Skip to Content

What is the difference between a maid of honor and a bridesmaid?

As a bride-to-be, choosing the people to stand by your side on your big day is an important decision. You may have a lot of questions about the roles of bridesmaids and the maid of honor. You’re not alone; many brides aren’t entirely sure what the distinction is between the two.

In this blog post, we’ll define what the maid of honor and bridesmaids are all about and what their roles are in the bridal party. Understanding each of these roles is paramount in ensuring that you pick the right people to be your bridesmaids and maid of honor.

Roles of the Maid of Honor

The Maid of Honor is like an assistant to the bride during the wedding planning process. She is often the bride’s closest friend or family member, and she plays a critical role in making sure the wedding day runs smoothly.

Here are some of the primary duties of the Maid of Honor:

  • Acts as the bride’s confidante, offering emotional support throughout the planning process
  • Assists the bride in selecting her wedding dress and bridesmaids’ dresses
  • Attends all pre-wedding parties and events, such as the bridal shower and bachelorette party
  • Helps with DIY projects and decorations (if the bride wants them)
  • Organizes the wedding party and ensures everyone knows where they should be at all times (especially before the ceremony)
  • Keeps the bride calm and reassured, offering words of wisdom, and ensuring she’s eating and staying hydrated
  • Signs the marriage license as the witness
  • Roles of the Bridesmaids

    Bridesmaids are typically women chosen by the bride to stand by her side during the wedding ceremony. There is no standard number of bridesmaids for a wedding, as that decision is entirely up to the bride.

    Bridesmaids often have the following duties:

    • Help the Maid of Honor with her duties
    • Attend the wedding rehearsal and assist as needed
    • Participate in the pre-wedding festivities and parties
    • Assist with any decorations projects assigned by the bride or Maid of Honor
    • Attend the bride and groom while they are getting ready for the ceremony
    • Walk down the aisle, typically in pairs
    • Dance at the reception and have a great time celebrating the newlyweds
    • The Differences Between a Maid of Honor and Bridesmaids

      Now that we’ve discussed the roles of the Maid of Honor and bridesmaids let’s look at how they differ.

      Position in the Wedding Procession

      One of the most significant differences between the Maid of Honor and the Bridesmaids is their position in the wedding procession. The Maid of Honor usually walks down the aisle last (just before the bride), while bridesmaids walk in pairs ahead of her.


      The Maid of Honor has more significant responsibilities than bridesmaids do. Maid of Honors has to ensure that the bride is comfortable on her big day, and that everything runs smoothly so the bride can focus on getting married. Meanwhile, Bridesmaids are there to support both the Maid of Honor and the bride.

      Dress Code

      Maid of Honor and bridesmaids should wear the same dress, usually picked out by the bride. However, the Maid of Honor may choose to wear a slightly different dress, different color, or more adorned dress, or carry a different bouquet from the bridesmaids.


      The roles of the Maid of Honor and bridesmaids at a wedding are distinct but complementary. A Maid of Honor is the bride’s right-hand woman, while bridesmaids offer emotional support and assistance as needed. The distinction between these two roles ensures that everyone in the bridal party knows what is expected of them and can work together to make the wedding day special.


      Is a bridesmaid better than a maid of honor?

      When it comes to weddings, there are many important roles to be filled, and two of the most prominent are the bridesmaid and the maid of honor. While both are integral parts of the bridal party, there is often a question of which is “better”. However, it’s important to note that neither role is necessarily better – it’s all about what you’re looking for in each position.

      Generally speaking, a bridesmaid is typically responsible for assisting the bride on the wedding day itself. This can include helping her get ready, holding her bouquet during the ceremony, and generally being a supportive presence throughout the event. Bridesmaids may also be tasked with helping to plan pre-wedding events like the bachelorette party, but their responsibilities are generally more limited and focused on the day of the wedding itself.

      On the other hand, the maid of honor is typically given more responsibilities than a bridesmaid. In addition to assisting on the wedding day, she may be responsible for helping to plan pre-wedding events, providing emotional support to the bride throughout the planning process, and generally acting as the bride’s right-hand woman throughout the lead-up to the wedding day. A maid of honor is often expected to give a speech during the reception and may also assist with things like dress fittings, vendor meetings, and other logistical tasks leading up to the wedding.

      While some might argue that the maid of honor is “better” because she has more responsibilities, it’s important to note that both roles are important and valuable in their own right. Some brides may prefer to have a smaller, more focused bridal party with just a maid of honor, while others may want a larger group of bridesmaids to help them celebrate. the decision of whether a bridesmaid or maid of honor is “better” depends on what the bride herself wants and needs from her bridal party.

      In the end, both the bridesmaid and the maid of honor are important members of the bridal party, and each has a unique role to play in the wedding planning process. While there may be some differences in their responsibilities, both are essential to making sure the big day goes off without a hitch and that the bride is supported and celebrated every step of the way.

      Does the maid of honor count as a bridesmaid?

      The short answer is yes, the Maid of Honour does count as a bridesmaid. In fact, the Maid of Honour serves as the chief bridesmaid and is typically considered to be the most important member of the bridal party. The role of the Maid of Honour may differ slightly depending on cultural and religious traditions, but in general, she acts as the bride’s key personal attendant both during the engagement and on the big day.

      The Maid of Honour is often a close friend or family member of the bride and is chosen for her ability to provide support and help throughout the wedding planning process and beyond. She may assist with tasks such as selecting bridesmaid dresses, addressing invitations, organizing pre-wedding events, and more. In addition, the Maid of Honour typically plans and hosts the bridal shower and bachelorette party, if applicable.

      On the wedding day, the Maid of Honour plays an important role in ensuring that everything goes as smoothly as possible. She helps the bride get dressed, carries the bride’s bouquet during the ceremony, and may hold the groom’s ring during the exchange of vows. If needed, she may also give a speech at the reception and help the bride with any last-minute tasks or emergencies that arise.

      While the Maid of Honour is considered a bridesmaid, her role is often seen as more significant. She is the bride’s right-hand woman throughout the wedding planning process and is typically tasked with more responsibilities than the other bridesmaids. The other bridesmaids may be responsible for tasks such as assisting with decorations, greeting guests, and walking down the aisle during the ceremony.

      In short, the Maid of Honour is indeed a bridesmaid, but she holds a special and important role as the chief bridesmaid. She provides crucial support to the bride during the planning process and on the wedding day, and her duties and responsibilities may differ slightly from those of the other bridesmaids.

      What does the maid of honor pay for?

      The role of a maid of honor is crucial in a wedding, and one of the responsibilities that come with the task is covering certain expenses related to the occasion. While the specifics may vary depending on the bride’s preferences and the wedding plans, there are certain things that the maid of honor is traditionally expected to pay for.

      Firstly, the maid of honor, along with the rest of the bridal party, is expected to cover all wedding attire costs. This means that she has to pay for her dress, shoes, and any jewelry that she will wear on the wedding day. It is important to keep in mind that the dress should be chosen keeping in mind the bride’s preference, and it should not clash with the bride’s dress or the wedding theme. Additionally, any necessary alterations to the dress should also be covered by the maid of honor.

      Apart from the attire, the maid of honor may also be tasked with covering some additional expenses. For instance, if the bride decides to have a bachelorette party or a bridal shower, the maid of honor may be responsible for planning and paying for the event. This includes covering the expenses related to food, decor, and activities. Similarly, if the bridal party decides to give a gift to the bride and groom, the maid of honor is expected to pitch in financially.

      However, it should be noted that not all expenses will fall on the maid of honor, and the bride and groom might cover some costs themselves. Sometimes, the bride may gift her bridesmaids with whatever accessories she wants them to wear, or she might offer to pay for the bridesmaid’s dresses. Therefore, it is essential for the maid of honor to have open communication with the bride regarding the financial obligations associated with the role.

      The maid of honor is expected to pay for her dress, shoes, and jewelry. Additionally, she may be responsible for organizing and paying for the bachelorette party or bridal shower and contributing to the bridal party’s gift. However, the specific expenses may vary depending on the bride’s preferences, and it is up to the maid of honor to communicate effectively with the bride to ensure that all financial obligations are met without a hitch.