Best Sun Dress For Plus Size Women (Staying Fabulous In The Heat)

When the sun starts shining you want to be out there, soaking up the good weather (while wearing lots of sunscreen, of course). But what to wear? When the temperature rises, sometimes it feels like you have to sacrifice looking good for staying cool.

Best Sun Dress For Plus Size Women (Staying Fabulous In The Heat)

The best sun dresses for plus-size women are comfortable and stylish. They use airy fabrics to keep you cool in the sunshine with flattering styles that celebrate your body.

They can also see you through a range of occasions, whether you’re grabbing an iced coffee with a friend or enjoying a summer celebration with family.

Ready to stun with your summer looks? We’ve rounded up 6 of the best sundresses for plus-size women.

For easy summer dressing, there are few dress styles better than the tunic dress. Light, airy, and moveable, the tunic dress has minimal shaping to create a floaty silhouette (Also check out How To Wear A Kaftan: Style Tips And More). The loose fit is ideal in the hot sun.

You can keep the tunic dress simple, pairing it with flat shoes and a big sunhat. If you’re heading to the beach, a tunic dress acts as an easy swimsuit cover up. Throw it on over a damp bikini and you’re good to go! 

But the tunic dress can also be dressed up for an evening out. Pair with heeled sandals for a look that elongates the leg — and don’t forget some statement jewelry.

The tunic dress does lean a little towards casual, but if you’re heading to a beachfront bar, you can get away with a laid-back look.

The best tunic dresses, particularly tunic sundresses, are made from a light fabric. This gives the dress movement while keeping you cool. They also tend to be pretty short.

The lack of length helps balance the volume of fabric. If you prefer some extra coverage, you can easily pair a tunic dress with your favorite shorts. You’ll feel comfortable and it won’t disturb the line of the dress!

The A-line dress shape was originally created by Christian Dior, so you know this is a classic look. Tucked in just under the bust, the A-line dress features a fitted top and a skirt that lightly flows over the body. 

We love the A-line dress because it’s shaped without being form-fitting. When the days are heating up, the last thing you want is a dress that clings from the shoulders all the way down.

The light skim of the A-line skirt fits the bill perfectly. There’s just enough shaping to flatter your curves, without the close fit that can ramp up the heat. 

A-line styles first became popular in the 1950s, so you can lean into this era of glamour when choosing an outfit.

For a classic vintage look, pair with block heels and cat-eye sunglasses. But A-line was also big in the 70s, so don’t shy away from color and prints.

A versatile style with a comfortable fit for warm days, the A-line dress should be a staple of your summer wardrobe. Choose breezy fabrics that allow the A-line shape some natural movement.

Anything too heavy will lose the swing of the dress. And you can also play around with length. A-line looks good mini, maxi, and everything in between.

Shirred dresses and tops have come back in a big way. This feminine style features rows and rows of gathering, creating a flattering fabric with plenty of stretch and shaping.

If you’re searching for a summer style to fit any body, it’s hard to beat shirring!

The brilliance of shirring is an incredible amount of stretch. Repeated lines of parallel gathering create a tight fit that can expand outwards as you pull it. When you let go, the shirring springs back to its original place.

For clothing, that means shirring sits in all the right places. It stretches out where you want it to and clings where you want it to.

You have well-fitted clothing with minimal effort (and without the seams and gathers that can be uncomfortable during a summer heatwave).

Shirring typically sits at the bust and waist. This gives the dress shape, before flowing into a looser skirt. The natural movement of shirring is great for getting about in. Try a shirred dress for a summer picnic!

Shirred dresses were originally associated with farmers and milkmaids, and this pastoral vibe continues today. For summer, look for floral print, gingham, and pastel-colored shirred dresses.

Who doesn’t love a wrap dress? This effortless look was first popularized by Diane Von Furstenberg in the 1970s, and it hasn’t really gone away since.

Wrapping over the body and tying at the waist to create a v-neck, the wrap dress is known for being universally flattering.

An iconic sundress style, we love the wrap dress for busy days when you need to keep your cool. The wrap allows you to create a shape that works for your body, so you can feel comfortable no matter what.

It’s perfect for when you need a look that’s a little more dressed up, without committing to office wear. Choose the wrap dress for drinks after work or family get-togethers!

We believe that any wardrobe needs a good wrap dress. It’s the outfit you can turn to when you need something that’s “dressed up” without being too “fancy”.

A pair of flats keep your wrap dress casual for an iced coffee run, but add some heels and you’re ready for the cocktail bar. And the wrap dress has an easy-flowing movement, so it’s also just right for a night out.

A little bit of extra fabric might seem like the last thing you want on a hot day, but the midi dress is an effortlessly stylish way to dress for the summer sunshine.

A few added inches below the knee gives you more freedom to move around and allows you to take your look from the beach to the bar.

The midi dress finishes just below the knee, and it has a bit of a reputation for being tricky to pull off. But we think that’s an unfair reputation.

When choosing a midi dress, the most important thing is to get the length right. You want it to fall just above the swell of the calf to add length to your legs.

Get the length right, and the midi dress will become a wardrobe favorite. For summer, make sure you choose a lightweight fabric.

You want the midi dress to be breathable, and heavy fabric will transform your cute summer outfit into an overheated nightmare. 

With a crossbody bag, strappy sandals, and your favorite sunglasses, you’ll be ready for a city break, beach holiday, or garden party.

One step on from the midi dress, the maxi sundress falls all the way to your ankles. They’re an easy way to do elegant summer dressing.

When picking a maxi dress, make sure to balance the fabric. It’s a lot of length, so you need to hold back elsewhere. A maxi dress with a high neck and full sleeves will quickly veer into winter formal wear.

We love an off-the-shoulder look, which creates a casual finish and is flattering if you aren’t confident in your upper arms.

You can get away with more fabric up the top by adding a split at the bottom. As you walk, the split flutters and moves to give little flashes of leg. Plus, it lets the air circulate! 

Maxi dresses are a feminine take on summer dressing. They’re really easy to wear, as the dress does most of the styling for you. Pair with strappy sandals and you’re good to go!


Sundresses are a chic and easy way to dress for a hot day. Whether you’re relaxing in the back garden, heading to the beach, or meeting your friends for dinner and drinks, a sundress can keep you looking and feeling good.

For plus-sized women, the best sundress is one you feel amazing in. Pay close attention to fabric and fit, for a relaxed style even in the heat.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Dress For The Heat When You’re Plus-Sized?

Dressing for the heat is about finding the balance between style and comfort — which is difficult at any size. Fabric choice is really important. Look for loose and airy fabrics that have plenty of movement.

Tunic dresses are perfect for casual comfort, while A-line and wrap shapes are flattering and lightweight. We also love shirring. It stretches with the body, for a fitted shape that works in the heat.

Can A Plus Size Woman Wear A Maxi Dress?

Yes, plus-size women can definitely wear maxi dresses! Maxi dresses are an easy way to do elegant summer dressing. Falling to the ankle, maxi dresses flatter any body shape and are comfortable in the sun.

When choosing a maxi sundress, pay attention to the balance of the fabric. If you have too much on top and below, it can get a little hot.

Jessica White
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