How to shop for your wedding dress during COVID-19 at home safely!

As we continue to stay at home for the good of our families and community, it’s hard to not be able to meet with brides and help them feel beautiful in finding their dream dress. I have been asked a lot now if I can meet with just one bride or ship dresses to try on for a virtual appointment. I want to continue to stay safe and keep my loved ones safe and so I have declined.

But I don’t want brides to feel discouraged who feel they need to try on their dress before they say yes, as there are many shops offering in-home services as each shop is doing what they can. I want brides to feel and be safe when participating in these services.

Or if you are a bride that knows they love a dress or found an amazing deal for a dress online through an authorized bridal boutique here are tips for you to stay safe.

A local gown preservationist who also has PHD in fabrications and is the president of The Association of Wedding Gown Specialists provided tips to shops and brides to help keep them safe.

How long can the virus survive?

The virus survives two hours on cardboard so your bride might want to wipe down the gown box with an antiseptic before she opens it.  On fabric, some have said the virus lasts about two hours; the rougher the texture of the fabric the shorter the time it survives.  However, the virus can last up to three days on plastic (think sequins, pearls and other decorations) and seven days on metal (think zippers).

Can wedding dresses be disinfected between brides? 

You probably know the virus is surrounded by a thin “envelope” of fat, and the trick is to dissolve the fat.  Steaming the gown does not get rid of the virus completely.  Drycleaning does, but it’s not very practical to dry clean gowns in between each bride. There are sprays but it can ruin a dress. So it’s difficult on the shop’s side to disinfect the dress safely. The best thing to do is, leave the gown boxed and do not touch it for 5-6 days. So as a bride, you can do the same if the timing works for you.

What can your bride do to protect herself when trying a gown?

Most often a bride can step and should always into the gown, which means any lingering virus would not come into contact with her face.  If the dress needs to go on over a bride’s head, she might do something models did back in the day—tie a silk scarf over her head and face to protect her hair and makeup.  The scarf will keep any residual virus from touching your bride’s face.  Either way, she should wash her hands after handling the gown.

How can you be sure you can stay safe?

Ask the shop what have they done to the gown to ensure your and their safety. For example, was disinfectant used or was it kept hanging in a protective bag for more days than the virus can survive. And remember not to touch your face until you have washed your hands after you have finished with the gown.