Indian Bride

Indian Bride

Since Indians consider a wedding to be the union of two souls and two families, it is celebrated in a special style. And nowhere is this apparent than in the way the Indian Bride is styled on her wedding day.

An Indian bride lavishly adorns her attire on this special occasion, maintaining all her family traditions. Different styles of bridal wear, jewellery, and bridal makeup are used per the local custom of different Brides in India. In this article, we will take a look at the different traditional attire that is worn by Indian brides, in addition to exploring the various trends in bridal jewellery and makeup. Let's begin!

The Rich Cultural Tapestry of Indian Marriages

Before we speak about the traditions for Brides of India, a brief note on Indian Weddings would set the stage for everything we are going to discuss beautifully.

India is a vast country with a diverse culture that varies from north to south, east to west. Every Indian state has a distinct set of cultural traits reflected in its social celebrations, including Indian Weddings.

The opulence, splendour, and cultural abundance of Indian weddings are widely recognized. Every region in India possesses its own distinctive manner of commemorating the sacred union of two individuals, offering a diverse panorama of customs and traditions. Indians value their marital relations a lot; thus, brides are thought to be the harbingers of good fortunes in many Indian families. Within this blog post, we aim to embark upon a mesmerizing expedition into the realm of everything bridal in Indian weddings. Let's start with understanding some basic traditions for Indian Brides from different regions of India.

Exploring the Diversity of Indian Brides

Hindu Bride

A Hindu bride undergoes several pre-wedding rituals at her home. Mehendi and Sangeet are conducted in Northern and Western India. Haldi ceremony is known by different names in different parts of India, like Pithi, Mandha, Tel Baan, and Ubtan, where turmeric paste is applied to the groom and then to the bride.

A Hindu marriage is conducted by a priest who follows all the Vedic rituals mentioned for a wedding ceremony. A Hindu bride usually dresses in red bridal attire, though the type of dress may vary from region to region. However, she needs to cover her head with a veil while being led to her groom at the wedding stage called Mandap.

She exchanges garlands thrice with the groom and then sits with him before a sacred fire or havan for puja. A corner of her veil is tied with the groom's scarf, after which they proceed for Saptapadi. The bride and groom move around this havan seven times while taking seven vows as written in the Vedas. Lastly, the wedding ceremony ends with the groom putting sindoor on the hair parting of the bride. In some parts of India, the groom ties a mangalsutra around his bride's neck.

Islamic Bride

Islamic Bride

A Muslim bride wears a gorgeous red or golden lehenga choli or salwar kameez as her bridal outfit. She covers her head with an embroidered dupatta or hijab per Muslim tradition. She wears Mughal-styled jewellery of gold, including a special maang tika or jhumar on her head. Her hands and feet are adorned with Mehendi designs during the Mehendi ceremony. Several pre-wedding functions are held at the bride's place, including Mangni or engagement, Mehendi, and Sanchaq or Haldi ceremony.

The Islamic wedding ceremony is called Nikkah, which is presided over by a Maulavi or Qazi, the priest of a local mosque. A Muslim wedding is usually held in a mosque or at the bride's place. The bride or the groom needs to propose the marriage, which should be formally accepted by both bride and groom, by saying 'Qubool Hai' thrice. Two male witnesses should attend this part of the wedding ceremony. The groom gives his bride a compulsory gift called Mehr, which may be a certain amount of money or other kinds of gifts as desired by the bride.

Punjabi Bride 

As most Punjabis follow Sikhism, their marriages are usually conducted in local Gurdwaras. The Punjabi bride wears a red salwar kameez made of silk and heavily embellished, along with an embroidered red dupatta to cover her head. Many pre-wedding celebrations are held at the bride's place, starting from Rokka or pre-engagement and Kurmai or engagement. Mehendi and Sangeet are held one or two days before the wedding.

More rituals are observed at the bride's place on the wedding day. Choora and Vatna or Haldi are two rituals maintained on the wedding morning, after which the bride gets ready for the wedding. Milni is a ritual of introduction between the two families after the groom arrives at the wedding venue with his Baraat or wedding procession.

The Punjabi wedding ceremony is much like a Hindu wedding. A Punjabi bride exchanges a heavy floral garland called Varmala with her groom. Then the bride's father gives a ring to the groom and gives his daughter's hand to him, which is called Kanyadaan. Next, the bride and groom take the pheras or circle the holy fire seven times. Lastly, the groom puts Sindoor to the bride's hair part and ties a Mangalsutra or a necklace of black beads around the neck of the bride.

South Indian Bride

South Indian Bride

The wedding outfit of a South Indian bride is somewhat different from other Indian brides. All Tamil and Telugu brides prefer to wear heavy Kanjeevaram silk saris on their wedding day. They wear matching or contrast-coloured quarter-sleeved blouses adorned with heavy embellishments with these saris. However, the blouse can be of a simple design if the sari is too heavily embellished.

A South Indian bride never covers her head during the wedding ceremony. She is decked with lots of gold or diamond-studded jewellery. As most South Indian girls have long hair, they prefer buns or braids adorned with multiple flower garlands called Gajra. Many brides also prefer to use braid ornament in gold called Naga Jadai.

When the groom arrives at the wedding venue, the bride's family members wash his feet with milk, rosewater, kumkum, and sandalwood, and this ritual is called Pada puja. Next, the bride and groom exchange floral garlands three times called Malai Maatral, a South Indian term for the Varmala ritual.

Then follows the Kanyadanam ritual when the bride's father gives her hand to her groom, and he places a coconut on their hands while the bride's mother pours some water on it. A corner of the bride's sari is tied to the end of the Angabastram or the long scarf of the groom. The bride and groom hold hands of each other and move around the holy fire seven times. The bride's family then hosts a feast for all wedding guests where tasty vegetarian foods are served.

Exquisite Indian Bridal Attire

Now that we know more about Indian Brides from different regions of India and their marriage customs let us see how their attire varies. Each region in India has their own twist on the traditional Indian bridal conventions. Let us go over a few of them and discover the diversity in the Bridal traditions of India.

1. The Kashmiri Bridal Ensemble

Kashmiri BridalKashmiri Bridal

A Kashmiri bridal outfit is named Phiran, a knee-long loose kameez made in Iranian style and adorned with Ari embroidery all over its borders. It is paired with a heavily embroidered silk Lehenga. The Kashmiri bride wears a white turban called Zoojh and a folded cap called Kalpush on her head, covered with a delicately embroidered dupatta. She wears gold jewellery, including Dejharoo or pendant-like earrings and headgear called Tarang.

2. Punjabi Bridal Splendor

Punjabi Bride Wears

Punjabi Bride Wears

A Punjabi bride wears a red salwar kameez and dupatta per the Sikh tradition. Some brides also prefer to wear red Lehenga. The entire bridal dress should be adorned with heavy zari embroideries and beads. Usually, Punjabi bridal jewellery includes a long necklace called Ranihaar, Maang tika, nose ring or Nath, red and white bangles called Choora tied with golden and silver hangings called Kalire,

3. Rajasthani Bridal Elegance

Rajasthani Bridal Wear

Rajasthani Bridal Wear

Rajasthani bridal wear comprises a crimson red sari or Lehenga adorned with intricate gold zari or silk thread embroidery. A Rajasthani bride’s head is covered with a hand-embroidered chiffon dupatta called Odhni, one corner pinned to the bridal dress in her waist region. Heavy gold and Kundan jewellery can match this gorgeous outfit.

4. Uttar Pradesh Bridal Attire

Bride from Uttar Pradesh Wears

Bride from Uttar Pradesh Wears

A bride from Uttar Pradesh wears a red Lehenga Choli made of silk, crepe, or velvet, adorned with allover embroidery. She wears gold jewellery, a toe ring called Bichua, and red bangles called Choora, as the signs of a married woman.

5. Maharashtrian Bridal Charm

Maharashtrian Bridal Attire

Maharashtrian Bridal Attire

The Maharashtrian bridal attire is a Nauvari, meaning a nine-yard sari. It is usually Paithani silk of two colours with a bright golden border. As per the local tradition, the bride wears this sari in the same style used for wearing a dhoti. A headgear called Mundavalya is a string of pearls or flowers, with both ends hanging on the sides of the bride's face. She wears a crescent-shaped bindi on her forehead and a nose ring of the same shape. Gold and pearl jewellery are always preferred by all Marathi brides.

6. Gujarati Bridal Grace

Gujarati Bride Wears

Gujarati Bride Wears

A Gujarati bride wears a special kind of sari in red and white called Panetar. It may be adorned with simple thread embroidery or embellished with shiny stones to make it more gorgeous. The Pallu of this sari is neatly displayed in front rather than hanging back, as in most saris. The bride covers her head with a dupatta that is also nicely embroidered. Usually, Kundan and gold jewellery sets match this kind of attire.

7. Assamese Bridal Exclusivity

Assamese bridal wear is traditionally called Mekhla Chadar, made of heavy silk. Usually, light shades, like white, cream, silver, and gold, are used for making this attire. Thus, the minimum use of jewellery and makeup is preferred to match the sober nature of this dress. The Assamese bride wears lightweight gold jewellery, including a Maang tika bearing traditional Assamese symbols.

8. Bengali Bridal Allure

Bengali Bride

Bengali Bride

A Bengali bride usually wears a red Benarasi sari with a golden Zari border and embellishments all over it. She wears gold jewellery and a traditional white crown made of Styrofoam. Beautiful designs are made on her forehead and cheeks with sandalwood paste and red kumkum. Her feet are adorned with a red dye called Alta.

9. Orissa's Yellow Silk Serenade

A bride from Orissa chooses a yellow silk sari with red borders as her bridal outfit. She wears gold jewellery quite similar to that chosen by a Bengali bride, and a long scarf called Uttariya covers her head.

10. Enchanting Kerala Bridal Traditions

Kerala Bride Wears

Kerala Bride Wears

A Kerala bride wears a white silk sari with golden borders called Kasavu. She wears a gold necklace, earrings, bracelets, and garlands of white flowers, like jasmine or Rajanigandha, in her hair.

11. The Timeless Elegance of the Tamil Bride

Tamil Bride

Tamil Bride

A Tamil bride always wears a traditional Kanjeevaram silk sari of bright shade, bearing golden Zari borders and Buta embroidery all over its body. She wears a jewellery piece called Nethi bordering her forehead and a lovely Maang tika. A waistband called Oddiyanam and a braid ornament called Jadai Nagam are also included in her bridal ornaments.

The Artistry of Indian Bridal Makeup

Indian bridal makeup

Indian bridal makeup

An Indian bride puts up suitable makeup that matches her gorgeous bridal outfit and jewellery. Earlier, female relatives of the bride used to apply makeup touch on her face, hands, and feet to make her look most beautiful on her wedding day. Now, renowned makeup artists are hired to accomplish the best Indian bridal makeup for Indian brides. They apply a few standard makeup practices so that brides look absolutely adorable and like a queen in all their wedding photos. Let's go over a few elements of modern makeup that are in fashion nowadays among the brides of India.

1. The No Makeup Look

No makeup look is rendered with the minimum use of cosmetic products, which shows a bride's natural beauty. Only nude makeup with a skin-colour foundation, or blush of neutral shades, like beige, peach, or lighter shades of rose, is applicable on the skin of the bride. She needs to use natural-toned lipstick and neutral-shaded lip gloss, along with a light application of eyeliner and mascara.

2. The Allure of Maroon Lipstick

Maroon lipstick is widely preferred to match the red bridal wear of an Indian bride. The lipstick in the shade of tomato red also looks perfect with white or light-shaded bridal wear, as preferred in some parts of the country.

3. The Magic of Eyeliner and Mascara

The application of eyeliner that extends like wings on the corners of the eyes is the traditional eye makeup for an Indian bride. However, modern brides prefer only a slight winged liner that extends to an angle of only 20 degrees from their eye corners.

4. Creating Dreamy Eyes

Smoky eyes render a dreamy look to a bride, which can be done by the accurate application of a mid-tone eye shadow with a brush over the eyelids. It goes well with a matte or brownish undertone of lipstick to highlight the eyes. Her cheekbones are also highlighted with gold or bronze undertones to match her bright eyes.

5. Highlighting Indian Bridal Beauty with Metallic Tones

Metallic tones, like gold, silver, or bronze, can be used to complement traditional bridal wear in many parts of India. Highlighter and blush of chosen metallic shades are used for this kind of bridal makeup. Pink or nude lipstick looks perfect with this kind of makeup.

6. The Iconic Red Bindi

A large red bindi is the traditional part of Indian bridal makeup. It goes well with red lipstick, glittery eye shadow, and mascara, which renders the traditional look to a bride and matches her bridal outfit and jewellery.

Bedecked in Brilliance: Indian Bridal Jewelry

Indian Bridal Jewelry

Lots of jewellery pieces adorn an Indian bride, covering her from head to toe. The main purpose of wearing shining jewellery is to accent the lavish wedding outfit that will make her look like a goddess on this special occasion. Jewellery designers create various types of Indian bridal jewelery sets that can be bought by brides as per their budget.

1. Pearls: Timeless Elegance

Pearl jewellery is the favourite of all Indian brides. Long, multi-layered pearl necklaces, chokers, earrings, bracelets, and maang tika made of white or pink pearls make a bride look more elegant and stylish, matching perfectly with her gorgeous bridal dress.

2. Kundan: Regal Opulence

Kundan jewellery is made of pure 24-carat gold with a core of wax for rendering strength. Precious gems are mounted on gold to form this type of jewellery. Hence, it was widely preferred by all royal families of Gujarat and Rajasthan over the centuries. Rajasthani artisans also use Meenakari work on Kundan jewellery pieces to make them look more colourful while keeping them affordable for common people.

3. Polki: Vintage Grandeur

Polki jewellery was a tradition of medieval India that was a specification of the Mughal dynasty. Usually, uncut diamonds are used here. Thus, this type of jewellery can be found at lower prices than finished diamond jewellery pieces. However, polka jewellery has better resale value than Kundan jewellery due to the use of real diamonds and is widely chosen as bridal jewellery.

4. Silver: Beauty on a Budget

Silver jewellery is very popular among people from poor economic backgrounds, as silver is much cheaper than gold. Oxidized silver jewellery is no less gorgeous than gold or stone-studded jewellery. Since this kind of jewellery is available in amazing designs, many Indian brides also prefer to wear it in their pre-wedding functions.

5. Pachchikam: Intricate Kutch Tradition

Pachchikam jewellery is the tradition of the Kutch region in Gujarat. Silver jewellery studded with precious stones is known for intricate artwork. However, it is not widely available due to its difficult artistic designs.

6. Temple Jewelry: Majestic South Indian Splendor

Temple jewellery is the first preference of all South Indian brides. This type of heavy gold jewellery is usually seen on Hindu deities in temples, like Goddess Lakshmi and Ganesha. Thus, the long pendant necklace and other varieties of temple jewellery make a bride look majestic.


The wedding is a major life milestone for every Indian bride, as can be seen by the level of attention that goes into making her wedding outfit the highlight of the event. Hopefully, this article has clarified the length and breadth of Indian Bridal attire for you, and if you are an Indian Bride-to-be trying to decide on her outfits, then this post has given you some options to explore. Remember, India is a beautiful melting pot of cultures and traditions, and you can easily find inspiration for your wedding outfit not just in your own culture but from cultures all over India. Make sure the wedding outfit ties into the central theme of your wedding, which is reflected in everything, from Indian wedding cards to decorations and outfits.