30 Summer Wardrobe Essentials You Must Have (2021 Guide)

While you may be shopping for the latest fashion trends, it’s important to remember that your wardrobe will always need the basics. A summer wardrobe must include trendy and versatile pieces, allowing you to look and feel good wherever you go. The right summer clothes are made with breathable fabrics like cotton, designed to be colorful and outgoing, feel comfortable when it’s hot out, and still work well with all types of outfits.

From the simple white t-shirt to classic boyfriend jeans to comfortable shoes, there are many summer must-haves that will keep you stylish and fashionable. These are the staples you can put in your closet and wear with different summer outfits to elevate your style. To inspire your outfit ideas this season, we’ve compiled a list of summer wardrobe essentials to get this year. Whether you’re traveling to the beach, getting brunch outdoors, or visiting a foreign country, check out these summer staples to find attire and accessories that will keep you looking effortlessly cool and chic.

Summer Wardrobe Essentials

Summer Fashion Must-Haves

White T-Shirts

Simple and easy to wear, the white t-shirt is the most popular piece because it goes with everything. Create a comfy and casual look with a pair of jeans and trainers or dress up a long skirt with a clean white tee and leather sneakers. When it comes to the best summer clothes for women to buy, the white t-shirt will always be a staple so pick up a few different styles and embrace all the summer outfits you can wear.

White T-Shirt

Denim Jacket

Denim jackets come in many different styles and cuts, allowing you to find the perfect complement to your summer wardrobe. Practical for layering on a chilly morning or breezy night, the jean jacket is a closet staple that looks cool and stylish as the finishing touch for any outfit. Comfortable and versatile, you can pair your denim jacket with all kinds of pants and shirts to design a vibe that fits your fashion and personality.

Denim Jacket

Skinny Jeans

In recent years, skinny jeans have transitioned from fashion trend to classic closet staple. Great for casual and business casual looks, you can’t go wrong with a pair of fitted skinny jeans. Just add your favorite t-shirt, tank top, or blouse to match the weather and dress code. Skinny jeans also pair well with different shoe options, so play around to find your desired style.

Skinny Jeans

Ankle Strap Heels

Ankle-strap heels are classic summer footwear for a reason. From heeled sandals to two-strap heels, these shoe styles offer a great way to dress up for summer celebrations without having to wear uncomfortable pumps. Grab a pair of neutral wedges for the day and check out block heel sandals for a night out with friends.

Ankle Strap Heels

White Shirts

When buying summer basics, you’ll want to get white shirts in several styles and designs. White will reflect the sun and keep you cool in the heat while complementing your tan and lighter hair from days spent at the beach. From the breezy button-down to a sleeveless top, a white shirt can match any outfit, so try the style with your favorite jeans, skirts, and dresses to create your desired looks.

White Shirts

Swimsuits

A fun summer starts with cute swimwear for the beach and pool, so you’ll want to start searching for the right swimsuits for every occasion. From a one-piece to a bikini, there are many styles and options to explore so find a swimsuit that makes you feel confident, comfortable, and happy. Consider mixing and matching patterns and solids for a totally unique look.

Swimsuits

Cami

On those super hot days, camis are an essential wardrobe piece worth putting on. Loose and fitted camisoles can look trendy with jeans or skirts and can be paired with heels or sneakers. Not only can you grab a cami top in all your favorite colors, but they are easy to layer under white shirts or denim jackets when the weather starts to cool down at night. Showcase your summer style with colorful hues and tones.

Camisole

White Sneakers

Whether you’re traveling this summer or just want to be comfortable in a casual outfit, white sneakers are must-have footwear for women with style. Sneakers are perfect for walking around new cities or beach towns and can be paired with everything from your top summer jeans to floral maxi dresses. Keep it simple and easy with white trainers or add flair to your look with quality leather sneakers.

White Sneakers

Carryall Tote

A carryall tote is a comfortable and easy way to bring your gear for the pool, beach, or wherever else your summer day may take you. These bags come in several different shapes and sizes so find your favorite and stock up on sunscreen.

Carryall Tote

Boyfriend Jeans

Relaxed and fashionable, boyfriend jeans are essential to have in your closet this summer. When you aren’t in the mood to wear fitted pants, these loose-fit jeans can help you look good in all kinds of outfits. You can wear your boyfriend jeans with a shirt and heels, button-down and sneakers, or a light sweater and sandals. A pair will keep you cool and comfortable but still give off a trendy vibe that can be dressed up or down for the day.

Boyfriend Jeans

Shirt Dress

A shirt dress is a classic summer outfit because it’s loose, stylish and always classy. They breathe easily for those hot summer days, while still maintaining a beautiful silhouette. Add heels, sandals, or a white sneaker to complete your favorite looks.

Shirt Dress

Midi Skirt

As a wardrobe staple, the midi skirt is perfect for comfortable and chic ensembles. The midi pencil skirt is ideal for a business casual look, while the classic midi style can be worn on a beautiful day out. Throw on strappy heeled sandals for a fun dinner date, boots for a bold fashion statement, sneakers to run errands, or cute flats to explore a new city.

Midi Skirt

Tank or Crop Top

Tanks tops and crop tops are summer basics for keeping cool on even the hottest days. You have a wide variety of options for colors and materials, so whether you’re hitting the beach or spending a summer day gardening, there’s a good fit for you.

Tank and Crop Tops

Rompers

A summer romper is made of lightweight material like cotton or linen and can come with short sleeves, cap sleeves, or no sleeves for a fun and pretty style. They’re very versatile and look lovely in prints and solids.

Rompers

Sunglasses

Sunglasses are the ultimate summer accessory, adding just the right final touch to your look. From sleek and affordable to designer and upscale, the most popular sunglasses brands make quality shades that protect your eyes with class. Check out different shapes and styles to find the best sunglasses for your look and invest in a high-quality pair that offers protection from the summer sun.

Summer Sunglasses

Espadrilles

Espadrilles are available in many unique styles, shapes, and designs, but they all have a beautiful woven fiber sole. Find them in heels, flats, mules, and more, and match them with your favorite dresses, skirts, and shorts.

Espadrilles

Denim Shorts

If you’ve been working out and want to show off your legs, denim shorts are the ideal choice. Great for staying fresh on those hot summer days, these shorts can be worn in many different ways. You can dress them up with a loose-fit blouse and heeled sandals or choose a button-up shirt with booties. Keep it casual with a white tee and sneakers or crop top and sandals.

Denim Shorts

Colored Crossbody Bag

A crossbody bag is both useful and stylish, especially if you’re traveling and don’t want to carry a lot. This type of bag can also be used to add a splash of boldness and fun to any outfit, so explore different color options and find the best one for your wardrobe.

Crossbody Bag

Ballet Flats

As a popular shoe style for the summer, ballet flats are easy to wear for a cool and comfortable look. They can make any outfit look classy and chic, and still allow you to explore the city on foot. You can wear your ballet flats with jeans, pants, dresses, or skirts to create a cute ensemble.

Ballet Flats

Straw Hat

Protecting your skin during the summer is essential and the straw hat is a fashionable way to stay safe and look chic. A straw hat can match your jeans, dresses, skirts, and shorts, so find the brim size and shape that you like best.

Straw Hats

White Pants

When it comes to summer heat, white fabrics are the way to go. You can find white linen pants, shorts, boyfriend jeans, and joggers. It’s all about find the right style of white pants to go with your outfit.

White Pants

Breton Striped Shirt

The Breton striped shirt is a wanderlust-inspired staple that makes any summer outfit look chic and put-together. Pair it with jeans, shorts, or your favorite skirt for a comfortable style that has classic vibes.

Breton Striped Shirt

Slides

Slides are a great summer shoe because they’re comfortable, cute, and easy to get on and off. Wear them to the pool or beach or add them to your favorite maxi dress for that perfect summer accessory.

Slides

Slip Skirts

Slip skirts are bold, beautiful, and unapologetic. The classic slip materials like silk and lace are on display in these shimmery summer pieces. They match well with everything from colorful camis to graphic tees.

Slip Skirts

Open-Toed Shoes

When it comes to summer footwear, open-toed shoes are breezy and fashionable. You can find lovely heeled sandals that show off your pedicure or beach shoes for feeling the sand between your toes. From peep-toe wedges to classic Birkenstocks, there are many excellent styles to fit all your summer outfits.

Open-Toed Shoes

Maxi Dress

The maxi dress is the ultimate combination of comfort and style. It’s traditionally long and flowy, which allows for a cool, comfortable look that can be worn at work, school, or family events. Find them in floral, patterns, and solids and match them with your shoes.

Maxi Dress

Jumpsuits

Stunning and simple to style, jumpsuits are amazing for summer days and nights. While rompers are made with shorts or skirts on the bottom, jumpsuits are designed with long pant legs and can come with short or long sleeves and belts. When a romper just isn’t enough, take your style to the next level with a gorgeous jumpsuit.

Jumpsuits

Lightweight Cardigan

It may be hot outside, but the summer heat usually means full-blast air conditioning in office buildings and restaurants. A lightweight cardigan slips easily into your tote bag or purse and can be thrown on to keep the chill at bay. You may even want to wear it at the beach, to protect against too much sun. They can be long or short and come in many colors.

Light Cardigan


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