Where and How to Buy a Wedding Dress Online That Actually Fits
Shopping for wedding dresses online can seem daunting on the Wild West that is the internet. But with a few helpful tips, like knowing your measurements (more on that later), and heading to a shop that matches your needs, why not say “yes to the dress” with a tracking number? Here are our favorite tips for shopping for a wedding dress online, plus 18 stores offering incredible bridal selections right at your fingertips. Cheers!
How to Shop for Wedding Dresses Online
Focus on these key things while you browse the web, and you will be golden:
1. Your measurements: Get accurate measurements with the help of a friend or a trusty tailor and write them down. Though chances are you’ll still take your dress in for some alterations, you can keep would-be expensive costs down by knowing your actual size from the get-go. It’s also important to note that standard sizing for wedding gowns run smaller than your run-of-the-mill formal gowns, so take those measurements and sizing chart recommendations pretty literally.
2. Budget: Know your maximum limit for spending going into your shopping quest so you don’t fall in love with a dress thousands of dollars more than you can afford. BTW, keep in mind alterations can cost anywhere from $50 to $1,000 so you will need to account for that when creating your bridal-wear budget.
3. Reviews: Scour reviews of the brands you’re interested in so you can get an idea of sizing, color, details, etc. Looking solely at online reviews opinions can get a little dicey since everyone’s experiences are different, so take them with a grain of salt. One trusty trusty takeaway from reviews, however, is how the dress sizes run. Note if reviewers remarks that dresses run true-to-size, small or large.
4. Return Policy: Read the fine print! Before you click that buy button, make sure you understand the parameters of the return policy. These policies get very finicky and if you don’t know the ins and outs before you buy, you may end up with a dress you don’t want to wear down the aisle, but can’t return. If you’re considering multiple shops online, screenshot the key portions their return requirements and keep them in folders on your desktop so you can easily reference them if you need.
18 Trusted Shops to Buy a Wedding Dress Online
Best For: The boho bride
If you love everything you see at Anthropologie, chances are you, you’ll feel the same at BHLDN, the bridal extension of your favorite boho chic flagship. From short city hall dresses to long ballgowns, you will find hundreds of high-quality gowns from designers like Watters, Jenny Yoo and Marchesa Notte. The price range starts at $625 and reaches $2,500, which definitely makes it a more affordable option considering the designers on tap. Sizes begin at zero and go up to 26W. BHLDN has brick and mortar locations if you want to try on in person, but if you can’t make it, you can opt in to a consultation via email for expert fit and styling advice.
Return Policy: In order to get a full refund for your gown, you have to return it in-store or via mail within 30 days of arrival. This return policy does not include dresses that were marked as “final sale” upon purchase. Learn more on the return policy here.
2. David’s Bridal
Best For: The bride who wants options
David’s Bridal is one of the most expansive shops on the web to buy a wedding dress online. With its vast in-house collections and thoughtful collaborations—like White by Vera Wang—David’s Bridal not only has pages upon pages to scroll, but it also has a super handy search bar for the picky (or undecided) bride. Filter by silhouette, price, color, length, size, brand, neckline, strap style and more. If you need your dress in a pinch, David’s Bridal has a “Ready to Ship” section where you can choose a gown and it will be promptly shipped out—just try to leave in some time for alterations you’ll probably need.
Return policy: Seven days to return once you’ve received it—with the tags still attached. There are certain items not eligible for return which you can read more about here.
Best For: Designer taste
MYTHERESA has a slimmer option of gowns to choose from, but if you are looking for designer, this is the place to go. Labels include Alexander McQueen, Stella McCartney, Simon Rocha, Ellie Saab and many more. It’s also a one-stop-shop for bridal as you can find accessories, shoes and even outfits for your honeymoon.
Return policy: You have 30 days to return your items unworn and in brand new condition with the tags still attached. If you are returning multiple items, they must be sent in one package. Once the returned pieces are reviewed a refund will be promptly issued. More on the policy here.
Best For: The sustainable bride
Reformation is known for its romantic, streamlined-but-sexy gowns. And lucky for us, the price range caps out at $600. The dresses are sustainably made in Los Angeles and each one lists how much water, carbon dioxide and waste were saved in production. The fits are typically slim-cut and column style, so if you're into more of the ballgown or A-line options (or run a bit bustier) this may not be the brand for you.
Return policy: You have 21 days from the shipping date to return your Reformation gown. The tags must be attached and once it’s received you will get a full refund to your original payment method. Return shipping is free on U.S. orders. See the site for more information.
5. Saks Fifth Avenue
Best For: A traditional and non-traditional selection
From flirty Zimmerman mini dresses to elegant Monique Lhuillier floor-length gowns, Saks offers lots of traditional and non-traditional picks curated by the smart, fashion-focused eyes behind this luxury department store. You can also take advantage of their Virtual Shopping option and search in-store selections via video chat with a stylist and then pick up your order—find a store near you
Return policy: To qualify for a free return, you will need to send back your dress within 14 days of the ship date. If you return within the next 14-day window (30 days) you will have a $9.95 shipping cost deducted from your refund. Read the fine print here.
Best For: Extra customer service
We love the dress selection at Nordstrom for two reasons: 1. They tend to be reasonably priced and 2. You can actually wear it again for another special occasion (just not your friend’s wedding, OK?). If you purchase a dress from Nordstrom and aren’t sold on how it looks you can mail it back or return to a store near you. Nordstrom offers responsive customer service to make sure you are getting the attention you deserve to enhance your shopping experience. You can book a virtual styling appointment here or book a slot for in-house alterations if your dress needs fitted.
Return policy: Nordstrom’s return guidelines are processed on a case-by-case basis. You can file for a return on their website and they will deem a refund based on the state of the dress. You can also take the gown into a Nordstrom or Nordstrom Rack location to process a return. Learn more here.
Best For: The indecisive bride
Lulus has everything from loungewear to stunning wedding gowns, and their take on bridal is all about effortless glam without going broke. Yeah, we’re talking gowns under $400 with intricate patterns and detailing. (Yes, you read the correctly.) That means you can add more than just one to your cart to try on at home…or wear at the after party?
Return policy: Free returns within the first ten days once you receive your packages. If you can’t make the ten-day return period, no worries, you have 30 days to return your dress(es) for $7. Learn more details about the policy here.
Best For: Something totally original and high-fashion
Net-a-Porter is all about high-fashion. Pick a dress here, and we have a feeling you won't have to worry about Jessica from high school wearing the same dress at her wedding. Consider utilizing their fashion consultants as a resource to help you choose a dress that matches your style. They also have a selection of items below each dress you click that are handpicked to match to make your browsing experience easier.
Return policy: You have 28 days from the arrival of your package to return your products to Net-a-Porter. If you are in the U.S., returns and exchanges are free of charge. You must return your package via the same courier who delivered it. Learn more about their return policy here.
Best For: The courthouse bride
Head to ShopBop to chase your Carrie Bradshaw courthouse nuptial dreams. With dresses and jumpsuits that range from elegant to dressy-casual, you’ll have quite a large selection to choose from depending on the wedding day vibe you are looking to accomplish.
Return policy: If you return your product(s) within 15 days upon receiving, you are eligible for free shipping. Returning within 30 days will require a $10 shipping label provided to you via ShopBop. Your return will not be accepted if it’s sent after 30 days. Read more here.
10. Needle & Thread
Best For: The ethereal bride
Needle & Thread mixes ultra-feminine materials and delicate detailing with vintage tropes like flapper-length hems and Victorian necklines. The result? Dresses that look straight out of a modern fairy-tale. Dresses range from full gowns to tee-length styles and fabrics are mainly tulle and lace with off-white to blush coloring—if you are going for a pure-white bridal look, this site won’t be your go-to for a wedding dress, but would be a great option for a fun rehearsal dinner mini or midi if we do say so ourselves.
Return policy: Returns must be sent within the first 30-day window for a $10 fee. Tags and labels need to be intact and the gown should be unworn. Needle & Thread does not offer exchanges. Read the fine print here.
Best For: The trendy, non-traditional bride
Getting married in a microwedding on the beach? You’re probably not in the market for a mermaid gown with a 15-foot sweeping train and intricate bustle. But if you are looking for something that can slip from saying your vows barefoot on the sand to taking shots in the bar, Revolve might just be where it’s at. The non-traditional bride looking to spend $700 and under will have a field day with Revolve’s selection of trendy, au courant styles. (Just look at this mini feather dress. Swoon)
Return policy: U.S. customers receive a prepaid shipping label via Revolve for return of products within 60 days. If you miss the 60-day mark, you can exchange your product within 90 days. If the item you bought was marked as “Final Sale” it is not eligible for return or exchange. See more here.
Best For: The classic bride
Amsale offers that classic wedding dress shopping experience, but, of course, online. From its selection of more traditional bridal gowns (think: ball gowns, appliqué details and dramatic trains) to how you can confer with a remote stylist, Amsale is best for the bride who wants all things old school, except, ya know, the in-person contact.
Return policy: Because of the enhanced try-on and shopping process, bridal gowns are ineligible for return, but you have the option to return any selections purchased from the Little White Dress and Evening collections within 14 days for a $25 restocking fee. Read the full policy here.
13. Fame and Partners
Best For: Custom options without custom price tags
Fame and Partners offers a customizable dress tool to create the exact style you are looking for. It’s literally a choose-your-own-adventure experience: Pick your silhouette, color and length to design your dream dress. You can also select from 20 color swatches and order them for $2 a piece to see them in person before you click “buy.” The made-to-order option is the best way to get what you want down to the last hem.
Return policy: To receive a refund, your dress must be returned in resalable condition with tags attached. These dresses are made-to-order so there is a $35 zero-waste fee per item. Get more information here.
Best For: The glam bride
The dresses from CocoMelody are stunningly extra. The tulle skirts and detailed beading are to die for. They offer a “Try At Home” feature that ships three gowns to test at home for three days, skipping the annoying and expensive order-return-refund process. While you surf their gowns, you can save ones you like to your “showroom” and then sift through the ones you love in one place.
Return policy: If you’d like to return your dress, you have seven days to contact CocoMelody’s customer service to process your return. Any returns without tags, original packaging or not sellable condition will not be accepted. Read the full policy here.
Best For: The Cinderella bride
We’d describe Azazie’s selection as royal-wedding chic—these gown are fit for a princess. Plus, we appreciate that you can view photos from real customers wearing the gowns. They also offer customized sizes, which is nice for people who just know traditional sizing won’t cut it. But there’s also the “Ready to Ship” section if you’re all about that shotgun wedding. Yes, these are final sale, but for under $100, that’s a total steal. And if you’re concerned about that final sale, order a few dresses from the same designer in the “Try at Home” section to check out the fit.
Return policy: It’s important to note that any customizable orders aren’t eligible for return. Other than that, you have 45 days to return your standard orders. You will be given one return label, so they recommend returning multiple items at once. Read the rest here.
Best For: The unique bride
If you want something you’re not seeing on the other sites, head to Etsy. Just make sure to do your due diligence before adding to cart—for instance, you’ll want to make sure your measurements are 100 percent correct and that you’re dealing with a reputable seller. So check out sales histories and reviews before you say yes to a dress. For example, StylishBrideAccs has made over 24,000 sales and gets rave reviews—they offer romantic gowns from two-piece sets to tulle ballgowns. BlushFashion has over 17,000 sales from their array of simplistic boho wedding dresses.
Return policy: Return options will vary from seller to seller.
17. Nearly Newlywed
Best For: Designer names at a discount
Nearly Newlywed specializes in pre-owned and sample floor (aka pre-worn) gowns. Translation? You can buy a wedding dress for a fraction of its retail price. You can even resell your gown to the site after you wear it—don’t let it sit in your attic forever! Just note you'll probably have to do some ample alterations and tweaks to get the dress in "I do" shape.
Return policy: You have five business days to return your dress if you aren’t loving it, and there is a $50 fee that you are required to pay. You will be refunded once the Nearly Newlywed team reviews the condition of your returned item. See the full policy and instructions here.
Best For: The budget bride
ASOS is known for their super trendy products and quick shipping. Their wedding selection has styles for almost every kind of bride. From delicate details to simple and sleek, the variety will allow you to order multiple bridal items for a fraction of designer gown prices. If you take advantage of ASOS’s low prices and easy returns, you can basically turn your bedroom into a bridal dressing room as you complete your hunt for “the one,” or…three?
Return policy: Free returns are available within 28 days through UPS. If you return within 45 days, you will receive a gift card in lieu of a refund to your original payment method. Get more information here.