summer denim shorts outfit

Across the globe, jeans are a timeless essential that will never go out of style. Not only are they sturdy and long-lasting – they also go with everything! And when the weather gets warm, jean shorts outfits are fun to put together. Read on for some style inspo!

How to Style Cute Outfits with Jean Shorts

Jean shorts are especially popular in the summer. They can be high waisted or low-rise, dressed up or dressed down. Plus, unlike a lot of women’s more formal pants, denim shorts usually come with pockets.

Most people associate jean shorts with casual or outdoorsy activities. And yes, they are perfect for the open-air farmer’s market or bottomless brunch at the brewery. You can’t go wrong with pairing jean shorts with a white t-shirt or graphic tee and an oversized sweatshirt. But there’s no need to limit yourself to wearing jean shorts only on casual days.

The truth is, there’s really nothing that doesn’t go with jeans. So here are some ways you can dress up your jean shorts.

How to Dress Up Jean Shorts

While women's jean shorts may not be the go-to option for a wedding or a business dinner, some light touches can dress them up:

Go for a Dark Wash

Typically, it’s easier to dress up dark wash jeans or a black denim shorts outfit. For example, dark denim shorts and thigh-high heeled boots with long socks paired with a trendy vest over a collared shirt, topped off with a black blazer is an upscale, intelligent look. Accessorize with some tasteful jewelry and you’re all set.

Light Wash Denim Shorts

A light, clean-cut blazer, a crisp button-down shirt, and some flats can make light-wash jean shorts look professional for work.

jean shorts outfit

Date Night Jean Shorts

Whether it’s a first date or one of many, a cute denim shorts outfit can be just the thing to keep it fun and light.

Show Off Your Silhouette

Imagine: a patterned blouse tucked into belted jean shorts. Or a curve-hugging bodysuit paired with denim shorts and some heels or wedges. Bring along a pop-of-color purse and a long cardigan in case date night gets chilly.

Jeans on Jeans

The jeans on jeans look is coming back, so don’t be afraid to throw on a jeans jacket with your jean shorts for an evening of watching the sunset or going window shopping downtown. And why not pair with some cowboy or ankle boots?

Grunge-Chic with Fishnet Stockings

If you want to go grunge-chic for your black jean shorts outfit, put on some fishnets underneath. Although fishnet stockings are another layer, they won’t add any warmth – but they’re just the thing to turn a day look into a night look. Pair with a leather jacket, silver statement earrings, and combat boots. The final touch? A red lip.

What to Wear With Jean Shorts

Summertime is the best time for rocking a jean shorts outfit. Experiment with pieces in the spring so that by the summer, you’ve got your favorite looks nailed down. Accessorize with outerwear, jewelry, and footwear. 


One of the keys for figuring out how to style jean shorts is finding the right top for the occasion. Sleeveless, short-sleeved blouses, t-shirts, sweaters, crop tops, and long-sleeved tops - they all look great with jeans. And layering women’s tops is always an option in every season.

Go-To Casual Look

An easy casual look with jean shorts is a flannel shirt and a henley underneath with sneakers. Tie the flannel around your waist if you’d like.

Don’t Forget about Shortalls!

Women’s denim overalls are super cute in the summertime. Wear a striped tee, graphic tee, or basic t-shirt underneath with sandals. Find soem more inspiration on how to style overalls on our blog!

denim shorts outfit


For outdoor adventures, practicality is the priority for short shorts outfits. But that’s no reason to skimp out on style. 

Beach Day

On beach days, a light poncho will keep your skin safe from harmful sun rays when you’re walking along the shore. Accessorize with a floppy sun hat, or a drawstring bucket hat to prevent the sea breeze from blowing your hat away. Jean shorts will keep the sand at bay when you sit down on the dunes. Plus, they look effortlessly cool when layered over a bikini bottom or whole piece bathing suit.

Hiking Outfit

When hiking, you’ll look like a professional (even if you’re totally not) with jean shorts and a waterproof windbreaker. Jean shorts are tough: they won’t tear if a branch or bramble gets caught on you. Don’t forget a backpack, hiking boots, and a sweat-resistant shirt.


How to Style Sunglasses

No summer denim shorts outfit is complete without sunglasses! Even if it’s not sunny out, sunglasses resting on your head or clasped on the collar of your shirt is a prime way to accessorize.

  • Resting sunglasses on your head is an alternative to wearing a hat, headband, beanie, or bandana.
  • Clasping sunglasses on the neck of your shirt adds the same razzle dazzle as a statement necklace or scarf would. (Of course, you can wear necklaces, scarves, or chokers in addition.)
  • Sunglasses can also be accessorized by tucking them into a front shirt pocket, front jeans pocket, or back pants pocket (just don’t sit on them by mistake!).

How to Style Belts

A belt can also draw attention to your shorts. Belts can be practical and hidden, or they can completely be the focal point of the outfit. When worn for fashion, belts don’t have to physically hold up your shorts or pants; they just add a pop of color or uniqueness. 

  • Our jean shorts have belt loops that can accommodate a wide, chunky belt for an eclectic look, or a skinny belt or chain for a minimalist look.
  • Create a DIY belt by looping a thin scarf and tying it in a bow.

Get Ready for Summer with UNIONBAY

Jean shorts for women can be a blank canvas. Dress them up or dress them down. If you really want to flex your designer muscles, you can even rip them up or draw on them!

Need more jean shorts outfit inspo? UNIONBAY has offered high-quality, laidback clothing and lifestyle pieces since 1981. Browse our collection to find your style, and don’t forget to check out our clearance for the best prices on some of our last chance items. See what’s in store for you today!