Stay Comfortable & Chic: 5 Basic Items That Won't Sacrifice Comfort for Style
Say goodbye to sweatpants – outside of the house, that is – and welcome apparel that feels just as relaxed but looks a whole lot better. For casual weekends, road trips and even errands, it's possible to feel totally at ease in your clothes without looking sloppy. Here are five key items your wardrobe needs to keep you cute and comfortable year-round.
1. Basic Leggings
There's a good reason we see these formfitting pants almost everywhere. When it comes to comfy and versatile staples, you can't beat the easy stretch fit and straightforward look of leggings. In basic black, like the latest Simply Styled leggings pictured on the right, they're flattering, forgiving and wearable with almost any outfit.
Style Tip: To keep leggings from revealing too much, choose a sturdy knit that doesn’t show skin when stretched, and pair with a long, flowing tunic.
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2. Tank Dresses
To give your laid-back, summertime look an instant upgrade, put the shorts away and reach for a knit tank dress. This design offers an easy, curve-skimming fit and the breathable softness of cotton jersey knit. With the addition of some layers, this warm weather go-to carries you right into fall and beyond.
Style Tip: Look for a dress made from jersey knit with a straight or lightly contoured fit and a curved hem. This trio of features works together to create flattering drape and unrestrictive comfort.
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3. Oversized Tops
When styled correctly, slouchy is very chic. Completely forgiving, an oversized top helps minimize or hide areas you’d rather not highlight. Drop shoulder designs and dolman sleeves keep the fit easy around the bust and arms, while an off-the-shoulder neckline shows off the collarbone and decolletage for a bolder look. For flattering drape, opt for stretch jersey knit, or for a boxier shape, go with a woven.
Style Tip: The flowing silhouette of a slouchy top or tee gets chic balance from curve-hugging pants. To add a touch of glamour or create more structure, accessorize with a chunky statement necklace or leather moto jacket.
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4. Perfect Jeans
The most challenging to find and, in turn, the most rewarding, perfectly fitting jeans are an effortless, everyday go-to that every woman needs. For both casual and dressy outfits, skinny jeans and jeggings offer the most versatility, working with flip-flops, heels and boots alike. If you’re craving a totally laid-back look, the looser fit of distressed boyfriend jeans delivers a cool, carefree vibe. For the best combination of comfort and shape-retaining fit, look for a flattering mid-rise cut and cotton denim with 1 to 4 percent stretch (spandex, elastane or Lycra).
Style Tip: Balance jeggings with a flowing tunic and boyfriend jeans with a fitted top. The lighter the wash, the more casual the look. Likewise, darker washes lend a dressier feel.
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5. Fashionable Flats
For footwear that works seamlessly across the casual-to-dressy spectrum, a ballet flat is your best friend. A round toe looks cute and classic, while a pointed toe feels chic and sophisticated. Look for a design with tonal elastic trim, which increases comfort and ensures a stay-put fit. For more support and everyday functionality, opt for preppy boat shoes with comfortable cushioning and arch support.
Style Tip: Beige is a beautiful thing. The key players in a versatile wardrobe, neutral beige, nude, and taupe shoes complement every color in your closet.
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