Should the Groom Wear a Suit or a Tuxedo on the Wedding Day?

How to decide what's right for your groom and your wedding.

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Photo: Abby Jiu Photography

Deciding whether to wear a suit or a tuxedo on the wedding day is a big decision for most grooms. That's why many men look to their future wife to steer them in the right direction. But what if you don't really have a preference one way or the other? How do you decide which type of attire your groom should wear on the big day? The decision mostly comes down to the overall formality of the wedding, as the groom's attire sets a standard for a white-tie, black-tie, formal, or semi-formal affair. Not sure what suits your wedding best? Here's how to decide whether a suit or a tux is right for your groom and your wedding.

The Big Differences

All suits and tuxedos are not created equal. In terms of the big differences, satin is usually seen on the detailing of a tuxedo, usually lining the lapel, decorating the buttons, or in the form of a side-stripe down the pant leg. Suits are typically made entirely of one fabric, which makes them slightly less formal. The accessories often vary with tuxedos and may include a cummerbund, waistcoat, and bow tie. That said, these accessories aren't required for a tux.

Pay Attention to the Time of Day

Tuxedos are meant for evening events only, so your groom wouldn't wear one for a morning or afternoon wedding. If you're planning to marry during the day, a suit would be a better option for your groom's attire.

The Formality of the Wedding Is Key to Your Decision

If you're planning to have a black-tie wedding, a tuxedo is a must for your groom. It's the most polished option, and you'll want your groom to set the tone that this is a very formal event. If you set black-tie as your wedding dress code, you'll likely have a several guests arrive wearing tuxedos, and the last thing you want is for anyone to look more formal than your groom.

The Price Factor

Men are more likely to get additional use out of a suit than out of a tuxedo, making a suit a more reasonable expense for most. That said, it is possible to rent a nice tuxedo and it's often a more affordable option than purchasing a new suit.

Personal Preference

When it comes down to making the final call, personal preference will likely play a big part in your groom's decision. If your guy cares about great style and he's excited to don a tuxedo instead of a suit, let him run with it. If he's a guy who enjoys his accessories, a suit may be a better fit. If he has zero preference and is happy to wear whatever you choose, use the the timing and formality of your wedding to guide your decision.

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