From outfit ideas to makeup to accessories, here are the do’s and don’ts for mehendi outfits for Indian brides-to-be! Be comfy yet glam!
Hey, gorgeous! The evening of the mehendi is such great fun – for the wedding guests, the family, relatives and friends. As for the bride – you’re getting married the next day, taking the biggest decision of your life, you want everything to be perfect – it’s normal to feel a bit stressed. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun for you. Afterall, your family and friends are there celebrating for you, and it’s a party!
To make sure you don’t miss out on the fun, pre-planning everything is a must. It helps avoid the anxiety and last-minute chaos. Here are some tips that’ll help you make sure everything goes perfectly on your mehendi function, at least on the fashion and style front!
Guide to Mehendi Outfits & Bridal Mehendi Dressing Tips
1. The Color Palette
Bright festive colors are perfect for great pictures. You wanna look like the bride, so keep it rich and embellished. You want to look different than your wedding day, so avoiding a red dress may seem obvious in the pre-wedding ceremonies. But from my experience, shades of red are a great idea for mehendi outfits.
Some options are garnet, crimson, coral and blush and watermelon. Other than reds, bright yellow, peacock blue, royal blue, magenta, violet, deep purple and bright green would all be great options, depending on what suits your skin tone and personality! Avoid light pastels because a stain or two is unavoidable when mehendi-wearing guests want to take pictures with you!
2. Bridal Mehendi Outfits: What Dresses to Wear
I’ve often heard Indian women say that the bride should avoid looking too dressed up on mehendi night because you don’t want to over-shine your beauty and ‘shringar’ on the wedding night. I say B.S.! It’s the age of social media so wear something awesome! Plus, do you want to ruin your pictures with that ugly 5-year old sweater? Yeah, I’m talking to you, my unnamed-cousin-whose-name-I’ll-keep-a-secret!
So go for something really gorgeous with sequin or bead embellishments. Some customs dictate that the bridal mehendi outfits be donated later. If that’s the case in your family, choose something accordingly, which you wouldn’t mind parting with! Choose something fuss-free that you can dance in, and spend long hours in. Avoid itchy fabrics or too-tight outfits as they’ll make you fidget all night, which would be impossible with mehendi!
Here are some pretty ideas:
Peplum Kurti with Dhoti Pants
A simple silhouette like peplum kurti would be perfect. You can pair it with dhoti, chooridar or trousers. The more comfortable your bridal mehendi outfits, the better, especially if you’re planning on dancing! Ditch the dupatta!
Leggings with Tunics/ Jumpsuits
Stretchable fabrics are the best for leggings as they can stay folded up while your mehendi dries. You can experiment with a draped tunic or fitted kurta paired with stretchable leggings. Indian jumpsuits and dhoti-kurta sets are also comfy!
Ponchos with Dresses or Long Skirts
If you wanna be dressier, experiment with a silk midi or long skirt and top set. An A-line gown with a front slit worn with chooridar pants or cropped trousers is also a good idea. A great way to avoid a dupatta is to add a matching embellished poncho if you’re not going for higher than elbow-length mehendi.
A poofy gown, lehenga or anarkali may be too difficult to manage, especially with wet mehendi on your feet. So go for a non-voluminous outfit that’s easy to carry. A-line pleated gowns in non-fluffy fabrics like georgette, silk or satin may be workable. Go for a heavily embroidered top so the pictures are great, or try a lehenga gown! Keep it sleeveless or small-sleeved if you intend to get armfuls of mehendi!
A sexy off-the-shoulder blouse or choli may be a great way to show your urban, glam side before the wedding day when you turn into a traditional demure bride! You can also go for an off-the-shoulder dhoti outfit or dress.
The two drawbacks to wearing lehengas are that you have to constantly adjust the dupatta and that the skirt keeps getting in the way of the mehendi on the feet. But if you must wear a lehenga, keep the dupatta neatly pinned on your shoulder so you can spend a hands-free evening!
Here’s a more comfortable variation of the lehenga, especially if you’re not up for showing off your not-yet-there abs, or just wanna be comfy sitting. I personally love them!
Indo Western Mehendi Dresses
Wanna try something non-traditional? Go for a unique and trendy Indo-western mehendi outfit. A high-low skirt set may be perfect for feet mehendi. Or go for a maxi high-low kurti paired with dhoti pants or a long skirt. So many options
3. Makeup for Bridal Mehendi Outfits
Needless to say, keep your hands manicured and nails painted because your hands and feet will, of course, adorn all the henna pictures!
You can’t avoid makeup altogether, but keep it light so that it’s comfortable for the long hours you’ll have to wait for the mehendi to dry and come off. (It takes hours just to get that monstrosity off!) Your mehendi night makeup shouldn’t tire your skin or eyes out the next morning. Use concealer, foundation and pressed powder to make a flawless base. Use a moisturizer before to prime it for that youthful look!
Eyeliner, a light shimmery eyeshadow, light mascara and a dash of blush are perfect add-ons. Keep your lipstick light, so you don’t have to worry about smudging or re-applying. Avoid false lashes, as they may make your eyes tired the next day when you’ll need to look shiny and happy for your wedding!
4. Accessories for Your Bridal Mehendi Outfits
Clutch is obviously avoidable, but a dress with pockets to keep your mobile would be handy, or a cross-body cell phone pouch. Avoid rings and bracelets, of course, except your engagement ring! Good accessories to wear would be layered pearls or matching polki necklace set. Keep it light because as I mentioned before, tiring yourself out the day before your wedding isn’t recommended!
So those are all my handy tips for your mehendi dressing. Hope this guide on bridal mehendi outfits was helpful. Keep it stylish, and most importantly, don’t forget to have fun!
Shilpa Ahuja a designer and entrepreneur. She is the editor-in-chief of ShilpaAhuja.com, which she founded with the goal of inspiring confidence in the modern working woman through fashion.
Fashion has traditionally been for the rich, white, thin woman. That’s how it evolved over centuries and that’s how it’s been represented in fashion media. But Shilpa believes that with the changing role of women in the society, fashion has changed, too. She believes that fashion is for everyone, regardless of their age, gender, color, body type and background. So she translates runway fashion into easy style advice that one can incorporate into their daily lives.
Shilpa’s work has been published in the University of Fashion blog and Jet Airways magazine. She is also an artist, illustrator and cartoonist. She is also the creator of Audrey O., a comic series that represents the lifestyle of millennial women. She enjoys creative writing and world travel. Her art has been exhibited at Harvard Graduate School of Design and the Aroma Hotel, Chandigarh and been published in Chandigarh Times.
Originally from Chandigarh, Shilpa also has a professional degree in architecture and has worked in interior project management. She is also the author of the book “Designing a Chinese Cultural Center in India”. Shilpa has a Masters in Design Studies degree from Harvard University. For feedback and questions, please email [email protected]