By Alexis Bennett
Oct 29, 2018 @ 2:00 pm
Pierre Suu/Getty Images

Tis the season for holiday party invites, from fancy cocktails to charity galas to formal dinners. Having multiple head-turning outfits ready to go is a must for me during the holiday season — but finding the perfect holiday dress isn't always easy, especially when you're working under a time crunch.

Related: A Brief History of the Revenge Dress

If you're not quite sure where to start, begin with a LBD. The little black dress is the hero of the holiday party season. Why? It's an easy match for that statement clutch and those fancy shoes you've been waiting to wear. Plus, you can get away with wearing the perfect LBD just about anywhere. Work, brunch, the club ... you name it.

If basic black isn't your thing, why not try something with sequins? It's the perfect time to go full-on glam in head-to-toe glitter — the holidays are about being extra, after all. If you're a freeze baby, look for a cocktail dress with sleeves. There are plenty of details to look out for that will set your holiday party look apart from the rest — see below for some inspiration, a gift from us to you.

VIDEO: 6 Investment Pieces Every Woman Should Own

Best Black Party Dresses

You can never have too many black party dresses in your closet. The universally-flattering color can make even the most inexpensive materials look fancier. Plus, you don't have to worry as much about any spills or makeup stains from hugging all your friends.

Saks Fifth Avenue
Alice + Olivia $895 SHOP NOW
Neiman Marcus
Halston Heritage $525 SHOP NOW
J.Crew
J. Crew $178 SHOP NOW

Best Party Dresses with Sleeves

Just because the event is a bit more formal, doesn't mean you have to wear a sleeveless dress. Keep your arms covered and warm in one of the long-sleeve options ahead. The long-sleeve designs also add an elegant touch that the Royals would certainly approve of.

Related: All of the Royal Family's Fashion Rules and Restrictions

Nordstrom
Topshop $85 SHOP NOW
Shopbop
Retrofete $575 SHOP NOW
My Theresa
Rebecca Vallance $423 SHOP NOW

Best Designer Party Dresses

Special occasions call for special outfits. The designer dresses below are made with high-quality fabrics and impeccable craftsmanship, which means you'll get to re-wear them over and over again during the holiday season.

Shopbop
Zimmermann $630 SHOP NOW
Net-a-Porter
Rixo London $550 SHOP NOW
Bloomingdale's
Michael Michael Kors $155 SHOP NOW

Best White Party Dresses

That whole "don't wear white after Labor Day" thing is tired. In fact, the color seems to be quite a hit for fall/winter 2018 — Meghan Markle and Michelle Obama both recently wore it. So if you're thinking about wearing white this holiday season, we go for it. There are plenty of options to choose from in the stores, and these are our favorites.

Shopbop
Marchesa Notte $695 SHOP NOW
Saks Fifth Avenue
Alexis $298 (Originally $596) SHOP NOW
Revolve
NBD $132 SHOP NOW

Best Plus Size Party Dress

Here are three brands that need to be bookmarked for all of your party needs. They keep a versatile selection of dresses stocked for every shape and size.

Macy's
R&M Richards $64 (Originally $89) SHOP NOW
Macy's
Adrianna Papell $200 SHOP NOW
Eloquii
Eloquii $170 SHOP NOW

Best Bodycon Party Dresses

If you're looking to show off your figure, a bodycon dress is always a solid option — plus, these dresses look great under leather and fur jackets.

Nordstrom
Bailey 44 $167 (Originally $238) SHOP NOW
Nordstrom
French Connection $95 (Originally $158) SHOP NOW
Nordstrom
Reformation $298 SHOP NOW

Best Sheer Party Dresses

The naked dress trend is definitely a favorite for celebrities on the red carpet. And you can try it out, too, during your next event with a sheer party dress.

Related: The 30 Most Naked Dresses of all Time

Nordstrom
Tadashi Shoji $368 SHOP NOW
Nordstrom
Equipment $448 SHOP NOW
Nordstrom
Ali & Jay $138 SHOP NOW

Best Party Gowns

Sometimes you'll need something that's a bit more formal than a cocktail dress. These gowns check that box and are sure to help you nail a spot on the best-dressed list.

Nordstrom
Alice McCall $490 SHOP NOW
Nordstrom
Chiara Boni La Petite Robe $995 SHOP NOW
Nordstrom
Frame and Partners $329 SHOP NOW

Best Mini Party Dresses

Go ahead and show off those legs while you're on the dance floor. Shorter hemlines are a party dress staple, and will instantly give you a confidence boost.

Nordstrom
NBD $148 SHOP NOW
Nordstrom
Privacy Please $148 SHOP NOW
Nordstrom
Retrofete $615 SHOP NOW

Best Sequin Party Dresses

Did the holidays really happen if you didn't wear a sequin dress. The shiny embellishment is a hero when it comes to dressing up for major events. 

Nordstrom
Topshop $34 (Originally $68) SHOP NOW
Urban Outfitters
Dress the Population $238 SHOP NOW
Fwrd
RtA $425 SHOP NOW