By the time you're ready to start wedding dress shopping, you've probably amassed a pretty nice-sized wish list about your dream gown. But how do you find the best wedding dress for your body type? Most bridal shops will only let you book an hour-long appointment. And, while one hour is plenty of time to try on dresses, if you can narrow down your options before stepping foot in the dressing room, you're in for a much more pleasant, laid-back shopping experience.
One easy way to limit your options is to choose the best wedding dress for your body type by finding a silhouette that will highlight your best-loved assets and conceal your less-favorable traits. To start, figure out which of our five featured body types best defines your figure: Petite, plus size, busty, hourglass or lean and straight. And remember, you may not fit squarely into one category — most people don t! Take Kim Kardashian: She's petite, busty and has (insane) hourglass curves. And, her wedding dress (ahem, the Givenchy Haute Couture one she wore a few years back to marry Kanye West) with its sheath silhouette, modest neckline and waist-baring cut-outs, was the perfect complement to her shape.
Along with finding the right gown for your body type, there are a few other things that can help make your wedding dress shopping experience as easy as possible. First, trust your consultant and don't be afraid to try on gowns he or she suggests that fall outside of your traditional comfort zone. Also shop with a supportive crew! Miss Negativity does not deserve a sacred spot on the "yay-or-nay" team. And finally, do your makeup and hair. It will be much easier to imagine wearing one of these gowns on your wedding day if you don't look like you just rolled out of bed.
Well, what are you waiting for? Book your appointment and start reading to see how to find the best wedding dress for your body type!
Wedding Dresses for Petite Body Types
Petite brides should avoid overwhelming their small frame. Choose airy sheaths and structured trumpet styles over big, frothy ball gowns.
A form-fitting shell underneath a gossamer tulle skirt is the perfect way to wear a more voluminous silhouette. Wedding dress by Rivini by Rita Vinieris
For petite brides, simple reigns supreme, and this chic silk crepe number is minimalism at its best. Wedding dress by Christos
The substantial straps on this plunging V-neckline gown draw the eye upward elongating your frame. Wedding dress by Theia
An empire waistline is a great style for petite figures. It creates the illusion of long legs. Wedding dress by YolanCris
A dropped-waist or mermaid silhouette isn't off limits. Just opt for slim, more structured skirts over wide, poofy ones. Wedding dress by Victoria Kyriakides
When done right high-low hemlines can be an asset, and may even make your legs look longer. Wedding dress by Marylise
Skip 3D accents — like luxe blooms — in favor of intricate embroidery, light beading and one-dimensional appliques for design details that won't overwhelm. Wedding dress by Rosa Clara
This trumpet gown with draped lace ruffle and tulle skirt feels ball-gown-grand, while still maintaining the lengthening lines of a sheath. Wedding dress by Blush by Hayley Paige
A sheath's continuous line creates the illusion of height. Plus, it's super easy to hem! Wedding dress by Nouvelle Amsale
Wedding Dresses for Plus-Size Body Types
Whether you want to create the illusion of a smaller frame or celebrate your curves, we've got you covered (or uncovered).
An empire waistline creates a lengthening effect while these fluttery chiffon sleeves act as the most ethereal cover up. Wedding dress by BHLDN
A lace illusion neckline is equal parts daring and demure, and it’s an especially slimming look when paired with a cummerbund-style waistline. Wedding dress by Anne Barge
Minimize your waistline with design details that draw the eye inward (think bodycon seams, but with crystals). Wedding dress by Stone Fox Bride
A high neckline, sheath silhouette and slight train are the ultimate trio to help you look long and lean. Wedding dress by Watters
A high neckline, sheath silhouette and slight train are the ultimate trio to help you look long and lean. Wedding dress by Maggie Sottero
A dark colored sash is a simple way to make your middle look trim. Wedding dress by Justin Alexander
Intricate silver embroidery adds infinite allure but not a bit of bulk to a simple silhouette. Wedding dress by Pronovias
A scoop neckline shows off your voluptuous shape and lets you avoid a strapless bra! Wedding dress by Justin Alexander
A basque waistline enhances an hourglass figure. This modern, less severe interpretation gets it right. Wedding dress by Maggie Sottero
Strategic draping on an unembellished gown can add drama and define curves. Wedding dress by Truly Zac Posen at David's Bridal
Wedding Dresses for Busty Body Types
If you're a busty bride, you've got two choices: reveal or conceal. Either way, finding the right gown starts with pinpointing the perfect neckline.
A square neckline looks great on almost anyone, but it's especially great for the well-endowed because its not too revealing. Wedding dress by Lela Rose
Strapless gowns can be tough for brides with a larger bust, but the straight-across version actually minimizes your assets. Wedding dress by Oscar de la Renta
If you're set on a sweetheart neckline, try one with straps and a full skirt to balance your busty frame. Wedding dress by Anne Barge
Another sweetheart idea we love? This "modesty" lace detail that keeps your cleavage in check. Wedding dress by Christos
This structured off-the-shoulder neckline offers a subtle curve that minimizes a large bust. Wedding dress by Marchesa
Plunging V-necklines are typically too risquè for big-busted girls, but this more subtle dip gets it right. Wedding dress by BHLDN
Generally slinky material is a no-no for larger busts, but the draped cowl neckline makes this 20s-style gown more of a go-to. Wedding dress by Savannah Miller
A subtle dip won't hide your curves completely, but it will soften your sex appeal. Wedding dress by YolanCris
Illusion "skin-baring" details are a big-busted girls bestie. This sheer scoop neckline is every bit ethereal. Wedding dress by Marylise
Wedding Dresses for Lean-and-Straight Body Types
Because floor-length gowns were made with your model stature in mind, you've got lots of options to choose from. But, if you're hoping to create the illusion of curves — we've got a few tricks.
A voluminous peplum skirt acts as a stand in for curvy hips. Wedding dress by Viktor & Rolf
This sheath gets some added allure from intricate geometric design details. Wedding dress by Naeem Khan
Bodycon goes bridal with contouring seams that create "imaginary" curves. Wedding dress by Watters
A sheath will accentuate your statuesque frame. Wedding dress by YolanCris
Consider a wedding dress with a slit to show off your great legs. Wedding dress by Alyne by Rita Vinieris
A high neckline paired with a full, A-line skirt showcases and balances your height at the same time. Wedding dress by Savannah Miller
The illusion neckline details on this gown, which leave just a hint of skin bare, highlight a swan-like neck. Wedding dress by Pronovias
Lucky you! Not everyone can pull off the most eye-catching trend in bridal gowns — crop tops. Wedding dress by Limor Rosen
Go for an over the top ball gown (we love this ballerina-inspired style), it won't overwhelm your tall figure. Wedding dress by Oscar de la Renta
With daring illusion panels, this lace sheath will let you flash a hint of those enviable legs. Wedding dress by YolanCris
Wedding Dresses for Hourglass Body Types
Work your womanly curves in a bodycon bridal gown or hide your hips in a big ball gown — either way, your gown should show off your trim mid section.
A glitzy belt detail is a glamorous way to highlight your tiny waistline. Wedding dress by Alexandra Grecco
This ethereal fit-and-flare dress accentuates hourglass curves. Wedding dress by Victoria Kyriakides
An exaggerated dropped waist and oversized tulle skirt keeps all eyes on feminine form. Wedding dress by Sachin & Babi
The cinched waistline of this Marchesa stunner plays up your small midsection in the most subtle way. Wedding dress by Marchesa
It's clear why this dress is a winner. Seriously, it's the sheer midriff that gives this gown an edge. Wedding dress by Lihi Hod
Fit-and-flare are three words you should get very familiar with. It's a curvy girls go-to silhouette. Wedding dress by Amsale
Hourglass is one of the only body types that can pull off a true mermaid silhouette — a style that flares out just below the knee. Wedding dress by Sareh Nouri
For an unexpected take on a dropped waist design, asymmetrical tiers are a fun, yet glamorous choice. Wedding dress by Monique Lhuillier
We love the idea of long sleeves and a curve-hugging floor length skirt with only a hint of skin at your skinniest bit showing. Wedding dress by Marylise