What to Wear Wedding Dress Shopping
How to be prepared and stay comfortable for your wedding dress appointment.
Your first wedding dress appointment is coming up, and amid all your excitement about trying on wedding gowns, one important consideration is often overlooked: what should you wear?
Good preparation is the key to having an enjoyable, memorable experience at your bridal appointment. You want to feel your best so that you can look your best, and that means thinking carefully about what you wear while shopping. And, since trying on wedding dresses is unlike any other shopping experience, we’re here to provide some of the guidance you need so that you can have a fabulous time during your appointment.
1. A simple dress that’s easy to get in and out of.
You’re going to spend a lot of time taking clothes on and off, so you want to avoid the hassle of struggling in and out of multiple layers of tight clothing as much as possible. This makes a simple dress that doesn’t require a lot of fuss the perfect choice for your bridal appointment.
Why a dress, you ask? Why not a blouse and a skirt, or a comfortable pair of jeans?
Well, for one, a dress is just one article of clothing, which usually makes it simpler to slip in and out of. But the other reason you want to wear a dress has to do with the undergarments you’ll probably be wearing, which brings us to point number two.
2. Shapewear and other “day of” undergarments.
Many brides plan to wear form-shaping undergarments on their wedding day to keep their look polished. If you already have these garments picked out, wearing them to your bridal appointment can help you get a sense of how they’ll work with your dress.
Of course, you may not be planning to wear much of anything under your wedding dress, and that’s perfectly fine. But even if you decide to forego form-shaping undergarments, or even a bra on your wedding day, you will still want to have something on for your appointment.
After all, you won’t be alone in that fitting room. While the bridal stylist has probably had plenty of experience helping half-clothed customers in and out of their dresses, you’ll probably feel more comfortable wearing some nude-colored boy shorts than a thong.
3. A strapless bra.
You don’t want to be fussing with bra straps when trying on wedding gowns. Even if you aren’t planning on a strapless dress, a strapless bra is a more flexible styling alternative. You may have had your heart set on lace sleeves, only to be swept away by an illusion neckline, so it’s good to keep your options open.
That said, even if you don’t have a strapless bra that you like, bridal studios usually carry a few different bra styles in store to help accommodate unusual dress styles. However, it’s no guarantee that the store bra will fit well or show the dresses off to their full advantage. So, while you can rely on them in a pinch, it’s best to come with your own.
4. Flats (but bring heels with you).
You’re probably going to spend a lot of time on your feet, so comfortable shoes are a must. Flats are ideal, because their design means you don’t have to worry about lacing or unlacing.
However, if you already have your wedding shoes, or if you know what style you plan to wear, bringing those shoes with you can help when trying on a dress. If you plan to wear six-inch stilettos, they will change the way you old your body and affect how you walk. While you don’t want to wear them all day, having them on while trying on dresses is a smart move.
5. Bring your wedding-day jewelry.
Accessorizing is all part of the dress shopping fun. Of course, there will be items you can try on in-store, but you may also have jewelry picked out. For instance, if you plan to wear a show-stopping pair of chandelier earrings, you’ll want to make sure they work with your dress.
Or, maybe you plan to wear a special locket from you grandmother on your wedding day. In that case, you will need to make sure that it fits the neckline of your dress and doesn’t conflict with any of the design elements. You don’t have to wear your jewelry the entire time you’re in the store, but you should have them on-hand in case you find your dress.
6. Hair simple, makeup light.
Brides face a little bit of a conundrum when it comes to their hair and makeup for bridal appointments. On the one hand, if you’re about to spend hours staring at yourself in a mirror under strong lights, no makeup could leave your face looking pale and washed out. And if you’re sporting a bad case of bed-head, it’s unlikely you’ll feel good about any of the dresses you try on.
On the one hand, if you’re going to be pulling dresses on and off all day, it’s sure to mess up your hair and smear your makeup. Wearing an elaborate hair style is a bad idea, since it’s sure to end up a mess, and there’s always the possibility of catching a pin in the fine lace of a gown. Similarly, full contouring with a bold lip is likely to end up smeared all over the ivory satin and chiffon of a half dozen dresses before the appointment is over.
The best course is to do a simple version of however you plan to wear your hair for the day. You can leave your hair down but give it a quick go-over with the curling iron before you come in, or you can bring a couple pins and a hairband so you’re ready to sweep it up into a messy bun when the time comes.
As for makeup, keep it simple. Light foundation, a little blush, and some black eyeliner will help you from feeling washed out under the lights, but it’s also unlikely to smudge.
When deciding what to wear wedding dress shopping, put comfort and confidence first.
We all want to enjoy ourselves at our wedding dress appointment, but the reality is that trying on gowns for your big day can be physically and emotionally draining. Dressing well for your bridal appointment can go a surprisingly long way toward making your experience more rewarding.
So, dress for success! Think about what you need to feel comfortable, but also be ready with whatever you’re planning to wear for the day. That way, when you try on your perfect dress at The White Dress for the first time, you won’t find yourself distracted by bad hair or painful shoes. Enjoy the experience! It’s what you came for.