Seaside weddings and wedding vow renewals are popular, in part, because they provide a gorgeous backdrop for a comfortable, relaxed ceremony. While an ocean side wedding can range anywhere on the scale from casual to elegant, there are several factors to consider when deciding on beach wedding clothing for the groom, groomsmen, or male guests. The heat, humidity, salt spray, breezes, and sand can all have a bearing on your comfort when attending a beach wedding ceremony.
Hint: Because there's always someone who thinks a beach wedding is super-casual just because it's being held by the ocean, our Destin, FL wedding planner highly recommends that the wedding couple include a dress "guideline" in their wedding invitations!
Ten Tips For Men About How To Dress For A Beach Wedding
1) For the groom: while tuxes are perfect for the groom to wear to a beach wedding, you may want to forget about renting a tux and go with a summer-type suit instead. Paring a lighter-weight suit and a brightly colored tie is a perfect look for a more formal wedding or consider a beachy button-down shirt and slacks for a more casual ceremony.
2) For the groom: Be sure to check with your bride-to-be so you can coordinate styles and colors with her gown and the bridesmaid's dresses. What colors has she chosen for the wedding? Wearing a tie in a complimentary color brings the men's and women's clothing together to create a harmonized look. Conversely, we have seen seaside weddings where the bridesmaids and groomsmen have worn contrasting colors and these contrasts have provided a gorgeous pop of color against the white beach background. For an example, check out the banner photo of our Photo Gallery page where you can see an image of one of our wedding parties that used coral for the men and teal for the women – stunning!
3) For the groom, groomsmen, and guests: whether casual or formal, when dressing for a beach wedding, it should be all about comfort! After all, just being at the beach invokes a sense of relaxation and calm so you should dress accordingly. Think about wearing lightweight materials like cotton or linen – fabrics that "breathe" and will let the ocean breezes through the cloth to keep you cool. Keep in mind that, although silk looks great, it will show sweat stains and isn't as durable as linen or cotton materials. Also, wear light or pastel colors that reflect the sun's rays and will help you stay cooler in the heat.
4) For the groom, groomsmen, and guests: visit casual wear shops for men instead of wedding shops to find great beach wedding clothing at a fraction of the price!
5) For a more casual ceremony, beach wedding attire for men usually consists of Hawaiian style clothing: loose fitting, short sleeved, collared shirts with linen or khaki pants or dressy shorts, and no ties or jackets (unless you are the groom). Wear long sleeved shirts for a spring or fall wedding.
6) For a more formal wedding, men's beach clothing is similar to that worn for a casual beach ceremony, but add a lightweight linen jacket and solid color tie in a tropical color. Or, how about one that features a beachy design? A tie embellished with starfish, tropical flowers, or sea horses would add some flair to formal wedding attire. Again, if you are the groom, we can't stress enough that you need to check with the bride to be sure your clothing will harmonize with her gown and the attendant's clothing.
7) DON'T wear t-shirts or tank tops to a beach wedding unless you are certain the ceremony will be super-casual! This is so important that we'll say it again: unless you are sure the bride is wearing a wedding bikini, you need to save the board shorts and denim cutoffs for another day.
8) It's natural to go barefoot at the beach, but the sand can be hot so wear sandals, canvas slip-ons, boat shoes, or loafers that will keep your feet insulated from the sand. We have even seen wedding flip-flops that can be utilized for either the guests or the wedding party. These beach shoes come in generic wedding designs (think “black tie” flip flops!) or can be personalized with the bride and groom's names. If you are going really casual, you can even find disposable beach shoes made of cardboard.
9) Consider wearing a Panama hat or a fedora to keep your head shaded from the sun. In addition to helping you stay cool, the brim will help protect you from getting sunburned.
10) Always remember to wear sunscreen to a beach wedding! Men should be sure to apply sunscreen to their ears and the top of their heads if their hair is thinning (or wear the aforementioned hat).