The Slip Dress

The Slip Dress

When underwear became outerwear.

THE STORY BEHIND IT
Like so many 2016 fashion trends, the slip dress too is an echo from the 1990s. The often bias-cut, lace-trimmed and spaghetti-strapped dress was popularised by supermodels like Naomi Campbell and Kate Moss (remember the completely sheer one she wore in 1993?) and artists and actresses ranging from Madonna to Courtney Love and Jennifer Aniston. 

In its return to high fashion, the slip dress is no longer considered as daring as it once was and the underwear-as-outerwear trend doesn’t really shock anyone anymore. In the 90s, the slip added a sexual layer to whoever chose to wear it. In current fashion – it’s just a layer, and often worn over a T-shirt or sweatshirt and paired with a pair of jeans. 

The slip dress as we know it dates back a few decades, but the idea of showing lace-trimmed underwear or a slim silhouette with a lot of skin showing dates back centuries – to the days of Marie Antoinette and 17th century aristocracy. For centuries, the slip was standard underwear for women and wearing it without a “real” dress on top was a way to rebel against societal norms.  

With the 90s seemingly never letting go of its fashion impact, it was only a matter of time before the slip dress would make a grand return as well. It’s punk, grunge and glamorous. Yet it works for red carpet events and casual days at the office. 

Hit the attic, basement or wherever to find your (or your mum’s) old 90s favourite – or check out our selected favourites from H&M below. 

Need some slip dress styling advice? See our guide to layering it here.


The slip dress is modelled by Danish beauty Camilla Christensen (Le Management). Lok Lau (CLM) did her hair, and Nina Belkhir (Mikas Looks) worked her makeup magic.

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