If you ignore those pesky spring snowstorms throughout the Midwest, you might say that warm weather is finally upon us. Summer is coming, and with that comes summer fashion. Dressing for warm weather can be tricky because you want to be cute but also comfortable, and sometimes, summer clothes come with challenges all on their own (if you’ve ever worn sticky boobs, you know what I mean).
Dressing for summer can also be fun, however, because it often means that we get to wear easy, breezy dresses, don’t even have to think about bringing a jacket, and have endless fun accessories to choose from. There’s also the return of warm-weather athleisure, which has us instantly feeling like “that girl.”
We’ve rounded up 16 summer fashion essentials to have in your arsenal, from our go-to no-bra solution to our editor-favorite denim shorts to the best accessories. If you have these 16 things in your wardrobe, you’ll be prepared for whatever adventures are to come this season.
Pro Stylist Kit
One of the things I look forward to most when warm weather finally arrives is getting to wear those beautiful summery tops and dresses in my closet. However, this also comes with the struggle of figuring out what type of bra or other type of support I might need to wear (because those of us with larger chests know that it’s often not an option to go completely braless). So with NOOD’s Pro Stylist Kit, you get three options: the Lift & Shape Bra, reusable nipple covers, and body tape, meaning there is a solution for any top or dress you wear. And instead of using similar products with cheap materials that you can only use once, NOOD’s products are made with sustainable materials and recyclable packaging. Plus, they are waterproof, sweatproof, and size and skin tone inclusive.
Game Changer Lift & Shape Bra
Summer means wedding season, which also means challenging dress silhouettes that make finding a bra that works seemingly impossible—whether you’re a bride, a bridesmaid, or a guest. NOOD’s Game Changer Lift & Shape Bra is unlike any other solutionwear that we’ve tried. It actually provides lift and support, no matter the size of your chest (it works for up to cup sizes G and F!), so that you can rock that deep V or backless style to any of your special occasions all summer long.
ABERCROMBIE & FITCH
Oversized White Button-Up
An oversized white button-up is an absolute necessity in any summer wardrobe because of how versatile it is. It can be dressed up with trousers for an office outfit, paired with denim shorts for a beachy-cool vibe, or even thrown on over an athleisure set for a model-off-duty look. Plus, it’s an ideal layering piece for when it’s chillier during summer mornings or nights.
If there’s one type of swimsuit that every woman needs, it’s a classic one-piece that makes you feel as confident as ever. A black one-piece with some fun details—like cutouts, a one-shoulder style, and a flattering tie-waist—is the perfect combination of timeless and stylish
A good pair of sunnies is obviously a must for summer, but I think the key is to find an affordable pair that can keep up with all of the season’s shenanigans. A fun rectangular shape in a tortoiseshell pattern immediately says chic, but these are also comfortable enough to wear on top of your head (if you know, you know) and sturdy enough to be thrown in your bag.
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High Rise Denim Shorts
The struggle to find a pair of denim shorts that is actually cute and comfortable seems to be a long and unending one. Luckily, the days of short-shorts and ultra-rigid denim are gone, and now we have tons of options in longer inseams, high waists, and softer materials. Our editors absolutely swear by Abercrombie denim shorts for their comfort, appearance, and fairly affordable price point.
A neutral bodysuit is the versatile base layer that every closet needs. Not only is a bodysuit flattering, but it can also go with everything from jeans to trousers to shorts. Our editors are obsessed with Express’ Body Contour collection, which comes in tons of colors and styles and is extra flattering.
I’ll never stop talking about the Converse Move sneakers, which are seriously the most comfortable pair of shoes I’ve ever worn. They are lightweight and perfectly cushioned, making them a go-to for a summer day full of activities. Plus, their “cool girl” factor instantly elevates any outfit from dressy to casual.
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Black Maxi Dress
There are very few summertime occasions that a black, flowy maxi dress doesn’t work in. It’s great for everything from beach days to date nights to special occasions because it can so easily be dressed up or down. Plus, it is universally flattering, goes with everything, and can be accessorized in countless fun ways.
Crochet Tote Bag
A large crocheted tote is truly the quintessential summer bag. Whether you’re headed to the beach, going on a picnic, or just packing yourself a bag for a day out on the town, this style of bag can truly fit everything you might need. I also prefer crocheted to a straw material because it’s more durable and more comfortable to wear.
Oversized Zip-Up Hoodie
While this is technically a men’s hoodie, it is truly something that we all need. Full-zips are back in a big way this year, and they’re a great summer essential because they are amazing for layering. You can throw on an oversized zip-up to complete any athleisure look in a cool way, leave it unzipped to show off more of your outfit, and, if you get too warm, you can easily tie it around your waist or shoulders. With more than 30,000 reviews and over 4.5 stars, this hoodie won’t disappoint.
When it comes to summer footwear, there’s nothing better than being able to easily slip on a pair of sandals when you’re running out the door to your next adventure. A chunkier, platform pair is not only comfortable and easy to style but also makes any look instantly trendier. Because summer sandal trends often come and go, I like to find budget-friendly pairs that I know I’ll get my use out of in the upcoming season, so this under-$40 pair from Target was an instant purchase.
Nothing serves as the perfect summer day uniform quite like an exercise dress. These are not only fun and comfortable, but they are also insanely easy to wear and can easily take you from day to night. Pair an exercise dress with sneakers, your favorite sunnies, and a tote bag, and you have a very cute-yet-effortless summer outfit.
Mini Crew Socks
It might sound silly, but having the right pair of socks can make or break both your outfit and your mood. There’s just something about a mini crew sock that feels instantly sporty-chic. This particular set of socks is a TikTok favorite, and they will pair perfectly with all of your sneakers this summer
A belt bag is the perfect option for days when you only need the essentials (or for your Hot Girl Walks). They are small, are super easy to wear, and allow you to be hands-free, which is great for busy gals on the go. Really, what more do you need than a card holder, a pair of sunnies, and your favorite chapstick? I especially love this option from Lululemon because it’s slightly different from their ever-popular Everywhere Belt Bag.
Side-Pocket Biker Shorts
Another editor favorite, these under-$30 biker shorts are sure to be your next summer staple. You can pair them with an oversized graphic tee or sweatshirt or a cute sports bra and zip-up hoodie. The super-soft yet compressive material and convenient side pockets make us want to get them in every color.