Day-To-Night Beach Outfit Ideas You'll Wear On Repeat All Summer Long

When it's blazing hot outside, you want to take full advantage of every free day you have to enjoy the water, go sightseeing, enjoy family picnics, or go on sultry summertime dates. Whether you're on vacation in a tropical climate in mid-winter or enjoying the summer sun at a beach nearby, the vibe is casual and easy, and you want to look fashionable and stylish in the heat. You'll want to be able to step off the beach and into a bar or restaurant, and that means it's time for inspirational day-to-night beach outfit ideas. If you know you're headed to dinner after the beach, bring the bare minimum of provisions: water, sunscreen, a hand mirror, lipstick, and a bag chic enough to transition to evening.

During the day, especially when it's really hot out, your priority is to keep cool in a flattering bathing suit and maybe take a dip in the water. In the evening, for most bars and restaurants, you'll need (and want) to glam it up to get inside. If you're on vacation, the hotel might be too far away for another round trip just to get ready for dinner, plus you might need to bring your night look with you to make the reservation on time. Strategically planning ahead for a seamless transition from day to night will look like a magical transformation to everyone else. 

Creating dresses from a sarong

Creating dress shapes from a sarong and styling it over your bikini or swimsuit can instantly elevate your look. We recommend you spend a couple of hours practicing various shapes so that you have a few options ready to go. @jordanunderwoodig has a fantastic TikTok tutorial you can use as a guide to creating four different styles — a tube dress, kimono, halter dress, and a Grecian goddess dress. So, create a kimono as a daytime sun coverup, then undo it and create a goddess dress with a stunning side slit for the evening. This Grecian-style dress works beautifully with on-trend gladiator sandals, pinned-up hair, and one oversized statement ring to complete the look.

Modifying a beach cover-up — especially if you're short

If you're on the lookout for beachwear with more construction than a sarong, which, after all, is just a fabric rectangle, seek out a cover-up that's basically an unlined lightweight dress, fitted or loose. A cover-up with dress-like details and a cute print make it an easy choice to transition to night — just bring the right shoes and earrings. @Carolynjbraden shared a great hack on TikTok which you can use if you happen to have an ornate-looking beach coverup. Wear it over your bathing suit as usual, and if it's too long, tie one front corner into a high knot to lift the entire hemline so you don't trip walking on the beach. Then, bring a belt for more shape, heels, and jewelry, and put a simple little black dress on underneath for a total transformation into the evening. 

How to go from beach to a business dinner or networking event

We love a classically designed, one-piece bathing suit because it can so easily double as a versatile top, especially if it's got built-in support or you're comfortable going braless. Bonus points if you choose black. It works on every skin tone and it's chic by the pool. Black also keeps it upscale, so then at night it looks like a bodysuit or a camisole top. As a neutral, you could pair it with any other color. You can decide ahead of time whether to bring a knee-length pencil skirt or a pair of chic trousers. We like these high-waisted red pants with black and red heels. But if you're going to a more luxe event, consider pairing this with a maxi-length, sparkly tulle ballerina skirt, and heels for major impact.

On a date? Think sheer

@hollie.hobin beautifully showcases how to pair a tastefully sheer outfit with a bikini on TikTok. If you're a bikini wearer and comfortable in sheer clothing, then this is a stunning look to take you from running around on the beach to an insanely chic evening. Try using a printed, sheer maxi-length dress or a pantsuit. Consider how the colors are working. You might want to wear a more nude-colored bikini rather than a color that contrasts greatly with your skin tone. Or choose something that blends well with the color of your sheer layer. Otherwise, the focus goes straight to the bikini instead of allowing people to take in the whole effect. 

Elevate the look with accessories

Wearing a cream or white swimsuit gives you a fresh and crisp daytime look. Then, with the addition of other monochromatic pieces, it can take you straight into the evening. You get bonus points for thinking ahead of time and color-coordinating your sarong and one-piece bathing suit. Add some layered necklaces, leave your hair down, or style it in a messy bun, throw on some heels, and take an elegant, beach-resort-worthy clutch. We like @kristinazias's styling on her TikTok channel and love how she chose a monochromatic ivory palette to gorgeously transition to a summery evening look.