, you’ve blocked out golden hour, and you’ve picked a couple of killer outfits, it’s time to sit back and let your photographer take it from here. You’ve hired a pro for a reason! They know where to find the best light and backdrops, how to guide you into natural poses, and capture once-in-a-lifetime portraits celebrating your engagement. Let the fun begin!


celebrate afterwards!

Plan a date night after your session! Now that you’re all dressed up and feeling the love, why not keep the fun going on a date after your session.

Another reason why this is a great idea? As you’re getting ready, it’ll feel more like you’re getting ready for a date night, not an intimidating photography session. Win-win!

pick a few favorites

After you receive your engagement session photos from your photographer, pick a few favorites to print and hang on your walls! They’ll be the perfect compliment to your future wedding photos.

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