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What to Wear to a Funeral: 6 Practical Tips

What to Wear to a Funeral: 6 Practical Tips

When dealing with the grief associated with the death of a loved one the last thing you want to worry about is what to wear to a funeral.  Here are some quick and simple tips on what type of attire should be worn for a funeral.

What to Wear to a Funeral

What you wear to a funeral should be modest and classy. You want to show respect to the deceased. For men a suit or button up shirt and dress pants would be appropriate. For a woman a suit, a modest dress or pants and blouse will work well.

What Color

Wearing black is often associated with mourning and funerals. You can never go wrong with wearing an all black ensemble. Any other dark neutral color can work as well. For example a navy or a dark brown is also appropriate.  Try to stay away from bright colors and lively prints.

How to Style Hair and Makeup

Just as the outfit you wear should be modest so should hair and makeup styles. A nice subtle makeup job and low key hair style will suffice. Remember there may be lots of hugging and tears.  Something to keep in mind when styling for a funeral.

How to Style Jewelry

As far as accessories go wearing minimal jewelry and keeping it modest as well is a good rule to follow.  Simple necklaces and earrings are nice especially if it is something given to you be your loved one who has passed away.

Can I Wear a Hat

Baseball caps, fedoras or other casual hats should be left at home. Some cultures and traditions wear small hats with an attached veil. That can be appropriate according to cultural expectations. Keep in mind when wearing large “church” hats to respect others view of the service.


When you see people in mourning or funerals on tv you will often see people wearing sunglasses sometimes to conceal the tears in their eyes.  Sunglasses are appropriate especially if outdoors. Follow the same rule in regards to minimalism and modesty. Oversized cat eye sunglasses should probably be left at home.

When it comes to deciding what to wear to a funeral, first and foremost show respect to the one who has passed. Make the day be about their legacy. Whatever you wear should not draw attention to yourself and away from remembrance of the deceased.  Always take into account the cultural expectations of those in attendance. In some cultures the funeral is a homegoing service and more elaborate attire may be acceptable. If the deceased has pre-planned their funeral they may have shared that they want bright colors and a celebration of life rather than sadness and mourning. Always take into account these exceptions when dressing for a funeral.  Remember that as long you show respect to the one who has passed on, you can’t lose when dressing for a funeral.

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