Shop the 11 Best Wedding Guest Dresses for the Summer Season

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Best dressed guest! Wedding season is in full swing, and we’re gearing up for a summer of love. According to Brides, this is the busiest time of year to get married, with weddings peaking in June and September. And 2022 is particularly packed with parties due to postponed pandemic celebrations (try saying that 10 times fast). No wonder our social calendar is so swamped!

Weddings are our time to shine. Open bar and buffet? Don’t mind if we do. Dance floor? We’re always down to bust a move. Bridesmaid duties? On it — and you better believe we’re catching the bouquet! But finding the perfect outfit to wear as a guest is another story. We want to say yes to the dress too, but sadly it’s not that simple! It feels like there are infinite white gowns for brides but limited options available for guests. Most of the dresses in our closet just don’t cut it.

How We Picked the Best Wedding Guest Dresses

When searching for wedding guest ensembles, there are some important factors to keep in mind. As The Knot reports, each summer wedding has a specific dress code to adhere to: cocktail attire or black tie, backyard or beachy, dressy or casual. Plan accordingly. You can usually play around with tasteful prints, but we suggest steering clear of any pattern that features too much white. Ivory is out of the question at a wedding — you never want to upstage the bride! And as always, we like to keep it classy and comfy at the same time. Whenever possible, we opt for stretchy over stiff styles so we can survive the ceremony all the way until the cake cutting. Breathable fabric will be your best friend at a summer wedding.

Over the years, I’ve spent countless hours scouring the shelves for affordable wedding guest dresses. And this past year alone, I’ve been to so many weddings that I’m beginning to feel like Katherine Heigl in 27 Dresses! But unlike the plot of that rom-com, I can actually wear all of my dresses again. If I’m going to invest in formal fashion, I want to make the most of my purchases.

My goal in compiling this list was to choose party pieces that are timeless, not just trendy. Rock one of these frocks to a wedding one weekend and vacation the next. The possibilities are endless! I also tried to include budget-friendly designs that appeal to a wide range of body types and work in a variety of different settings.

By the power vested in me by Us Weekly, I now pronounce the 11 best wedding guest dresses for the summer season! Shop these chic styles, from Amazon to Anthropologie. May you live happily ever after with these dreamy dresses.

1. ASTR the Label Women’s Gaia Dress

Silky Smooth

ASTR the Label pink slip dress
Amazon

Say hello to the holy grail of wedding guest dresses! This silky slip dress fits like a glove, accentuating your curves in all the right places while allowing airy movement with the sultry slit and flowy skirt. I wore this flattering frock to a wedding and received compliments all night long! Since this dress costs under $100 and comes in 17 different colors, you could even snag multiple shades for events throughout the year.

Pros:

  • Universally flattering
  • Comfortable
  • Available in 17 colors

Cons:

  • Midi dress — might not be appropriate for a black-tie wedding

See It!

Available at: Amazon

2. Lulus Moments Of Bliss Forest Green Backless Mermaid Maxi Dress

Long Live

teal mermaid gown
Lulus

Warning: jaws may drop when you wear this mermaid maxi dress. Shoppers say that this evening gown is figure-flattering and fabulous! Ideal for taller women, the long length makes this dress a black-tie staple. We’re smitten with the simple yet shapely silhouette — V-neckline, thin straps darted bodice and wide back cutout.

Pros:

Cons:

See It!

Available at: Lulus

3. Lulus Such Sophistication Rust Red Floral Print Pleated Maxi Dress

Paint the Town Red

red floral dress
Lulus

This is what we meant by tasteful prints! Make a fashion statement in this elegant floral frock, available in three different colors. Pleated with woven chiffon, this tiered maxi dress features sheer crochet lace accents, a surplice neckline and wide straps with sweet bow ties. So chic and charming! Perfect for a daytime wedding with matching black heels.

Pros:

  • Unique details
  • Flattering

Cons:

  • No stretch
  • Bust area runs big

See It!

Available at: Lulus

4. Lulus All About Love Maxi Dress

Flowy Frock

lavender maxi
Lulus

Whenever we hear “easy, breezy, beautiful,” we think of CoverGirl — and this maxi dress from Lulus. With seven colors to choose from, this gorgeous gown won’t break the bank for a black-tie wedding. One shopper even said, “It feels like a typical overpriced wedding dress without the crazy price tag.”

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Multiple colors

Cons:

See It!

Available at: Lulus

5. La Femme One-Shoulder Jersey Gown

One-Shoulder Showstopper

blue one-shoulder dress
Nordstrom

Looking for a lovely wedding guest dress? Allow Us to take a weight off your shoulders with this one-shoulder maxi. Featuring a sultry slit and dipped back, this glamorous gown is fitting for any formal function. Available in six solid shades, this dress is a jewel-tone jersey gem.

Pros:

  • Fits well
  • Six beautiful shades

Cons:

See It!

Available at: Nordstrom

6. Dress the Population Nicole Sweetheart Neck Cocktail Dress

Va-Va-Voom!

black sheath
Nordstrom

Have you ever had the unfortunate experience of running into an ex at a wedding? It just happened to me recently — not fun. But one way to survive this inevitably awkward encounter is by looking your best. And if there’s one dress that will have your ex eating their heart out, it’s this stunning sweetheart sheath. A satisfied shopper reported, “Very sexy fit without showing too much skin. Classy for any event.” Sign Us up!

Pros:

  • Flattering
  • Multiple colors 

Cons:

See It!

Available at: Nordstrom

An Ace in Lace

green lace sheath
Amazon

With over 15,000 reviews on Amazon, this lace sheath dress is a wedding guest dress winner. “MY ABSOLUTE FAVORITE DRESS HANDS DOWN!!!” proclaimed one shopper, in all caps no less. “I got SOOOOOO many compliments on this dress and everyone was so shocked that I had gotten it for so cheap off of Amazon.” This classic silhouette will never go out of style.

Pros:

  • Available in 15 colors
  • Affordable
  • Flattering

Cons:

  • Not long enough for a black-tie wedding

See It!

Available at: Amazon

8. Ever-Pretty Women’s Off-The-Shoulder Ruffle Party Dress

Go With the Flow

burgundy off-the-shoulder dress
Amazon

Whether you have a destination wedding or a black-tie ball coming up, this off-the-shoulder gown is divine! The layered ruffle along the neckline adds a delicate touch, and the thigh-high slit adds for flowy movement. If the off-the-shoulder style isn’t for you, you can wear this dress higher up on the shoulder, as a one-shoulder look or strapless. As another versatile victory, this maxi comes in 17 different colors. Almost every single reviewer gushed that they received compliments on this gown all night long!

Pros:

  • Versatile
  • Top-rated
  • Affordable and on sale!

Cons:

See It!

Available at: Amazon

9. Adrianna Papell Petaluma Sequin Dress

Sparkle and Shine

black sequin dress
Anthropologie

Searching for a sophisticated Mother of the Bride or Groom dress? This sparkling midi is a modest yet magnificent choice. Covered in crystals, sequins and intricate beading, this dress demands attention without stealing the spotlight from the bride. Also perfect for a New Year’s Eve celebration!

Pros:

  • Ideal for Mothers of the Bride or Groom
  • Comfortable and slimming

Cons:

See It!

Available at: Anthropologie 

Also available in silver and copper!

10. Norma Kamali Diana Gown

The Carrie Bradshaw Dress

green ruched dress
Revolve

As seen in baby blue on Sarah Jessica Parker in And Just Like That…, this iconic Norma Kamali one-shoulder dress has taken the internet by storm. Wonder why? This flattering gown hugs your curves while concealing trouble spots with the draped ruching effect. According to one reviewer, “It’s the kind of dress that looks amazing on any body type.” Made from a Spandex blend, this stretchy dress is comfy-chic!

Pros:

  • Comfortable
  • Available in a variety of colors

Cons:

Available at: Revolve

11. Lulus Got Your Love Mustard Yellow Ruffled Button-Back Maxi Dress

Golden Hour

yellow dress
Lulus

As a wise Hilary Duff once sang, “You always dress in yellow, when you want to dress in gold.” Go for the gold in this gorgeous gown, featuring a side slit, flutter sleeves and an open tie back. This sunny summer dress is perfect for a beach wedding! All you need is a bronze tan, and you’re golden (no more puns, we promise).

Pros:

  • Lovely details
  • Beautiful summery color

Cons:

  • Some shoppers say this dress runs a little large

See It!

Available at: Lulus

Other Wedding Guest Dresses We Love:

Looking for additional ways to elevate your closet? Check out more picks below:

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