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While a massive part of my job is figuring out the season's latest trends, I spend plenty of time thinking about the pieces in my own wardrobe that are timeless classics—the pieces that I pull out season after season and style alongside whichever handbag is trending. I love a white tee and a good pair of jeans, but the perfect little black dress has to be one of favorite items to throw on when I'm in a pinch.
I didn't understand the true power of a good LBD until I managed to snag a Max Mara wrap dress for $8 in a thrift store when I was in college. I wore it to every single job interview that I had that year, and I consider it to be the secret to all my early-morning looks when I was rushing to get to work or class on time. It made me feel confident and like a certified adult and like I actually had my life together, which I most certainly did not during that time.
I can only hope that one of the perfect little black dresses below hold the same power in your wardrobe. Some of the options on this list are perfect for date night, while others work for an office party or just to wear to work on an everyday basis. Some feature spring-weather ready cutouts, while others are better suited for chillier temperatures. Keep scrolling to shop all of our favorite picks.
The Ribbed Midi
I own a few pieces from The Range and I wear them whenever I have the chance. This ribbed midi dress is perfect for putting on when you don't know what to wear because it's the ideal one-and-done piece.
The Subtle Cutout Mini
Going somewhere fancy? This satin-look mini from WAYF retails for under $100 and looks like it costs way more than that.
The Off-The-Shoulder Mini
Simon Miller gets it right when it comes to fashion-person-approved pieces that stand the test of time. The lightweight mesh fabric feels like air on the skin.
The Classic Nap Dress
Ah, the good old Ellie Nap Dress from Hill House Home. When you have a good thing going, why try to fix it? The stretchy top makes for easy wear, and the creaseless fabric means you can literally fall asleep in it if you wanted.
The Elevated LBD
Midi dress, but make it fashion! The gathered details and slightly asymmetrical hemline on this pick from FRAME is great for wearing back to the office.
The Romantic Floral Pick
Fact: LBD's are better when they're covered in a cute print. This dress from & Other Stories is proof.
The '90s-era Tube Dress
The '90s called—they want their dress back! This classic tube-style mini is majorly retro, so spruce it up with a few more modern accessories.
The Do-It-All Mini
This dress is so good, I bought it in two other colors (and convinced my sister to buy it in black so we could match). Prepare to never want to take it off.
The Modern Cutout Dress
Smaller, circular cutouts are majorly trending this season. Make them work in your wardrobe by wearing them on a black midi dress like this one.
The Classic Slip
Every dress lover needs a little black slip dress in their closet. Endlessly style-able, these closet superheroes are worth stocking up on.
The Puff-Sleeved Mini
If you want to channel some romantic Bridgerton vibes, this Reformation dress is for you. This author loves a puffed sleeve!
The Tent Dress
Pack this mini on vacation with you and you'll have the perfect beach-to-bar option. It literally doesn't get any easier than this.
The Elevated Tank Dress
Cuyana is in the business of making "fewer, better, things." This midi dress is made from their soft Pima cotton fabric, which means that you'll want to live in it.
The Ideal Wedding Guest Dress
Got a wedding coming on your calendar? You'll need a dress to wear!! This Norma Kamali option is the definition of timeless.
The Perfect Work Dress
Remember how I said that you'll need a dress to wear back to the office? This one is the ideal pick.
If you wish your favorite had a little shape, you'll love this oversized option from Everlane.
The Transitional Sweater Dress
Small, elevated details like the subtle twist-front design on this knit dress from Mango make it feel special.
The Tiered Midi
Meet the most party-ready option on this list. I mean, the pom poms are to die for, right?
The Sexy Cutout Dress
This dress from AFRM has it all. A sexy backless design? Check. A slightly more conservative front so you can fool your relatives into thinking it's not totally open in the back? It has that, too.
The Sweet Pick
Fashion insiders love Ganni for its playful range of femme-feeling dresses. This one is no exception thanks to the oversized collar design.
The Summer LBD
We've already discussed how cutouts are having a major moment in 2022. And while smaller options are everywhere, so too are larger ones places around the waist, as demonstrated on this option from Jonathan Simkhai STANDARD.
The Sporty Pick
Like a hoodie, but cuter! Swap out your leggings for a sporty mini dress like this one this summer.
The Slinky Maxi
The Slightly Sheer Pick
The sheer top on this longer midi dress from DKNY make it feel playful. It's perfect to wear to work and to drinks afterwards.
The Updated Halter
How fun are the menswear-inspired details on this otherwise simple halter dress from Zara? I love the satin touches.