Today’s post is dedicated to three very important questions in your journey to finding the perfect wedding dress: How do I figure out my body type? Which silhouettes work for my body type? and most importantly, How do I find the perfect wedding dress for my body type? And lucky for you, we have everything you need to ace your dress-shopping fit strategy below!
Before heading to your first bridal appointment, it’s a good idea to get to know your general measurements and how they comprise your natural body type. No bride fits neatly into one shape or another, but basic categories can be useful to understanding your proportions, narrowing your wedding gown search, and choosing silhouettes that play up your most flattering features.
For your consideration, the body shapes we’re outlining in this post are hourglass, small chested, petite, pear-shaped, apple-shaped, tall and slender, athletic, and full chested. Combine tips and recommendations from each category to find the perfect wedding dress for your body type—whatever your unique features, personal aesthetic, style, and wedding vision. Keep scrolling!
Dress Shopping Tips for Finding the Perfect Wedding Dress for Your Body Type
- Trust your bridal consultant. During your dress-shopping appointment, they may pull a wedding gown silhouette that feels outside of your comfort zone. Remember to keep an open mind; stylists are trained to help each of their brides find “the one!”
- Do your hair and makeup before a bridal appointment. You don’t have to go all out with the contour, but a little zhoosh will boost your confidence and help you imagine a complete bridal look for your big day.
- Shop with your trusted bride tribe only. Buying a wedding dress is a big deal, so you have every right to exclude people who don’t love, support, and cheer for you at every step of the way.
- Use a few simple references and style tips to help you find the perfect wedding dress for your body type. We’ve outlined a few of our tried-and-true pointers below!
Wedding Dresses for Hourglass Figures
- For hourglass body types, corset style and/or mermaid wedding dress is designed to flatter and accentuate your natural curves. A relaxed fit-and-flare wedding dress (less structured but equally as glamorous) is also a gorgeous option for hourglass brides.
- If a ball gown wedding dress strikes your fancy, opt for a structured bodice and full skirt to cinch in your waist and play up your red-carpet silhouette.
- Be sure to avoid loose-fitting sheath wedding dresses that tend to drown out your figure.
- A sweetheart or portrait neckline complements your feminine shape, especially when paired with a fit-and-flare silhouette.
- For more tips and wedding dresses for hourglass-shaped brides, hit the link: Flattering Mermaid Wedding Dresses for an Hourglass Figure!
Dresses: Hattie by Rebecca Ingram & Astley by Maggie Sottero
Dresses: January by Maggie Sottero & Joss by Sottero and Midgley
Dresses: Kitara by Sottero and Midgley & Valona by Sottero and Midgley
Wedding Dresses for Small-Chested Figures
- If you are a small-chested bride, find the perfect wedding dress for your body type by adding structure and form in strategic places.
- For example, ruching, wrapping, and embellishment help play up your décolletage and add visual interest to your bodice and neckline.
- Or, consider that instead of trying to make your breasts look larger, you could wear something only a small-busted bride can rock: a deep plunging V-neck and low back!
Dresses: Leticia by Maggie Sottero & Bellamy by Sottero and Midgley
Dresses: Burke by Maggie Sottero & Hesper by Rebecca Ingram
Dresses: Petra by Sottero and Midgley & Alberta by Maggie Sottero
Wedding Dresses for Petite Brides
- Choose smooth, monochromatic fabrics with flowy layers and vertical details. Heavy embellishments tend to add bulk to your silhouette.
- Ball gown wedding dresses can overwhelm a smaller figure, but a narrower A-line silhouette plays up your curves and elongates your frame.
- Certain fit-and-flare wedding dresses work well for petite brides—just opt for relaxed construction and subtle embellishment.
- A high or natural waistline helps you avoid looking “scrunched up” or bottom-heavy. Watch out for dropped waistlines; they tend to shorten you by visually lowering the starting point for your legs and hips.
- A V-back or open back look can also help elongate your torso, making you appear taller. For more petite body type inspo, check out: Open Back Wedding Dresses for Petite Brides!
Dresses: Stevie by Maggie Sottero & Joelle by Maggie Sottero
Dresses: Sondra by Maggie Sottero & Heather by Rebecca Ingram
Dresses: Angie by Rebecca Ingram & Austin by Sottero and Midgley
Wedding Dresses for Pear-Shaped Body Types
- An A-line or ball gown wedding dress looks great on most body types, but we think they look especially dreamy on a pear-shaped figure!
- Find the perfect wedding dress for your body type by focusing on the bodice: embellishments and details help to accentuate your décolletage and waistline to even out the curve of your hips.
- However, if you want to accentuate your best assets, flaunt your hips and booty with a fit-and-flare wedding gown in a chic and comfy fabrication!
- For more pear-shaped body type inspo, visit: Lightweight A-line Wedding Dresses for Pear-Shaped Brides!
Dresses: Lorenza by Maggie Sottero & Mirra by Maggie Sottero
Dresses: Zareen by Maggie Sottero & Lettie by Rebecca Ingram
Dresses: Arta by Sottero and Midgley & Jill by Rebecca Ingram
Wedding Dresses for Tall and Slender Brides
- Find the perfect wedding dress for your body type by focusing on elegant details and a slinky silhouette. Showy wedding gowns are gorgeous, but they might feel like overkill on your lithe and graceful frame.
- Play up your height with a soft sheath wedding gown that feels light and airy. You’ll look like a Roman goddess!
- Or, if you’d like to downplay your height, stay clear of empire waists. Instead, opt for a ball gown wedding dress with a low waist; or try out a fit-and-flare silhouette to lend focus to your curves.
Dresses: Lorraine by Rebecca Ingram & Barrett by Sottero and Midgley
Dresses: Bryan by Sottero and Midgley & Cruz by Sottero and Midgley
Dresses: Waverly by Maggie Sottero & Verina by Sottero and Midgley
Wedding Dresses for Athletic Body Types
- If you’re a bride with an athletic build, find a sexy silhouette like a slimming A-line or fit-and-flare wedding dress.
- Work with angles: a unique neckline, swirls of beading and embellishments, and a tiered skirt help to add visual interest to your silhouette.
- Show off your toned arms and shoulders with a halter top or strapless wedding dress.
- To see more fit-and-flare wedding gowns for sporty figures, hit the link: Flattering Fit-and-Flare Wedding Dresses for Athletic Body Types.
Dresses: Hamilton by Sottero and Midgley & Belinda by Rebecca Ingram
Dresses: Dasha by Sottero and Midgley & Anthony by Sottero and Midgley
Forrest by Rebecca Ingram & Cairo by Maggie Sottero
Wedding Dresses for Full-Chested Figures
- If you are a full-chested beauty, shop for wedding dresses with wider straps or sleeves to help support your bust and also hide bra straps.
- To find the perfect wedding dress for your body type, choose your neckline wisely. A sweetheart, portrait, bateau neckline, or even an off-the-shoulder neckline can hide strapless bras and flatter your natural curves.
- Opt for a bridal gown with a higher back or corset. These types of wedding dresses can hide a bra and also provide extra support. You can still wear illusion; just wear nude garments underneath for secret support.
- If you also have narrow hips and slender legs along with your full chest, check out this blog: The Best Wedding Dresses for Apple-Shaped Body Types!
Flora by Rebecca Ingram & Fernanda Lynette by Sottero & Midgley
Dresses: Georgia by Rebecca Ingram & Nora by Maggie Sottero
Dresses: Tiffany by Maggie Sottero & Cambrie by Sottero and Midgley
More questions to consider when looking for the perfect wedding dress for your body type.
Here are some more questions to ask yourself while shopping for your dream wedding dress. What makes you feel comfortable for your day job? What makes you feel sexy for a special occasion? It’s a delicate balance of both when getting dressed up for your wedding. You want to feel like yourself on your big day without playing it too safe. Think about wedding dress styles and aesthetics that make you feel like the best version of yourself—but still true to your individual personality.
Also, think about what HAMU looks make you feel confident. Does a structured updo make you feel fit for the occasion. Or, do natural waves help you go with the flow? Do accessories elevate your look or distract from it? Does the thought of wearing heels make you want to dance all night or bail on the situation entirely? Clues like these help you find a wedding dress that synthesizes your body type, personal style, and overall vision for your big day.
Also, can you let go of some insecurities and listen to feedback from your close friends and family? Every bride has things she likes and doesn’t like about her body. It’s important to find a gown that fits these preferences, but you can’t let your inner critic dominate your decision-making. We’re willing to bet your loved ones—and most importantly your sweetheart—have a much more glowing perception of your gorgeous features than you do!
For tips on how to know if a wedding dress is “the one,” check out this advice from real brides! Then, browse the shopping resources below, and head to an Authorized Retailer near you to find the perfect wedding dress for your body type. Happy wedding dress shopping!