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7 Ways to Elevate Your Cocktail Party Attire

We’ve all been there: you get an invite to a cocktail party, and you can’t help but panic a little. What constitutes as cocktail party appropriate anyway? What can you wear that’s tasteful, without being overly boring? Well, lucky for you, these 7 tips are sure to help set you up with an amazing foundation to build off of. Once you master these basics, feel free to experiment!

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#1 Gather The Information

Maybe you have a designated 2-3 cocktail party outfits already. Good for you. But did you know that not every cocktail party requires the same dress code? A corporate cocktail party is different than a bridal one, for instance.

Instead, pay attention to the trinity: where, when, why. If it’s at a swanky hotel, then you need to dress it up. If it’s at night, even more so.

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#2 Bling It Out

For men, it could be a shiny watch. For women, it could be dangling, light-catching earrings. Whatever the case, you don’t need to glam up your outfit to the point where you could be confused with an Oscar. Just focus on one shiny object, two max, to make a statement.

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#3 Minimalist, But Prepared

If you’re unsure about how fancy you’re supposed to dress for the party, play it safer, but not boring. Take some of your best jewelry (not too much), and secure a place to stow it away if needed (handbags have never been so handy). And go for neutral colors that are just fine in both relaxed and fancy cocktail parties. Don’t select crazy lines or patterns, solid colors are just fine. Focus on the materials instead.

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#4 Length Is Everything

This one is for the ladies, sorry boys. The appropriate length to aim for is mid-thigh to mid-calf. Shorter and it’s rude and out of place. Longer, and it’s like you thought you were going to a black-tie affair.

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#5 Save Risky Behavior For Celebrities

Sure, in the media, it seems like everyone is dawning these super revealing dresses and outfits. But truth be told, that’s all an illusion, a marketing ploy to get these celebrities noticed more. There’s a lot of magic behind the scenes, such as tape, strategic lighting, makeup tricks, and surgery.

Chances are you’re not a celebrity, so you don’t need to pretend! Don’t cave and purchase something just because you think that’s the new norm. It’s not. And if you show up revealing too much, you might be turned away at the door―with good reason!

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#6 Spend Some Extra Time On Your Face

This goes for everyone, not just women. Pay extra attention to your face. Wash it, use face scrub to clean deep into your pores, and get rid of anything that may be causing issues like blackheads. Don’t forget your toner, to tighten pores, and some moisturiser to reduce the appearance of flaky skin.

That is your building block, your canvas prepping. From there, focus on your makeup, or beard, in men’s cases. Facial hair should be neatly trimmed, with no neck beard. And makeup should play up a single feature, such as your lips.

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#7 Be Prepared

Let’s be honest here, you’re looking at at least 3-4 hours in one outfit. Standing up, walking around, mingling, eating and drinking. That means that for that amount of time, you not only need to look your best, you need to look effortless. Otherwise, no matter how good you looked when you entered the party, you will look a hot mess walking out.

So, for men, make sure your blazer or suit jacket is breathable. You don’t want to start sweating profusely, especially because you’re not really supposed to take the jacket off. Focus on breathable fabrics, a moisture-wicking undershirt, under your button-down, and dark pants.

For women, select comfortable heels and don’t be afraid to slip a gel pad in there. The added support and massaging gel will keep your feet from getting tired too quickly. Also, make sure your undergarments fit correctly. This will not only shape you better, making the actual outfit look even more flattering on you, but it will keep you from having to readjust yourself all night long.

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