If you’ve overdosed on bright colour, zingy neons and bold prints so far this summer, make a clean break with white. The coolest shade of the season is the ideal tonic for the heatwave months.
“There is something very fresh and honest about white,” says Fiona Wellins of Colour Me Beautiful (www.colourmebeautfiul.co.uk).
“Don’t let the practicality factor put you off. Now is the time to invest in white as it will feature right through high summer into autumn/winter.”
Be a wonder in white with our guide to going colour-free.
White can be daunting if your wardrobe is packed with dark colours. The key to wearing it with confidence is all about getting the right combination for you.
“White-on-white is the look for this season, but not everyone can carry it off,” Wellins warns. “If you’re wearing all-white, you need to think carefully about your skin tone to make sure you don’t look ‘transparent’.”
If you have warmer undertones in your skin, Wellins recommends wearing softer off-whites, like ivory or creams. Starker, icy whites will work against skins with cooler undertones.
To make your white less intense, add a pop of colour. Stick to one hue, like a primary bright, and pare back your accessories to work a minimalist look. For a softer vibe, try mixing your white with other pale neutrals, like grey or beige.
A summer tan and white clothing is a match made in heaven. Fabric will make the clear distinction between high summer and winter whites.
Wellins suggests: “If you want to achieve a romantic look then choose pieces in cotton, linen, chiffon, or soft knits, for example. Choosing softer fabrics will soften the brightness of your whites.
“For a bolder look, go for stiffer fabrics such as thicker cotton, denim, crepe or organza.”
White immediately draws the eye to the body so wear with care. “If your hips are your problem area, then a full white skirt in a stiff fabric is not for you,” Wellins says. “Choose soft materials that drape for a more flattering look.”
You don’t have to pack away your whites once temperatures start to cool. Invest in the right summer sale buys and you can wear white all year round.
“Going into autumn, you need to think more carefully about how you wear white,” says Wellins. “With paler skin and less sunlight, too much white can look stark, however, everyone can wear white as a contrast or background colour.”
Try a jacket as a focus piece to brighten up black, navy or dark grey. For a casual take, try a white leather biker jacket that’s an unexpected twist on traditional black, or for something more classic, try a tailored jacket that will instantly smarten up jeans or trousers.
If you’re looking for an after-dark look, bling up your whites with shine or embellishment. “Look to silk, lace or icy sequins,” Wellins suggests. “Teaming with silver (for cool skin tones) or gold (for warm skin tones) is the easiest way to glam up your whites.”
The most accessible way to wear white is via accessories, especially if you feel that white doesn’t flatter your face.
A statement white watch or stark white clutch is the no commitment approach to working the colour. Make your accessory pop by sporting a glowing self tan and bright nail polish.
The instant way to transform a dress or trousers this summer? Wear white shoes. The hottest colour in footwear extends from flat pool sliders, through to glam, strappy heeled sandals.
The more coverage on the foot, the bigger the statement, so try a pair of pointed white courts for a show-stopping look that will also elongate your legs.