What to Wear to a Pool Party To Look Cool in the Summer Heat

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Going to a pool party this summer but have no idea what to wear? If so, we’ve put together a style guide so you can find the best pool party outfit for you.

Pool parties are an anomaly because dressing appropriately for this event has a different aesthetic than other events. There could be a few occasions, including a casual backyard pool party, day clubs, and wedding pool-side events, thanks to the rise of fun destination weddings. 

For casual pool parties, stick to a casual dress code like denim shorts or wide-leg pants over your swimsuit, but for more formal parties or day clubbing, there are strict dress codes, which don’t always make what to wear totally obvious. As a general rule of thumb, no matter the type of party you’d attending, be sure to always wear something over your swimsuit, as often the dress codes require cover-ups to be worn in public areas.

The one thing pool parties allow for is fun outfits and accessories. If you still have no idea what to wear, we’ve collated 10 great options to wear to a pool party this summer season.

What To Wear To A Pool Party

1. Oversized Shirt

A shirt is an unexpected look for a pool party, but it is the perfect item to wear over a swimsuit and can be dressed up to go straight out in the evening.

Brands like Casablanca have brought back into Vogue silk shirts in bright colors, mostly in oversized bold graphics.

These are perfectly paired with a simple swimsuit, and if a more formal pool party, they can be worn with white linen wide-leg pants or shorts. The rest of the outfit can be dressed up with big earrings to add a fun element.

Yellow Zimmermann shirt

Postcard Fringed Shirt

At FarFetch

Reformation Olina Linen Pants

Olina Linen Pants

At Reformation

Hermès Suede Goatskin Womens Chypre Sandals 37 Nature

Suede Goatskin Chypre Sandals

Secondhand at Fashionphile

2. Sun Hat

If you’re looking for a statement piece to sport while in or by the swimming pool, a wide-brimmed hat is a great accessory. 

High UV rays are harmful, especially on delicate skin like the face and decolletage. However, SPFs are a great way to combat this; a straw hat is a fashionable addition to this protection.

This doesn’t only need to be worn with a swimsuit or while in the pool, a structured straw hat can be worn with a more formal outfit.

Recreate this look
SAME Los Angeles

Rose Bandeau Top

At Same

SAME Los Angeles

Rose 90s Black Bikini Bottom

At Same

Jacquemus Le Chapeau Bomba Straw Wide Brim Hat

Le Chapeau Bomba Hat

At Neiman Marcus

3. Fun Swimsuit

Of course, a statement bathing suit is a perfect addition to wear as, or alongside, your outfit at a pool party – if it’s that sort of party. No matter your body type or insecurities, you can find a cute outfit to suit you.

If you prefer a one-piece swimsuit, these now come in just as many fun designs and cuts as bikinis, though the latter bikini top can be worn as a crop top with a maxi skirt or trousers for a chic poolside look.

Shani Shemer Sandra One Piece
Shani Shemer

Sandra One Piece

At Revolve

Reformation Mila Linen Short

Mila Linen Short

At Reformation

Miu Miu Miu Glimpse sunglasses
Miu Miu

Miu Glimpse sunglasses

At Miu Miu

4. Sparkly Cover Up

Okay, this is more of a ‘right place, right time’ outfit. Beach clubs in some places around the world allow for sexy outfits in their dress code.

The norm for Ibiza and Vegas pool party outfits is for sparkly outfits to be worn during the day. However, the general style for these is very different than a normal pool day. 

Women attend with their hair and makeup done as though going out in the evening and wearing wedges and high heels instead of the pair of flip-flops you’d usually opt for.

recreate this look
Maiyo Isabella One Piece

Isabella One Piece

At Revolve

Santa Brands x REVOLVE Midi Feathers Skirt
Santa Brands

x REVOLVE Midi Feathers Skirt

At Revolve

Manebi Mini Summer Raffia Top-Handle Bag

Mini Summer Raffia Top-Handle Bag

At Neiman Marcus

5. Matching Set

The perfect outfit for a chic poolside look is a matching set. Classic brands like Missoni and Emilio Pucci are experts at beach cover-ups, usually consisting of matching cover-ups and swimsuits.

The style of these outfits means it looks dressy while still being appropriate for a pool day. If going to a beach club, the rule is often that if not by the pool area, it is required to wear a cover-up while in public areas; this option means you can abide by the rules and still look fabulous.

Missoni Mare Metallic crochet-knit bikini
Missoni Mare

Metallic Crochet-knit Bikini

At Net-A-Porter

Missoni Mare Striped metallic crochet-knit wide-leg pants
Missoni Mare

Striped Metallic Wide-leg Pants

At Net-A-Porter

Kate Spade fringe straw bucket hat
Kate Spade

Fringe Straw Bucket Hat

At Neiman Marcus

6. Mini Dress

If you’re still interested in outfits fitting the Vegas pool party dress codes, a mini dress is the perfect thing to wear at a pool party.

Mini dresses come in all forms, from embellished party dresses to fun cover-ups worn at the pool area; the latter is perfect for this occasion.

If you are worried about not being dressed enough for the particular party you are attending, take some fun jewelry with you to add to your look once you arrive.

Bamba Swim BOUNTY dress - sunset
Bamba Swim

Bounty Dress

At Bamba Swim

LOEWE + Paula's Ibiza Anagram medium leather-trimmed raffia tote

+ Paula’s Ibiza Anagram Tote

At Net-A-Porter

Light pink Birkenstock sandals

Arizona Eva Sandal 

At Revolve

7. Maxi Dress

A flowy maxi dress is another great idea to wear at a pool party. They’re appropriate for sunny days while giving your legs some much-needed sun protection for the summer season. If you have a summer wedding party to attend, poolside parties are becoming very popular.

You can go with something cute and flirty, like floral prints, or you could even opt for a solid color with tassels if that’s more your style!

To keep it looking poolside appropriate, pair this with a straw clutch and flat sandals to not look too formal for the occasion.

BOAMAR Asha Long Dress

Asha Long Dress

At Revolve

Hermès Paris Epsom Mini Kelly Sellier 20

Epsom Mini Kelly Sellier 20

Secondhand at Fashionphile

Ray-Ban Icons 50mm Round Metal Sunglasses

Icons Round Metal Sunglasses

At Nordstrom

8. Sundress

Sundresses are a staple to wear at the pool. Mini dresses are easy to wear, provide a more casual look that’s a good option for poolside parties, and are a comfortable ensemble on hot days. 

It’s best to go for sundresses with lightweight fabrics so you won’t get too bothered by the hot weather. If it’s a casual pool party, a plain white dress is the perfect cover-up over a swimsuit, and it also looks great if worn to lunch before or after.

Pair your favorite beach sundress with flat sandals and a cute rattan bag for a finishing touch!

Astr The Label Haylen Dress
Astr The Label

Haylen Dress

At Revolve

Saint Laurent Tribute Espadrille Wedges
Saint Laurent

Tribute Espadrille Wedges

At Nordstrom

Wooden beaded beach bag

Gumball Bag

At Revolve

9. Bucket Hat

A good idea to add a fun touch to your look is to wear a bucket hat with your pool party outfit. Luxury brands are now all well-versed with bucket fats, and nearly all add a few to their annual resort collections.

A bucket hat is a floppy hat with a downward-facing brim; it can be squashed and folded up and is a great accessory to fold away into your bag, just in case.

Tularosa Hayden Crochet Pant

Hayden Crochet Pant

At Revolve

Off White Alps Arrow Acetate Shield Sunglasses

Alps Arrow Acetate Shield Sunglasses

At Neiman Marcus

Isabel Marant Haley Logo Embroidered Cotton Canvas Bucket Hat
Isabel Marant

Haley Logo Embroidered Hat

At Nordstrom

10. Canvas Bag

A chic canvas or straw bag is necessary to keep your possessions safe and dry. Leather or other delicate fabric bags will likely be ruined with greasy SPF products or by water overspill from the pool.

A great way to minimize the mess by the pool is to keep your items in pouches within your bag, i.e., all liquid products in one pouch and all delicate accessories and valuables in another.

Poolside bags also come in fun patterns and graphics and will complete your pool party look perfectly.

Black crochet cover up

Renata Swim Cover Up

At Revolve

Straw boat hat
Lack of Color

The Spencer Wide Brimmed Boater

At Revolve

Prada Crochet tote bag

Crochet Tote Bag

At Prada

We hope you found an outfit for your next pool party. If you’re still looking for more summer fashion inspiration, check out our related articles below.

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