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Dating might look a little different these days, but you can still have fun dressing for the occasion.

By Julia Guerra
Jan 11, 2021 @ 2:00 pm
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Date Night Outfit Ideas for Any Occassion
Credit: Christian Vierig/Getty Images

Whether it's your first date or your fiftieth, piecing together the perfect date night outfit can be both an exciting and nerve-wracking task. The goal is to look and feel your best while also dress appropriately for the occasion. However, when you're also up against a global pandemic and dealing with various weather-related conditions, figuring out what to wear can almost feel impossible.

This is especially true for those of us whose significant others are also now our co-workers. Making plans to spend some quality time together outside the home-office feels almost essential to keep the romance alive, but what cute outfit can you throw together that they haven't seen already? Well, that's where we come in.

Ahead, we've rounded up enough date night outfit inspiration to accommodate every occasion, keeping in mind the current state of the world. From slipping into some elevated loungewear to dusting off the skirts and dresses you retired months ago, here are some of the best looks influencers are serving up on Instagram to help spice up your date night attire.

A Coordinated Set

During a global pandemic, co-ords have become the fashion trend that date nights need and deserve. If you can't eat (or don't feel comfortable eating) at a fancy restaurant in your area, channel candle-lit dinner vibes from the comfort of your own home, dressed in a matching set that's both sexy and super comfortable.

Your Coziest Pajamas

Date nights spent indoors watching a movie and ordering in call for comfy attire, and what's more comfortable than actual loungewear? Monochromatic sets will give off the illusion that you put in real effort to put together a cute outfit for the occasion, but at the same time, prints can be pretty fun, too. Whip out your favorite pair of PJs, and if you and your significant other can color coordinate, all the better.

All-Black Everything

If there's any fashion technique that is always on-trend and works for every signature style, it's the all black outfit. It's chameleonic: no matter what your date night plans entail, black on black is always subtle, classic, and appropriate.

Elevated Loungewear

Gone are the days when sweats translated to a lazy day uniform. Now, they're elevated, celebrity-approved, and work for anything and everything, from running errands to zoom meetings, and, yes, even date nights. Upgrade your favorites with layered necklaces or a statement chain, a sleek crossbody bag, and a clean pair of white sneakers. Or take a page from JLo's playbook and style your sweats with furry outerwear.

Your Favorite Sweater

Just in case you haven't caught on, a running theme throughout date night outfits in 2021 is comfort and convenience — which makes a classic sweater and jeans combo the ideal option. Think about it: You look your best when you feel your best, right? So, pick your favorites and focus on accessorizing for the evening's vibe. Sneakers and a crossbody are fit for a casual outing, while heels and statement jewelry will make this outfit work for plans that are a little more formal.

A Blazer Over Anything

This layer goes with just about anything. Blazers add an element of sophistication to even the simplest, everyday outfit, so slip one over a plain white or graphic t-shirt and play around with bottoms like jeans, cigarette pants, roomy joggers, and leggings. Nothing's off limits.

The Lampshade Look

Influencers are still loving the pantless look Ariana Grande made famous circa 2015, and, admittedly, we are, too. It's a kind of street style that requires minimal effort and exudes confidence and sensuality, while also being incredibly laid back. Plus, chances are you already have an oversized sweatshirt and thigh-high boots in your wardrobe, so you can put the money you planned to spend on a new outfit towards food, instead.

A Done-in-One Jumpsuit

Done-in-one outfits, like jumpsuits, will be your saving grace when you're low on time before a date. Loud patterns and bold colors are a statement all their own, so reach for dainty accessorize and neutral footwear. However, if your jumpsuit is an earth tone or boasts a very subtle pattern, gravitate towards chunky jewels, belts, and footwear that add pops of color.

A Belted, Oversized Shirt

Jumpsuits aren't your only options for done-in-one date night outfits. For example, you can easily add a chunky or chain belt to transform an oversized top into a shirt dress and style to your liking. You can dress up the ensemble with costume jewelry and funky handbags, keep things casual with sneakers and a beanie, create contrast with baggy jeans, or simply throw on a pair of over-the-knee boots and be on your way.

Leather Bottoms

There's something about leather that boosts an outfit's cool factor. Faux leather leggings and joggers are especially popular and look fantastic when paired with graphic t-shirts or mock turtlenecks. But, let us not forget the impact a leather jacket or pair of boots can have on an ensemble, too. These types of additions can add a moody contrasty to feminine looks, so have fun with them.

A T-Shirt and Jeans

Jessica Simpson wrote an entire ode to T-shirts, and there's a reason why the song ("With You") is still beloved 11 years later. T-shirts are the linear definition of comfort, easy to throw on, and there are countless ways to style them. Plus, if you can feel comfortable and confident around your partner with nothing but a t-shirt and jeans on, you've found a winner.

Skirts

Once upon a time, "date night" meant getting all dolled up and actually leaving the house. These days, date nights look a little different because of the CDC guidelines in place to help stop the spread of Covid-19. But keep in mind that, even if you and your partner feel most comfortable just wining and dining at home, you can still dress up in a skirt and heels for the occasion. Doing so might even make the night feel a little more special.

Sweater Vests

Sweater vests are having a moment right now, so even if you're unable to ransack your grandparents' closets for this must-have piece, you can take a page from their book and invest in a modern option. They're the ultimate layering piece, so whether date night is in or outdoors, there's always a way to throw it over your look to add a quirky, cool detail. Not only retro item of clothing super versatile, it can be worn any time of year — even in the summer without a layer underneath.

Casual With Formal Pieces

You heard it here first: There are no rules in fashion. So, mix and match patterns that speak to you, experiment with color, and take a page from the outfit photographed above, blurring the lines between casual and formal wear. Get the look by pairing trousers or a tennis skirt with a baggy graphic sweatshirt, or go casual with your bottoms and pair with a formal blouse (think puffy sleeves and tailored cuts).

A Dress

Just as classic as a skirt and heels, a dress and boots creates the perfect date night outfit for any time of year. If you're heading out to dinner, layer a sweater or cardigan on top and consider a pair of tights, depending on the weather. Staying in? Opt for comfortable footwear like flats, sneakers, or matching house slippers (celebs like Gigi Hadid and Selena Gomez love this pair from UGG.)