All-White Outfits Are Peak Summer Chic, But How Can You Wear Them Without Worrying?

It seems like all of our favorite celebrities have rocked an all-white outfit at one time or another, from Kate Middleton to Beyoncéto Rihanna. But this kind of outfit can be pretty nerve-wracking, as it seems as though there are numerous rules and restrictions regarding when you can and can't dress in the lightest of the monochromatic shades. (Here's a hint: You can get away with it after Labor Day, but we'd never recommend it at a wedding) 

"The rules have less to do with timing and more to do with flattery. The whole Memorial-Day-to-Labor-Day thing is dead," Cindi Leive, former editor-in-chief of Glamour, explained to Lawrence Journal-World. "I've worn white in the dead of winter. But there are some smart rules when it comes to flattery." Not only do you have to keep these fashion rules in mind, but you also have to tackle the difficulty of wearing something that is prone to getting stained.

But, trust us, there are a few tips and tricks that will keep you looking oh-so-fabulous in your chic all-white outfit (because monochromatic looks are totally hot right now!) while eliminating the worry that can come from piecing together the bold look. Here's how to effortlessly rock the look this summer, no matter your budget.

Avoid armpit stains

Underarm stains are one of the most common issues people face while wearing white clothing in the summer months, as those pesky yellow marks tend to stem from the aluminum in deodorants when it mixes with sweat from the armpit. It shows up more on white clothing because the shade is so light that there's no way of hiding it; whereas if you're wearing a black or navy top, the stains likely would not show. The best way to avoid having those awkward pit stains is to swap out your deodorant for one that doesn't contain aluminum so that the chemical reaction that creates the mark never happens in the first place.

Other tips for keeping pit stains at bay? Try avoiding wearing white fabric that contains cotton, as it can be particularly susceptible to sweat marks. You could also give an undershirt a go. Having a barrier between you and your nice white clothing means any natural marks will be less likely to be seen, as the undershirt is more likely to soak up the sweat and keep your outer layer of clothing fresher.

Choose your white materials wisely

One of the biggest dangers of wearing white clothing is knowing that all it's going to take is one little bit of dirt to ruin your whole look. That's why, if you're worried about your white clothes not staying so white, you'll want to think about the specific materials you're wearing. Something like leather, faux leather, or PVC is ideal for wiping clean if you're out and about when any liquids spill onto your attire. Cotton can also be cleaned easily — depending on what's accidentally transferred onto your clothes — as long as you can quickly get to a damp cloth. 

Equally, carrying a pack of stain remover wipes in your bag is rarely a bad idea when you're wearing light-colored clothing. Just make sure you check the label to ensure your wipes are suitable for what you're wearing. Another solid option for making sure your white attire stays that way? Scotchgarding your outfit before you head out, which will make it easier to clean when you toss it in the washing machine.

It's not all about stains when it comes to choosing your fabrics though, as you'll also want to make sure what you're wearing is seasonally appropriate. "Make sure it is a winter texture or fabric so it feels appropriate. You don't want to wear cotton poplin in the winter," Editorialist co-founder Stefania Allen told the outlet. In the summer, you'll want to stick to flowy, airy fabrics, like linen.

Go nude (but not literally)

Another way to make sure you're rocking all-white worry-free is by investing in a good set of nude underwear. Yes, nude. Not white. White outfits are notorious for being see-through, especially if they get wet or get caught in a camera flash, but wearing an underwear set that matches your skin color is the ideal way to sidestep any embarrassing undergarment missteps. "Keep in mind, that no matter what your skin tone (even if you are darker skinned or super fair), the color nude will always be better than white. The nude blends into any skin tone better than a white or a black [garment]," Aerie stylist Jenny Altman told Insider.

Though a bra and underwear set will usually work just fine, you could also invest in nude shapewear to rock underneath your all-white look. Not only will this smooth everything out and make you a little more streamlined (because all-white isn't the easiest look to pull off for anyone!), but something like a bodysuit will also help you avoid any awkward wardrobe malfunctions. Before you head out, it's a good idea to check what you're wearing in different lights to make sure none of your undergarments show. "Make sure it's not see-through. A quick flashlight will bring to light any unfavorable garments," assistant stylist Katelyn Bernard told Editorialist. To make extra sure you're safe, choose thicker materials or go for something ribbed or double-lined.

Choose the right shade of white for your skin tone

Not only is wearing white daunting because of how easily it can get dirty but just wearing a shade that's so light and bright poses a few challenges. That's why, to make sure you're looking your absolute best, you'll want to do your research before deciding on an all-white ensemble. Darker skin tones tend to complement any shade of white. On the contrary, the paler you are, the more likely white ensembles are to wash you out.

Nediva Sokoll, an assistant stylist at Editorialist, offered up some advice for light-skinned ladies looking to get in on the trend, suggesting that you may want to try wearing cream or off-white to bring a little more color to your look. "I have a pale complexion, and that has always been my go-to," she shared. Just remember though that looking good is all in the confidence, so if you are on the paler side and still want to rock bright white, just go for it!

Hairspray can help keep your whites white

We totally get it. White clothing tends to be a summer thing, and in the summer we all like to be a little more tanned, right? But, let's be honest, tanning products and white clothes don't exactly tend to go together, as all too often that tan color transfers onto your clothes and totally ruins your whole look. And the same goes for makeup. For those who wear foundation and like to put some on their neck to make sure it all blends seamlessly, it can quickly end up all over the collar of your outfit. 

But there's a handy hack to stop the transferring that you may not know about. Stylist Alex Lamb had a great solution she shared in a TikTok video, and it involves hairspray of all things. Yes, to stop the pesky transfer, all you have to do is spray hairspray on any parts of your clothes that may come into contact with your makeup or your faux tan. Lay it on pretty liberally, and the hairspray acts as a barrier between the material and your skin to prevent any transfer. Who knew?

Even with this hack in place though, we'd still recommend getting dressed before you start your makeup routine. And if you're a fan of a faux tan, we'd also suggest tanning at least 24 hours before you get into your white ensemble, just to be on the safe side.

Layer it up

Another expert tip for rocking an all-white outfit is to dress in layers. There are a few reasons why layers will help complete your outfit, namely because they will bring different textures to your ensemble which will stop your look from being too simple. As Instagram influencer Rini Jain explained on the social media site, "Wearing one color can create an artistic illusion, relying more on texture rather than color to accentuate features and create shadows. Monochrome fashion helps draw the eye away from the distractions of color and focus more on the detailing of the clothing." Layers will also bring some much-needed depth and shading to your outfit.

But dressing in layers has a few other benefits when it comes to an all-white look. If your layering involves a jacket, start off not wearing it and then pop it on if you notice your top has any marks on it to cover up any issues relating to dirt. This can also work the opposite way; if it's your jacket that ends up getting stained, you can simply take it off and you're clean once again. You may also want to carry a scarf with you that you can throw on to cover any unfortunate marks on your top half.

Bring on the shape and structure

Monochromatic outfits — and particularly all-white ensembles – need a little shape and structure to help you avoid looking shapeless. The best way to do this is to draw attention to your favorite part of your body. If you especially love your waist, try wearing something that cinches at the waist or throw on a waist belt to really highlight this area. If it's your legs you want to highlight, show them off with a structured skirt and a slinkier top. If you want to show off your figure, then why not go for a white bodycon dress? 

A bodysuit is also a great option to throw on when you're trying out this trend, as it's easy to pair with wide-legged pants or a structured skirt. One of the easiest ways to eliminate the worry that can come with an all-white look is to opt for something like a white co-ord set so that you already have elements of texture and structure in your outfit. 

Another way to add a little structure and some glam? Fashion expert Abby McHale suggested to The Sun that choosing something white with embellishments will instantly bring a little extra something to your ensemble.

Pay attention to your shades

When it comes to wearing white on both the upper and lower halves of your body, we'd recommend going to one of two different extremes. Either you'll want to perfectly match when it comes to your white shades and pair the exact same colors together, or you'll want to wear something that makes it very obvious you know they're not the same. 

As Glamour's former editor-in-chief Cindi Leive told Lawrence Journal-World, if you're opting for the latter, you'll want to make sure your shades are different enough that the world knows you weren't trying to be matchy-matchy. For example, rocking bright white pants (because we just can't get enough of white pants in the summer) with a cream top is always a great option when mixing your whites. This one can be tricky to work out at first, but it's well worth it. This technique will keep your look chic and glamorous without it looking like you've just thrown together any white garments you found in your wardrobe.