15 Must-Have White Summer Dress Styles For Every Occasion 

By  Emily Konatella

LAST UPDATED - December 11, 2023

Nothing says summertime quite like a crisp white dress. So to help you find the perfect outfit for an upcoming bridal shower, summer party, rehearsal dinner, backyard wedding reception, or just a stylish summer day, we're highlighting our picks for the best white summer dress of the season. Paired with a golden glow and your favorite sandals, these chic looks are sure to bring the heat.

What are dresses on-trend this summer?

After spending most of the past year in athleisure, you may be feeling a bit rusty in the dress department. The good news is, this season's biggest dress trends are driven by comfort, versatility, and practical designs. Here are a few of the hottest dress styles for this summer:

Two-piece sets

For maximum versatility, go with a trendy two-piece set that can be worn together or mixed and matched with other summer staples in your wardrobe.

Relaxed silhouettes

This season, designers were well aware that most women aren't looking for tight, body-con fits after wearing loose clothes for so long. Many of this season's midi and maxi dresses are cut in roomier, oversized silhouettes that'll keep you super comfortable and hide the few extra pounds you gained during Quarantine.

Knit dresses

Unlike uncomfortable non-stretch woven fabrics, this summer's knit and crochet dresses effortlessly hug your curves for all-day comfort that looks incredibly chic. Plus, these wrinkle-free styles are easy to toss in your suitcase for a summer vacation.

Feminine ruffles

While summer dresses from season's past were centered around oversized statement ruffles, this season's styles are a bit more understated. Look for flirty ruffle details along the neckline, hem, and sleeves for an added touch of femininity.

The Best White Dresses of Summer 2021

Everlane The Shirred Mini Dress

Everlane The Shirred Mini Dress

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Everlane's Shirred Mini Dress offers superior comfort, versatility, and style. Pair it with sneakers for a casual daytime look, or dress it up with strappy sandals for dinner on the terrace. Subtle design details like a stand collar, shirred chest seam, and a keyhole back bring an elegant touch to the otherwise understated style. Its voluminous silhouette is cut from lightweight cotton poplin that's comfortable, airy, and perfect for hot summer days.

Alice + Olivia Harmony Drapey Slip Dress

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Channel 90s minimalism this summer in this glamorous Harmony Drapey Slip Dress from Alice + Olivia. The versatile satin slip dress is cut with simple spaghetti straps, a subtle cowl neck, and a thigh-baring mini length. While the white dress looks chic on its own during the summer, it can be styled year-round under a blazer, denim jacket, or other cute outerwear.

Once you've fallen in love with the white version, you'll also want it in basic black for fall. But heads up, the product does run a bit large, so Alice + Olivia recommends ordering one size down from your typical dress size.

LoveShackFancy Cedria Shirred Broderie Anglaise Cotton-Voile Mini Dress

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The voluminous puffed sleeves, lightweight cotton fabric, sweetheart neckline, and a scalloped mini hem make this Cedria dress from LoveShackFancy a no-brainer for summer. Pair it with espadrilles and a denim jacket for a boho feel during the day and throw on a pair of clogs or wedges for an easy night-out look.

French Connection Whisper Light Ruffled Off-the-Shoulder White Dress

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French Connection's Whisper Light Ruffled Off-the-Shoulder White Dress is the perfect little white dress for a bridal shower, birthday celebration, or garden party. The fitted A-line silhouette and slightly stretchy fabric skim your curves to accentuate your natural shape and elongate your legs while still being super comfortable and easy to move in. An off-the-shoulder neckline with a ruffled overlay adds a feminine touch as you show off a bit of skin.

Reformation Yucca Linen Two-Piece Set

Reformation Yucca Linen Two-Piece Set

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Looking for a white dress that will stand out from the crowd? You'll love this Yucca Linen Two-Piece Set from Reformation. The cropped blouse and midi skirt can be worn together for a statement-making summer look or mixed and matched with other pieces in your closet. On the top, a fitted bodice with a square neck, slightly puffed sleeves hits right at your natural waist to show off your smallest part. On the bottom, a relaxed linen skirt accentuates your natural curves while keeping you cool and comfortable.

Dress the Population River Off-the-Shoulder Midi Dress

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Dress the Population's River Off-the-Shoulder Midi dress makes the perfect choice for a bridal party or laid-back summer wedding reception. The off-the-shoulder style is fitted through the bust and waist before fluttering out into a tiered skirt with swirling vine embroidery and floral appliques. Elasticized off-the-shoulder sleeves add a feminine feel with just the right dose of sexiness. Plus, the midi length hits right around mid-calf to show off your favorite summer sandals.

Eliza J Balloon Sleeve Eyelet Lace White Dress

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This Balloon Sleeve Eyelet Lace White Dress from Eliza J is the quintessential little white dress for summer. Its trendy square neck and backline and elbow-length balloon sleeves perfectly balance out the ladylike body-con fit and knee-length hemline. Its eyelet lace overlay brings a bit of a boho touch without feeling too casual for dressy summer gatherings. Plus, it's fully lined, so you won't have to worry about wearing a slip underneath.

Lulus One Wish White Lace Midi Dress

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Lulus One Wish White Lace Midi Dress is one of the best white dresses for brides this summer. It's a great choice for a bridal shower, beach wedding, or backyard wedding reception. The minimalist lace dress is cut from white floral eyelash lace over a nude stretch knit liner. On top, it boasts a triangle bodice with princess seams and hidden boning that adds shape and support. The midi-length skirt features a chic handkerchief hem that accentuates the delicate lace fabric.

Charo Ruiz Cotton-Blend Poplin and Crocheted Lace Mini Dress

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This Cotton Blend Poplin and Crocheted Lace Mini Dress from model-turned-designer Charo Ruiz (available exclusively at Net-A-Porter) brings the perfect balance of femininity and sexiness. The sheer lace bodice is fitted with lined cups for braless coverage and lacy straps for added support. Dainty lace trim on the bottom hem ties the whole look together.

Reformation Dolci Linen Dress

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Reformation's Dolci Linen Dress is designed with summer vacations in mind. The sustainably sourced linen fabric is perfect for hot summer days and beach getaways. Center front hook and eye closures, and a smocked back bodice make a stylish (and comfortable) alternative to a traditional zipper closure. For added femininity, the trumpet skirt is cut at a midi length with a flirty ruffle along the bottom hem.

Retrofete Bridgette One-Shoulder Velvet-Trimmed Sequined Chiffon Mini Dress

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Bring a bit of disco glam to your next special occasion in this Bridgette One-Shoulder Velvet-Trimmed Sequined Chiffon Mini Dress from Retrofete. The 70s-inspired one-shoulder white dress is covered in iridescent sequins that turn heads as they sparkle under the light. A self-tie velvet belt defines your waist and balances out the lightweight chiffon fabric and single balloon sleeve.

Anthropologie Ruffled Pointelle Mini Dress

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This chic Anthropologie Ruffled Pointelle Mini Dress is perfect for a summer picnic, backyard barbeque, or weekend brunch. The ruffle details along the shoulders and bottom hem, fitted silhouette, and dainty pointelle fabric bring sophistication to the otherwise simple style. And who doesn't love a dress with pockets?

Maeve Somerset White Maxi Dress

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A Greek goddess and a famously beautiful Irish warrior queen-inspired maxi dress feature eyelet details for a sweetly sophisticated twist. This white dress represents both beauty and strength. Pair it with some gold hoops and bracelets, and you are set to go.

Cultgaia Stella White Dress

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Are you looking for white dresses to make you stand out in a crowd? Check out this elegant white dress that features a mid-length, off-the-shoulder dress, smocked waistline, and tiered puff sleeves.

Majorelle Sunbeams White Dress

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This wanderlust and effortless appeal white dress is a hot summer day must-have. It is perfectly balanced between sexy and modern elegance for a luxe-bohemian dreamer.

About the author

Emily is a fashion consultant, designer and creative director with more than 15 years experience creating, designing and developing clothing & jewelry. From managing pageant shows to turning concepts into actual designs, she has experience with almost all fabric types and jewelry designs and is in touch with the latest fashion trends.