Tank tops are such simple wardrobe staples, we sometimes forget it’s possible to make them the star of our ensemble. But as the weather heats up, we’ll likely be reaching for these bicep-baring styles often, and it’s about time we refresh with some modern summer looks. Here, six ways to wear a tank top in 2022 and still look like a fashionable adult, plus three you’re better off skipping (unless you want to look like you’re walking around the mall in 2002…).
6 Ways to Wear a Tank Top in 2022 (and 3 That Date You Immediately)
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1. Opt For Wide Straps Over Thin
Wider, bra-friendly straps and square necklines have officially replaced spaghetti styles and scoop necks for 2022. And while you can definitely opt for bright colors, timeless neutrals—creams, blacks and browns—tend to look most chic. Cropped silhouettes are particularly trendy right now, and can absolutely look posh and grown-up. The key is to pair them with high-waist pants in a rich hue, like Caroline Juen’s camel brown trousers, so just a sliver of skin shows at your midriff. Finish with luxe looking accessories, like minimalist leather sandals and some statement earrings.
Shop similar styles: Skims Cotton Rib Tank Top ($34): L’Academie Kristina Leather Pants ($598; $359); Marc Fisher LTD Chiara Sandals ($140)
2. Or Try A Luxe-looking Silk Cami
On the flip side, silk camisoles can still look chic, even with their super-thin straps. The reason is the elevated fabric, which works best tucked into pieces with similarly posh vibes. Think neat white-wash denim instead of sun-bleached distressed styles, or tailored twill shorts rather than raw-hem cutoffs. Keep your jewelry on the daintier side to avoid overwhelming this chic ensemble.
Shop similar styles: Cinq A Sept Marta Cami ($245); Agolde ‘90s Crop Jeans ($178); Anne Klein Horsebit Bag ($75); Steve Madden Rayne Sandals ($60)
3. Pair High Neck Tanks With Statement Earrings
High neck tank tops are one of this summer’s must-have styles. They work just as well with denim shorts as they do with silky cargo pants, like Coterie member Monroe Steele’s, or even trendy tennis skorts. But perhaps the best way to style them is with a pair of bold statement earrings, which help draw attention up to your sleek neckline and will frame your face beautifully.
Shop similar styles: 8 Other Reasons Gorg Earrings ($36); Everlane Cotton Cutaway Tank Top ($30); Silk Maison Wide-Leg Pants ($); Vinca Camuto Brelanie Heels ($99)
4. Stick With Midi Skirts Instead Of Minis Or Maxis
A shoulder-baring tank and a mini skirt can read very sexy, which is great for date night, but less so for casual weekend errand running. And on the flip side, a boho maxi skirt can read far too relaxed for any afternoon that doesn’t involve making daisy chains in a field with your hippie friends. But a midi that hits somewhere between your knee and mid-calf is just right for dressing up or down for just about any event on your calendar.
Shop similar styles: KOTO Cutout Ribbed Tank Top ($19): J.Crew Linen No. 3 Pencil Skirt ($128); By Far Rachel Bag ($420; $294); Veja V-10 CWL Sneakers ($170)
5. Dress Up A Plain White Tank With Stand-out Pants
A good old-fashioned white ribbed top needn’t be relegated to undershirt status all the time. All you need to jazz up this basic wardrobe staple is a pair of bold statement trousers, either in a fun print or bright color, and some dressy accessories (a gold chain necklace, sleek leather mini handbag, pointy-toe shoes) and voilà!
Shop similar styles: WSLY Rivington TankTop ($68); Mejuri Drawn Cable Chain Necklace ($168); Rotate Birger Christensen Rotie Pants ($250); Strathberry Nano Tote Bag ($505); Rothy’s The Point Flats ($145)
6. Elevate Basic Neutrals By Wearing Them Head-to-toe
Shades of white, a mix of forest-inspired greens or head-to-toe black (yes, even in mid-July) will always look incredibly chic. Monochrome dressing is an easy way to elevate simple basics and can make your plain white tank feel much fancier than it really is. We advise sticking to pieces with more structure or tailoring (so, not a flowy, asymmetrical hem skirt or cut-off jorts) to keep things polished. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still rock some easy white denim or green silk pants.
Shop similar styles: Stradivarius Seamless Tank Top ($13); Wilfred Melina Pants ($148); Wandler Penelope Mini Bag ($690); Reformation Gigi Sandals ($248)
7. Skip Cotton Spaghetti Straps
Super skinny straps, especially when combined with a tight fit (or, God forbid, a shelf bra) immediately read as something you’d wear under V-neck that’s a smidge too deep (particularly if you’re middle school). Really really like tiny straps? No problem! Just go with a looser silk cami and you’ll feel infinitely more grown-up.
8. Don’t Wear Your Tanks Untucked With Skinny Jeans
Whether or not you agree with Gen Z’s declaration that skinny jeans are over, in 2022 this combination looks lazy and a little out of touch. Luckily, there’s a simple fix: Tuck in your top and add at least one other point of interest, be it a chain necklace, stack of colorful beaded bracelets or a belt with a contrasting buckle. If you really want to upgrade, swap those skinnies for a more current style, like mom jeans, a cropped wide leg or even loose Bermuda shorts.
9. Opt For Minimalist Jewelry Over Lots Of Long, Chunky Necklaces
We get it, neck messes and lots of colorful jewelry is in right now. But when you pair a delicate tank top with a bunch of chunky beads and super-long lengths, you wind up looking like a kid playing dress-up. If you really want to go all in in jewelry, we think it’s best to opt for dainty pieces instead.