15 of the Best Last-Minute Wedding Guest Dresses, From $22 to $249 – PureWow

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Who doesn’t love a good wedding? For one magical evening, you get to watch your loved ones celebrate a major milestone in their lives at a beautiful venue, pop some bubbly and dance the night away. It’s also the perfect excuse to get all dolled up for a night to remember. If you’re stuck with a closet full of nothing to wear and the date is fast approaching, however, your stress meter can quickly shoot off the charts. Luckily, there are a lot of convenient, comfortable and timely options out there for last-minute wedding guest dresses that won’t disappoint—and we’ve tracked down 15 of the most stunning.
If the clock is ticking for you to get your dress in time for the special event, you can never go wrong with Amazon, which Prime members can rely on to get what they need at lighting speed (we’re talking two-day shipping or less for some items). Nordstrom also has a two-day shipping option for $12 (free for cardmembers in select cities), as does Zara ($9.95 for overnight delivery) and Revolve (it’s free for two-day shipping!), to name a few of our faves.
There’s an art to dressing for a wedding. After all, you’re not going to a bar, a club, or a museum: You’re going to someone else’s special formal event. Therefore, a certain level of etiquette is expected. To make sure your attire is appropriate, you should always adhere to the dress code on the invitation and avoid anything too short or sexy, opulent or attention-grabbing. Overall, you want to be able to make a statement without taking attention away from the bride (more on that here).
While wearing white is an obvious no-no, wedding planner Ani Wolff from New York City-based Ani Wolff Weddings says that any white detailing should be avoided as well. “For example, if you have a mainly blue dress with white flowers, maybe leave that one at home … just because we want to be as respectful as we can,” she explains to PureWow.
Black, on the other hand, which has controversial roots for older generations as a symbol of mourning, malevolence and bad luck, sees wedding experts disagreeing with it being a supposed faux pas in 2022. “Black is always formal and black is always appropriate,” Ohio-based Engaged With Nora owner and creative director, Nora Culley, tells PureWow. “I have some couples who are requesting that all of their guests wear black to their wedding. … Black is always a good color.”
Apart from color, it’s a good idea to take the setting into consideration when choosing your ensemble. If you’re headed to a beach wedding, for instance, you might want to leave the stilettos at home and opt for something more breathable—though that doesn’t mean you should go so casual you show up in shorts. “It’s always better to be overdressed than under-dressed at a wedding,” wedding planner Michelle Elaine of New York City’s Michelle Elaine Weddings tells PureWow.
If you’re still biting your nails over what to wear, it can’t hurt to simply ask the bride and groom what type of attire they’d like to see at their wedding. “The couple will appreciate that people are actually dressed how they’re expecting,” Elaine says.
Take a look at some of our editor-approved options below.
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Best Floral Wedding Guest Dress
With its dainty spaghetti straps and flowy skirt, this dress is perfect for an outdoor summer wedding. While the A-line silhouette is flattering enough on its own, we chose this little number for the innovative 3D floral embroidery and appliqué, which flatters the skirt overlay in a unique way that will look absolutely stunning in photos without being over the top.
Size range: XS to XL
Best Black Wedding Guest Dress
This sultry dress is the epitome of simple-yet-stunning. It has sex appeal without being too revealing (read: inappropriate) thanks to the singular mid-thigh leg slit and exposed arms, which give its otherwise minimalist design a glamorous touch. We love that the stretchy jersey fabric will also help you move around freely on the dance floor, too.
Size range: XXS to XL
Best Black-Tie Wedding Guest Dress
Ideal for ultra-formal events, this luxe satiny frock looks like a cold glass of Dom Pérignon, particularly in this champagne shade—it’s the epitome of elegance. We’re definitely digging the singular trendy shoulder and the fact that its ruched mid-section will be flattering to a wide range of body types. Better yet, you’ll have your pick of nine different wedding-ready solid hues to choose from.
Size range: S to XL
Best Long Wedding Guest Dress
We chose this eye-popping magenta number because it’s the perfect combination of class and comfort. Its floor length will cut an especially flattering figure for taller ladies, and it’s made from a polyester/spandex blend that allows for some breathing room (so there’ll be no need to say no to that second serving of pecan-crusted trout). It also comes with an airy side slit and ruffles that cuten it up a bit.
Size range: S to XL
Best Midi Wedding Guest Dress
Slip dresses are so hot right now. Not only do they fit right in with the major revival of ’90s fashion we’re been experiencing these last few years, they’re also quite flattering to your figure. We like that this one’s satin finish looks a whole lot more expensive than it actually is. It has a great midi length with a slit in the back for increased walkability, plus, we like that it’s got a bit of stretch.
Size range: XS to XL
Best Short Wedding Guest Dress
Wedding-tested by Assigning Commerce Editor Nicole Briese, this fun garment is quirky-yet-classy. Its halter neck and open back made it extra breezy (Nicole stayed nice and cool, even when everyone else in the room was heating up), and it draped in a way that didn’t emphasize her midsection, the way a lot of satiny fabrics do. In short (pun intended)? It’s perfect.
Size range: XS to XL
Best Ruched Wedding Guest Dress
With a higher V-neckline, a streamlined silhouette that mimics a wrap dress and a modest length that stops right above the knee, we’re keen on this chic cocktail style because it has a cross-generational appeal that will work just as well on a woman who’s over 50 set as it will for someone in their 20’s. It also has a bit of compression in the fabric, so you can let your hair down and skip the Skims.
Size range: 2 to 18
Best Lace Wedding Guest Dress
While most lace is made of silk or linen and this is made of a polyester/spandex blend, we like that it’s not itchy or scratchy like traditional lace—at least not according to its happy customers. Another added bonus? The adjustable straps that help to ensure the perfect fit. You can choose from seven different colors to best suit the ambience of the nuptials you’re attending—or even just your fancy.
Size range: S to XL
Best Plus-Size Wedding Guest Dress
We came for the inclusive sizing of this piece (this baby goes up to a 4X) and we stayed for the gorgeous draping of the cowl neck. The material moves seamlessly with your body (and feels nice and silky, according to the shoppers who love it), and you can choose from 12 gorgeous pastels and jewel tones.
Size range: L to 4X
Best Satin Wedding Guest Dress
This midi dress comes with thin spaghetti straps and a low scooped back but is still long enough not to be too revealing. While we’re partial to this beige floral print, you’ll have no trouble finding one to match your vibe, since there are more than 30 options—just make sure to hand wash only!
Size range: XS to XL
Best Beach Wedding Guest Dress
With its gauzy lightweight material, this gown will be perfect for attending a lovely wedding at a beach. The straps can be adjusted, so you won’t have to worry about it slipping down while you dance the night away, and it’s fully lined, so you won’t be accidentally giving anyone a view of your shapewear, either.
Size range: XS to L
Most Modest Wedding Guest Dress
If you want to cover up a little bit more, there’s this knotted design from Zara, which not only stretches down to your mid-calf, it’s got three-quarter length sleeves that conceal your neck and shoulders. There’s a peekaboo keyhole at the back and a bit of elastic for extra comfort. It’s also machine washable, making it plenty low maintenance!
Size range: XS to XL
Best Tank Wedding Guest Dress
Sleek silhouette? Check. Universal shade? Check. Classy detailing? Check. This elevated tank dress is partially lined and has adjustable shoulder straps. There’s also a back-tie closure for a just-right fit. It’s dry clean only, however, so take care not to spill your champagne during your toast!
Size range: XS to XL
Best Velvet Wedding Guest Dress
This luxurious crushed velvet gown comes in a deep navy hue that’s spot-on for evening wear. It has an unlined silhouette and a twist-front detail at the center to give even more of a formal flair. Oh, and did we mention the classy slit at the back? Don’t mind if we do!
Size range: XXS to XL
Best Halter Wedding Guest Dress
You know that awkward feeling you get when you walk into a room and see someone wearing the same dress as you? Yeah, that won’t be a problem with this modern rose gold stunner. Between the halter design and the cutouts at the side, it’s truly one-of-a-kind. Better yet, the ties at the neck allow for some control over the fit.
Size range: XS to L
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