It’s that time of year again and I keep hearing … “suns out, bums out” …. “suns out, guns out” … ! Oh dear … what if you’re less than excited about showing off your legs and arms than … whoever made up those silly sayings?! Me to the rescue with my summer style guide …. especially for women over 40, over 50, and beyond, who want to look stylish AND stay cool, want to look chic AND be a bit covered up!
How Much Skin to Show?
How much skin to show is totally a personal question that no one can answer for you but yourself. I’m more comfortable and confident being a bit more covered up. In the old days, there were so many rules about fashion and age, but now anything goes really. I had a dear friend who wore halter tops and shorts into her late 60’s! Even though it’s not a choice I would make, it fit her personality and she felt happy and cute. That’s all that matters. You do you!
Read on for summer style tips … including my go-to summer pieces!
Cool and Covered Legs
Skirts & Dresses
If you prefer to cover your legs, at least from the knees up, nothing will make your summer better than a couple of lightweight gauzy maxi skirts. I have one in black and one in white and if you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, you know that you seen them on me EVERY SINGLE SUMMER!
Shop Go To Summer Skirts
I always love a midi or maxi dress and buy several each summer. I will say though that by the end of summer I’m pretty sick of them, whereas the skirts can be styled so many different ways that I never get tired of them. But on the plus side, it’s fabulous to have a one-and-done dress to throw on in the summer, so I would suggest adding at least one or two … or ten … summer dresses for sure!
Shop Summer Dresses
Pants, Crops, Shorts
Some women look amazing in shorts well into their senior years. I alas do not! But if you look great in shorts and like to wear them, I would suggest passing on the cuffed hems and the pleats across the tummy. A smooth, simple silhouette will be the most flattering on most of us.
As far as pants go, there’s a raging debate whether to crop or not to crop! LOL! I loved cropped flared pants and jeans, and I have a few cropped pants that I like, but in general, other than flares, I find ankle length or longer to be more flattering.
I was really excited last year to get these super lightweight cropped pants (below) and figured they were the perfect shorts alternative. With a bit of a heel and a black tank, I think they look great, but with flat sandals, they looked frumpy, and who wants that?
Shop Summer Pants
Cool On Top
My favorite summer tops are a bit flowy, a bit boho … cotton or linen or a combo. I like the flattering easy-to-wear shape and they feel cool and nice. Even though I’m still okay with showing my arms, I’m starting to find that I feel my very best when a top covers my elbows. These three tops here are perfect and I think I’ll be living in them this summer.
I also am a big fan of graphic tees! They’re an easy, casual, fun alternative to the flowy blouse.
Shop Summer Tops
Of course feet need to stay cool too and there’s nothing better for that than a pair of sandals. I always make sure I have a neutral shade in a 2-3 inch heel (espadrille or cork wedges) as well as a flat sandal in a neutral shade. Of course I also love to have black and some fun pops of color.
What are your summer dressing issues? Do you have any tips to share with us?!
Want more help with building a wardrobe? Check out my How to Build a Wardrobe series, starting with Color & Silhouette, followed by Identity & Lifestyle, and then Trends & Inspiration. Coming soon … how to work with a budget!
Fun & Fashion,
Thanks for a great post. This is soooo helpful. I’m heading out for an extended trip and was at my wit’s end. This is such a useful guide.
Oh that makes me so happy! Thanks so much!
Thanks for sharing this article as its very difficult to find good style tips for 40+ women.
Thanks so much! 🙂