Can You Have Two Maids of Honor? Etiquette Explained

Composing your wedding party can be a difficult and intimidating task. Sometimes, you have too many people in mind, and narrowing down the list is nearly impossible. Amidst this, you may find yourself pondering the question, “Can I have two maids of honor?

Yes, you can! Selecting a single individual to be your maid of honor can indeed be a daunting challenge, and the good news is that you don’t necessarily have to settle for just one. It’s completely acceptable to appoint two maids of honor for your special day, thereby ensuring you can include the pivotal people in your life in a meaningful way.

For further clarity, the ensuing sections will offer a more nuanced explanation regarding the possibility of having two maids of honor. You’ll also find invaluable tips for selecting your maids of honor, coupled with a handy guide to assist you in navigating the process of having two individuals share this significant role on your special day.

Is it Possible to Have Two Maids of Honor?

bride and her two maid of honor

As mentioned above, you are free to have two maids of honor. No piece of etiquette dictates brides to have only one maid of honor in their wedding party. In some cases, opting for two maids of honor is a logical and wise decision.

You might have two siblings with whom you are very close, and it is virtually impossible to choose only one. Similarly, you might have two best friends to whom you want to assign the role. Alternatively, there might only be two bridesmaids in your wedding party; picking one to be the maid of honor might make the other feel left out.

Regardless of which case applies to you, you should consider having two maids of honor. It is a practical move. With two maids of honor, more energy and effort will be poured into the planning of your pre-wedding events. You will also have a bigger, more solid support network while you prepare.

Choosing Your Maids of Honor


Despite knowing that you can have two maids of honor, it might still be a challenge to choose who they will be. Here are a few tips you can keep in mind that will help you make the decision.

Anyone Can Be a Maid of Honor

Maids of honor are typically young, unmarried women. However, you do not have to restrict yourself to this category. Anyone can be a maid of honor, regardless of their gender, sexual orientation, and civil status.

If one or both of your maids of honor are married, then a better name for their role is “matron of honor.”

If you have chosen a man to take this responsibility, you can call him the “man of honor.”

Look at Your Close Relationships

bride laughing with her bridesmaids

You must have a close relationship with your maids of honor. Frequently, brides will go with relatives; siblings and cousins are popular choices. Aunts and uncles are great options as well. Alternatively, you can also choose your best friends.  

If you have many people in mind and are afraid of hurting their feelings, choosing a family member is a safe choice. Your friends are less likely to feel sad about your decision, as they will understand that family bonds are sometimes deeper. 

Do Not Listen to External Pressures

Although uncommon, some brides experience pressure from their friends or relatives surrounding the role of maid of honor. Regardless of the subtlety, they might push you to choose them or someone they know.

Not listening to pressure is a massive challenge in itself. However, stay strong and focus on what you want. Everyone else needs to take a backseat, as this decision is only yours to make.

Consider Your Candidates’ Strengths and Weaknesses

bride and her bridesmaids

Once you have narrowed down your list, examine each of the candidates’ strengths and weaknesses. Upon further reflection, you might realize that they have varying levels of organizational skills, accountability, proactivity, and other necessary traits.

You are not doing this to judge them, criticize them, or love them less. Being a maid of honor carries a lot of responsibility. By picking people who are up to the task, you are saving everyone involved from a headache.

Consider Their Financial Capabilities

Given their responsibilities, maids of honor can quickly become expensive. They can spend more than $1,000 throughout their time as maids of honor. Besides their attire, they also have to shoulder the costs of travel and planning pre-wedding parties.

Understandably, not everyone will have $1,000 ready to spend on anything. When choosing your two maids of honor, make sure that the role will not be a heavy financial burden.

Consider Where They Live

Ideally, your two maids of honor should live close to each other. This is convenient and practical. If one of them lives in a different state or country, time zones might get in the way of efficient planning.

However, there are ways you can ensure an equal division of labor despite the distance. The maid of honor living far away can focus on researching ideas, creating Pinterest boards, designing invitations, and so on.  

How to Work with Two Maids of Honor

two women holding wildflowers

Let Them Get to Know Each Other 

If you are lucky, your two maids of honor already have a close relationship. This is the case if you chose two siblings or two best friends to fill the role. Otherwise, it might be best to facilitate some bonding between your maids of honor.

Take them out for brunch, dinner, or drinks. Go on a spa day, watch a movie, or visit a museum. Find something they have in common, such as an interest or a hobby, and get them to bond over it.

They do not have to become close friends. However, breaking the ice and creating that connection will enable them to work with each other better. This will also prevent conflicts in the long run.

Brief Them About the Responsibilities

three woman laughing

Some people are not entirely familiar with the responsibilities that come with being a maid of honor. Inform them about your expectations. Tell them what exactly they will be doing as the maids of honor. These tasks can include:

  • Leading or heading the planning of pre-wedding parties. Pre-wedding parties include engagement parties, bachelorette parties, and bridal showers. The rest of the bridesmaids will help in the process, but the maids of honor are expected to oversee them. Maids of honor can also function as the point person for vendors.
  • Preventing and mitigating conflict among the bridal party. Wedding parties vary in size, and their members can vary widely in personalities. Thus, conflicts are sometimes inevitable. The maids of honor need to address these conflicts, mediate between the people involved, and solve the problems.
  • Providing emotional support for the bride. This responsibility starts from the moment they are picked as maids of honor. Even after the wedding, they should be a solid support network for you.
  • Contributing ideas for the events. They will help you brainstorm important details of your special day. These details include color schemes, themes, gimmicks, games, and so on. Though seemingly minor, these details will take your wedding to the next level.
  • Accompanying the bride to pertinent appointments. Maids of honor often go with the bride as she goes wedding dress shopping. They can act as consultants, giving their opinions while still letting you decide for yourself. They can also go with you to meetings with your planner, decorator, coordinator, and other vendors.
  • Assisting the bride as she gets ready on the day of the wedding. This includes any last-minute adjustments and working with the vendors. Moreover, maids of honor will also be in the dressing room with the bride. They will help her prepare, look her best, and feel her best before she walks down the aisle.
  • Performing duties during the ceremony. A maid of honor typically holds the bridal bouquet while the exchange of vows occurs. They will stand close to the bride as they do so. They may also be tasked with safeguarding the wedding bands.
  • Serving as a witness for the marriage license. Depending on local policies, you might be required to provide zero to two witnesses. Your maids of honor can be one or both of them.
  • Giving a speech at the reception. Maids of honor are expected to give a speech during the reception. The speech can be funny and short, sentimental, or practical and wise.
  • Look after the bride during the reception. Going into the reception, you will probably be a little tired. Your maids of honor should look after you during this time. They can retouch your makeup, bring you food, make you drink water, and more.

This list is not exhaustive by any means; these are just some of the tasks that you can delegate to your maids of honor. You may also ask them to assist your family members on the day of the ceremony, help you pack for the honeymoon, manage the social media aspect of the event, and so on. Ultimately, you should tailor the tasks according to your needs and circumstances.

Preparing a checklist or to-do list can be helpful at this time. Doing so can minimize miscommunication, misunderstandings, and forgetting something important. Moreover, they can start thinking about how they will divide the workload.

Throughout the planning process, constantly check in on them. Make sure that both maids of honor are equally involved. After all, it is unfair if only one of them is taking their responsibilities seriously.

Give Them Opportunities to Stand Out

bride and her bridesmaids smiling

Whereas bridesmaids are expected to wear the same dress, a maid of honor typically wears something different. With two maids of honor, they can wear different outfits with the same color palette.

However, some couples prefer a cohesive look for their wedding party. In that case, give them the freedom to accessorize their outfits. For instance, adding a belt or a hat can set them apart from the rest of the bridesmaids.

Make Them Walk Down the Aisle Side-by-Side

During the processional, a maid of honor typically goes just before the bride makes her grand entrance. If you have two maids of honor, the best thing to do is have them walk together. Not only will this show the guests that they have the same role, but this will also communicate to your maids of honor that they are equals.

Give Them Different Ceremony Duties

bride with two maid of honor

As mentioned above, a maid of honor usually holds the bride’s bouquet while she says her vows. As you have two maids of honor, you need to think of a task to give the other one. For instance, she may be in charge of holding onto the wedding bands.

The goal here is to not let anyone feel excluded. Concurrently, do not overwhelm one maid of honor with all the responsibilities. Figure out an equal and fair distribution of tasks.

Thank Them for Everything

wedding toast

After your wedding, make sure to show your gratitude to your maids of honor. You might feel that a thank-you card is not enough to express how thankful you are. You can start by giving them a shout-out during your speech at the reception. You can also mention them in a sentimental post on social media.

You can also prepare a personal gift for them. Given that you know them intimately, finding the perfect gift might be an easy task. You can attach a touching letter wherein you express your gratitude.

Final Thoughts

Ultimately, the decision is entirely yours, as it’s your special day unfolding. Opting for two maids of honor can indeed be a practical and sensible choice, particularly when you find yourself torn between two individuals who equally share a significant part of your life and heart.

Having two maids of honor allows for extra hands and hearts actively participating in making your day seamless and memorable. Should you find yourself contemplating this, know assuredly that having two maids of honor is not just permissible, but can also add an extra layer of support and joy to the celebration of your love and commitment.

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