I’m sure that with all your upcoming beach weekends you’ve already began swimsuit shopping. However, I’m not so sure that you’ve started shopping for the other v important beach essential, a great cover-up. And like, cover-ups are just as important, if not more. Hear me out.
It’s not just about what you’re wearing to and from the beach. Cover-ups also serve as your “outfit” when going to the bar for happy hour post-beach. Cause, tbh, once you start drinking at happy hour, the likelihood you’ll want to go home, shower, and change just to go back out is slim. And luckily, since it’s summer, you’re not expected to be at the bar each night in your best club attire. You really don’t need to go home and change if you reallllly don’t want to. (Which like, feels.) But you also can’t get away with wearing a blatant beach cover-up still once it’s 7pm. All that being said, here are some cover-ups that can pass for a casual beach outfit so you don’t have to interrupt your day drinking buzz.
1. MINKPINK Mahi Oversized Shirt & Cuffed Short
This button-up and shorts set is the perfect cover-up outfit combo for both on and off the beach. It’s lightweight, with a neutral stripe print that makes it totally suitable for the beach. Yet, it’s also nice enough to wear as an actual outfit to the bar. Not to mention, both pieces individually will make excellent versatile additions to your beach weekend wardrobe. They can easily be worn separately or together, and still be super cute both ways.
2. Solid & Striped Shift Cover-Up Mini Dress
This striped cover-up dress could easily just pass for a cute summer mini dress. It’s ideal for that post-work week Friday afternoon when you know you’ll want to hit the beach for an hour before heading to happy hour right after. This dress is pretty much your new ride-or-die drinking buddy. Wear it over a strapless swimsuit and no one will have any clue you actually just went straight from the beach to a night-long personal bar tour. Well, unless you take a little too much advantage of those early happy hour deals, then your stumbling might just give you away.
3. Beach Riot Ruby Top & Jasper Skirt
Sure, you might look a bit extra wearing this onto the beach. But being extra is “in” (at least I think it is, according to memes on Instagram). You’ll look totally flawless hitting the bar in this set after a full beach day lounging in the sun. Realistically, you could even just wear the skirt with your bikini top onto the beach, and then just pack the top to slip on before you head to the bar after. It’s basically the perfect set to accommodate your vacation agenda of beach, then booze.
4. L*Space Riri Jumpsuit
This striped linen jumpsuit from one of my fav swim brands, L*Space, is the epitome of a beach-to-bar outfit. Again, you can easily wear it over a strapless swimsuit and no one will have any clue you still have your bikini on underneath. As long as you don’t have one of those obnoxious backpack beach chairs on your shoulder as your accessory, everyone will totally believe you changed into this cute jumpsuit specifically to go out for the night!
5. House of Harlow 1960 x REVOLVE Capistrano Dress
This loose-fitting dress is stylish and chic, and just like the aforementioned sets, works just as well on the beach as it does off the beach. It’s casual and lightweight enough to be worn as a cover-up, yet polished and stylish enough that no one would think twice about you wearing it post-swim. You could even toss some heeled sandals in your beach bag to switch into before the night’s festivities, and voilà!
I get that these cover-up options aren’t exactly cheap, especially if you usually get yours from Marshalls for $14.99. However, these are more than just cover-ups; they all work as actual outfits. So even if you aren’t necessarily wearing it from the beach to the bar as suggested, you could easily wear it as a casual summer outfit just as well. Plus, I’m going to go ahead and assume that these ones are all a hell of a lot cuter than the one you got from Marshalls (no shade, just stating the facts). But again, that’s just a hunch, like, what do I know???
Images: Seth Doyle / Unsplash; Revolve (2); Nordstrom; Shopb0p (2)
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I deal with stressful things in life like most rational people: procrastinate incessantly by doing other equally important things (shopping, thoroughly organizing my closet, eating takeout…etc.) and delaying until the last possible second. Then I wonder why my anxiety level is constantly that of Britney Spears’ 2007 meltdown. For example, this often happens with packing. Like, running a mile sounds better than packing for anything ever, even a vacation that I know will be fun. It is literally so annoying to plan out your outfits because no matter how hard you try not to, you end up packing enough clothes to last you 6 years, even when you’re only staying 3 days. Whether it’s for a tropical vacation or just spending the day at the beach, I know overpacking is almost as bad of a habit as binge drinking. To (slightly) condense your beach suitcase bag, here are cover-ups that you can easily throw over your swimsuit and also run to the closest happy hour in. Because time is money when two-for-one specials are involved.
I’ll only accept the fact that you don’t own a kimono by now if you were like, homeschooled or something. If you have yet to buy one, find a bright, fun-printed style like Camilla Open Front Cardi Carpe. If you’re feeling extra bold, keep your bikini top on or opt for a lacy bralette underneath, and pair with denim shorts or jeans.
2. Off-The-Shoulder Dress
Why wear pants to the beach (or at all, honestly) if you can just wear a dress? Wear a comfortable, loose-fitted one like Lush Stripe Off The Shoulder Dress, so that way, you can slip off your swimsuit when you’re ready to leave. If tan lines make you feel better about yourself, find a strapless dress so everyone can compliment your dramatic transformation.
Rompers are my go-to because nobody has the time to search for both a shirt and a pair of pants. Whether you laid outside or on a tanning bed recently, you can show off all your hard work by wearing white like this Topshop Jersey Wrap Cover Romper so that it’s bound to highlight your (faux) tan on a rooftop. I’d say don’t forget to pack a strapless bra, but it’s 2017 so no one really gives a shit whether you wear one or not anymore.
Even though it’s basically like wearing a sexualized child’s onesie, bodysuits are the easiest and most convenient thing to make a hot AF outfit ASAP. Find one like the Chase Me Down Plunging Bodysuit that comes with a strappy design and attached choker. Pair with dark jeans and your fave pumps—just don’t fucking forget that you need to unclasp before you break the seal.
5. Matching Set
It’s about time fashion companies came to the realization that we need everything already done for us because like, life is hard and I shouldn’t have to stress over whether my outfit matches too. It just leads to frustration aka settling on wearing all black. Get a matching set from Fashion Nova (a company celebs also buy from). This ivory La La Land Set can be worn together (fucking duh) or you can mix and match the items with other pieces in your closet. It’s cute and you’re getting two for the price of one so, get ready to buy multiples.
If shopping for bikinis is as unenjoyable as going to a spin class with that friend of yours that’s totally obsessed with spinning, then shopping for cover-ups is going to the gym and pretending to work out with your friend who is equally as lazy as you. Both scenarios are like, definitely not how you’d ideally like to be spending your time, but the latter is definitely less sucky. Beach cover-ups are usually pretty ugly and for some reason, everytime I see one, I just picture Luann from Real Housewives of New York City. IDK, there’s just something about a bad cover-up that makes me picture its wearer with a mom haircut and like, varicose veins. I don’t care if you’re wearing a really scandalous suit underneath it, that’s just how you’re going to look if you buy a frumpy cover-up. So like, obviously don’t buy a frumpy cover-up. Here are a few acceptable ones.
1. Maxi Chiffon Beach Sarong With Satin Tie From ASOS
This cover-up is perfect for when you feel hot AF in your bikini and don’t actually really want to cover up. It’s probably impossible to wear this without standing like Angelina Jolie in that dress with the crazy slit at the 2012 Oscars.
2. Lace Crop Top Cover Up & Lace Midi Skirt Cover Up Set From Topshop
Matching sets are cool as shit, so obviously wearing a beach cover-up set will make you cool as shit, too. A two piece cover up is barely any more effort than wearing a regular single-article cover-up, but it will definitely make it look like you have your shit together and planned a full trendy beach outfit.
3. BDG Uma Fishnet T-Shirt Dress From Urban Outfitters
You’re lucky I’m telling you to buy this so early in the season, because I’m sure that every Instagram “model” will be posting photos in this cover-up all summer. This way, even when you only get a third of the likes, you can still be excited that you had it first. You’re welcome.
4. Blue Tie Dye Beach Playsuit From Missguided
The best thing about this beach playsuit, besides the fact that it offers lots of cleavage options, is that it comes in a blue tie dye print—so when you inevitably spill on it while you’re drinking a fishbowl at a boardwalk bar, it will probably just blend in.
5. Embroidered Off-The-Shoulder Cover-Up From Anthropologie
This cover-up is one of the few cover-ups that actually covers up (say cover-up again), which can be your excuse for purchasing something from Anthropologie that’s probably going to get thrown in the bottom of your beach bag or used to cover your face while you’re laying in the sun. You can also totally get away with wearing this in a couple of different social settings, so when drinks at the pool turn into an all day event, you won’t look like a Jersey Shore cast member wherever you go.
6. Isabell Blue Chambray Shift Dress From Tobi
So you felt really good when you went to the beach, but then you caught a whiff of fried dough and obviously had to get some. Enter this chambray shift dress. It will literally solve all of your problems. (It might solve like, two or three of your problems. But that’s still pretty good.) Any shift dress that gives you the chance to show off your bikini top is perfect for creating optical illusions, aka showing off your boobs and hiding your food baby.
7. Lira Marina Off-The-Shoulder Romper From PacSun
If we’re being honest here, (which, duh, we always are) the first thought that popped into my head when I saw this romper cover up was “that looks like a nightmare to pee in.” The second thought was “that’s gonna give me weird tan lines,” but I promise that “I actually really like that” was definitely number three.