Photo: Jessica Cooper Photography
Selfies. Let’s discuss.
Ellen took one at the Oscars. Songs have been recorded about them. And yes, with their good hair and epic backdrops, weddings seem like the ideal situation in which to snap one. While we’re all for documenting the good times, there are moments at every wedding when selfies are totally not okay.
Read on for our guide to when to put the camera phone down—and when you should feel free to snap away.
1. While the bride is getting dressed
Let’s face it—sucking in while squeezing into undergarments is not a good look for anyone. Wait until she’s fully dressed to pose for the pic, and then wait until after the groom sees her to post it.
2. Before her makeup is done
Nobody, nobody, wants a picture of themselves floating around cyberspace sans make-up, and this is especially true of brides. Do you really want to risk the wrath of your friend moments before she makes her debut?
3. During the Processional
A bride’s walk down the aisle is one of the most intimate and important moments of the wedding, and you are guaranteed to ruin it if you stick an elbow out (or worse, stand up) to take a selfie during it.
4. While the couple is exchanging vows
The almost-newlyweds are in the midst of making a lifelong commitment to each other. The courteous thing to do is sit quietly and listen, not crop your image to better flatter your face.
5. During the first kiss
This is still part of the vows, so not exactly the most appropriate moment to toggle between the Nashville and Hefe filters on Instagram.
6. While the wedding party is posing for portraits
The photographer the couple hired to take pictures of the day has this under control. No need to hold up your phone and point it at yourself when there’s a pro being paid.
7. While the couple is eating
If and when the couple finds a moment to eat between greeting guests and dancing, there’s no question they’ll be scarfing food down quickly. Please do NOT take this opportunity to ask them to pose for a pic.
8. During personal moments
Being the guest of honor means making the rounds to all sorts of attendees. Let the couple have their space with the people who made an extra effort to be there, especially older relatives.
9. While you’re giving a toast
Snapping photos of yourself Kim Kardashian-style during what is supposed to be a genuine and sincere expression of feelings will not be received well by the couple or any of the guests. Preserve your image by putting the iPhone away.
10. The couple’s first dance
This is in no way, shape, or form a moment that should include you. It’s totally kosher to ‘gram the first dance, but make sure the newlyweds are the only people in it.
11. During the send-off
The important thing here is to send the couple off into married life in style. Wave your sparkler with enthusiasm, and wait until they’re safely in the limo before you start posing whimsically with it.
All that being said, there are certain times during a wedding when selfies are totally appropriate—and even encouraged! Here’s when you can feel free to selfie away:
1. While you’re tearing up the dance floor
2. A reunion of old college friends
3. In your getting-ready and drinking outfits, pre-ceremony
4. While you’re seated and anxiously awaiting the bride’s walk down the aisle
5. During cocktail hour