It goes without saying that being someone’s bridesmaid is an exciting experience, but between the bachelorette party, gifts, and your bridesmaid dress, it’s no doubt that these costs rack up! When it comes to choosing between our everyday spending and being a good friend, people come to a hard conclusion that we cannot have our cake and eat it too.

Because being a bridesmaid should be fun—not stress-inducing, we’ve turned to the experts to help us navigate the bridesmaid train and cut down costs that come with being in a bridal party. So, for all you maid-to-bes who think you have to decide between being in your friend’s wedding or wifi, this one's for you!

Honesty is the best policy.

Being asked to be a bridesmaid is an honor—and it should be fun! But if you’re worried you won’t be able to swing the extra expense, the best thing you can do is be honest about your budget upfront. Let the bride know that while you’d love to be part of her tribe, you're on a budget and can't afford anything extravagant like a designer bridesmaid dress or a plane ticket to an overseas bachelorette bash. You'll also want to give the MOH or other bridesmaids a quick heads up, so they're aware (and hopefully respectful) of your bottom line when making plans. Setting limits early on and having open communication is the best way to navigate this tricky topic from the jump! – Jenna Miller, Creative Director, Here Comes the Guide

Early bird gets EVERYTHING!

Book and buy everything early. From hotel rooms, plane tickets to dresses, a lot of money can be saved, and a lot of stress can be avoided when things are done and planned for ahead of time. In ordering dresses, rush fees, express shipping, and a whole lot of things can be avoided when things are planned ahead of time. – Pia Gladys Perey, Founder & Creative Director, Pia Gladys Perey

Teamwork makes the dreamwork.

We’re willing to bet the other bridesmaids don’t want to break their bank accounts either, so team up! Go in on one nice group gift from the registry. Or split the cost of an Airbnb for the bachelorette bash. And do each other's wedding-day hair and makeup instead of splurging at a fancy salon! The more you can work with the other members of the bride tribe, the more money you can potentially save. – Jenna Miller, Creative Director, Here Comes the Guide

When it comes to hair and makeup, some beauty teams offer a discount on pricing if you book both hair and makeup together rather than A la carte pricing. Chime in on the group chat and book a group hair & makeup sesh with the rest of the bride tribe! – Veiled Vanity Artistry

Ball on a budget!

Being a bridesmaid is a huge honor, but it can also be damn expensive! Between the wedding travel, planning the bridal shower and bachelorette party, gifts, hair & makeup and more, expenses quickly add up. In fact, the average cost of being a bridesmaid is $1400… and the average American woman will be a bridesmaid 3 times by the time she's 27–that's $4200 in expenses! If you're on a budget, the easiest way to save money is on your bridesmaid dress. All of Birdy Grey's bridesmaid dresses are under $100 and come in a range of figure-flattering styles in the season's most popular colors, so there's truly something for everyone. (Bonus: Birdy Grey's bridesmaid dresses are in-stock and ready to ship immediately.) – Grace Lee, Founder & CEO, Birdy Grey

Be one step ahead.

It doesn’t hurt to be forward-thinking! When planning for wedding festivities, invest in a bridal party dress that is timeless and versatile enough to be worn again. When shopping, think about how one outfit can go from bridesmaid to wedding guest to dinner party and choose wisely! – Pia Gladys Perey, Founder & Creative Director, Pia Gladys Perey

Call your BFF

Not everything has to be brand new. Jewelry, accessories, clutches, shoes can be rented or even loaned! Don’t be afraid to reach out to a friend who has gone through the whole bridesmaid once or twice before. Chances are, they have plenty in stock for you to borrow. – Pia Gladys Perey, Founder & Creative Director, Pia Gladys Perey

Everyone wins!

As a team, we have artists at all different levels of experience. Ask if the team has a Jr. Stylist or Artist who is trained by one of the Senior Artists, so you're still receiving the same style and technique that you fell in love with, the employee is able to build their portfolio and expertise, all the while you’re able to keep everything within your budget! – Veiled Vanity Artistry

This post was put together by Be Inspired PR, a PR + Social Media Agency for wedding, wellness & lifestyle clients. With over 10+ years of experience, we’re here to take our clients to the next level! Find oodles of stylish wedding inspiration on our Instagram & Pinterest.

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