“Should I wear a wedding veil?” This is a super common question from brides and I’m here to share the pros, the cons, and things to consider as you plan your bridal look.
I didn’t wear a veil for our wedding in 2011, just a tiara. While I was really happy with how things came together, looking back I do regret not at least trying on wedding veils to see how they could have played a part. I thought if I wore a veil, I would have to wear it all day, and that just seemed like one more thing to worry about.
False. In our experience, most brides DON’T actually wear their wedding veils the WHOLE day! Let’s talk about what to consider with a wedding veil.
Wedding Veil Pros
Adding a veil WILL give you additional photo opportunities simply because it’s an extra element to play with. This means more variety for your portraits. Is your Pinterest wedding board full of images with brides wearing veils? If you’re in love with the veil aesthetic already in your inspiration images, then you already know you’ll love wedding images that incorporate a veil.
Are you looking for a traditional, classic wedding look? If you like the idea of keeping with some wedding traditions, then a veil can make your look feel complete. It’s also probably the only time in your life that you will even consider wearing a veil!
I often use your wedding veil while taking detail images as a way to soften images or add some extra texture.
Wedding Veil Cons
Will a veil hide your hairpiece? If you have a special hairpiece – like a family heirloom – you may decide to forgo the veil. You can also decide to wear your veil only for the ceremony and some portraits and then remove it later. (We’ll talk about that more below.)
What does your dress look like? If the back of your dress is super dramatic (think open back or lots of beading or buttons) you may not want to cover it with a veil even for part of the day.
Other Things to Consider When Selecting a Veil
What is your wedding venue like? Location is so important due to the weather. If your venue is located near the water or at a higher altitude, it’ll be a little windier than a wedding that’s indoors. Keep the weather in mind when picking your veil (and every other wedding day detail!)
Additionally, if you’re selecting an outdoor location, consider the length of your veil so it doesn’t get snagged on foliage or rough terrain. A cathedral length veil is a stunning addition for a wedding that’s held indoors, but will become a burden to care for if you’re spending the whole day outside.
What color is your veil? Sometimes pure white veils can photograph blue (which is also true with pure white dresses as well)! The best colors from a photography standpoint are off-white, creams, and light ivories. However, my biggest recommendation on veil color is to make sure it matches your gown! As a photographer, the biggest mistake I see with wedding veils is a veil that is much too yellow against a gown that is super white. This can make even an expensive veil look cheap, and it can make editing really difficult. 🙁
Are you still on the fence about whether to wear a veil?
Remember how I said some brides wear their veil only for the ceremony and some portraits and then remove it later? Consider this option: if you’re sharing a first look before the ceremony, I suggest waiting on the veil and adding it just before the ceremony starts.
First of all, it’s something your groom hasn’t seen already. It’s also a way to look a little EXTRA bridal when you’re coming down the aisle!
Additionally, placing the wedding veil just before the ceremony ensures your veil will look fresh and clean, not wrinkled or damaged.
Bonus – you get two different bridal “looks” to your portraits by splitting the time you wear your veil!
FAQ: What is best to get those flowy “flying” veil shots?
One last thing to consider – as your wedding photographer, I feel that it’s my duty to let you know that not all veils have equal flying power. If these aren’t the images you’re most obsessed with, then no worries! However, I’d hate for you to be disappointed on your wedding day if you realize your veil is too heavy to get the “veil in the wind” shot you were hoping for.
Here are some tips for selecting a veil that can easily go airborne and is extra photogenic:
👰🏻 Avoid heavy beading and detail that weighs down your veil. A little beading on the edges is helpful for a windy location, but if there’s a lot of beading throughout or heavy embellished lace around the border it won’t fall as naturally when tossed.
💍 One layer is best for flying veils! Multiple layers of tulle can be hard to toss.
🎊 Fine tulle flies more freely.
💋 Select a veil at least medium length (falling by your elbows) for optional fluffing and flying.