These expert-shopping tips will help you find "The One" for your big day.

Whether you've been dreaming of your wedding dress since you were five and know the exact specifications you want for it down to the last sequin, or you've never thought about your dress until the groom's mother nagged, "You still haven't gotten your gown?" — we've got you covered.

Finding your dream gown can be stressful. After all, you've likely never even tried one on before, and it's the most expensive garment many women will ever own, so it can feel like the pressure is definitely on. Plus, your dress sets the tone for the wedding as a whole, whether it's a grand ballroom affair or a casual beach bash. It may also feel like there's a whole new language to decode — tulle, A-line, fit and flare, organza, sheath. Plus, more brides than ever are doing multiple dresses, a more formal one for the ceremony and a party-centric (danceable or more blingy and outrageous) one for the reception, which can doubling the task of shopping.

With all eyes on you, not to mention photos you'll keep forever, of course you want to look perfect on your big day. But what does perfect mean to you? For some brides, a dream dress is a regal ballgown fit for a princess. For others, a dream look is a sexy, va-va-voom mermaid gown that makes everyone appreciate her curves; to other brides, the best dress is one that allows her enough movement to be able to re-enact the choreography from "Thriller" on the dance floor.

The choices can seem overwhelming for sure. No matter your budget, your personal style, or your timeline, here are our top tips for finding the dress of your dreams — the one you'll love today, on the big day, and in 30 years from now when you look back at your wedding photos.

Photo: Jana Dillon

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