Here’s hoping the historic summer heat wave of 2023 is over. Why not ring in the slightly cooler weather by celebrating the best summer dress styles? Though this may be counterproductive — depending on the styles you choose, your new dresses may turn the heat right back up, at least for everyone around you.
If you’re ready to take the risk, here’s a closer look at trending summer dress styles, plus tips on how to wear them. Whether you shop for women’s dresses online or in-person, this is the short list of cute dress styles you need to cover brunch dates, picnics, beach days, or all the above.
Top 10 summer dress styles
1. White dresses: Angelic allure
Sure, the little black dress is a year-round wardrobe staple. But the white dress is a summer statement like no other.
White dresses are elegant and graceful — perfect for strolling along the beach or attending a garden soiree. Wear one with nude sandals for a casual look or opt for bright accessories to lean into a pop of color.
2. Linen dresses: Breezy beauties
Lightweight and floaty, linen dresses are always chic in the summer months. Choose from classic white and cream colors or step outside of the box with brighter shades like blue, green, or orange.
Embrace the effortless vibe by pairing your linen dress with cute sandals, a straw bag, and a wide-brimmed hat. Then head out for a daytime stroll followed by drinks at sunset.
3. Floral dresses: Blooming in style
Floral dresses aren’t just for spring. Let your style blossom this summer with a head-turning floral piece that’ll add some whimsical charm to your looks. From dainty daisies to large lilies, you’re spoiled for choice.
Team your floral dress with a pair of espadrilles or wedges. You can also add a denim jacket for a touch of casual-cool. Or, reach for a tailored blazer if you want a more polished ensemble.
4. Printed dresses: Color explosion
Want to make a statement? Try a bold patterned dress. The choices are endless — from paisley print to stripes to abstract and geometric patterns. Let the pattern lead visually by pairing it with simple gold jewelry and strappy sandals. Or, double-down on the bright vibe by accessorizing with vibrant pieces like a hot pink bag or blue flats.
5. Mini dresses: Legs for days
Mini dresses are all about showing off those killer legs and savoring the sunshine.
Minis are available in many varieties, including spaghetti strap, long sleeve, cut out, and satin. Keep it casual with a halter neck dress, sandals, and sunglasses for daytime adventures. Or, dress up your mini party dresses with stiletto heels for a night out.
6. Maxi dresses: Effortlessly chic
Channel summer sophistication with a maxi dress. From slinky slip frocks to flowing silhouettes, these floor-length pieces are sure to wow. Whether you’re off to a garden party or attending a summer wedding, these versatile and timeless wonders have your back.
Belt up your maxi for a defined waistline or let it flow for a breezy and romantic vibe.
7. Midi dresses: The just-right length
Falling right below the knee, midi dresses are the perfect balance between flirty and sophisticated. It’s an effortlessly chic choice for a dinner date or drinks with friends.
Keep things interesting with details like twist front, side splits, and one-shoulder necklines. For a touch of glamor, accessorize your summer midi dress with a floppy hat and oversized sunglasses.
8. Shirt dresses: Elegant charm
Comfort is the new black! For laid-back style and flowy comfort, a shirt dress is a smart choice. With a button-up front and collared neckline, this style has a classic, yet fresh feel.
Cinch the waist with a belt or corset, then match it with your favorite sneakers for a relaxed daytime look. Or team a shirt dress with killer pumps and head out for a night on the town.
9. Strapless dresses: Sizzle in style
Strapless dresses are flirty and feminine, a stylish choice for rooftop parties and romantic dates. Accessorize with sparkling jewelry, a sleek clutch, your best heels, and a dramatic lip color. It doesn’t get more glamorous than that.
10. Crochet dresses: Boho babe
Crochet is summer’s knit. It wears beautifully as a second layer, over a swimsuit or conservative undergarments. Try a crochet dress on your beach days or poolside parties with your closest friends. Complete the outfit with a weaved bag, gladiator sandals and large sunglasses.
Summer dress styles
So, there you have it — the top 10 summer dress styles for whatever’s on your calendar. From timeless styles like midi and maxi to statement-making prints and knee-bearing minis, there’s a silhouette here for any occasion and any mood.