The Hottest Trends In Tropical Destination Wedding Fashion - Exclusive

After two years of putting travel on pause due to the pandemic, people are ready to jet set once again — so it's not surprising that many engaged couples are looking to have a destination wedding. In fact, a recent survey by David's Bridal (via Destination I Do) found that 55% of respondents plan to pull off a destination wedding instead of staying local.

The first step in planning a destination wedding is finding your perfect location, and many couples choose to say "I do" at a tropical locale. In fact, earlier this year, The List asked readers to dream of far away destinations and decide which is the perfect spot to host a wedding, and 33.86% of responses headed straight for the Bahamas! In addition, many couples are flocking to Belize for their vows.

It's not a surprise given that the pristine beaches, crystal clear blue waters, and breathtaking sunsets give you a beyond gorgeous backdrop without having to shell out any extra funds for decorations. It's especially perfect for those getting married in the winter months, giving the wedding couple — as well as their guests — a chance to escape the cold.

But with any wedding, you'll need to think carefully about what you're going to wear for this special event. So The List asked some fashion pros to give us the lowdown on the hottest trends in tropical destination fashions.

Lightweight fabrics and delicate details

While the setting may be relaxed, that doesn't mean the fashion has to be. Brides and grooms can step up their fashion game while still making sure they're cool and comfortable in the sun. As Jean Chen, the co-founder and COO of fashion brand Cicinia, told The List, tropical brides will be wearing flowing white gowns with delicate details like lace or beadwork. This will allow brides to showcase embellished gowns that are still lightweight — making them perfect to wear during a heatwave. 

Open backs, plunging necklines, sheered illusioned and body cone silhouettes are also making a beautiful statement, according to Victoria Walcott of Strapless or halter styles are always popular to show off a sun-kissed complexion, too. As for fabric, think chiffon, organza, and gazar to keep things light and airy. 

As for the men, a summer-weight suit in a natural fiber like linen or cotton is always a good choice. A light color will help him stay cool, and he can add a pop of color with his tie or pocket square.

Short and sweet with minimal accessories

Saying "I do" in a tropical setting is the perfect way to step out-of-the-box with your wedding day attire, and couples are doing just that, but in an understated way. "Less is more when it comes to a tropical destination wedding," fashion expert Ghana Sarfo, brand ambassador for shapewear company Snatched Body, told The List. This is true for décor, outfits, and accessories, as the beautiful view adds to the whole ambiance when at this type of wedding. 

With that in mind, many women — whether it's the wedding party or guests — will be donning short dresses, with brides skipping the long veil and opting for minimal accessories. Men can also feel free to ditch the heavy jacket and choose comfortable neutral pants and minimal accessories. Couples are moving towards less formal in all aspects of a wedding, which gives the festivities a more intimate and laid-back feel without forgoing style.

Floral prints and pastels

Tropical destination weddings allow all attendees to enjoy the natural and beautiful surroundings of the chosen locale — that makes floral prints and pastels a popular choice for destination weddings as they add a touch of femininity and romance to any outfit. "Flowing maxi dresses are a great option," Luke Lee, CEO of PalaLeather, told The List. "If you want to go for something a little more unique, consider a sarong-style wrap dress — perfect for showing off some skin while still staying cool and comfortable."

Lee recommends that when it comes to your wedding party, keep things coordinated but relaxed. Have your bridesmaids wear matching dresses in a light fabric, or let them choose their own outfits in coordinating colors. For groomsmen, khaki (pants or shorts) and linen shirts are always a good choice. And don't forget about choosing the right shoes: wedges or espadrilles are ideal for women, while men should stick to loafers or boat shoes. 

Bold colors and flirty designs

Couples are getting bolder when it comes to choosing their wedding day attire — throwing any and all traditions out the window. "Brides in 2022 are completely ignoring traditional wedding standards and making their own rules," Victoria Walcott of revealed to The List. "They are moving away from the classic white wedding gown to the bold vivid wedding dress and outfitting themselves with styles only seen at the Met Gala."

Dresses with cutouts have also become a popular trend with both brides and their guests, Laura Roncagli, co-founder of, explained. "A floor-length dress fits perfectly with the event, and the cutout details are a nice way to be sexier, mark your figure, and give your skin room to breathe. It's the perfect balance between elegance and comfort," she said. "Strappy dresses fit into this idea as well. Whether it is a floor-length or a short dress, skinny straps draw more attention to your shoulders and cleavage while making your arms look slimmer, and of course, give you a nice, fresh piece of clothing that makes you look good while also keeping you comfortable." 

If spaghetti straps aren't your thing, opt for an off-the-shoulder look like the one pictured above, or even consider going strapless. It's your big day! You make the rules.