If the Bride Pays for the Bridesmaids' Dresses, Should the Groom Pick Up the Tab for the Groomsmen's Attire?
Is there an obligation to do the same for each group?
When someone agrees to be in a wedding party, they're not just committing their time-they're also committing a big part of their paycheck. There are pre-wedding parties to host, gifts to be bought, and personal grooming to attend to. That's why it's always welcome if a thoughtful bride offers to subsidize her girls' outfits, especially if she chose a high-end design that costs as much as a month's rent. For the wedding day alone, a typical bridesmaid pays for a dress, alterations, undergarments, shoes, and jewelry. (To save, she could wear shoes and jewelry she already owns.)
But what about the groomsmen? If the bride is generously offering to pay for her attendants' dresses, should the groom also offer to pick up the tab for his guys? After all, a tuxedo or suit and formal shoes can be expensive, especially if rentals aren't an option.
It's an interesting dilemma. You want to be fair to everyone, but the guys generally don't have to pay for as much as the women. Though it's not outfit-related, another wedding-day expense the bridesmaids often pay for is hair and makeup, something the groomsmen never do, which means they're already expected to shell out quite a bit more for the big day.
Ultimately, whether or not a groom follows in his bride's footsteps and helps out his buddies with the cost of their outfits, it's a personal decision that should have nothing to do with the bride's actions. There's no clear-cut yes or no. Even if the total expenses aren't as high as a bridesmaid's, a groomsman may be on a tight budget that winces when it needs to accommodate a $200 tuxedo rental. Since the men in the wedding party are presumably close to the groom, he should be aware of each of his crew's financial situation and if he's able to, he can cover either all or part of their clothing bill as well.