With breathless anticipation you open your long-awaited photos from your engagement shoot: That one seems a bit off. You don鈥檛 love your smile in that one. Your S.O. looks so uncomfortable there. Wait, there has to be at least one that you love, right? If the answer is a resounding no, take a deep breath and remember that your money hasn鈥檛 gone completely to waste. Here鈥檚 how to deal.


1. Sleep on it. First impressions aren鈥檛 always quite right, and you might have a bad initial reaction simply because of the expectations you had in your head. Give it time, and you may come around and realize that the photos are much better than you originally thought. (Photo via Vicki Grafton /Lover.ly)

2. Remember that you鈥檙e your own worst critic. It鈥檚 so easy to find flaws in photos of yourself, but most people probably don鈥檛 see what you see. For a little ego boost, ask your fianc茅, family and friends for their opinions of the shoot. Chances are they鈥檒l think you look as gorgeous as ever.

3. Pinpoint what it is you don鈥檛 like. There are plenty of reasons you might dislike your photos, but unless you figure out exactly what鈥檚 bothering you, you won鈥檛 be able to make any worthwhile changes or decisions. Do you think the posing is awkward? Think your outfits totally clash? Hate the lighting or the location? Determine those factors first so you can avoid them for your wedding.


4. Talk to your photographer. Now that you know what you don鈥檛 like, you can politely communicate that to your photographer. While you may or may not get a second photo session, at the very least, this photographer will understand what you do like and can help find images from the shoot that you鈥檒l want to show off. That鈥檚 especially important if they鈥檙e shooting your wedding too.

5. Do some Photoshopping. Ask your photographer if she can make some tweaks to the lighting or cropping. Or, if you鈥檙e skilled in Photoshop or have a talented friend, you might be able to take matters into your own hands. It鈥檚 amazing what a little bit of editing can do 鈥 especially if you鈥檙e after a more modern aesthetic. After a few clicks, you might fall in love with your engagement photos. (Photo via Captures for Keeps/Lover.ly)

6. Decide whether you want the photographer to shoot your wedding. Many couples use engagement photos as a sort of 鈥渢rial run鈥 with the photographer. If you don鈥檛 like the end result and the photographer isn鈥檛 responsive in making you happy, consider hiring someone else.


If, after all this, you still can鈥檛 stand looking at your photos, you鈥檝e got more options. You could schedule another session with a new photographer or ask a talented friend to take some photos. Worried about busting your budget? Take one-year anniversary photos instead. Then you鈥檒l have something fun to look forward to! (Photo via dolgachov/BigStock)

(Original reporting by Kristin Doherty)

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