Veils Unveiled: How to Choose the Right Wedding Veil

At Happily Ever Borrowed, we’ve rented veils to THOUSANDS of brides, so we can definitely help debunk the mystery of how to choose your wedding veil!

There is a LOT to learn, so I’ve split it up into our most frequently asked questions in Length, Fabric & Color!

Length Questions

How do I know what length veil is right for my dress style?

There are SO many different lengths of veils, but we’re going to focus on the lengths we carry on our site which are the most popular lengths for brides.

Wedding Veil Lengths, Blusher, Elbow, Chapel, Cathedral
best veil lengths for your wedding dress style, blusher veils

BLUSHERS: This is the veil that covers your face as you walk down the aisle.  When flipped back, it gives a two-tiered look to your veil if paired with another veil worn in the back. We find that most brides are skipping the blusher these days, but if you’re a traditionalist, or if you love the look of two-tiered veils, we say go for it! We also have versions of veils on our site that have a blusher sewn to the same comb as a veil in the back. Look for anything that says “two-tiered”. Otherwise, you can rent our Simple Blusher which can be worn in front and looks natural with any other veil on our site.

best veil lengths for your wedding dress style, elbow length veil

ELBOW: Elbow length veils are essentially the same length as a blusher, but worn in the back! If you want something simple and traditionally, this is the way to go. It looks great with any length dress!

best veil lengths for your wedding dress style, fingertip length veil

FINGERTIP: This is the most universally flattering veil. It flows to a natural curve in your body and won’t cut the line of your dress.  For those brides with dramatic back gowns, this is a popular option as the sheer illusion allows you to see it through the veil. We LOVE our Danielle Veil which has just a hint of lace appliques at the edge.

best veil lengths for your wedding dress style, chapel length veil

CHAPEL: This is another one of the most popular lengths of veil! It just sweeps the floor behind you and gives an elegant look to any gown shape. For those brides who want a dramatic look, but don’t want to drag anything too long, this is the shape for you! Try our Rebecca Veil (which is a two-tier!) for a romantic look.

best veil lengths for your wedding dress style, cathedral length veil

CATHEDRAL: You want a train? You’ve got it!  This is the best length for the bride who wants to make a grand entrance! You don’t have to be so “dramatic” either. Have an elaborate gown, but want an elegant, long simple veil to compliment it? Try our Jessica Veil which has just the tiniest edge of piping!

What is the difference between a one-tier, two-tier, drop veil, juliet veil & mantilla veil?

Oh now we’re stepping up our game with some advanced veil knowledge…All of these are basically referring to how the veil is attached to the comb.

best veil lengths for your wedding dress style, one tiered veil

ONE-TIER VEIL: Just what you’d expect, just one layer of tulle attached to the comb which will drape behind your look. (or in front if it’s a blusher!) Like our Sara Veil!

best veil lengths for your wedding dress style, two tiered veil

TWO-TIER VEIL: As we described above, this is when the blusher is attached to the same comb as the veil you’ll wear behind you. You can see in the image of our Two-Tier Cathedral Veil that there is an extra layer of tulle she’s wearing behind that she can pull in front as a blusher.

best veil lengths for your wedding dress style, drop veil

DROP VEIL: Drop veils are also two tiers, but the difference is they are designed to lay flat on your head. They is basically no gathering at the comb so that the comb can sit flat on the top of your head, and give a beautiful angel-like drape to the veil in front and in back. You can see with our Jing Veil how the comb is sitting right on top, but it is one seamless line from the front of her veil to the back. They’re sometimes referred to as CIRCLE CUT veils!

best veil lengths for your wedding dress style, juliet veil

JULIET VEILS: Juliet veils have 2 combs! They are sometimes called a “Juliet Cap” as they create what looks like a tulle hat on your head. Our Rose Lace Juliet Veil is the perfect example. It’s SUPER romantic!

best veil lengths for your wedding dress style, mantilla veil

MANTILLA VEILS: Mantilla Veils have lace come all the way up to the comb and sit close to the face. Generally, Mantilla Veils are also a drop veil so that they are giving a flat look and no gathering. Our Florentina Veil is the perfect example of a Mantilla!

What does the width of a veil mean?

Widths aren’t always referred to, but they do make a difference in how you want your veil to look!

veil fullness

This is one of my favorite examples of veil fullness. From left to right you have Sheer (54″) , Medium (72″) & Full (108″). As you can see, the width adds more fold and fullness to the veil. It will also add more gathers on the comb and will wrap around your body more. Sheer will basically only fall behind you and full width you can wrap yourself up in!

Fabric Questions

What are the different types of tulle?

Bet you thought this wasn’t something you’d have to think about when choosing your veil.  All veils are tulle right? Mostly yes – but there are different types of tulle that can give you a different look!

illusion tulle vs. silk tulle

We found this great image which shows you the difference between the 2 most popular types of tulle. Bridal Illusion Tulle, sometimes called traditional tulle, is a bit stiffer and has more body to it. English Silk Tulle, or in this image above, a “silk effect tulle” has a much softer drape and will fall closer to the body. It still looks similar to bridal illusion tulle, but just feels a bit softer.

french silk tulle veil

The most luxurious fabric is French Silk Tulle. The weave is super tight and is the softest tulle with the most drape. You’ll notice it looks more like a knit fabric than a traditional tulle! You can get this look with our Pippa Veil.

What are the different types of laces and will it match my dress perfectly?

Here’s the honest truth…it probably won’t.  But you can come REALLY close if you can match the type of lace on your gown to the type of lace used on your veil! There are TONS of different styles, but here are some of the most popular. Our advice is to take a GOOD look at the lace on your gown and try to match some (but not all) features to your veil. It’s absolutely perfect to compliment your gown, but not match it perfectly. TRUST US. Unless your bridal designer makes your veil, no one’s lace matches exactly!

ALENCON LACE: This French style (which dates back to the 16th century) has a distinct floral pattern woven into the fabric and is best identified by the flowers being outlined with corded detail. It’s characterized by its 3-D effect, and is frequently decorated with seed pearls and sequins. You can see Alencon lace on our Courtney Veil.

CHANTILLY LACE: Chantilly lace is a handmade lace named after the city of Chantilly, France dating from the 17th century. Chantilly lace is known for its flat, floral pattern, and abundant detail. Brides who are looking for a soft, romantic lace pattern will love Chantilly. Take a look at the Sara Veil for an example of Chantilly Lace.

POINT D’ESPRIT LACE: This is a lightweight lace with small dots scattered over the illusion fabric. It’s generally more spread out than an Alencon lace. This lace isn’t often used on veils, but veils with lace appliques best match this type of lace since it’s more spread out than a full lace fabric.


Does my veil need to match my gown color perfectly?

The quick answer is NO! Tulle is quite sheer and rarely do you see a veil that clashes with the color of the gown. We have one rule of thumb, if you have a pure white dress, you MUST have a bright white veil. If you have anything darker than true white, it will make the veil look “dirty” compared to your dress.

What is the difference between diamond white, light ivory, ivory?

white, diamond white, light, ivory and ivory veil colors

This is my absolutely favorite image I’ve found. This gives a very clear example of what the different colors are to match to your gown. Light Ivory is by far our most popular and matches with nearly every bride’s gown. Please note your bridal designer might call the color of your dress Ivory, but it could be closer to light ivory! This is why we encourage brides to try our Send Before You Spend box to bring a few different colors to their dress fitting. But also, if you’re at a bridal salon, just ask them which veil color they think matches best! In general, the scale above is quite accurate to all designer’s veil colors!

Can I wear a different colored veil?

blue veil, happily ever borrowed

HECK YES! I did!! I knew I loved the light blue gowns of Hayley Paige and I asked her to custom make me an ombre veil to match! You can rent it yourself on our site, aptly named, the Hayley Veil.

So there you have it! Did we answer all of your veil questions? If not, please feel free to comment below with your other questions or email us at for all of your veil styling needs!


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