5 Colors to Avoid Wearing as a Wedding Guest

Steer clear of these taboo hues and fabrics to ensure you don't upset the bride.

close up shot of bridesmaids wearing white and pink

Photo by Gracie Byrd Jones

When you find yourself trying to pick out the perfect outfit to wear to an upcoming wedding, take note that there are a handful of taboo colors you should absolutely avoid wearing for the big day. As a guest, your job is to help celebrate the couple entering this new life chapter, so the last thing you want to do is get mistaken for the bride, a bridesmaid, or even just a guest who stumbled into the wrong party.

Therefore, as you comb through your closet, or scour the internet for a new ensemble, be sure to eliminate the below colors and fabrics from your list of options—lest you transgress and become that guest. Don't say we didn't warn you!

Colors Wedding Guests Should Never Wear—white, champagne, color of the bridesmaids, glitter, denim

Jessica Olah / Brides

White or Ivory

Itching to wear the gorgeous white dress you just purchased? Don't do it. While it may sound like the number one wedding guest faux pas that everyone should know, some people forget (or, worse, ignore) the rule, so we're here to reiterate that white, or a white dress with patterns, is off-limits. Of course, there's always an exception, so if—and only if—the bride has called for guests to wear white, never wear this color to someone's special day.

Champagne, Beige, or Anything Close to White

Steer clear of off-white, eggshell, beige, champagne, cream, or any other super light color that could be mistaken for white. There are so many dress options available in a variety of hues, so steering clear of these shades should not be a major issue. For instance, brands like Reformation, Lulus, Revolve, and ASOS are only but a few retailers that provide a plethora of wedding guest dresses in a variety of suitable colors, styles, silhouettes, and sizes.

The Same Color as the Bridal Party

While you may not immediately know the color of the bridesmaid dresses, try and do your due diligence in order to find out what they plan to wear (and avoid wearing the same hue). Either ask the couple, a member of the bridal party, or anyone attending the wedding who might be able to let you know. Trust us, the last thing you want is to accidentally get mistaken as a bridesmaid or member of the immediate family.

Lots of Glitter

It's best to avoid wearing anything too shimmery or distracting, so save the sparkles for the bachelorette party or another Saturday night on the town. As for sequins, you can opt for an outfit that incorporates this design element, but be sure that your look isn't completely full of this sparkly add-on. As previously mentioned, do your best to stick with pared-back fabrics and colors, as there are so many dresses available to shop that don't require you to draw any attention away from the bride.


Even if the wedding guest dress code calls for casual, you should leave your jeans and Candian tuxedo at home. While a denim jacket may be appropriate to sport as outerwear, if possible, try opting for a leather jacket or shawl instead. However, it's never appropriate to wear denim pants, skirts, overalls, and dresses for a wedding, unless otherwise noted by the couple.

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