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Winter Formal Style Tips

How to look fabulous and formal when it's frigid outside.


For most gals, a winter formal means bundling up a bit. Sure, the icy winter temps will melt on the dance floor, but what about getting to the dance? You don’t want to be stuck bare-armed in a strapless dress with a frigid breeze blowing up your dress. Yikes!

Instead, look effortlessly warm for with these style tips for dressing up in cold weather.

Also check out these winter makeup looks!

1. Winter Tights

Princess Kate has been running around London in sheer pantyhose since entering the royal spotlight. Has she brought back the hose trend yet? Not completely, but she’s certainly made them more acceptable for fashion-forward teens, so don’t feel shy about giving them a try. If hose aren’t your thing, consider a pair of patterned tights. The options are endless- you can find lacy stripes, floral swirls and even tiny hearts running up the back of your legs. Of course, you can also go the solid-colored tight route, too. Black will work against most dark-colored dresses. Experiment with purple, Kelly green and burgundy for a true winter look.

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How to wear the trendiest winter tights!

2. Winter Formal Blazers

Getty Images
If your winter formal dress exposes your shoulders, you’ll need a cute cover-up for entering and exiting the dance. Go for the hottest trend on the red carpet right now: blazers! Here’s how to wear them: If you’re wearing a mini dress with ruffles or a pick-up hem that poufs out at the waist, go for a cropped tailored jacket that ends just before the flare begins. If your dress is short and curve-hugging, has an empire waist or simply falls straight down, go for a looser jacket that covers your behind.

Check out more photos for style inspiration:
Ashley Tisdale’s Blazer Over a Short Dress
Emma Watson’s Tailored Jacket Over a Ball Gown

3. Close-toed shoes

Peep toes are a definite no-no for winter formals. Save those for spring dances and prom. Instead, go for a daring pair of ankle booties, heeled booties, or studded stilettos with a closed toe. These black and white bow booties by ModCloth (Buy Direct) are cold temp-appropriate and totally stylish. Plus, you can wear them again with black skinny jeans. As for heeled booties, I enjoy anything by Jeffery Campbell (even though those can get a little pricey).

Check out the best close-toed studded heels on the red carpet.

4. Winter Formal Dresses

David's Bridal
Now is the time to wear dresses in darker shades. Think of rich burgundy, warm Kelly green, deep navy blue and of course, black. These colors are the epitome of winter, and you’ll be able to wear a dress in any of these hues again for the holidays.

See more photos of the latest trends in winter formal dresses.

5. Evening Clutch

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A dainty evening clutch is a must-have for any gal heading out to winter formal. Go for a bag on the smaller side- there’s no need to cart an entire boho bag into the dance that’s swimming with room. Instead, get a clutch that’s just big enough for your essentials: a cell phone, $20 bill, lip gloss, bobby pins, powder and a mini mirror.

Need style inspiration? Check out these photos to find the perfect evening clutch.

6. Headpieces

Top off your winter formal look with an adorable headpiece that will bring together your whole outfit. If your dress is more casual and loose, go for a hippie headband that gives off a dainty vintage vibe. If you’re dressing up a bit, crown yourself with a headband adorned with a sequined appliqué or an exotic peacock feather fascinator. Compare Prices

Check out Nicole Richie's sparkly tress topper.
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