The Bridesmaid Budget

How much does it really cost?

As much as you look forward to celebrating your favorite bride’s big day, being a bridesmaid can be a significant financial commitment as well as an emotional one. When you factor in the dress, hair and makeup, showers and bachelorette, the cost adds up.
By no means are we suggesting you decline a bridesmaid invite. We’re just here to help you make smart choices when someone in your crew pops the question.

You Can Say No

Consider the line between accommodating a friend and over-extending. At the end of the day, honesty always wins. If you simply can’t afford the cost, let the bride know. If you’re close enough to her to be asked to join the wedding party, we’re guessing she’ll completely understand.

Old Friends

InWhen you’ve known the bride since birth, (25% of bridesmaids are relatives, 18% have been friends with the bride since middle or high school), it’s probably best to rise to the occasion and not let money get in the way of such deeply rooted relationships.

The Good News

There are bridesmaid expenses that the bride does commonly pay for.

Here are the stats on the costs usually covered:


38.9% of brides pay for accessories

17.2 % pay for make-up and hair

10.7% pay for the bridal shower

10.7% pay for travel and accommodations

4.1% pay for your bridesmaid dress

2.4% pay for shoes


Remember, the bride has quite a few of her own expenses to consider!


On average, a woman is a bridesmaid 5 times in her life—and while sometimes costly, it’s a commitment you will not likely regret. These are the life experiences that are invaluable—and you definitely can’t put a price on friendship.

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