How To Ask Bridesmaids To Pay For Their Dress

How To Ask Bridesmaids To Pay For Their Dress

Last Updated on April 22, 2024 by Kimberlee Johnson

Are you in the process of planning your wedding and wondering how to courteously request your bridesmaids to cover the cost of their own dresses?

Well, don’t fret. Today, we’re going to discuss the best ways to ask your bridesmaids to cover the cost of their dresses for your big day. 

From making sure to consider their financial situations to choosing affordable dresses, this guide will provide you with all the pointers you need to make it as stress-free as possible. 

Read on to learn more.

5 Surefire Ways To Ask Your Bridesmaids To Pay For Their Dresses

2 women wearing dress

1. Approach Them Directly

Asking your bridesmaids directly can also be a great way to ensure everyone is on the same page and that everything is clear. 

Being direct and honest allows for immediate feedback from your bridesmaids. 

Not just that, you can better understand their financial situation and what they can afford. 

Lastly, you can discuss different budget options and find a dress that both of you are happy with. 

Read: How To Tell Your Guests To Pay For Their Meal In The Invitation?

2. Schedule A Coffee Date With Them

Schedule a coffee date with your bridesmaids to discuss the details of their dresses. 

It will allow you to talk about the cost of their dresses and allow them to ask questions and voice their concerns. 

“Asking your friend to be a bridesmaid is one of the modern paradoxes: No one actually wants to do it, but everyone would be offended if you didn’t ask.” 

Mindy Kaling, American Actress

You can go over the budget for the wedding and how you’d like your bridesmaids to contribute to the cost of their dresses over coffee [1]. 

3. Give Your Bridesmaids Options

If you want your bridesmaids to chip in for their dresses, giving them a few different styles to choose from is great. 

But also consider the cost of the dresses and take into account the color scheme of the wedding and the season in which it is taking place. 

Many stores offer a wide selection of bridesmaid dresses at different prices, so you should find something that fits your budget while still giving your bridesmaids the freedom to choose their dresses.

But when should you give the bridesmaids their gift?

4. Let Another Friend Ask On Your Behalf

A good friend close to your bridesmaids can effectively communicate and more successfully convey your request. 

If you and your bridesmaids have problems, this pal can intervene as a mediator.

Plus, having a third party involved can help to take some of the burden and awkwardness off of you. 

Your friend can help to ensure that the conversation is respectful and civil and can help to ensure that your bridesmaids understand why you are making the request.

5. Offer Bridesmaid Incentives

When asking bridesmaids to pay for their dresses, giving them some reward is a good idea. 

It can help take some of the burdens of the bride and groom, who may be on a tight budget. 

The incentives can range from something small such as a free manicure [2] or pedicure to something more substantial such as a free night out for dinner or a spa day. 

Also, it can be tailored to each bridesmaid, such as a gift certificate to their favorite store. 

In this sense, each bridesmaid will know how much her participation in the wedding is valued. Find out how much you should spend on bridesmaid gifts here.

How Much Should You Ask The Bridesmaids To Charge For Dresses?

Generally, bridesmaids should be asked to pay at most $100-$350 for the dress. 

However, you should be sure to factor in the cost of the dress, alterations, accessories, and shipping. And consider the financial situation of your bridesmaids. 

They shouldn’t be expected to pay more than they can, so look for a dress in their price range.

What Other Expenses Do Bridesmaids Cover?

2 bridesmaids

1. Hair & Makeup 

Hair and makeup are other expenses that bridesmaids often have to cover. 

Depending on the desired look, bridesmaids may need to factor in the cost of extensions and accessories and the costs of any trials before the wedding. 

Makeup is another expense that bridesmaids should consider. 

They may hire a professional makeup artist who can create a look tailored to the bridesmaid’s features, or they may decide to do their makeup. 

Either way, they need to factor in the cost of any products they may need to purchase for their look. 

2. Transportation To & From The Wedding

It includes booking flights or renting a car to pay for gas or an Uber ride to the venue. 

Bridesmaids should discuss with the bride ahead of time who will be responsible for covering these costs and make sure to account for them in their budget.

3. Bridal Shower Gifts

Bridal shower gifts are essential to any bridal shower, and the bridesmaids are typically responsible for finding and purchasing them. 

Depending on the budget, bridesmaids can purchase anything from a simple gift basket or a more expensive item such as a jewelry set. 

Remember that the gifts should reflect the bride’s taste and be something she will appreciate and use.

4. Bachelorette Party 

One more thing that bridesmaids typically pay for is the bachelorette party. 

The bridesmaids can organize a night out with dinner, drinks, and fun activities such as a spa day, a wine tasting, or a dance party. 

This pre-wedding celebration is a great way to show the bride how much she is loved, and the bridesmaids can all chip in to help make it a unique and memorable night.


Why do dresses for bridesmaids cost so much?

Bridesmaid dresses can be expensive because they are usually custom-made and require more fabric and labor than other dresses. 
They also usually need to be ordered in multiple sizes, which can add to the cost.

What are the duties of the bridesmaids?

The bridesmaids’ duties typically include helping the bride prepare for the wedding and attending pre-wedding events. 

It includes showers and bachelorette parties and helping with wedding day details. 

Find out how many flower girls are at a wedding here.

Can a woman who is married be a bridesmaid?

Yes, a married woman can be a bridesmaid. 

Married bridesmaids are often asked to play a more critical role in the wedding since they have more life experience to share.

Final Words

Although it can be awkward, asking your bridesmaids to pay for their outfits need not be unpleasant.

Remember to be understanding and accommodating if your bridesmaids need to make alternate arrangements, and be sure to communicate your expectations (and budget) clearly and early.


Kimberlee Johnson
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