What To Wear At A Beach Wedding?

More and more people are opting for beach weddings, and it’s no wonder why. There’s the salty air, sandy beaches, and the sound of the waves crashing against the rocks and crawling up the shore. What’s not to love? 

The appeal of beach weddings is astronomical, but it can leave you wondering what the dress code will be. If you have been invited to a beach wedding and you have no idea what to wear, then don’t worry. We have got you covered with this easy guide! 

Some people may think it’s best to go formal, but you don’t want to get your heels lost in the sand. So, maybe you’re thinking smart-casual for the best of both worlds? What even is acceptable beach wedding attire? 

What Is Acceptable Beach Wedding Attire?

Beach wedding attire is typically the same as other weddings, where you need to dress according to the formality and dress code of the event. However, the main difference is that you also need to think about comfort. 

Beach weddings can get very hot as they are most often held during the summer months, so you have to consider the fabrics of the clothing you wear, and you may be walking on sand, so you have to think about appropriate footwear, too. 

For instance, if the wedding takes place on a patio or deck that has views or overlooks the beach, then you don’t have to worry, and you can dress as you normally would for a wedding or formal event. However, if it is going to take place on the sand, then you will have to dress with some beachy vibes to keep in with the theme of the wedding. So, what should you wear?

What To Wear To A Beach Wedding?

What you wear to a beach wedding depends on how formal the event is. Most weddings prefer the formal style, where suits and gowns are expected. Other brides and grooms go for a semi-formal wedding, where a nice shirt or casual suit is perfect, and a pretty dress and heels is just enough. 

Then you have casual weddings, where men may wear a shirt with chinos, and women can wear casual dresses or pantsuits, and feel comfortable and relaxed throughout the day. The key is finding out which is the dress code for the big day. 

You also need to think about the color palette and the perfect footwear. As previously mentioned, you won’t want to wear stiletto heels to a beach wedding that you will not be able to walk in. Most beach weddings are also summer themed, and are light, bright and positive with good vibes, so a black dress is not very suitable either! 

Your best bet is to go for breathable fabrics, fun prints with light colors, or simple, classy staples for a beach wedding look. You can also wear clothing with tropical elements or patterns as long as they go with the theme. 

If you want to keep it classy, then go for a simple dress, and try adding elements of the beach themed wedding into your outfit. For example, have your hair in a fishtail plait, take a seagrass purse, or a beaded clutch bag with a shell embroidered on it to tie the look together! 

What Should Women Wear To A Beach Wedding?

What you wear to a beach wedding depends on the formality of the event. If the beach wedding is rather formal, then you can opt for a nice dress or a smart jumpsuit with pretty patterns and colors. Although it can seem apt for a hot summer’s day, it is still best to avoid white or cream, unless the wedding is white-themed. 

For a beach wedding, it is unsuitable to wear black, as this does not fit in with the overall theme and look of the day. You will however want to wear fabrics that are breathable, in case you are out in the sun, or walking on hot sand all day. 

You can wear tea-length dresses for a formal beach wedding, or something elegant yet practical. Just don’t wear stilettos, or thin heels. You can still wear heels, just go for chunky heels or a wedge heel, or just wear some smart, formal sandals instead. If the wedding ceremony takes place on sand, but the party’s at a venue, then take sandals for the wedding, and heels for the evening! 

If the wedding is semi-formal, then you could also wear a nice dress, jumpsuits, pantsuit or romper. It is best to include tropical prints and light colors, but nothing over the top. If you opt for a dress, you should still wear a tea-length one, or a maxi dress to keep it formal, but not too fancy. Go for wedges, or cute sandals for this type of wedding!

If the beach wedding is casual, then try wearing a maxi dress or a pretty sundress. You are fine to wear sandals, as long as they are dressy, and don’t wear flip flops! Stick to brighter, lighter colors or bold prints to highlight your outfit, but don’t wear beachwear or swimwear! It’s a dressed up kind of casual! 

What Should Men Wear To A Beach Wedding?

For a formal wedding, it is best to wear a suit, or long sleeved shirt with a tie and jacket with some slacks. Go for solid colors, but avoid black, white and cream. Try wearing a summer suit, or one that is made of breathable linen for a cool, beachy look. Wear dress shoes that match the slacks, and never wear shorts! 

For a semi-formal wedding, you don’t have to wear a formal jacket. However, a nice shirt is key, and you can wear a blazer to smarten it up. It would be nice to wear a patterned shirt or suit, but nothing too over the top. Shoes don’t have to be as formal, as you can opt for loafers, or other closed-toe shoes to keep it casual and beachy yet smart.

For a casual beach wedding, you can get away with a nice pair of shorts such as chinos with a belt. A light colored shirt or polo can also pair well with this, or one with bold prints and bright colors can look great. For footwear, it is best to go for loafers or deck shoes, but not sneakers!  


The best thing to do if you are unsure what the appropriate dress code is for a beach wedding is to ask the bride and groom, or other guests going to the wedding. The couple will be more than happy to explain to you the actual location of the wedding, or the best wedding attire to wear for the big day.