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Lilac dresses are everywhere for summer - 11 we're loving right now

Move over LBD, it's all about the little lilac dress this season

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Sophie Bates
Commerce Writer
May 30, 2024
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Lilac is having a moment in 2024, and following the Barbiecore pink trend that was everywhere last summer, the purple shade is set to be the colour of the season. We're seeing lilac lead the way across occasion dresses, prom dresses, and pretty daytime floral pieces, so it's definitely the colour to look out for. 

The pastel hue will inject some colour into your warm-weather looks while still looking seriously elegant, and whether it's a pale lilac or a lavender shade you're after, the versatile colour will work with so many pieces in your wardrobe. 

From lilac mini dresses for the brunch date in your diary to purple bridesmaid dresses for the big day, I've picked out the stylish lilac dresses from the high street that are worth adding to your wardrobe this summer. 

Celebrities wearing lilac dresses

amal clooney holly willougby kate middleton and rihanna in lilac dresses © Getty
Amal Clooney, Holly Willoughby, Princess Kate and Rihanna have all looked glam in lilac dresses

How to style a lilac dress 

Lilac's soft pastel hues pair perfectly with golds, nudes, whites and pale pinks, so if you're shopping for a dress for a special occasion, those are the colours to consider when it comes to your heels and accessories. For daytime wear, a lilac dress would look effortlessly stylish paired with a raffia bag and espadrille sandals for a stunning holiday ensemble. 

How I chose the best lilac dresses

  • Occasion: I've selected a range of dresses suitable for every occasion, from lilac bridesmaid dresses to relaxed midis to throw on with sandals. 
  • Price: Fashion doesn't need to break the bank, which is why I've picked out dresses at a range of price points starting from £35.
  • Trusted brands: While I haven't tried on all of the dresses in this edit, I've only included brands that are known and loved by the HELLO! Shopping Team. 

Mint Velvet Gathered Bodice Midi Dress

mint velvet lilac midi dress © Mint Velvet

Sizes: 6-18

Shipping: £3.95 or free with a £100 spend 

Returns: Within 28 days 

Mint Velvet's ultra-feminine lilac midi dress features a V-neckline, cap sleeves, and a flattering gathered bodice, complete with a contrasting full skirt with gorgeous ruffle detailing. I recommend styling the midi with cream slip-on sandals for a stylish daywear look or opt for white heels, a matching clutch, and delicate gold jewellery for special occasions.

Phase Eight Mia One Shoulder Maxi Dress

phase eight lilac dress © John Lewis

Sizes: 6-20

Shipping: £4.50 and free with a £50 spend 

Returns: Within 30 days 

Lilac bridesmaid dresses are a popular choice every summer, and Phase Eight's one-shoulder gown is stunning. Flaring out at the hem for a feminine silhouette, this maxi dress by Phase Eight is free from any fussy details. The asymmetric neckline has delicate ruffles that wrap around the bodice, with a layered skirt that beautifully adds dimension. The matching belt cinches at the waist to tie the look together, and the formal number would pair perfectly with nude strappy sandals.

M&S Round Neck Midaxi Smock Dress

marks and spencer lilac midi dress © Marks & Spencer

Sizes: 6-24

Shipping: £3.99 or free with a £60 spend 

Returns: Within 28 days 

M&S has been nailing it with its summer fashion pieces lately, and this gorgeous lilac dress is no exception. The easy-to-wear midi has a crinkled bodice and flattering smocking, it a floaty midaxi skirt that's perfect for pairing with white trainers or sandals. The tie front adds extra ruching for a vintage-style finish. 

QUIZ Lilac Chiffon Tiered Skater Dress

quiz lilac floral mini dress © New Look

Sizes: 10-16

Shipping: £2.99 or free with a £50 spend 

Returns: Within 28 days

If you're searching for a mini lilac dress, look no further than Quiz's chiffon skater dress. Perfect for summer occasions, it features an eye-catching floral print and an elasticated shirred waist, with long sleeves that have tie cuffs to create a romantic puff effect. The tiered skirt will help to elongate the leg when paired with heels, and I'd finish the look with silver drop earrings.

& Other Stories Fitted Puff Sleeve Dress

and other stories lilac puff sleeve midi dress © & Other Stories

Sizes: 32-44

Colours: Available in lilac, pink, black 

Shipping: £4 or free with a £80 spend 

Returns: Within 30 days

& Other Stories is filled with elevated day dresses right now. This vintage-style midi has a square neckline with exaggerated puff sleeves, a smocked back, and an asymmetric skirt finished with fixed overlay pleating. The pastel style can be dressed up or down for just about any occasion, and I'd team it with espadrille wedges and a raffia bag for an elegant summer ensemble.

ASOS Raw Edge Bias Floral Mini Dress

asos lilac dress © ASOS

Sizes: 4-18

Colours: Available in yellow and black 

Shipping: £4.50 or free with a £40 spend 

Returns: Within 28 days

ASOS has just dropped the ultimate day-to-night dress, and I'm in love. The lilac mini has a burgundy floral print, a scoop back, and thin straps with delicate fringe detailing. Whether you're dressing up for a girl's night out or teaming it with gold sandals for your next holiday, the printed dress is worth reaching for all season.

River Island Chiffon Belted Swing Maxi Dress

river island lilac ruffle maxi dress © River Island

Sizes: 6-18

Colours: Available in lilac, pink, black, brown

Shipping: £4 or free with a £50 spend 

Returns: Within 28 days 

River Island's lilac midi dress is flattering in all the right places with its chiffon design, waist-cinching belt, and feminine flutter sleeves. The maxi cut falls just about the ankle, while the V-neck falls into a wrap design to enhance the silhouette. The occasion dress would make a stunning prom dress or wedding guest dress for summer.

Monki Off-Shoulder Midi Dress

monki lilac midi dress © Monki

Sizes: 34-50

Colours: Available in lilac, green check, black check

Shipping: £2.99 or free with a £35 spend 

Returns: Within 30 days 

If you're on the lookout for a breezy summer dress to throw on all season, Monki's off-shoulder midi is ticking all the boxes. The flounced skirt tiered skirt looks so comfortable for wearing all day, while the open back with tie detailing adds dimension. I love it styled with trainers and high socks for a relaxed 'cool girl' appearance.

Reiss Florere Side Tie Midi Dress

reiss lilac midi dress © Reiss

Sizes: 8-18

Shipping: £5.95 for standard delivery 

Returns: Within 28 days

Reiss is the home of elegant occasion dresses, and this fit-and-flare lilac number will flatter all body shapes. The timeless silhouette is complemented by the tie detailing and pockets for a modern twist that will look gorgeous paired with strappy heels and a matching clutch during summer evenings.

Reformation Mattea Silk Dress

reformation lilac polka dot dress © Reformation

Sizes: 4-16

Shipping: £6 or free with a £100 spend 

Returns: Within 30 days 

Polka dots are a trend that will never go out of style, so Reformation's silk lilac dress is one you'll buy now and keep forever. It has a relaxed fit that skims in the figure, with thin adjustable straps and a scoop neckline. Wear it with heeled mules and statement gold jewellery to round off the ultra-glam look.

Boohoo Racer Neck Maxi Dress

boohoo lilac dress © Boohoo

Sizes: 8-18 

Shipping: £3.99 for standard delivery

Returns: Within 28 days

Boohoo's lilac maxi dress is the ultimate date night number with its halterneck and open back. The slinky style is ideal for holiday evenings and dinner's out, and it would look stunning teamed with gold heels and a matching clutch bag.

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