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These days cheap bridesmaid dresses can do it all: They make you feel glam even when you’re standing next to the bride, can be reworn as a cocktail dress when you’re attending future weddings, and look high-quality without breaking your budget. It’s a refreshing change from the assumption that a dress must be frilly, expensive, and humorously unflattering to be fit for a bridal party (according to ’80s movies, Rachel Green in that episode of Friends, and decades of awkward wedding party photos).
The bridal dress code has gotten considerably more lax in recent years, and it’s now commonplace for brides to afford their squad a bit more sartorial freedom when it comes to selecting a dress. (Same for comfy wedding shoes, by the way.) From mismatched styles to varying colors, patterns, and price points, bridesmaid dresses have come a (very) long way since Sixteen Candles.
If you have the luxury of picking out your own bridesmaid dress for your loved one’s summer wedding and don’t want to drain your bank account in the name of friendship—or, alternatively, you’re a bride who wants to make your bridesmaids’ lives a little easier—no sweat: We’ve got you covered with 20 stylish and cheap bridesmaid dresses. And at $300 or less, you’ll have more than enough wiggle room in your budget for the after-party.