10 Getting Ready Tips For Your Wedding Day

Maybe you’re in the midst of planning your wedding or you’re it’s crunch time and you’re about to walk down the aisle any day now. Whichever the case may be, there is one thing that is true; the morning of your wedding day can be a make or break moment for your stress levels. There, I said it but it is 100% fact. I fully believe that the getting ready process on your wedding day can set the tone for the rest of your day. The morning of your wedding should be a feeling of calm and happiness. To achieve this, the proper amount of preparation is needed to ensure that your wedding day is as easygoing as possible. Below are 10 Getting Ready Tips For Your Wedding Day that will have you feeling like a million bucks.

10 Tips For Getting Ready On Your Wedding Day

There are a million and one things you could do on the morning of your wedding. However, here are just my top 10 tips for getting ready on your wedding day. All coming from a Chicago Wedding Photographer who has photographed countless weddings over the years and seen my fair share of mornings go very well and also quite the opposite. These getting-ready wedding day tips are some of the best that you’ll ever need.

10 Getting Ready Tips For Your Wedding Day | Chicago Wedding Photographer

1.) Remember That Sleep Is Your Best Friend

One of the most important things that you can do which starts the night before your wedding day is rest. We all need a little T-L-C and that starts with getting a good night’s rest. You want to be able to wake up on the morning of your wedding and feel rejuvenated! Use this time to unwind, draw yourself a bath, drink some tea, or do whatever it takes to have the most amazing sleep of your life. It may be difficult with all of the pre-wedding day nerves, jitters, and excitement. However, I promise you that being well-rested will help you tremendously when it comes to how you feel and act on the morning of your wedding day.

10 Getting Ready Tips For Your Wedding Day | Chicago Wedding Photographer

2.) Have An Amazing Support Team

I will scream this from the mountaintops, but please make sure that you have an amazing support team. In general, the people you surround yourself with on your day have the largest impact on your mood on such an amazing (yet stressful) day. Add on top people who will be there with you while you’re getting ready. These are the ride-or-die type of individuals who will be there to support you no matter what. The last thing you want is to surround yourself with people with bad attitudes or frantic energy. Protect your peace and know that the people with you on the morning of your wedding have got your back.

This also goes for your vendors as well. Make sure that you’re hiring wedding vendors who support this same kind of energy for your wedding day as well. Nothing is worse than working with wedding vendors who make it very clear that they don’t actually want to be there at all. Can we all collectively say, “No thanks?!”. Make sure that you are properly vetting out your wedding vendors and ensuring that they also care about your wedding-day experience, not just the content that comes out of it.

10 Getting Ready Tips For Your Wedding Day | Chicago Wedding Photographer

3.) Keep Things As Tidy As Possible

Ideally, you’re going to want to keep your getting-ready space as tidy as possible. On the morning of your wedding, you are frantically running around and things tend to get tossed to the side. I mean rightfully so, you have so many things to think about rather than the tidiness of your getting ready space. However, from the perspective of your wedding photographer, the last thing you want is dirty socks to be in the background of your getting-ready photos. You want the atmosphere of your getting-ready space to be very calming and clean. Not only for you to feel less anxious and overwhelmed but it will also help tremendously when it comes to me as your wedding photographer and being able to document your wedding day as organically as possible.

I’m not saying you need to be mindful of this little detail throughout the entire morning, however, here is a quick tip. Before everyone arrives at your getting ready area, designate a special area of the room for everyone to put their belongings. That way, everything is collectively organized and the clutter is kept to a minimum.

10 Getting Ready Tips For Your Wedding Day | Chicago Wedding Photographer

4.) Steam Your Dress & Cut Off Tags

Never underestimate the importance of steaming your dress and cutting off any loose tags or threads before your wedding day. The last thing you want is to be in the middle of getting ready just to realize that your dress is wrinkled and tags are hanging out. Also, don’t forget those little extra dress loops by the shoulders. We absolutely don’t want those getting loose, especially during your wedding photos.

Your hair and makeup artist will also thank you to finish all steaming before their services begin so that their hard work isn’t ruined by endless steam in the room! This helpful little getting-ready wedding tip can also apply to your wedding party or anybody else who is wearing something that wrinkles like a dress or jumpsuit.

10 Getting Ready Tips For Your Wedding Day | Chicago Wedding Photographer

5.) Add Buffer Time to Hair & Makeup

If you’ve read my wedding timeline blog which goes over the importance of having a solid wedding timeline, you would know my opinion on buffer times. Buffer times are essential throughout the entire wedding day, but especially the morning of your wedding day. The getting-ready process can take up quite a bit of time. Making sure you add in buffer time for getting your hair & makeup done is essential. While we try to prevent as many things from going wrong as possible, sometimes the inevitable just happens. You don’t want to feel rushed on your wedding day, so please ensure that there is a little bit of wiggle room while getting glam. That way if something were to come up, there would be no need to rush.

Important!! This also includes the spouse-to-be’s HMU timing as well – I *highly* recommend that you are NOT the last person in the hair or makeup chair on your wedding day. It sounds like a good idea to be the “freshest” and done last, I know! I’ve seen it time and time again where we’re running behind since you’re still stuck in the glam chair when it’s technically time to put on your wedding attire or do PJ pics. I recommend that you finish your hair and makeup at least 30 minutes before your next event – pajama photos, putting your attire on, etc. That way your artists can continue their work on your friends while we get you moving onto the next event.

6.) Have A Getting Ready Space With Great Lighting

Along with point #3, you also want to make sure that your getting-ready space has plenty of great natural lighting. Lighting is probably one of, if not the most important thing when it comes to your wedding photos. If you value your wedding photography (which I hope you do), choosing a getting-ready location should have plenty of natural light. Lots of windows and natural light coming in will help a ton when it comes to creating those dreamy getting-ready photos we all love so much.

Wedding Getting Ready Tips

7.) Eat, Eat, Eat!

It can be really easy to get caught up in all of the excitement of the day… and before you know it you have barely eaten a cracker. Especially if you’re planning on having some celebratory champagne/mimosas throughout your morning, you want to make sure you are fueling your body and eating. Your wedding day is going to be filled with tons of activities and excitement and you want to be feeling your absolute best. This goes especially if you’re going to be drinking. So please, make sure that there is plenty of food for you and your wedding party/guests. You want to be fueling your body with plenty of nutrition so that you can party all night long!!

8.) Don’t Leave Decisions Last Minute

Making last-minute decisions on the morning of your wedding can be one of the most nerve-wracking things you can do. While you may feel like “winging it”, your wedding day is definitely not when you want to feel that pressure. If you’re deciding what socks to wear, if you should be wearing a regular tie or a bow tie, please make this decision before your wedding day. Big decisions like what you’re going to wear along with grooming (Ex: if you should shave your facial hair or not) should be made prior to your wedding day. This will save you a ton of headaches the morning of your wedding and you will thank me.

Bonus: this also includes small decisions like what you’re eating for lunch. Hint: always pre-order your meal or assign someone *that’s not you* to do it day-of. It also includes small decisions with your vendors and family too. Nothing is worse that getting calls from people asking where things go or who needs to where while you’re trying to relax!

9.) Practice Makes Perfect

You know that saying, “Practice makes perfect”? That absolutely applies to your wedding day. Before your day, you want to make sure that you are practicing everything that could cause issues. Is your dress really complicated to put on? Are you wearing heirloom jewelry with difficult clasps? Is your bustle really complicated? Still don’t know how to tie your tie? Head to YouTube or ask a friend. You don’t want to be looking up tutorials on the morning of your wedding and having everyone freak out as they try to figure out the littlest of things. This goes for your wedding party as well. Ideally, everyone already knows what they need to do to ensure a smooth wedding day morning.

10.) Make A Plan For Your Items

Last but certainly not least, is what comes once you’re finished getting ready. Something most wedding parties don’t think about until it’s too late is where all the items go AFTER you’re finished getting ready.

When packing up your items consider:

  • What will I need for the rest of today? Lipstick, tissues, a change of shoes, a snack, etc. Whatever you need for the daytime, make a bag and assign it to someone to keep track of. I highly recommend the mom of your group, they’ll take great care of you!
  • What will I need tonight? Think about where your overnight bag is before you go anywhere – is it with you all day? Is someone keeping it in their car to grab at the reception? Do you need to add anything to the bag from the morning like makeup wipes for later that night?
  • Where are my bags of makeup and hair products going? Is there a certain person/car that’s taking them home and/or to your wedding night location? Make sure there’s a plan for everything once the morning is complete!


  • The most essential and often needed items on wedding mornings are scissors, fashion tape, and safety pins.
  • Practice bustling your train before your day with the person that will be doing it that night! This is huge if you have a complicated dress bustle – it will save you so much time! Take a video at your last fitting for a real-time reference to go back to.
  • Don’t wear a bra or tight socks on the morning of your wedding! We don’t want indentations or red marks on your skin when it’s time to get you dressed.

Chicago Getting Ready Locations

Below is a list of some of my favorite getting-ready locations here in the beautiful city of Chicago!

10 Getting Ready Tips For Your Wedding Day

I know I may sound like a broken record at times, but these things are important! It doesn’t sound like much, but these factors is where I see a LOT of day-of tension come from. And it can all be resolved with detailed planning!

These tasks will be the last thing you’re going to want to do once you’re ready. BUT I PROMISE! It will be worth it when you’re ready to party with your best pals and don’t have to worry about where all your stuff is going.

Get In Touch! | Chicago Wedding Photographer

Hey, I’m Emma! A Chicago Wedding and Elopement Photographer ready to document your day in a candid and documentary style. If you liked reading these 10 Getting Ready Tips For Your Wedding Day, inquire here, and let’s chat through the vision of your wedding day!

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