18 Ways to Style Wavy Hair for Your Wedding

From low buns to high ponytails.

Bride with a wavy half-up, half-down hairstyle smiling at the groom

Photo by Sydney Noelle Photography

Wavy hair is the perfect in-between hair type. It isn’t so straight that it lacks texture and volume, and it isn’t so curly that it’s difficult to style and tame. Who wouldn’t want bouncy, effortless waves?

Whether your hair is short, medium, or long, a head full of wavy tresses complements so many different hairstyles. From low buns to high ponytails, there’s so much versatility in styling a wavy hair texture.

To select the right hairdo for your nuptials, Brittany Lo of Beautini and Beia suggests considering your everyday style and then elevating it for the wedding. “Think about how you normally feel comfortable wearing your hair, and focus on a hairstyle that complements that versus picking a hairstyle solely based on your wedding dress or the time of year,” she recommends. “Many brides come in determined to create a look that they think is best for the dress but then ultimately don’t feel like themselves and change it to be more comfortable.”

Once you’ve chosen your ‘do, prepping your locks before the wedding to maintain their health and radiance is essential. “Taking care of wavy hair is so important, and establishing a good hair care routine is vital to having the best hair for a wedding day,” notes Laura Luna of Luna Beauty and Bridal. “I recommend using a nice hydrating hair mask at least once a week and getting your haircut every six to eight weeks.”

However, Lo warns against making any major changes to your everyday hair routine before the big day. “I don't suggest switching shampoos or conditioners less than a month before the wedding in case it makes the hair heavy and greasy, which could affect the final hair look,” she explains. 

On the morning of your wedding day, there are steps your hairstylist can take to ensure your waves maintain their textured appearance. Using a curling iron is a great way to create shape and enhance the look of your waves. "Allowing your hairstylist to go in with a hot tool to mimic the natural pattern will allow you to have more volume and fullness to some not-so-cooperative texture," Luna remarks.

Then, you can have your hairstylist use products to make sure your style stays intact. When Luna styles brides’ wavy hair, she always uses Kevin Murphy Killer Curls, a leave-in conditioner that hydrates and strengthens the hair. Lo’s go-to product is Shu Uemura Texture Spray, to add fullness and volume.

If you aren’t set on a style yet, here are 18 wedding hairstyle ideas that look best with wavy hair.

Meet the Expert

  • Brittany Lo is the founder and CEO of Beautini, a wedding hair and makeup business, and Beia, a beauty wellness brand. She’s based in New York City and has been styling hair and doing makeup for eight years.
  • Laura Luna is a professional hair and makeup artist and the founder of Luna Beauty and Bridal, which is based in Austin, Texas. She’s been working in the beauty industry for over nine years.
01 of 18

A Voluminous Updo

bride in wedding dress

Photo by Amy Anaiz Photography

There’s nothing more timeless than an updo. Whether it’s braided, knotted, or twisted, there are so many ways to pull off this look. Instead of tying your tendrils back in a tight bun, select a loose style to highlight your wavy texture. A chignon is the perfect option for brides who want to draw attention to the back of their wedding dress or neckline.

02 of 18

Fresh Flowers

Francesca sharing a sweet moment with her mom while putting on her satin A-line dress

Photo by Adriana Rivera

We can’t think of a better way to accentuate your waves than with luscious blooms. It doesn’t matter whether you wear your hair down or on top of your head. A floral accessory is the most romantic way to pull your tresses out of your face. We love how this white flower's hue coordinates perfectly with a wedding dress!

03 of 18

A Half-Up Hairdo

Sage and Teddy kissing in the desert before their ceremony

Photo by Sydney Noelle Photography

For brides who are concerned about their strands staying in place all night, a half-up, half-down hairstyle is the right choice for you. If your waves start to flatten as the day goes on, this structured style will still capture the beauty of your original coiffure. This look is also ideal for anyone who wears their hair down on a regular basis. You’ll feel like yourself while giving your mane a special upgrade.

04 of 18

An Uncomplicated Approach

Wedding dresses

Photo by John & Joseph

Sure, updos feel upscale and wedding-worthy, but don’t overlook the simplicity of wearing your hair down. You'll actually be able to dance the night away without constantly fixing your hairstyle or worrying about it falling out. Whether it’s long and loose or short and sweet, cascading waves that fall down your back are timeless.

05 of 18

A Statement-Making Accessory

bride and groom

Photo by Shannon Skloss

To elevate your updo, clip on a show-stopping hair pin. This bride fastened her chignon with a beaded hair piece, which certainly stole the show at her European-inspired wedding in Dallas. By embracing a subtle wave on her face-framing pieces, her look felt even more dreamy.

06 of 18

A Chic Headband

Bride in a beaded headband with soft waves

Photo by Deborah Ann Photography

If you’re searching for a modern alternative to the traditional wedding veil, a trendy headband will do the trick. This crystal-studded hair accessory will draw attention to your long waves and make your locks even more radiant. For a cohesive look, pair it with diamond jewelry.

07 of 18

A Stunning Center Part

Indhira's off-the-shoulder lace beaded wedding dress and white bouquet

Photo by Kiyah C Photography

Parting your hair in the middle is a wildly popular hair trend right now. Having a precise center part looks clean and polished, and it complements the symmetry of your face. With wavy hair, a middle part or slightly off-center part allows your waves to fall naturally. Wearing your hair down will add even more whimsy to your tresses.

08 of 18

A Waterfall Braid

Side-Swept Multi-Strand Braid

Photo by Bonphotage

Looking for a low-maintenance style that still feels upscale? Settle on a cascading braid swept to the side. A long braid with a four-strand plait will capture the texture of your waves instead of concealing them. And, if you decide to remove your hair tie at the reception, you’ll reveal mermaid-like waves.

09 of 18

Topped With a Veil

Chasity and Francois standing on a cliff with the bride's veil blowing in the wind

Photo by The Foxes Photography

Calling all traditional brides! Accenting your wavy tendrils with a cathedral-length veil is the epitome of romance. Not to mention, windswept waves and a billowing veil make for epic photos.

10 of 18

A Low Ponytail

Heather and Kelly kissing after their first look

Photo by We the Romantics 

A low ponytail is fuss-free and practical without skimping on glamour. Slicking your hair back at the top and brushing out your waves in the pony is a sleek and chic way to wear your hair. Affixing the style with a pearl accent will add an ounce of elegance that will pull your look together. 

11 of 18

Styled With Bangs


Photo by Hailley Howard Photography

If bangs are your signature look, there’s no need to grow them out for your wedding day. Flaunting bangs exudes boldness, especially when paired with wispy waves. This bride’s French fringe was the perfect accompaniment to her rockstar wedding in the Arizona desert.

12 of 18

An Ethereal Flower Crown

A bride's messy bun hairstyle with a colorful flower crown

Photo by Volvoreta

Add even more dimension to your textured waves with a halo of petals around your head. Flower crowns will give any hairstyle a boho and effortless feel. The lush accessory is especially fitting for summer weddings or garden-inspired soirées. Stick with bright buds to add a pop of color to your white dress.

13 of 18

Elegant Pearl Accents

Sabrina and Clark kissing during their first look

Photo by PS Photography + Films

Are you on the hunt for a fun accessory that will play up your hairstyle? Enhance glam waves and a deep side part with a cluster of pearls. The beaded accent will look especially eye-catching when combined with a pearl-studded wedding dress.

14 of 18

A Fashionable Top Hat

Georgia wearing strapless jumpsuit and top hat and Alex wearing dark blue suit

Photo by Sotiris Tsakanikas

From chic fedoras to fancy fascinators, hats are a surefire way to make a fashion statement at your nuptials. Tuck soft and smooth waves underneath a top hat to channel a vintage vibe, like this bride at her old Hollywood-inspired wedding in Athens. Make sure to don a hat while your hair is down, so the accessory doesn’t detract from your wavy finish.

15 of 18

A Royal-Inspired Tiara

Becky's bouquet of roses, peonies, and ranunculus in red, white, and pink with trailing greenery

Photo by Austin Gros

Is there anything more regal than a tiara? At her fairy-tale Athenian wedding, this bride topped her bouncy waves with a gold leaf crown, a nod to her German and Greek heritage. The posh accessory matched her princess-worthy satin gown with sheer sleeves and an illusion neckline.

16 of 18

A Lovely Lob

bride laughing

Photo by Liz Fogarty Photography

Just because you have short hair doesn’t mean you can’t show off your wavy locks. A cropped ‘do with tight coils is a refined look that requires minimal upkeep. With a short cut, you’ll also emphasize a plunging neckline or a low back. Red lipstick and thick lashes will take this style to the next level.

17 of 18

A High Ponytail

Couple kissing at the ceremony

Photo by Janine Licare Photography

Throwing your hair up isn’t just reserved for workout classes or casual outings. A perky ponytail is an underrated wedding hairstyle that proves less is more. It’s also an excellent way to spotlight a subtle wave. When you wear your ponytail high up, you’ll give your attire a fun and fresh flair.

18 of 18

Side Swept Layers

Alexa's old Hollywood-inspired waves and natural makeup

Photo by Jacqueline Benet

Parting your hair to the side will add more softness to your silky spirals. A side style featuring loose waves falling around your shoulders is perfect for brides with long hair. Accessorize with drop earrings for heightened drama.

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