Unless you’re going for a goth look or you’re headed for a costume party, an all black outfit needs to tick a few boxes in order to be fashionable. If you’re going for a sophisticated look, you need to be extra careful about how you choose and wear your dress or separates.

Get acquainted with the most important fashion rules for wearing all black and you’ll end up with a look that you love and others will appreciate as well.

Mix Textures

The key to a successful all black look is texture. If you’re planning on wearing a black dress made from a single fabric, you can easily go for accessories that add a more diverse feel to your look. When you’re wearing separates, one of the best rules for wearing all black is to pair different fabrics and textures. 

If you’re dressed in the same black cotton all over, your outfit can easily come off as drab.

All Black Outfit With Mini Skirt
photo: Anouska Proetta Brandon

Get the Perfect Fit

Black is slimming, but that doesn’t mean that you can afford to wear one size too small or too big. If you’re going for an elegant look, you need perfect tailoring when you’re thinking of wearing an all black outfit. Make sure that you get the right fit if you want to pull off the look in the right way. If you only have loose and tight black pieces, layer them.

All Black Outfit With Leather Pants
photo: Zina CH

Choose the Right Fabric for the Perfect Black

If you’re looking for the darkest black, cotton is not your best option. More expensive fabrics, from wool to silk, can offer your deeper blacks. One of the most important rules for wearing all black is that your black isn’t discolored, because that easily creates a worn out look. If you’re sticking to cotton, buy black pieces that also include a little Lycra, for a better color.

All Black Party Outfit
photo: Annabelle Fleur

Show Off Your Waist

A belt is the perfect accessory for a black dress, and also a great way to show off your waist. If you want to keep your look monochrome, go for a black patent leather belt, that adds a bit of texture and glam to your look. Even if you’re not used to wearing belts because you have a slightly thicker midriff, you may be able to pull it off when you’re wearing all black.

All Black Outfit With Pop Of Color
photo: Nicola Kirkbride

Add a Little Color

Unless you’re going to a funeral, adding a bit of color in your look is one of the rules for wearing all black that you definitely need to follow. It can be anything, from a colorful purse to accessories in bright shades. At the very least, pair your black outfit with a bold lip. Shoes are another great option for adding color to your look, as long as they’re not brown, gray or white.

All Black Outfit With Cut Out Dress
photo: Anila ♡

Show Some Skin

Your all black outfit really pops when you’re also showing off some skin. You can go for a deep V-neck, a sleeveless top or a skirt that hits at the knee or above. If you’re completely covered up because of the weather, go back to the previous rule and add some vibrant colors, either with accessories or through your makeup.

All Black Outfit With Vest And Pants
photo: Micah Gianelli

Make Sure Your Fabrics Are Season Appropriate

Wearing the right fabrics, that fit with the season, is one of the most important rules for wearing all black. You should stay away from wool and other heavy fabrics during the summer, even if the weather is cold enough that they feel comfortable. Go for linen or silk for spring and summer, while keeping your options open to heavier fabrics for the rest of the year.

All Black Outfit With Hi Lo Dress
photo: Annika M.

Keep It Pristine

As soon as you put together an all black outfit, you need to start using a lint roller. It’s especially important if you live with a furry pet that sheds all over your home. The key to looking perfect in black is keeping it clean from any lint or skin flakes. If you have a big dandruff problem, pair a lighter top with a black pair of pants or skirt.

All Black Outfits With Jackets
photo: Victoria Törnegren

Adapt Your Look to the Weather

On hot summer day, black is simply a bad idea. If you accept that being dressed appropriately is one of the rules for wearing all black or wearing anything, you’ll make sure that you don’t go out in the sun for a long time wearing all black, even if it’s a very light fabric that breathes.

All Black Casual Outfit
photo: India Rose

Go for Light Makeup If You Also Have Black Hair

Adding color to your look is even more important if you have long dark hair, but you can easily balance it out by choosing a few lighter shades for your makeup, especially lips and eyes.

See also:
How to Wear All White