It wouldn’t be summer without distressed denim shorts being an integral part of your wardrobe – in my opinion at least. A pair of perfectly worn, comfy denim shorts is one of the easiest ways to throw together an outfit when it’s nearing 90 degrees outside and you want to be cool and still look cute. They work as a bathing suit coverup for the beach, they’re great with your favorite t-shirt, and they’re totally acceptable for any kind of BBQ or backyard function. But denim shorts, especially distressed ones (featuring ~cute~ rips, tears, or even paint splattered) are definitely more casual than anything else, and so sometimes, they can come off as a bit… well… sloppy.
Sometimes looking sloppy is completely fine. No one needs to be glamorous when they’re headed to the beach, and there are some lazy summer days where you have no desire to put any effort into your outfit. No judgement here! But other times, looking sloppy and messy is not ideal. Maybe you’re going somewhere and you want to impress someone there, maybe you’re headed to a BBQ that’s a little bit more on the *fancy* side, or maybe you’re just trying to take a good Instagram #OOTD. Whatever the case, distressed denim shorts can definitely be dressed up for those occasions. While they might never look good enough for something bougie, distressed shorts can be transformed into a trendy, chic, and put together option with the right accessories and clothing items. Don’t believe me? Check out the below outfits. Here are some style tips on how to wear distressed denim shorts while still looking put together AF:
1. Add a trendy, chic top that will instantly pull things together – one great option is an off-the-shoulder top. Sneakers keep the look casual, while added accessories like a structured handbag make it more stylish.
2. Make your shorts look more tailored by tucking your shirt in and adding a simple leather belt. A button-down is ideal for this look, and cute shoes, like ankle booties, make this whole thing work.
3. Keep your outfit simple but chic with classic pieces like a striped shirt, a cute summer hat, and bright sandals. It’s still comfortable without looking sloppy.
4. Even a crop top paired with ripped shorts can look stylish instead of messy! Pick a crop top in a pretty pattern – bonus points if it’s off the shoulder. Cute flat sandals make this casual look work.
5. Denim shorts can easily look messy when paired with a graphic tee, but not when you do it like this. Pick a bold tee that fits nicely instead of something oversized, tuck it in, and add accessories like gold jewelry, funky glasses, and bright lipstick. Perfect!
6. A crisp white blouse is one of the easiest ways to dress up distressed denim shorts. Tuck it in, pair with classic heels, and add a pretty clutch. You’re good to go basically anywhere!
7. Work some layering action to make a crop top and denim shorts look like an outfit straight out of a fashion magazine. A long tailored vest is perfect for this, and strappy heels look just right.
8. The right accessories have the power to make any outfit more chic, even if it’s just a plain tank and ripped shorts. Fringe sandals and lots of gold jewelry work like a charm.
9. Go for something casual that’s still very cute by adding trendy items like cool sneakers and a baseball hat. Oh, and double denim is definitely A+.
10. If your shorts are frayed on the bottom, cuff them up to change ’em up a bit. A fun patterned blazer over a graphic tee is unexpected, but yet the whole look works, especially with the heels pulling everything together.
11. Again, layered looks are what you want to go for if you’re trying to be more polished in distressed denim shorts. A crisp white shirt with a fitted blazer really makes your shorts look more professional. Ankle boots keep this more casual, but if you wanted to take it a step further, you could add classic heels.
12. A hat and cool ankle boots are all you need to take your white tee and denim shorts to the next stylish level.
13. This outfit couldn’t be easier or more comfortable. The key to keep it from looking sloppy is to add a fitted cardigan and a leather belt, and to front tuck the tee.
14. Another super simple way to make your shorts more put together – a slim sweater, strappy sandals, and lots of gold necklaces.
15. Add lots of bright colors for a very summery feel – a printed blouse, colorful sandals, and a bright bag are perfect.
16. The power of accessories! Lots of delicate gold jewelry and a chic clutch make anything look more fancy.
17. If the weather is on the chillier side, a long sweater can make even a baggy tee and high-waisted shorts look good.
18. Unexpected mixed prints, like this shirt and clutch, are enough to make any outfit look good.
19. Add a fitted black blazer for an instant style update. I love this tailored piece with the old Converse sneakers.
20. Add a layer in the form of an easy plaid shirt left open. So simple, so casual, so cute.
Which outfit is your favorite? What did we forget to include? Let me know in the comments.