Hey there! Congrats on your upcoming wedding! I’m Tylee, a wedding and elopement photographer for adventurous couples. I know first-hand how stressful wedding planning can be. So I interviewed countless past brides and asked them, “What was one thing you couldn’t have lived without on your wedding day?” Then I took their responses and compiled them into this list of wedding day essentials!
From physical items, to tangible tips, to mental mindsets, my hope is that this list helps you to be prepared for anything that might come up on your big day. Here’s to having the best day ever!!
You’ll want your ring to be looking as sparkly as ever in your wedding pics! Between make up and hand lotion and finger smudges, it’s easy for your ring to get cloudy. So this handy travel jewelry cleaning pen is a life saver!
P.S. If you hire me to photograph your wedding, you can skip buying this one. I already bring one of these along with me to every wedding! You’re welcome! (;
As a wedding photographer, I’ve seen it all. I’ve witnessed dress straps break and groomsmen split their pants! So having a sewing kit on hand is essential. I personally had this small travel sewing kit in my own wedding day bag just in case!
For those bridesmaid dresses that quickly wrinkle, or the groomsmen that showed up with a crumpled shirt, having a garment steamer on hand is really helpful. Even certain wedding dress materials can wrinkle quickly! So it’s best to have a small travel garment steamer like this one on hand to tackle any wrinkles throughout the day.
You should obviously hire a professional photographer to capture your big day (like me!!), but you can also hire your bridesmaids and friends to capture moments of their own!
Having a polaroid camera on hand while getting ready in the morning or getting down on the dance floor allows you to capture even more authentic moments through out the day. I recommend this Fujifilm Instax for an affordable, compact option. Plus, you can pick a cute color that matches your wedding palette!
Bride after bride after bride recommended bring LOTS of hydration along on your wedding day. Keep a water bottle by your side at all times! Bonus points if it says ‘Bride’ and has a straw like this one so that it won’t mess up your lipstick!
Keep that thing filled up all day long with water, gatorade, etc. You can even dedicate a bridesmaid or family member to be your hydration accountability partner on the big day! It sounds silly, but time will fly by and it’s so easy to forget to stay hydrated. Also, be sure to have coolers stocked with water bottles for the bridal party and family members as well.
Even if your wedding dress has been perfectly altered to your body, there still might be a strap the keeps slipping or a gap in your bust when you bend over to sign the marriage license. Body tape is at the top of the wedding day essentials list for keeping everything where it should be! This was my favorite type of body tape that I used on my own wedding day!
A few brides mentioned feeling worried on their wedding day about being stinky! The nervous sweats are a real thing! So don’t forget the perfume and deodorant! You can choose to have a special perfume scent that you wear on your wedding day. Then you can save this scent and take it out to add a touch of nostalgia to date nights and special occasions.
Additionally, don’t forget the deodorant! A lot of brides recommend this Dove Invisible Dry Deodorant Spray for no streaks and no sweat.
Yes, you read that correctly! Windex is a wedding day essential! If your wedding band or engagement ring are tight (like mine is!) and you’re worried about slipping it on and off for the ceremony (like I was!), then Windex is a lifesaver. I learned that Windex is actually what they use in jewelry shops when people are trying on rings and they get stuck. It’s a great way to get those stubborn rings to slide right off, so I knew I had to bring some along to my wedding!
You can keep a little bit of liquid Windex in a travel toiletry bottle. Or you can even bring some of these Windex travel wipes along. Apply to your finger as needed when you’re trying to slip your rings on and off. Especially if your wedding will be on a hot day, your fingers might swell more than usual and you’ll be glad you brought some Windex along!
Similar to hydration, make sure you’re eating! Multiple brides recommended scheduling time in the morning to sit down and eat breakfast, as well as time in the afternoon to have a sandwich or light snack. If you don’t schedule it, you might not get the chance to eat. And if you don’t eat, you’re not going to feel well, which is the last thing you want on your best day ever!
So many brides recommended bringing a pair of comfortable shoes for your wedding day. You can wear the heels for photos and the ceremony if you’d like, but have a back up pair of comfortable shoes for the downtime and the dance floor!! I’ve seen brides in sneakers, slippers, booties, and barefoot! The happiest brides are the ones that are comfortable and capable of busting out dance moves at any given moment.
Tears are inevitable, so tissues are a major wedding day essential. Make sure to pack some tissues along for yourself, your family, the groom, etc. I love keeping some travel Kleenex packs like these in my camera bag for those extra sentimental wedding day moments.
Another very important wedding day essential, don’t forget your SPF! Especially if you’re having a summer wedding, make sure you’re protected. This will help you to not look red in your photos. Plus, who wants to start their honeymoon with sunburn?!
Lastly, many brides recommend taking the right mindset with you into your wedding day. Decide ahead of time that you will go with the flow and enjoy the day no matter what happens. Then throughout the day, keep your focus on your partner and your marriage. At the end of the day it’s not the details that matter, it’s the fact that you’re marrying your best friend! Keep this at the forefront of your mind, and you’ll have the time of your life.
A few more articles you’ll love:
Or check out my Planning Tips page for more wedding and elopement advice. Happy planning!!
I’m a destination wedding & elopement photographer, and I believe that your marriage is the most important part of your wedding day.
As your photographer, I'll capture images that are natural, authentic, and honestly illustrate your love for one another so that you can always remember exactly why you fell in love.
Whether you're eloping just the two of you, or getting married in your favorite place with all your favorite people, I'd love to capture your best day ever.