Miss or Ms.?

I wanted to pop on the blog today to shed some light on another wedding addressing etiquette question that I hear a lot. When addressing your invitation envelopes, you’re more than likely including titles. So how do you decide if someone is a Miss or Ms.?

Luckily, this is an easy answer, and it all depends on the age of your guest. Miss is used for girls, and Ms. is used for young women.

The tricky part, can be deciding what age to use as the dividing line between young women and girls! Typically, this is set as sixteen. Any of your guests 16 or older would be addressed as “Ms.”, while any guests 15 and under would be addressed as “Miss”.

As with most things in etiquette, you do have some wiggle room based on what you are comfortable with! You know your guests best, so you can make a judgement call based on what you think would be most appropriate.

Not quite sure what to put? Here are the questions that I hear most often from my couples in regards to the great “Miss vs. Ms.” debate.

What should I use for a guest who does not live with her parents?

In this case, you should absolutely use “Ms.”

What should I use for a guest who lives at home with her parents?

Living at home doesn’t necessarily mean you’d use “Miss”! In this case, I’d defer to the over/under the age of sixteen rule.

Do I need to use the same title for both sisters living in the same house?

Not necessarily! It is okay to use “Ms.” for one sister and “Miss” for the other. However, you know your guests best and if they are relatively close in age, say, one is 17 and one is 14, you may want to use “Ms.” for both to keep the younger sister from feeling treated like a kid! (Gotta stand up for those little sisters!)

What is the male equivalent of Miss?

For a boy, you would use “Master”.

What is the male equivalent of Ms.?

For a male you would use “Mr.”! Mr. is used regardless of whether or not they are married.

I hope that these tips help equip you to more confidently address your invitation envelopes!


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