The 7 Rules of Dressing for Summer in 2022 (& One Look That's Officially Done-zo)
Found yourself in a style rut this summer? You’re not the only one. Especially on days when it’s wildly hot and humid, it can feel like a chore to have to think about pulling together a cute outfit, even if all you have planned is a trip to the grocery store. But we have a handy trick up our sleeve to break your sartorial slump. Or seven tricks, really. Here are the seven rules you need to know for styling your wardrobe this summer, plus one look to retire ASAP. And don’t worry, they’re all incredibly easy to follow, no matter your personal style.
1. Get Ready to Show Some Leg
Minis are officially in and yes, you can 100 percent wear one no matter your age, height or body type. The key is to accessorize with posh jewelry and sleek handbags and stick to flats or kitten heels over high heels or wedges. The most flattering silhouette? A mini skirt or dress with a slight A-line shape in a more structured fabric, which helps to cinch your waist and looks more grown-up that pleated or ruffled options.
Shop similar styles: Lulus Sunny Wrap Dress ($68); Eloquii Shirred Mini Dress ($100); Missyempire Ribbed Mini Dress ($47; $36); Tuckernuck Blythe Dress ($198); Alice + Olivia Melvina Dress ($350); Torrid Chambray Dress ($80; $48)
2. Transition Your Mom and Dad Fashion into Coastal Grandmother Mode
Lucky for anyone who fell in love with mom- and dad-inspired trends last summer, the new coastal grandmother aesthetic incorporates many of the same pieces. Oversize button-ups, light linen layers, easy sandals and, of course, large sunglasses and sunhats to protect you from the sun are all must-haves for the next few months.
Shop similar styles: Athleta Midtown Shirt ($98); J.Crew Gauzy Seaside Pants ($90); AYR The Deep End Button-Up Shirt ($125); Anine Bruni Shirt ($179); SUNDRY Wide Leg Pants ($188); Free People Shady Character Wide Brim Hat ($68)
3. Swap Last Year’s Chunky Dad Shoe for Retro Kicks
This year’s top sneaker trend is all about throwback styles with minimalist silhouettes. Think the Adidas Samba, New Balance 574 and Onitsuka Tiger shoes so popular in the ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s. Plain white versions are the most versatile, but styles that incorporate a pop of color or even elaborate color-blocking are just as trendy, so feel free to have fun with a stand-out pair rather than sticking with the basics.
4. When In Doubt, Opt for a Monochrome Ensemble
Monochrome outfits are a no-fail way to look cool and put together. All white, black or navy are always good options, but if you want something with a bit more pop, try covering yourself in one of 2022’s top color trends instead, like creamsicle orange or Barbie pink.
Shop similar styles: Eloquii Maxi Dress ($125); Charles & Keith Satin Envelope Bag ($83); Endless Rose Shirred Dress ($120); ASOS Button-Up Mini Dress ($60; $48); Looks Like Summer Simone Leather Bag ($159; $115); House of Want We Are Chic Top Handle Bag ($98; $69)
5. Invest In a Good White Tank (Or 3)
The good old fashioned white tank top is having a moment right now as more than just a layering piece. The wardrobe basic is all over TikTok and, lucky for everyone, is incredibly easy to pull off. Our favorite way to rock a tank is with some wide-leg statement pants, a simple gold chain necklace and a sleek ladylike handbag. Or, for something more casual, try a slip skirt and flip-flops for a ‘90s-inspired weekend look.
6. Go Big Rather Than Playing it Safe
Usually we love to mix and match different styles, like Y2K with ‘90s or pop-punk with country club prep. But this summer’s trends so strongly and clearly fit in different categories that we think the best way to wear them is by going all in, one at a time. So pick your favorite, be it ‘70s disco or lime green, and embrace it head-to-toe
Shop similar styles: Staud Calypso Dress ($325); Stateside Gauze Top ($68) and Gauze Drape Skirt ($156); Lulus Pier and Now Midi Dress ($74); Stradivarious Cropped Wide-Leg Overalls ($50; $40); Banana Republic Ruffle Wrap Dress ($190)
7. Try Adding a Hat
But not just any hat. Bucket hats and baseball caps specifically are the trends du jour, so be sure to swap that straw boater for something new. Best of all, you can treat both styles much in the same way you would any other summer hat. And if the sheer idea of wearing your hair down with a cap is already making you overheat, try knotting your hair into a low bun or braid to get some extra air-flow on the nape of your neck.
Shop similar styles: J.Crew Bucket Hat ($50; $35); Vans Reversible Bucket Hat ($42; $34); Ganni Cotton Cap ($95); J.Crew Crew Baseball Cap ($40; $25); Baggu Bucket Hat ($34); Only NY Thank You! Hat ($48)
8. Sorry to Say, But Cottagecore Is Officially Dated
Puff-sleeve nap dresses, kitschy cardigans and garden clogs, while not so off the mark individually, add up to one very outdated look. This escapist trend had its moment, but now’s the time to try something new. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still get use out of your beloved cottagecore staples—pair that nap dress with some ‘90s Dr. Martens, your cardigan with a sporty tennis skirt and those clogs with your new “coastal grandmother” pieces. Voilà! A chic and easy wardrobe refresh, no shopping required.