12 perfect day dresses for summer under $100

Q. Last week you mentioned your daily summer uniform of a simple cotton or linen dress for daytime. Can you give me some examples?

A. With pleasure! On any given day in the summer, you will likely find me wearing a lightweight dress and a pair of sandals or wedges. There’s literally nothing easier or more comfortable to wear. My closet is full of these daytime dresses, making getting dressed in the morning a breeze. Packing for summer vacations and weekends away is also relatively easy, since many of these dresses can be dressed up for an evening out or even worn over a swimsuit to the beach.

I generally look for styles that resist wrinkles and don’t need to be dry cleaned, so my day dresses can be laundered at home. Avoid fabrics like polyester or silk that don’t breathe and opt for cotton or cotton/linen blends instead. I also stick to styles that are under $100 (under $50 is even better!), saving my more expensive purchases for nicer dresses to wear to work meetings or events. Another important requirement is that I don’t need any special underpinnings, meaning, the dresses can be worn with a basic bra or racerback bra, or even a tank top underneath for fuss-free dressing.


Here are some perfect budget-friendly day dresses to wear all summer long:

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