How to Dress Like a Ballerina Daily
We all want to transmit both strength and elegance when we get dressed every morning, and a ballerina-inspired look is the perfect way to do so. We're not talking about ballerinas onstage, with their stiff tutus and big blinking jewels, but in streetwear. Think about it - their style is pared down, comfortable, affordable and office-appropriate.
The best thing about dressing like a ballerina is that it can fit all styles and body types. You can channel The Nutcracker for a sparkling Christmas party, or you can opt for a slick and androgynous look that looks both stunning and effortless. Stay with us at OneHowTo and we'll show you how to dress like a ballerina daily.
Before starting with particular pieces, the first thing to do is to take a look at the color palette. Ballerinas are often associated with light pink, but ballerina-inspired style tends to go for more mature colors that are easy to mix and match since dance wear is all about layering.
Choose neutral, flat colors like white, black, silver, grey or beige. Patterns should be minimalistic and soft. Baby pink is still an option, as are pastels and the shades of blue, violet and green that can be found in the backgrounds of Romantic fairy-tale ballets. Think dreamy and moody rather than full-on whimsical.
In order to dress like a ballerina, most people choose a skirt as the outfit's centerpiece. A tutu-inspired skirt of layered tulle is an elegant way to create a formal, feminine look. Of course, we're talking about soft tulle, not the stiff and garish material that was popular in Hot Topic circa 2005.
If a tutu seems a bit too obvious, go for a soft chiffon skirt - it's very satisfying to pirouette in when nobody's looking, and it's what many ballerinas wear to dance class. A longer, tunic-like pleated fabric is less flouncy and more mature, and it's perfect for the office. You can also find a simple fit and flare dress for a similar effect.
Tops and leotards
If ballerina skirts are loose and flouncy, tops are form-fitting in contrast. After all, the dancers' posture and lines must always be visible. Get inspiration from leotards, which often have gorgeous scooped backs, complex criss-crossing straps, otherworldly lace or even jewels.
Take advantage of the fact that bodysuits and unitards are all the rage now: they come with mesh, cutouts and all kinds of designs to flaunt your favorite parts. Make sure to pick cotton or camisole fabric for daily wear, not nylon.
If you don't want to wear something that form-fitting, go for a loose soft top with a boat or scoop neck and let a lace bralette or an edgy bustier peek out.
Knitwear and outerwear
As we said, dancewear is all about layering. Ballerinas love their knitted shrugs and wraparounds, which are often tied in a bow at the waist. They're great for all weathers, and they're super comfortable! You can also wear a cropped sweater or top - ideally, it should reach just under your waist to free your movements as much as possibly.
These kinds of ballet jackets and sweaters often come with boat or Y necklines; if you need something more formal, look for a blouse in that shape.
Trench coats and long, chunky cardigans are the perfect outerwear to dress like a ballerina, but you can opt for a badass biker leather jacket or well-worn oversized denim jacket to show off your sharp edges. And why not decorate it with ballet-themed enamels or patches?
Leggings and tights
If you're not a skirt person, don't worry. You can dress like a ballerina daily with skinny jeans, neutral pants or, especially, leggings.
When we say "legwarmers", most people think of neon, itchy materials or - gasp - Fame. However, there are soft, knit legwarmers in neutral colors that make wearing boots all that more comfy. You can also wear chunky or thigh-high socks; you'll call attention to your legs and be warm, all at once.
Ballet tights are almost always sheer or light pink, but you can dress up a skirted outfit with lace or slightly shimmery tights. They all look elegant!
Of course, ballet flats are the most obvious option: If you don't know how to combine them, take a look at our article. They come in very different designs; with open toe, open heel, open sides... There are even lace-up ballet flats that mimic ballet shoes all that much better.
However, you can also wear ribbon lace-up pumps or sandals, or neutral, school-like Oxfords or saddle shoes. If you prefer, dark, white or pink tennis shoes are a comfortable option - as long as they're not too flashy.
Since ballerinas have to move around, jump and spin a lot, they don't tend to wear that many accessories. Jewels, for instance, can get in the way - dancers never wear big earrings or rings, which can be dangerous. Instead, opt for a pared down look. If you do wear jewelry, make it small and silver.
However, hair accessories like romantic combs, vintage pins and head bands are very popular, since they dress up any updo. Take a look at the most popular ballets and see what the characters are wearing: feathers in Swan Lake or small dainty flowers in Giselle and La Sylphide. The tiaras in Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty can be a bit much, but don't let us stop you.
Makeup should be as natural as possible - if you were really going to dance practice you'd sweat it out. Focus on achieving dewy, healthy skin and use nude shades - shimmer at the most - on your lips and eyelids if you paint them at all, and wear only light mascara to make your eyes pop.
How to wear your hair like a ballerina
Well - a ballerina bun, of course! Make a high ponytail, smoothing any frizz or bumps, and twist it around the tie. Fix it with bobby pins - done! You can also wear your hair in a simple ponytail, a French twist, or a half updo, as long as it's pulled away from your face.
If you have short hair, curl it or pin it back with hair pins, barrettes or a headband. It can also look fantastic simply slicked back.
This is how to dress like a ballerina daily - if you have any tips, tell us in the comments section! If your look inspires you to join a dance class of any style for real, we have an article on what to wear for that.
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