Yes, you CAN wear white: 4 lies about white clothing

how to wear white

Call me crazy, but I love wearing white (even as the mom of a messy toddler). Crisp, clean and refreshing, it is sure to make an elegant style statement. That said, I know so many people who shy away from the shade. They’re afraid it will get dirty, look too bridal, make them look heavier… etc. They’re not sure how to wear white. That’s where this post comes in.

We are going to debunk those “white lies” so you can wear the shade with confidence!

Before we dive in, let me say I understand your hesitation. Years ago, you’d never catch me wearing white. Many of the image consultants I worked with as a news anchor told us to avoid white because harsh studio lighting can make it glow (you can read more about dressing for TV here). I incorrectly assumed white would wash out my complexion off-camera as well. In reality, white can really play up your features!

You can look chic, slim and fashionable wearing white.

white midi dresswhite dressesWhite Midi Dress | Convertible Clutch | Earrings | Wedges (Similar)

White Lie #1: White will make me look bigger

Sure, black is slimming. But did you know white-on-white or all white can have the same effect? The key is finding the right fit… not too snug, not too loose. A properly tailored white jacket, blouse/skirt combo, or dress can be incredibly flattering on curvy figures. It’s the stuffed-in, sausage-like look that gives white a bad rap. You’ll find a few examples of garments that work below. Click on any image for details.


  • Look for pieces that skim your body, as opposed to clinging to it.
  • Pick a heavier weight fabric (quality fabrics disguise lumps and bumps)
  • Think about using vertical seaming and/or detailing to elongate
  • Choose no-show undergarments. Shapewear works wonders!

White Lie #2: White isn’t practical for daily life

Fabric technology has come a long, long way. High quality synthetics are often immune to stains, fewer garments are dry-clean only, and white denim and 100 percent cotton shirts can be washed at high temperatures to keep them bright. Many retailers have even developed stain-resistant clothing lines. For example, Old Navy offers Clean-Slate jeans, jean jackets and shirts it says will repel stains and spills. While these next tips might make you laugh (they’re common sense), they’ll also keep you clean!


  • Carry baby-wipes and a Tide-To-Go pen in your purse
  • Make sure your to-go coffee lid is on tight
  • Eat with a napkin on your lap
  • Watch wear you sit (park benches are notoriously dirty)

White Lie #3: White is too “bridal”

Pieces with interesting textures and sleek, strong lines will help you avoid looking like you’re about to walk down the aisle. Take my midi dress. With its crochet detailing and tassel neckline, it reads more boho than bridal.


  • Choose accessories that are distinctly non-bridal (i.e. bold colors, wood, metal)
  • Look for unexpected detailing
  • Try out pieces with geometric necklines, backs or straps

White Lie #4: I’m too pale to wear white

There are so many different shades of white, there is certainly a variation that will look great on you! Test things out, study yourself carefully in the mirror, and ask a few friends what looks best on you. If you’re uncomfortable with all-white outfits, dip your toes into these new fashion waters by choosing items with colorful trim, or allowing a bright shirt to peek out from under a white blazer. Colorful accessories can also really brighten up your face.


Thoughts? Questions? Please comment below! I’m curious… What colors do you struggle wearing? I can’t pull off that golden yellow shade that is so popular in fall.

—Lindsay

2 COMMENTS

  1. Victoria Martin | 24th Aug 18

    Great info Linds!

    • laveremis | 24th Aug 18

      Thanks for popping on the blog! Hope you’re having a wonderful Friday!

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