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In addition to juicy peaches and the alluring scent of coconut oil, nothing spells summer like a quintessential tunic dress. We’re leaning towards minimalist silhouettes for their effortlessly chic factor, which makes them the ultimate multitaskers. Pair them with flip-flops and a floppy sun hat for lazy afternoons or punch them up with strappy sandals and layered statement necklaces for those long-awaited evenings out.
And, when the temperatures soar, look for lightweight, breathable fabrics including linen, Tencel and gauze, or pile on added protection with a dress featuring UPF 50+ fabric, designed to block 98 percent of the sun’s rays. From flowing maxis to flirty midis, we’ve rounded up 10 of the best tunic dresses you’ll never tire of this summer.
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1. Kobi Halperin Amira V-Neck Tiered Ruffle-Hem Dress
Thanks to its dainty cap sleeves, A-line silhouette and tiered ruffle hem, this Kobi Halperin design oozes femininity. Talk about a solid everyday piece that delivers a special-occasion aesthetic.
2. Fil De Vie Gloria Linen Maxi Dress
Sweet and simple, this classic maxi with a flirty tie-enhanced neckline is designed with breathable linen – ideal for sultry summer nights. And you’ll feel even better wearing it knowing that Fil De Vie employs and supports local artisans to handcraft their clothing.
3. Coolibar UPF 50+ Malta Travel Shirt Dress
The leader in UPF 50+ clothing, Coolibar offers head-to-toe apparel for the “active, outdoor” lifestyle. Skin Cancer Foundation-recommended, their fabrics are designed to block 98% of the sun’s rays. This impeccably timeless, travel-friendly style even has trusty side pockets and roll-up sleeves, along with a convertible collar for added protection around the neck – ideal for mid-afternoon beach strolls.
4. 9Seed Tangier Caftan
Casually fuss-free and sexy, 9Seed’s Tangier caftan features a plunging V-neck, on-seam pockets and flowing gauze fabric that makes it drape like a dream — making it one of the best tunic dresses we’ve found. The raw-edge, high-low hem makes it a versatile piece for walking on the beach or shopping for groceries.
5. Mer Sea Essential Shirt Dress
A cinch to throw on, this sophisticated and slightly oversized shirt dress (by beloved seaside-inspired clothing and home goods brand, Mer Sea) is crafted with a soft, breezy fabric. A mandarin collar and covered buttons complete the aesthetic. Wear it loose or add some flair with a belt — whichever way you choose this style will get endless play.
6. Brochu Walker The Havana Dress
With statement-making puffed sleeves and a tiered skirt, this Brochu Walker dress oozes femininity. Whether you wear it belted or free and flowing, the look is always polished.
7. Ulla Johnson Rabea Belted Striped Cotton Midi Dress
A master at bohemian-luxe dressing, Ulla Johnson’s belted striped midi dress adds a pop of sunshine to any hot-weather ensemble. It’s made of lightweight cotton and features a loose fit, so you can wear it unbelted for casual occasions or cinch it at the waist for dressed-up gatherings.
8. Neu Nomads Kerala Dress
Founded by fashion industry veteran Karen Wood, Neu Nomads is an eco-friendly New York-based brand offering timeless, ultra-wearable essentials for the modern woman. Featuring their signature Tencel fabric and a flattering deep-V neckline, this beguiling dress will take you from day to night all year long.
9. Heidi Merrick Camille Dress
Say hello to refined California elegance, courtesy of Golden State-based designer Heidi Merrick. Available in toile or silk and hemp, this best-selling silhouette — complete with a flattering cinched waist and side pockets — is as effortless as it gets.
10. Felicite Apparel Boyfriend Maxi Shirt Dress
The sexy boyfriend silhouette receives the maxi treatment with this classic button-down style in sumptuous gauze. According to founder Venay Gordon, “felicite means happiness” — that’s exactly what this dress brings. Machine washable and easy to pack, you’ll likely never want to take it off.
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