How To Make All Black Outfits Actually Look Good

All black outfits

All black outfits can be very hit or miss. If you get them right, they can be chic and slimming, but if you don’t, that can wash you out or look dumpy. Black outfits can be worn anywhere and will always be fashionable, so having one or two on standby is a must. 

Wearing all black doesn’t have to be boring or too gothic. When it comes to putting together an ensemble, success usually lies in the details. When dressing in one color, you have more scope to play with texture and silhouette, as you don’t have to worry about any clashing colors or prints.

If you’re curious about dressing in all black or just want to improve your current ones, we’ve worked out the best formula to make sure your outfit is stylish and timeless.

Getting The Basics of All Black Outfits Right

If you’re looking through fashion blogs or Instagram, you’ll always come across totally black outfits; these can be great inspo or starting points when building your own. If you’re ever stuck for style inspiration, fashion blogs can be your best friend! Not only do they show you great outfit pictures, but they also give handy tips and show you good stores to shop at too.

Photo: Lookbook/@lsalison

Something you need to decide when curating an outfit is where you want to be able to wear it – do you want a formal outfit, or are you a fan of casual wear? Can it be used for both? The type of fabrics and cuts you purchase often depend on the event the outfit will be worn to, so knowing where you want to go in the look is a great place to start. 

When wearing one color, the shape of your body and garments becomes more obvious. This doesn’t need to be a bad thing, though! Many of us are body conscious, but the all-black trend can be great for becoming more body-positive and creative with our outfits. Hourglass silhouettes can be created and emphasized with statement belts or belted coats. If you want a boxy fit, this can be exaggerated with large shoulder pads in an oversized jacket. 

Photo: Lookbook/@jointyicroissanty

Another benefit of wearing one color is the texture of the textiles becomes more prominent, so look at what fabrics make up the clothes! A chunky knit becomes much more obvious when all in one color, so playing with jumpers can be great fun. Also, leathers and skins are more noticeable when they color match your outfit, so a black biker jacket will fit in well with an all black look. It’s details like these that can set your outfit apart from the rest.

Adding Black Accessories Into The Mix

Photo: Lookbook/@Claire-H

We’ve mentioned details and silhouette a lot, and investing in good black accessories can totally add to the look. Don’t always think of accessories as the finishing touches. If you opt for statement pieces, they can control the energy of the outfit. That may sound odd, but an intricate and enlarged belt can completely change a dress. 

Another excellent example of an accessory that can change a look is the enlarged headbands that have been everywhere this year. These can take a good outfit to a great one, adding a high fashion and preppy element just from a simple accessory. This preppy vibe is also achieved well with the classic black beret.

Don’t forget bags and shoes either, depending on what look you’re going for; I’d always recommend the humble black boot. Black boots are always applicable, and everyone should own at least one pair. They tend to lend themselves to fall and winter, however, they can be worn in any season. These are a great tool to take an all-black outfit from daywear to evening wear without changing any of the garments. 

How To Style An All Black Outfit For A Party

Want to look timeless and classic? Go for the all-black look. This look is always appropriate for parties and evening events when done right. The little black dress is a classic for a reason, you can’t go wrong with a black mini dress. But, if you want to mix up this staple, play with textures and opacities. Many standard black bodycon dresses can be taken up a level by layering a sheer blouse over the top. This also makes it look very 90s – a trend having a revival right now.

Photo: Lookbook/@thesensiblefay

If these dresses aren’t your thing, an all-black look with trousers is also an excellent option for a party. Again, going for trousers with an interesting texture (such as PVC or knit) can create interest and mimic runway styles. Pair the trousers with a simple crop top or blouse for a put-together yet stylish outfit. Always remember to finish any look with a statement coat or suave blazer!

How To Style An All Black Outfit To The Office

Maybe you’re more interested in looking chic at the office? This can easily be done by buying the right black basics that you can mix and match over and over again. Let’s face it, when it comes to office wear and daily work outfits, it’s better to have a handful of staple outfits that you can rewear and restyle to keep you looking good all week. All-black outfits are perfect for the office as they are a professional color and fit the professional dress codes.

Photo: Lookbook/@carolyndolly

Well-fitting black trousers are a staple piece for a good office dress. The cut of the trousers depends on what you like (and perhaps what your workplace deems acceptable), but these days there are so many smart trousers on offer you’re spoilt for choice.

For me, personal favorites are the classic cigarette trousers, high waisted paper bag trousers, and some good high waisted flares.

A simple black blouse can pair well with any cut of black trousers (or skirt), however, you can also play with the shape of blouses and shirts too. A good feminine option is the ever-stylish pussy-bow blouse. If you want something slightly more understated, a standard black shirt can also be used. Pair with a black blazer for a finished office outfit. 

All Black Can Be Glam Too

Photo: Lookbook/@vintageshadeson

When we think of full glam looks, it can be easy to go straight to colorful gowns and shimmering makeup styles – but this doesn’t have to be the case! Black maxi gowns can be very effective for a formal occasion; they create a very even silhouette and can be very good for the figure. 

If you’re opting for a gown that is all one color, explore maxi dresses with leg slits as these are perfect for glam occasions – dressing up should be fun, and gowns like these can make you feel fantastic. 

If leg slits aren’t your thing, a backless dress can also be very effective. These are very popular when it comes to glam evening gowns, unlike most dresses; the detailing is all on the back. For an even more glamorous look, choose a fabric like velvet. When in all-black, this fabric choice will stand out and compliment your figure. Pair any black gown with heels and subtle accessories for a great glam night outfit. 

The Best Casual All Black Outfit

Photo: Lookbook/@kayaloves

If you prefer chilling to getting all dolled up but still want an all-black look, don’t worry! There are so many options for comfy casuals these days, especially since most of us have transitioned into working from home. The market for loungewear is huge, meaning creating an all-black casual outfit is easier than ever. 

Flared leggings are very popular right now, and finding these in black can create a good base for a casual outfit. Flares give a more interesting silhouette than skinny jeans, so if you are after a more fashionable and casual look, give these a go. If not, any type of jeans in a black colorway can also be used for a casual all-black ensemble. 

Photo: Lookbook/@priskagomezone

Pair your black trousers with an oversized black sweatshirt for ultimate comfy vibes. When it comes to sweatshirts, vintage or thrifted ones often give you the best oversized fit – however, replica vintage ones are great too. A black sweater vest is another great and on-trend option for a casual look. Just layer a black denim jacket over the jumper for a laidback and casual outfit. 

How To Wear All Black In Winter

Photo: Lookbook/@caroline

Autumn/Winter color palettes have always tended to be darker, just like the changing of the seasons, so wearing an all-black ensemble is much easier in the latter months. While some opt for bright colors to brighten up the mood, embracing the darker evenings with an all-black look can be very practical and stylish. 

With winter outfits, one of the most essential elements is a warm coat. For most of us, winter is a colder time, so wrapping up warm is needed to stay healthy. While balancing function and style can sometimes be difficult, it can be embraced with a winter coat or a winter cape coat. The larger, the better! Go for the fluffiest or chunkiest coat you can, especially when black, as the texture can speak for itself. 

Once you have a statement coat, you don’t always need to put lots of focus on the other garments in the outfit. However, if you are detail-focused, adding smaller accessories or opting for well-fitting pants can help the all-black outfit look put together. Make sure to add heeled black boots or chunky loafers to the outfit to ensure the look is on-trend. 

Mixing Thigh High Boots With A Black Outfit

Photo: Lookbook/@whaelse

Black thigh-high boots have been popular for the last few years, and they can really be mixed with any color, but combining them with a full black outfit can be even more effective. 

Wearing these can make you feel like a femme fatale or a vixen. So, when paired with a bodycon dress or a short jumpsuit, these are perfect for a night out or evening occasion. If you also like to experiment with makeup, add bold winged eyeliner to compliment the svelte boots.

If you want to go for a street style/daywear outfit with the boots, you could easily pair them with a black tea dress or skater skirt for a more feminine silhouette. If not, wearing the boots over skinny jeans can create a subtler layered look, elevated by the heeled boots. Either way, these will have your legs looking better than ever. 

Who Needs Color?

Hopefully, these ideas will boost your confidence when it comes to dressing in all black. Whatever the occasion or season, an all-black outfit is always appropriate. Going to the dark side has never been so stylish!

About The Author