Why vow renewals can rejuvenate marriage, as John Legend and Chrissy Teigen celebrate 10th anniversary

John Legend and Chrissy Teigen celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary by holding a vow renewal ceremony at Lake Como, Italy, where they married in 2013. (Getty Images)
John Legend and Chrissy Teigen celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary by holding a vow renewal ceremony at Lake Como, Italy, where they married in 2013. (Getty Images)

John Legend and Chrissy Teigen have celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary by renewing their wedding vows.

Over the weekend, the couple returned to the Lake Como villa in Italy where they held their star-studded nuptials in September 2013.

According to People, they enjoyed a romantic Saturday brunch at Villa Pizzo, followed by a ceremony and a party with guests that included dancing and a lakeside bar.

The couple first met in 2006 on the set of Legend’s music video for his song “Stereo”. In a 2016 Instagram post, Teigen revealed Lake Como held a special place in hers and Legend’s hearts as they first visited the location in 2007.

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What is a vow renewal?

Vow renewals are a popular way for couples to recommit to one another as they celebrate marriage milestones. They are purely ceremonial and not legally binding, and therefore can take place anywhere, at any time.

Why do couples renew their vows?

Bayu Prihandito, a certified psychology expert and life coach, says that saying "I do" again can help couples reaffirm their love after years of ups and downs that might "blur the clarity or the true intentions of those initial promises".

"By choosing to reaffirm, couples are not just remembering about the past but actively deciding to continue their journey together with the same dedication, passion and love," she says. "It’s a powerful statement that says, ‘I still choose you over anything else, every day’."

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Prihandito adds that vow renewals are often seen as an acknowledgment and acceptance of how a couple’s bond has transformed as they continue their lives together.

A couple hold hands as they exchange vows on their wedding day
Vow renewals are a way to recommit to your spouse and remind each other of the promises made during the wedding. (Getty Images)

"It’s about recognising the challenges faced, the compromises made, and the mutual growth that has happened. It’s a moment to celebrate not just longevity but the depth and richness that time has added to the relationship over the years."

Senior therapist Sally Baker adds: "A vow renewal ceremony provides an opportunity for couples to reflect on their journey together, acknowledging the challenges they've overcome and expressing gratitude for the growth they've experienced as individuals and as a couple. This reflection can foster a deeper appreciation and understanding of each other, leading to renewed emotional intimacy."

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When should couples renew their vows?

There is no ideal time for a couple to renew their vows, as they are free to do so at any point in their marriage. However, anniversaries are popular times to recommit to one another and many people do so to celebrate having spent several years in matrimony.

But Dr Tara, a sex and relationship expert currently starring on Celebs Go Dating, suggests that an "ideal time" to renew wedding vows would be in the sixth or seventh year of a marriage. "This is before the ‘seven-year itch’ would kick in," she says, adding that this can "make or break| relationships.

"Renewing your wedding vows around the six or seven year mark would prevent distance growing within a relationship and solidify your love for one another. This would be the most ideal time to renew your wedding vows, but people can do it as much as possible throughout their marriage. I know my husband [and] I are going to renew our wedding vows as much as possible as time goes on."

Prihandito advises couples that when they want to renew their vows should "resonate with [their] unique journey. Some might feel the need to renew after overcoming a particularly challenging phase in their relationship, while others might do so to mark a new chapter in their lives. The essence is to ensure the renewal is authentic, genuine, and meaningful to both partners."

Can vow renewals help breathe new life into a long-standing marriage?

Dr Tara says: "Renewing your wedding vows reinforces that your love is powerful and strong. It reminds you of why and how you fell in love and gives you a strong reminder of this. Communication is so important and being able to tell one another and celebrate your love is crucial."

Prihandito adds that couples can "reignite the passion and intimacy" that may have waned when they revisit and reaffirms the promises they made at the start of their marriage. "It’s an opportunity to realign with each other’s goals, dreams and aspirations, and make sure the relationship continues to thrive in the future."

A man's hands hold a wedding card containing his wedding vows.
Repeating vows at significant milestones in a relationship can help reaffirm a couple's love for one another. (Getty Images)

Baker also says that a vow renewal "can be a powerful reminder of the love and dedication they have for each other, particularly during challenging times".

"In some cases, a vow renewal can help heal past wounds or bring closure to difficult periods in a relationship. It can serve as a symbolic fresh start, allowing couples to let go of negative experiences and focus on building a brighter future together."

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