So you picked your dress! Now comes a whole litany of new questions–what shoes will you wear? Do you want your hair up or down? What color of lipstick (if any at all)? What flowers do you want for your bouquet? What sort of veil do you want, if you want one? That last question is what we’ll be talking about today.

First things first: you totally don’t have to wear a veil if you don’t want to. There are lots of beautiful alternatives: flower crowns, jeweled clips, and tiaras are all excellent choices. But some want the traditional veil and gown. The challenge is finding the right one. Veil styles are as diverse as gown styles.

cathedral veil

Cathedral Veils

Cathedral veils are what most people picture when they think of a wedding veil: the long flowing fabric (often made of tulle) trailing behind, sometimes even longer than the train of the dress. You may need help wrangling it, but it pairs excellently with formal, dramatic gowns and traditional weddings. A chapel length veil is a similar option but shorter, usually just brushing the floor or extending an inch or two behind you

. These may be paired with a blusher: a veil that hangs in front of your face that your new spouse will raise when you meet them at the altar.

 

Fingertip Veils

Fingertip veils are a more informal option for more modern weddings. These veils will stretch to the bride’s fingertips when her arms are resting at her sides. This helps you achieve the romantic “bride” look without having to work with a full cathedral veil dragging behind you. Fingertip veils can be pinned into your hair at the crown or be attached to the bottom of a chignon or french twist. There are several similar styles of veils that adjust to different lengths, such as the ballet style veil which goes to the back of the knee. Choose a length that flatters you and your dress, and pay attention to small details. If your dress has a lace trim with a floral pattern, it might be possible to find a veil trimmed with the same lace.

Juliet Cap Veils

Juliet cap veils give you a romantic, 1920s inspired look. They can vary in length, but the name comes from the section of tulle that rests over the bride’s head, forming a cap. These are great for a Great Gatsby inspired wedding and can add some visual interest to a simple dress or hairstyle. You could look like you belong in a century past with a dress accented with jewels and a Juliet Cap veil to wear as you celebrate your night.

Birdcage and Elbow Length Veils

A birdcage veil is a small veil that attaches to your hair or a headband and covers either just your forehead or extends down to your chin. These give a great mid-century vibe and pair well with informal, short dresses. Maybe with a bit of tulle from a crinoline in a fun color poking out the bottom? Another mid-century option is an elbow length veil worn high on top of your head. It’s a fun, flirty look that great for brides that love pinup style. You may already have a haircare routine that resembles that of a woman from a few decades in the past.

Whatever style you pick, enjoy it: veils are the sort of garment that you often will only wear on your wedding day. Bridal hair accessories such as veils, fascinators, tiaras, and flowers are great ways to elevate your normal style into something for your big day. Enjoy it, and enjoy those moments when your bridal look all comes together.

What’s your favorite bridal veil style? Let us know in the comments!

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