Cotton summer dresses for over 50s

Check out our favourite cotton summer dresses, available to buy ready for the summer months.

woman in cotton summer dress

by Emily Gilbert |

Whatever your shape or size there’s a cotton dress for you this season. Hide full hips and trim your waist with fit and flare or full-skirted styles, or skim over lumpy and bumpy silhouettes with a classic shift dress. Here's everything you need to know about the best cotton summer dresses.

Related: The most flattering dresses for mature women

Cotton summer dress tips

For an easy daytime look, throw on a simple shirt dress. Alternatively, flatter your figure with a wrap or ruched dress.

It can be hard to find summer dresses with sleeves, but if your arms are your biggest bugbear there are lots of lovely lightweight cardigans and cover-ups available in the shops.

When it comes to prints, anything goes this season –bold florals and chic stripes help draw attention to your best features (and disguise your worst). Whatever your shape, wear your outfit with confidence – and a huge smile!

Below the belt

Dresses with belted and tie waists will create definition on your waistline and will help you look slimmer. Don’t be afraid to swap the included belt for something different, but follow these golden rules:

If you have a long torso go for a slightly wider belt to help shorten your upper body.

Do you have a short body and/or a big bust? Choose a slimmer belt.

Balancing act

Wrap and V-necklines can be flattering for most body shapes. They cleverly lengthen the upper body, make you look taller and can help draw the eye upwards away from a bigger bottom half. If you’re a classic pear with a smaller bust, then look for ruffled necklines to balance out your proportions.

Related: 14 eco-friendly clothing brands in the UK

Cotton summer dresses to buy

Bonnie Broderie Midi Dress

Bonnie Broderie Midi Dress

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Time to hit the beach or family BBQ in a dress that its airy and comfortably. Thanks to it's pure cotton design, it's also breathable in a heatwave and easy to wash.

Review: "Lovely colour dress. Easy to wear & style with trainers or sandals. Great having a cotton dress which looks good."

Tie Waist Jersey Shirt Dress

Tie Waist Jersey Shirt Dress

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Are you searching for a timeless holiday dress that can be worn in Spain or Cornwall? The Tie Waist Jersey Shirt Dress from Boden is exactly what you're looking for. Although it's a cotton blend, it's still durable and weather proof - so it's great come rain or shine.

Review: "This dress is beautiful and will take you anywhere. I have the cream/blue print, it must be said it is not blue and definitely dark navy, never the less gorgeous. Wore it last night for meal and drinks with friends, felt comfortable and classy wearing it. As always, very pleased with my Boden dress. Eyeing this up in other colourways."

White Stuff Ruby Cotton Dress

White Stuff Ruby Cotton Dress

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Made from 100 per cent cotton, this knee length dress is ideal for lunch out with friends or taking the grandkids to the park in, it's flattering V-neck and short sleeves makes this outfit pretty versatile.

Review: "Attractive pattern, I love the colour combination and it fits perfectly."

Pure Cotton Textured Midi Dress

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With a flattering self-tie waist, this will be your new go-to summer dress. We love how the dainty button detailing and playful frill gives a feminine touch to this outfit. It's great for teaming with trainers, sandals, boots or heels.

Review: "Lovely dress. Great quality fabric, has a look of sunseeker about it so fingers crossed won't need ironing. I'm 5'8" and it's mid calf, size 14 usually and it fits fine, probably could have got away with a 12, but it's not that big that'll I'll be bothered by it."

Top Shell Jersey Dress

top shell jersey dress

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Whether it's for a day at the office or a trip to the theatre, this dress is both comfortable and flattering. The round neck and organic cotton material make this a piece worth having in your wardrobe.

Review: "This is a very flattering shape and I love the retro pattern and colour. It is so easy to wear, I feel well dressed all day long."

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