The white shirt is a classic item that will never go out of style. Let’s look at how to wear a white shirt in style!

Here are just some of the advantages of a nice white blouse

  • It gives you a clean crisp look.
  • There’s a style of white shirt to suit any style personality.
  • It combines with every other color you have.
  • It is a perfect background for your fabulous accessories like jewelry and scarves.
  • It is perfect to wear with all the printed trousers that are so fashionable now.
  • You can wear them in so many different ways.
    – Tuck them in.
    – Wear with a belt
    – Semi tuck
    – Wear them loose over a singlet
    – Tie a knot in front
    – Wear to the Oscars with a formal long skirt (remember Sharon Stone!). Or wear to Wimbledon tucked into a pleated skirt (Meghan Markle).

The white shirt is one of my 28 wardrobe essentials every woman should own.

I always make sure I have a white shirt in my closet because of its versatility.

If you are still looking for the perfect one, here are 13 different options for you to choose from.

I will continue to show you how stylish 40+ women are wearing their white shirts right now.

Scroll down and you’ll also find ideas on how to wear a white shirt, what to wear with your white shirt as well as a capsule wardrobe featuring 9 outfits.

Read our ultimate guide to creating a capsule wardrobe that works best for you.

A white shirt for work

Whether you’re wearing it to work or not, a crisp white shirt is the perfect addition to your closet.

Wear it to the office, or just wear it with jeans!

White work shirt |

Lafayette 148 New York blouse

White silk blouse

If you’ve been reading 40+style for a while, you’ll know that I’m a big fan of natural fabrics, particularly silk.

Here’s why I have a problem with wearing synthetic fabrics.

White silk blouse |

Veronica Beard silk blouse

White silk shirt

Here’s another lovely option if you’re looking for a silk shirt style with a more structured collar rather than a silk blouse.

White silk shirt |

L’agence silk shirt

White see through shirt

If you want to add a bit of subtle sex appeal which is still incredibly classy, you could try a sheer or see-through shirt and add a camisole underneath.

You might want to take a look at this piece on the best camisoles for women over 40.

White see-through shirt |

Ming Wang windowpane plaid button-up shirt

White long sleeve blouse

Do you prefer a long-sleeved option when it comes to blouses and shirts? Then this classic style could be for you.

You can still give it a more casual look by rolling up the sleeves if you don’t always want to wear them down to your wrist.

This could be a great option to wear with leggings.

Here’s more inspiration on how to wear leggings for women over 40.

White long sleeve blouse |

Eileen Fisher jersey tunic

White sleeveless blouse

On the other hand, if you are searching for a white blouse for summer, or your shoulders and arms are part of your body you love, you could show them off with a sleeveless shirt.

White sleeveless blouse |

Anne Klein peter pan collar blouse

White short sleeve blouse

Of course, you don’t have to go long, or totally sleeveless. Sometimes, the middle ground is a good style to choose.

I think this would be lovely with shorts for the summer months.

White short sleeve blouse |

Eileen Fisher linen blouse

White sheer blouse

Another option for you if you are looking for a lovely sheer blouse. You can pop a camisole underneath this one and wear with everything from jeans to leather pants to a pencil skirt.

White sheer blouse |

Equipment silk shirt

White ruffle blouse

You can see already that there are so many different styles of white shirt that you’re sure to find one that suits your style personality.

For added interest, you could try some ruffles or ruching.

White ruffle blouse |

Bishop + Young ruffle sleeve blouse

White lace blouse

Another fantastic idea if you want to add interest to the white blouse is choosing an option with lace.

Lace is particularly on trend this fall so you could wear with your jeans and booties to take this look into the cooler months.

White lace blouse |

Nordstrom lace inset blouse

White chiffon blouse

Chiffon isn’t a type of fabric as such. You can make chiffon from silk, nylon or polyester. Instead it refers to the properties of the fabric.

A chiffon shirt is made from a fine gauze so you’re likely to want to make sure you’re wearing underwear which provides you with some coverage underneath.

White chiffon blouse |

Kut from the Kloth blouse

womens oversized white shirt

Oversized clothing is particularly on trend right now. But if you do opt for an oversized shirt, make sure that you get the balance right with the rest of your outfit.

For example, you could wear this over skinny jeans, or over a fitted dress. Or you can add some structure by wearing a cropped jacket over your shirt.

White oversized shirt |

Vince cotton shirt

White cotton blouse

Another great natural fabric to choose when looking for the perfect white shirt, is cotton.

White cotton blouse |

Vince split neck blouse

There are a few drawbacks to a white shirt as well

Having talked about how essential a white shirt is, and shown you some you could try, it’s only fair to tell you about the drawbacks.

  • It can make you look a bit washed out (adding accessories can help with this)
  • They get dirty really quickly (Getting the right product for washing can help. Check out these tips on how to wash a white shirt.

How to wear a white shirt – What to wear with it

With those points in mind let’s have a look at some ideas of what to wear with your white shirt and some fabulous examples of women wearing the white blouse in style and some of the best white shirts in stores now.

Tops and jackets to wear with your white shirt

Really, anything goes when it comes to choosing options to wear with your white shirt. The beauty of a white shirt is its versatility.

You can wear any jacket or coat style over it, and you could also choose to add an extra layer with a v-neck sweater or cardigan.

Outerwears for white tops |

Halogen single breasted blazerHalogen moto jacketBB Dakota belted vestHalogen cashmere sweater

White shirt and jeans

I always think that a jeans and white shirt look is an absolute classic that you really can’t go wrong with. But, I also love the look of red and white worn together.

Pants for white tops |

J Brand crop wide leg jeansPaige bootcut jeansJag Jeans skinny jeansHalogen ankle pants

Skirts and dresses to wear with your white shirt for women

Again, you can wear any style of skirt with your white shirt. You could choose to tuck it into a fuller skirt or a pencil skirt. Or you could wear your white shirt under your dress for a preppy look.

Skirts and dress for white tops |

Ming Wang ruffle hem midi skirtHalogen a-line skirtBoden pencil skirtBoss sheath dress

Shoes and accessories to wear with your white shirt

There’s nothing a white shirt doesn’t go with. But, how about keeping your look monochrome and adding some black.

Or you could add a pop of color or pattern with some red or leopard print.

Accessories for white tops |

Cole Hann calf hair flatConverse sneakerVince Camuto cutout sandalAGL slingback pumpUrban Originals satchelKate Spade New York crossbody bagKendra Scott pendant necklaceKate Spade New York statement necklace

How to wear a white shirt in many different outfits – a capsule wardrobe

White shirt outfit ideas with Skirts

Here’s some more inspiration for you on what to wear with your white shirt.

White shirt and printed skirt |

Here’s how I wore my white shirt (above), with my abstract print skirt and silver shoes. You can get a similar shirt here.

White bell sleeves blouse |

Deborah (above) keeps her monochrome outfit interesting through the architectural shape of her shirt, which mirrors the shape created by her skirt. Check this similar bell sleeve blouse.

For more ideas on dressing for this style personality, check out this article on how to dress the architectural style personality.

White button down blouse |

Claudia (above) lets her skirt stand out through the use of a simple white shirt. Get a similar shirt here.

V-neck lace top |

Karen (above) opts to pair her shirt with a dressy, tiered skirt. Check out this similar lace v-neck top.

White plain tee |

Venetia (above) adds pops of red to her monochrome outfit. Get a similar scoop neck tee here.

Cute white shirts with pants

A white shirt looks just as beautiful with pants as it does with a skirt. As these images (below) show a white shirt will go with any color pants you happen to have in your closet.

White ember detail crop blouse |

Nina (above) opts for an all-white look with a pop of yellow. Here is a textured white top you can check out for a similar look.

white rolled up sleeve top |

Kristen (above) shows how beautifully white goes with khaki. Check out a similar v-neck blouse here.

White puffed sleeve blouse |

Dora (above) shows off another khaki option, with leopard print sandals. You can get a similar puff sleeve blouse here.

White ruffle top |

Natalie (above) opts for a ruffled shirt worn with jeans and espadrilles for a stylish, casual look. Get a similar white blouse here.

White cutout long sleeves |

Abi (above) wears a sheer lace, white blouse with sandals for a perfect vacation look. Check out this lace top for a similar look.

Check out our article on how to wear a shirtdress.

How do you feel about the white blouse? What are your ideas on how to wear a white shirt?


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How to wear a white shirt |

Sylvia is 40+style’s editor-in-chief and has been helping women find their unique style since 2011. An alumni of the School of Color and Design, she is devoted to empowering women of any age to look and feel their best. Read more about Sylvia and 40+style on this page.

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