5 Brilliant Tips for Cocktail Party Attire for Women

5 Brilliant Tips for Cocktail Party Attire for Women

So, you got invited to a cocktail party in town and are wondering what to wear – a skirt, a dress or formal pants; and no, you cannot dress in a business suit! This article is designed to give you the solution where you can highlight your curves and look your classic best, depending on the nature of the event.

Parties of this sort are organized for a multitude of occasions such as birthdays, fundraisers, weddings, work functions, etc. A cocktail dress is a short evening dress that is usually in shades of red and black, acting as a link between formal and casual wear. Any other colors opted for, must be simple in design and texture. Most cocktail clothes are individualistic, having a sense of personal style and comfort.

Teaming the right kind of makeup with your chosen apparel is equally important. All these factors are dependent on the time of the cocktail party – day or night. Accessorizing with elegant and sleek jewelry goes a long way in drawing attention rather than loud, metallic shades. If you are stressed and want to learn more about cocktail party attire, read through the following section to get an idea. 


  • What you wear, defines you.This statement holds good especially for women who dress to impress. Cocktail attire is similar to semi-formal wear.
  • This includes knee length or shorter hemmed dresses, which are more body fitting as compared to casual wear. Floor length gowns are usually avoided as they might make you appear too lax. But, on certain occasions, such as outdoor barbeque-cocktail parties, flowery long dresses can be worn.
  • If you are hesitant in wearing frocks or dresses, blouses with pencil skirts can be worn. Again, the length of the skirt must neither be too short nor too long. The blouse can be simple with slightly embroidered intricate designs.
  • If exposing skin is not your cup of tea, then settling for trousers with a sexy top will be much admired. Again, the upper garment must be sober with subtle shades.
  • Selecting colours and textures can be quite important. The most preferable shades are red, white, black, yellow and grey. Remember, it is not a formal event, so you can experiment with patterns and designs. The only thing to be kept in mind is to choose elegance over flashiness; you are not representing the circus clown! Based on the time of the day and the weather conditions, select a suitable material of clothing.


  • According to your chosen attire, pick out the accessories. Think simple, instead of going overboard!
  • For example, a simple white blouse with a straight skirt can be accompanied by slight bling or jazz! A single neckpiece or shiny silver earrings are sure to do the trick. If you are wearing an LBD (Little Black Dress!), then keep it simple with a string of pearls around your neck. In case the necklines for any of these outfits are high, then you could go in for pearls, embellishments, or stones as bracelets or a big chunky piece of silver/gold.
  • A beautiful ring or a colorful scarf thrown over your clothes can also make all the difference. Some women wear a watch on one wrist; this can be varied according to your collection and taste. A classic platinum watch studded with diamonds will suit any occasion.
  • A clutch or handbag is yet another lovely accessory that can be carried. It is said these purses need to be matched with the shoes you wear.

Boot Up!

  • Shoes change the way a woman walks; so it is essential that you have footwear for every occasion and every dress!
  • Simple ballet flats can be worn to a best friend’s cocktail party, held in her backyard. But, if the event is arranged for a more somber occasion such as an engagement, pick out your favourite and most comfortable heels that complement your attire. Strappy, peep-toed pumps are highly recommended.
  • Contrary to popular misconception, your shoes need not be the same colour as your clothes! This would look ridiculously pre-planned and very formal. Again, this completely depends on the type of cocktail party you are attending.
  • Sneakers, flip flops and regular sandals are unadvisable for these occasions as they fall under the category of casual. Sometimes, there may be dancing and award ceremonies as part of the celebrations. Considering all this, wear classy yet manageable footwear so that you don’t regret the morning after!


  • Dolling yourself up is a great idea when you know the temperature of the place! Check whether the location is indoor or outdoor, hot or cool, and whether the party is during the day or night before applying the cosmetics.
  • Although every woman has her signature style, smoky eyes and red lipstick can practically never go wrong. But if you are looking for more experimental forms of makeup, then you must try shimmers and eyeshadows. For example, if you are adorning a black dress, then silvery eyeshadow would look gorgeous! Deeply colored mascaras can be worn to accentuate the eyes, for a more dramatic cocktail party look.
  • Basic foundation and concealer are a must followed by a sweep of rosy blush across the cheek for the natural glow. Do not overdo any of these products in case it is an event held during the day. Lipsticks and lip glosses can be kept to the minimum if the eyes are overplayed and vice versa. Always match your skin, nail, and eyes tones to colors that you are using on the skin.

Hair-y Affair!

  • “Cocktail party makeup necessitates cocktail party hair”. If you are ina mood to be fun and flirty then you could easily add a twist to your ponytail. You can dishevel strands of hair from the head and leave the knot slightly undone. Make sure you hair is not flat and lifeless; for this, spray on a serum to keep it in place.
  • One of the cocktail party’s favourite hairstyle is the side ponytail sporting bangs. For this, take all your hair to one side and let your fringe remain free. Don’t use pins to secure any of this! This is typically called a low hair knot that rests at the nape of your neck.
  • Braids are elegant and classy ways to tie your hair. Either a tight French braid or a loose pig-tailed plait can be worn with all types of attire. This makes for interesting conversation with good-looking men too! 

So, these are some of the tips that you need to remember when it comes to picking out cocktail attire. Women are pros at showing off their best assets and hence, dressing up and look absolutely fabulous should come as no big deal!

Cover Image by bridgesward from Pixabay

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