The Breakdown of Wedding Veil Styles and Lengths

June 4, 2020
The Breakdown of Wedding Veil Styles and Lengths

Veils are an important part of a bride’s wedding day look that is often forgotten or overlooked. If you choose to wear a veil, it’s important that both your veil and dress compliment one another and that it also stands out on its own. From length to style Rocky Mountain Bride is here to help guide you on the various wedding veil options for your big day!


One of the first options to narrow down is your veil’s length. Decide how long you want your veil to be. For a dramatic statement when walking down the aisle, consider a long veil such as the Cathedral style veil. Or, for a more simple and modest look opt for a shoulder veil! Veils range from a length of a few inches and can go up to a length of 144 inches in length (Cathedral style). We always recommend trying on a few lengths once you’ve selected your gown. This will help you picture the impact it will have on your look!

Elbow Length

This Jackson bride, featured in our Jackson Wedding Guide, opted for an Elbow length veil that also served as her something old as it was her grandmother’s veil. We love how this simple veil frame’s the beautiful bride’s face and shoulders without being the star of the show! An elbow-length veil is great for a bride-to-be that chooses a classic wedding dress for her debut.

Photos by: Jeremiah & Rachel Photography

Fingertip Length

An option a little longer than an elbow-length veil is the fingertip length or waltz veil. This bride below wore a fingertip length veil for her wedding featured in our Santa Fe Wedding Guide and it adds the perfect touch to her wedding day look. Shorter veils allow you to wear your veil during your first dance with your new Mr., whereas Cathedral length veils typically must be removed to prevent tripping! Not to mention, fingertip length veils are also much easier for your father to lift off your face to present you to your husband-to-be.

Photos By: JoAnna Robertson

Waltz Veils

Waltz veils are designed to fall between your knee and the ground! This is a great choice for a bride that wants to add a romantic, yet fun detail to her wedding day look. It twirls beautifully while dancing and sways the perfect amount when walking down the aisle. It truly is perfect in every way!

Cathedral Length 

The most dramatic and longest of veil options is the Cathedral length which is 144 inches in length. We absolutely love the Cathedral veil and the unforgettable entrance it creates! Trust us, you’ll get some gorgeous photos of you and your pops walking down the aisle. You won’t keep it on all night but for the shock factor, we think it is 100% worth it. Oh, and if it’s a little breezy outside, it adds an even bigger dramatic effect on your wedding photos!

This veil option is perfect for the couple saying I do in the church or with a long walk down the aisle!

Photos by: Melissa Brielle Photography


If you’re wearing a mid-length wedding gown or vintage-styled dress, the birdcage veil might be for you! The birdcage veil covers just your forehead and top part of your face. They add a beautiful pop to your wedding day look and can be embellished with lace, beading, or even pearls! This oldy but goody is coming back in style and we’re here for it!

Check out this stunning birdcage wedding veil from BHLDN. Or, this showstopper from Twigs & Honey.


If a veil isn’t for you, don’t be afraid to add some spunk and confidence to your wedding day look with a headband! From simple and classic to sparkly and regal, there are numerous styles to add a modern pop to any wedding look! We love seeing brides break away from the traditional veils to rock this bold accessory.

Check out these headband options from BHLDN.


Plain Jane

Want to keep it simple? Make your dress the statement piece of your wedding day look but still keep it traditional and stylish with a veil that isn’t embellished with lace or beading. Or, go for a tulle veil that still will not take away from your dress but adds a feminine, yet whimsical detail to your look. Simple veils can vary in length.

Some Sparkle 

We love the idea of adding a little sparkle to your look with a bedazzled veil, especially if your dress is on the classic or simple side. The pop of sparkle really shines in wedding photos!

Check out these sparkly veils made locally in Denver by Sara Gabriel. 


This Idaho bride, featured in our McCall Wedding Guide, went with a tiered veil. The bride covered her face with a blusher (a veil that covers your entire face but stops at the chin level) for the first look and ceremony. This retro-chic veil selection paired well with her very class, yet modern and sleek wedding dress from La Bella Elaine’s Bridal. We suggest this look for brides who want to add in a romantic element to their wedding day style.

Photos by: Maggie Grace Photography


Lace veils add the perfect romantic touch to any wedding dress. They’re soft and feminine and can come in any length! Opt for a full lace veil, lace flower embellishments, or a simple lace trimming around the edge of the veil. The options are endless.


Recently we’ve seen a trend in getting creative with embellishments on your veil. Doing so can bring in a bride’s fun or spunky personality out. Don’t be afraid to have fun with your veil! From colorful butterflies and flowers to gold speckles and colored details, there are so many possibilities. If you’re looking for a unique veil to help your wedding day look stand out, check out BHLDN, Needle and Thread or work with your bridal boutique to design a custom veil.

For more bridal veil inspiration, Flip through our Issues and Local Wedding Guides! You can also explore veils at your local bridal boutiques — find some bridal shops near you in our Vendor Collective!

The Bride’s Planning Guide to a perfect Rocky Mountain Wedding
  • The Bride’s Planning Guide to a perfect Rocky Mountain Wedding

On Sale Now! Rocky Mountain Bride

Find The Best Wedding Venues

Rocky Mountain Bride
©2024 Rocky Mountain BrideTM   All Rights Reserved  |  Privacy  |  Terms  |  Site by Spitfiregirl