Finding the Perfect Wedding Veil Style

Finding The Perfect Wedding Veil Style

The wedding veil is an iconic bridal accessory! Veils come in so many different styles, details, and lengths to choose from. But the question is how are you supposed to know which one’s right for you and your wedding day outfit?

Follow these handy tips to choose the perfect veil to top off your look.

Finding the Perfect Wedding Veil Style – Start With the Length

First, consider the length to find the ideal veil to match your wedding style. Test out a variety of options when you go for your first dress fitting to see what length works best with your gown. That means finding a style that complements your overall silhouette—you don’t want your veil to interrupt the flow of your look. Designers will often make veils tailored specifically for their dresses, so you can use these as a starting point.

Long or Short wedding veil

Shorter veils, like bandeaus, birdcages, and blushers, tend to lend a bit more personality as well as an informal or retro edge to your look! While longer veils (ballet, chapel, and cathedral styles) lean more in the way of tradition and formality. If you can’t find one you love, you can always go the custom route. Many companies will create a veil to your specifications, from the length to the color and the kind of embellishments.

From cathedral-length to elbow-length, tulle poufs to lace mantillas, there’s a veil style for everyone. Choosing the right veil is the final touch that will complete your transformation into a full-blown bride.

1- Birdcage Wedding Veil

Also known as a cage veil, birdcage veils are typically a 9-inch piece of netting that drapes off the side of the head. It can provide a unique, vintage look and also allows the lower half of your face to be free.

Birdcage wedding veil

2- Blusher Veil

A short, single layer of veiling, the blusher is worn over the face before the ceremony, then either flipped over the head or removed afterward. This style of veil is ideal for the bride looking for a no-fuss take on the veil tradition.

Blusher veil

3- Cathedral Veil

The mother of all veils, the cathedral is also the most formal. Sometimes referred to as the “royal veil,” this style sweeps the floor and falls three-and-a-half yards from the headpiece.

Cathedral wedding veil

4- Chapel wedding veil

A formal veil that extends to the floor, the chapel falls two-and-a-half yards from the headpiece. It’s often worn in combination with a sweep train and blusher for extra oomph.

Chapel veil

5- Double Tier Wedding Veil

A veil of two layers (either two veils or a veil and a blusher), usually of different lengths. Having more than one tier can be a way to add detail and volume to a simple hairstyle or wedding dress.

Double Tier wedding veil

6- Elbow Wedding Veil

As the name implies, this type of veil extends 25 inches in length to the bride’s elbows. It can be great for showcasing the skirt or train of your wedding dress.

Elbow veil

7- Fingertip Wedding Veil

A very popular length, particularly with ball gowns, this style extends to—you guessed it—the fingertips. We love the idea of pairing this style with a dramatic headpiece like a flower crown or tiara.

fingertip wedding veil

8- Flyaway Wedding Veil

A multi-layered veil that just brushes the shoulders, it’s considered less formal than other styles. If you’re wearing a dress with a heavily embellished back, this simple style is the perfect way to wear a veil without distracting from your gown.


9- Mantilla Wedding Veil

A long, Spanish-style circular piece of lace that frames the face. Made either of lace or lace-edged tulle, the mantilla is usually secured with a comb.


10- Pouf Wedding Veil

A gathered piece of tulle or netting that fastens to a comb or headpiece to create height. If you’re opting for this style, place it off-center on your head.


11- Waltz (aka Ballet) Wedding Veil

A veil length that falls somewhere between the knee and ankle, a waltz veil is good for showing off the bodice of your dress (and can help eliminate tripping fears!).

Waltz (aka Ballet)

Choose a Complementary Color

Aim to match the color of the veil to your wedding gown as closely as you can. And since photos may not accurately portray the correct color, bring a swatch of fabric from your dress when you go veil shopping. The one exception to this rule is antique veils—you shouldn’t try dying a vintage veil (it’s not worth the risk of ruining such a delicate piece). As long as the colors are close enough don’t worry if they’re not a 100 percent match—the appeal of an heirloom style is in its uniqueness and sentimentality (if it was your mom’s or grandmother’s, for instance), so it won’t matter if it’s slightly off in color.

Strike the Right Balance With Embellishments

If your wedding dress is heavily embellished, keep your veil on the clean and simple side, with minimal (if any) extras. And vice versa: A simple, streamlined gown allows you to be a bit more adventurous in the veil department. Play around with unexpected shapes, accents, and textures, like a floral-embellished chapel-length veil, a lace cap, or a couture-inspired bubble veil with over-the-top volume. Try to create a balance as well when it comes to the type of embellishments—while they don’t have to match the ones on your dress exactly, they should complement them in color, size, and style. A glam sequined veil, for instance, might feel out of place next to a romantic gown embroidered with tiny pearls.

Find the Perfect Wedding Veil Fabric

You can’t go wrong with tulle—it’s a classic choice for veils—but depending on the look you’re after, there are also a variety of other materials to consider, such as lace, silk, and satin. In most cases, tulle is the most budget-friendly option, and it offers a few benefits over pricier fabrics. Synthetic materials like tulle tend to keep their shape better and have a lighter, more ethereal look than silk and satin, which are more likely to appear heavy and hang straight.

Don’t Forget About Your Hair

Before you decide on a veil, it’s smart to have some idea about how you’ll wear your hair on your wedding day—the style you choose may affect your final veil decision. For example, halo veils, bridal caps, and mantilla veils work best when hair is worn down or in low updos, while blushers and birdcages are much more versatile and can be worn with most hairstyles. Your hairstyle might also affect where you place the veil and how you secure it.

If you’re wearing your hair up,

you can wear the veil above or below a bun or chignon. Pinning it above gives it more volume and achieves a more classic look while placing it below feels more modern and keeps the focus on your stylish updo. Once you’ve purchased your veil, don’t forget to take it (along with any other hair accessories you plan to wear) to your hair trial appointments, so you and your stylist can find the perfect ‘do (and there won’t be any last-minute surprises).

Finding the Perfect Style – Accessorize Wisely

Your hairstyle isn’t the only detail that can affect the type of veil you choose—other hair accessories make a difference too. A voluminous fountain veil, for example, isn’t going to pair well with an equally dramatic tiara. Instead, classic styles, like elbow, cathedral, chapel, or fingertip length, look best with a royal topper or beaded or crystal headband.

Mantillas are traditionally worn with an ornate comb; halo veils often require a wreath, headband, or cap to hold them in place; and blushers and birdcage styles go great with unique accents, like a feather clip or floral barrette. You can use your accessories to hold your veil in place or keep the two separate and attach the veil to your hairstyle with an indetectable clear comb.

Finding the Perfect Wedding Veil Style – Highlight the Back of Your Dress

Does the back of your wedding gown have a daring open-back, lace panel, intricate cutout, or other dramatic detail? Don’t hide it under too many layers of tulle or a wall of heavy satin fabric. Opt for a super-sheer veil with just one or two layers to let those gorgeous details shine through.

Make Wedding Veil Removal Easy on Yourself (and Your Wedding Party)

If you plan to remove your veil after the ceremony (or at any point, really), but want to leave your headpiece on for the reception, attach your veil with fabric hook and loop closures for easy on and off. Keep in mind if you remove your veil before the reception, it won’t appear in pictures of the first dance or the cake cutting. If you choose a cathedral, chapel, or ballet veil and want to keep it on post-ceremony, try a multilayered version with a fingertip-length top layer. That way, you can detach the floor-length layers and keep that classic bridal look—but you’ll be able to mingle and dance with ease.

Keep Your Photos in Mind

Whether you want to flaunt your veil or keep it tucked away; be mindful that how you decide to wear your veil; will affect how much or how little of it you’ll see in your wedding photos. If you attach it with a back piece, then little; if any, of the veil will show up in your photos. This is a good option if you want to keep the focus on your hairstyle or jewelry; but maybe not ideal if you consider your veil your pièce de résistance.

Make It Your “Something Borrowed”

Want to wear your mom’s veil but afraid it’s dated? Give it a face-lift. Take it to a trusted tailor and see if they can rework the trim; embellishments or length so it feels a bit more like you. Or, if the veil has seen better days; but you love its vintage style, look into having it restored to its former glory, or use pieces of it to create something new, yet vintage-inspired.


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