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Lately, I’ve found myself in a bit of a fashion funk. I’m eager to ditch my sweats and start dressing up again, but honestly, for what? Why squeeze into something uncomfortable when I’m still not seeing many people and I can just take a photo for IG and put my loungewear back on? I’ve been struggling to find pieces that feel on-trend and are comfortable enough for all-day wear—but just as I was about to resign to a life of leggings forever, I found it: the sheer mesh trend. Cue the choir of angels, not to mention a large splurge from AFRM.
I’ve seen tons of celebs wearing sheer mesh over the past year or so—Kylie Jenner and Kim Kardashian are mega-fans, as is Cardi B, and Camila Mendes just posted in the cutest mesh dress—and the top two silhouettes appear to be long body-con dresses and thin, fitted turtlenecks. Why? Because sheer mesh is so damn figure-flattering! A single-layer body-con fit can show everything; and not necessarily in a good way. Something about a layer of sheer mesh overtop of a built-in slip is both forgiving and more flattering. Plus, the sheer element just feels sexy AF!
So, how to try it out? If you aren’t an AFRM fan, allow me to turn you on to the brand that basically made sheer mesh accessible to those of us without celeb stylists at our beck and call. In addition to a bunch of other cute clothing, they’re known for their Zadie Semi Sheer Turtlenecks and Shailene Mesh Dresses, both of which are staples in my closet getting new life thanks to this trend’s revival.
I wore AFRM’s Shailene Mesh Dress for a day out in the city and believe me, I felt way better than I’ve felt in my sweats for the past 13 months. It was nice to just get dressed up for myself—and in addition to sheer mesh being figure-flattering and trendy, it just so happens to be hella comfortable. AFRM’s dresses come in straight and plus sizing and are stretchy as can be; when I really want to amp them up and emphasize my silhouette, I just add some shapewear underneath.
Once you fall in love with AFRM’s silhouettes, you’ll go nuts for their myriad of patterns. My personal fave is the Zadie Semi Sheer Turtleneck in Vintage Chain, but there are tons of colors and patterns to choose from whether you want a simple, all-black look or a major statement (like a mess of gold chains or a literal tiger on you chest).
If you’re into the sheer mesh trend, too, you’re in luck—it’s only getting more popular! Since sheer mesh is so lightweight, it’s the ideal fabric for transitional weather, so expect to see it everywhere come spring. If you want to get ahead of the curve and shop now, check out some more amazing AFRM options below and peep even more patterns and silhouettes on their site!
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Zadie Semi Sheer Turtleneck in Aqua Tie Dye
AFRM has multiple different tie-dye colorways for their sheer mesh pieces, so if you’re still a fan of the colorful trend, lean in and stock up on a few.
Shailene Sheer Long Sleeve Dress in Placement Ombre Animal
The Jersey Girl in me is a sucker for leopard, tiger, zebra—you name it. I’ve never met an animal print I didn’t like, so this dress is right up my alley!
Long Sleeve Lace Dress in Noir Lace
A twist on sheer mesh: Sheer lace! The under layer of this gorgeous dress features some criss-cross detailing that really shows some skin. Ooh la la.
Dawn Cutout Turtleneck Knit Top in Noir
If you’re into a more ~subtle~ option that still shows skin, the Dawn Top’s cut-out neckline and sheer mesh sleeves are the perfect balance of sexy and conservative.
Mari Print Long Sleeve Mesh Body-Con Dress in Spring Daisy
I’m a big fan of a body-con midi dress, but if you like a little less length, you can go short with this mini moment instead! This daisy print just screams Spring 2021.
Long Sleeve Mesh Body-Con Dress in Olive
This olive stunner features the same criss-cross detailing as the lace option I mentioned earlier, but the sheer mesh material instead of lace makes it a little more wearable. You’ll still look hot AF, though!
Zadie Semi Sheer Turtleneck in Ombre Angel Graphic
I can just see Gen Z girls lining up to snag this angel graphic Zadie top. So playful and fun!
Rhys Cutout Long Sleeve Midi Dress in Vintage Leopard
If you aren’t one for form-fitting silhouettes, the Rhys dress has a skirt with a slight flare, plus a fun tummy cutout and flattering ruching details.