Every woman has a little black dress, but what about little white dresses? This understated style essential is perfect for just about any event, and looks just as elegant and sophisticated as the iconic LBD, if not more. These angelic, feminine dresses should be a staple to every woman’s closet for those days when you need an ethereal boost to your look.

From legendary starlet Marilyn Monroe in her William Travilla halter-neck dress to sultry Courtney Love in her deep-cut Versace plunge dress, Hollywood’s most recognizable leading ladies have strutted out in striking white dresses. Many people think that white dresses are solely for walking down the aisle, but these women proved that classic white dresses can be worn anywhere at anytime while giving off a Goddess vibe.

While most of us have drifted away from white dresses since Bjork’s outrageous “swan” gown, don’t discount the power of the white dress. It’s a timeless look that is here to stay.

It’s a versatile look that can be worn in tons of different style, from short and sweet to flowing maxis, and can be easily embellished with beautiful crochet embroideries and jeweled tones. This legendary style is one of the most intriguing of all of fashion’s looks for its playfulness and endless amounts of styling options that never cease to amaze.

Although the white dress is a classic look, we’re ready for something new. That’s why we’re dressing to impress in some white cocktail dresses. This style embodies the best of both worlds: sexy and playful, yet elegant and composed. They’re perfect for in and out of cocktail hour, which is why we’re shamelessly wearing them around the clock. If you’re daring enough with your style, you could even make one of these sexy little numbers a “safe for work” ensemble that will leave your coworkers in awe.

To us, there is no reserved “time and place” for a white cocktail dress, and we’re challenging you to think the same. These fun and flirtatious dresses can be paired with just about anything in your fall wardrobe, making them an essential for most of our closets. Fall is the season of change, so switch up your contained style and start with a blank slate (or a blank dress).

So, there’s no need for your fall outfits to stay in the dark yet again. Ditch the LBD and try brightening things up with a sexy LWD — or a midi, maybe even a maxi. The choice is yours for the picking.

But, we know decisions can be difficult, so let us help out. These white cocktail dresses are fresh off the racks and ready for you to strut around town in. They’re the perfect pairing to anything in your fall closet: play them up with your heels, or tone them down with your favorite leather jacket. Either way, you’re guaranteed to look like a stunner in these sultry white dresses.

On the hunt for some fresh white dresses? You came to the right place.

Cold Shoulder


SELF PORTRAIT

Pleated One-Shoulder Maxi Cocktail Dress

$485


Just because the weather is chilly doesn’t mean you can’t bare a little bit of skin. This maxi white cocktail dress from Self-Portrait lets you show off a little bit without keeping you in the cold. This is no basic white dress: it has a lively breath of fresh air that just pulls you in. The double shoulder straps are accentuated by their ruffled overlay, and the loose bodice of this dress is given a more flattering approach by the belted waistline. This maxi dress is given a touch of contrasting color by the black belt and hemlining along the shoulder.

See Through Me


BRONX AND BANCO

Majiorca Dot Lace Cocktail Dress, Size 6 US / 10 AU - White

$380


The sheer overlay on this Bronx and Banco white cocktail dress give you a “life of the party” vibe while somehow still staying appropriate — and dare we say, conservative? The bodycon-tight figure of this dress is tamed down by the delicate lace and polka-dot patterns. The sweet lace neckline and ruffled hemline add a regal twist to a usually provocative dress style, giving you the best of both worlds: sexy and sweet. You can wear this to cocktail hour, and even to your significant other’s family dinner party. Pair this dress with some bold jewelry to really make your style stand out from the crowd.

Keeping Things Simple


LIKELY

Cordelia Fit-and-Flare Cocktail Dress

$188


Sometimes, we like to enjoy the simpler styles in life. That’s when we reach for this minimal white dress from Likely. It’s the ideal wear-everywhere for it’s one subtle cream color that plays no games, paired with a fitted bodice and flared skirt. The sleeveless look allows you to throw on whatever you’d like to customize it to your style: pair it with a leather jacket for a “good girl gone bad” energy, or wear a denim jacket for a more casual finish.

Corporate Approved


KARL LAGERFELD PARIS

Knot-Neck Lace-Skirt Cocktail Dress

$178 $149


Want a dress that you can wear to work and to any after-hours event? Then slip into this white number from Karl Lagerfeld. The floral lace pencil skirt is complemented by the plain off-white bodice, creating an office-ready fit. But, this dress is given a touch of modern edge by the jersey crepe top’s knotted neckline, giving a classic style a simple yet major upgrade. The scalloped hem adds a breezy, casual appeal to this dress, creating a look that’s sharp and a little playful. It’s the perfect dress for any girl boss who’s ready to take her career (and her wardrobe) to the next level.

All Tied Up


HARLYN

Twist Front Asymmetrical Cocktail Dress, Size Small - Ivory

$120


Who said being tangled and tied had to be a bad thing? This Harlyn dress takes the average white cocktail dress and twists it (quite literally) into something entirely new. This asymmetrical dress is perfect for any big night out for it’s refreshing style. From the lopsided halter neckline to the unbalanced split hemline, this dress the the poster child of the perfect hot mess. The knotted halter neckline only heightens our the surprising look of this dress, creating a lively contemporary style.

Subtle Shimmer


HALSTON HERITAGE

Shimmer Knit Mini Cocktail Dress w/ Fringe Cuffs

$425


As the old saying goes, all that glitters is not gold — sometimes it’s white. This Halston Heritage mini dress is the perfect fall party attire for its shimmering knit material that gives your dress a unique look, without becoming gaudy or overbearing. The tiered fringe cuffs add a vivacious attitude while adding an extra sparkle factor. This dress also has a more figure-hugging shape than many of the other dresses on this list, which we love to wear when we’re really ready to party the night away. Pair this dress with some vibrant heels and accessories to give it a dose of color.

Fall Floral


DRESS THE POPULATION

Rita Plunge Neck Cocktail Dress, Size X-Large - White

$254


Let’s get one thing straight: florals can be worn at any time of the year. Just because the leaves are falling instead of blooming doesn’t mean you can’t add some flower power into your wardrobe. So, add a floral flare to your fall ensemble by grabbing this Dress the Population dress. The white floral lace gives a subtle nod to the must-have florals of warmer seasons, but is given a sexy remix through the plunging v-neck and dramatic leaf-fringe hemline. To give this dress an autumn aesthetic, pair it with nude, black, or even burgundy heels and accessories.

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