Your wedding day is supposed to be the greatest day of your life and there is certainly an immense amount of pressure from both the wedding industry and probably your friends and family to look your best. Often times women spend their wedding day stressed about the ceremony and photos and all the little details that have to come together to make your day “perfect”. Here are some tips to make you look stunningly beautiful in your wedding photos, even if you lose your cool on the inside.

Smile with your eyes

This is a tip that comes all the way from the top, and by the top I of course mean America’s Next Top Model host, Tyra Banks. It’s even such a popular turn of phrase that it’s spawned an abbreviation in the form of “smizing”. More serious poses are very trendy, especially for bridal party photos, but that doesn’t mean that you have to look unhappy. By smiling with your eyes you can avoid having a limp face or looking like you would rather be anywhere else.

Go easy on the bronzer

Although you might feel more beautiful with a bronze glow, cameras tend to function a little off when capturing yellows and oranges which can give you a distorted look. Even if you look sun kissed in real life, you could come out more like a carrot in the photos. This is particularly true if you don’t follow a bronzer routine and are trying it for the first time on wedding day. Along the same vein, glitter and other luminescent lotions tend to photograph poorly as well so maybe skip those as well.

Relax your face

Your wedding photos typically take quite a while to get through all of the permutations, and keeping the same smile throughout can be rather torturous. If you start to feel your eyes squinting or your smile stiffen, take a second to press the reset button and relax your face. You can close your eyes, let your lips fall back into their normal position and just breathe. You can even ask the photographer to count out the photo while your eyes are closed so that you can open them with that stunning smile just in time for a picture perfect look.

Don’t underestimate the beauty of laughing

Whether it’s in real life, or photos, fake smiles are not flattering at all. That being said, a fake laugh can photograph wonderfully! If you need to loosen up for a photo but just can’t grin and bear it any longer, try a fake laugh. It’s so ridiculous that after a photo or two you’ll probably be actually laughing and everyone else will be laughing with you. That’s a photo worth hanging in your first home!

Stand up straight

A day filled with forced photos will make even the most confident woman a bit self-conscious, which tends to cause you to subconsciously shrink into yourself. However, slouching like fake smiling, is not at all flattering. Debbie Reynolds used to say “chins up, boobs out, it’s show time!” and she was absolutely right. Put your shoulders back, chest forward, and pull your bellybutton in and I can guarantee you will look thinner. There’s not need to get rigid like this though, you can still relax while having good posture, just take a few deep breaths and let the tension out of your body.

Make your arms look slim

Frequently bridal & bridesmaid dresses are sleeveless and may make you self-conscious about any arm fat you may have. People tend to believe they can hide this by keeping their arms close to their body, but actually that will photograph worse. Instead, create a small separation between your body and your arms. It not only will slim your arms down, but will help define your waistline, which makes you look thinner.

Hopefully on the big day you’re able to recall some of these tips and use them to make your wedding photos as beautiful as they can be. That way when you get the proofs back you’ll be stunned by just how perfect these photos of your wedding are. These photos will be worthy of printing and hanging in your home and the homes of your friends and relatives for years to come.