Halloween has come and gone, and Thanksgiving is on the horizon. In wardrobe speak, this means that winter isn’t just coming, it’s pretty much here. Temperatures are dropping fast, and we’re layering up even faster, starting with the winter dress.
The winter dress is not that much different from the fall dress, just add some extra weight and/or fabric so it’ll stand the test of snow, sleet, or whatever else the season throws at you. Think sweater-like materials and Yuletide prints, long sleeves, and high necks. But how to know which frock is a fit for you as you step into the chilliest period of the year, keeping you covered for office wear, holiday parties, and everything in between? To answer this question, we turned to shoppers themselves for their star ratings and reviews on dresses from all our reliable retail faves, including Madewell, Everlane, Free People, and more. Scroll onwards to see which dresses are earning customer approval this winter as you navigate your way to your own perfect winter pick.
Welcome to Hype Machine, our hit-list of the top reviewed products across the web — according to a crowd of die-hard shoppers. Call this your 4-star & up only club, with entry granted by our devoted-to-the-goods shop editors.At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff.
All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. All product details reflect the price and availability at the time of publication. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.
Free People Georgie Midi Dress, $78
This effortless, laidback cotton dress looks sleek and feels cozy — the perfect blend of features for a winter frock. Plus, it has pockets, which is always a plus.
The Hype: 4.9 out of 5 stars and 9 reviews on FreePeople.com
Best For: An oversized silhouette
What They’re Saying: “This is comfortable and not too thin and not too thick . Flattering also. I’m getting another color ! U won’t b disappointed!” – Michelebuchko1, Free People reviewer
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Current Air Cable-Knit Sweater Dress Set, $170
This figure-hugging, hint-of-skin-showing, cable-knit sweater dress comes with a matching cropped shrug for an ensemble that’s equal parts comfy and versatile.
The Hype: 4.4 out of 5 stars and 9 reviews on Anthropologie.com
Best For: Staying cozy and sexy
What They’re Saying: “I love this dress! The material is very soft. It is flattering and not too tight. I love that you can wear it as a shift or add the top. This is perfect for work or going out. It is classic! The quality is great! It looks expensive. I ordered the lighter color.” – jfave, Anthropologie reviewer
J.Crew Knit Ribbed Sweater-Dress, $76.50
Long sleeves, ribbed fabric, crease-free appeal: the fixings of a go-to dress that’ll keep you stylishly warm while going wherever you go.
The Hype: 4.4 out of 5 stars and 10 reviews on JCrew.com
Best For: Going out (and then some)
What They’re Saying: “I adore your sweater dress! Bought three last year, now added two more…they work for everything…dates, dinner with the girls, work, packing and travel, hanging out and making dinner for friends. Everything!” – KadyBloom, J.Crew reviewer
Madewell Flannel Colette Mini Dress, $118
This cozy, throw-on dress is made from a soft flannel in a wintry fall print. Toss it on over a turtleneck for extra coverage (and sartorial points).
The Hype: 4.6 out of 5 stars and 7 reviews on Madewell.com
Best For: Layering
What They’re Saying: “This dress is so cute and comfortable! I was out wearing it the other day, and when the temperature dropped, the rest of my family got cold. I was still warm in this flannel dress, despite shoe short it is.” – STYLEBYBABI, Madewell reviewer
French Connection Simona Rib Sweater Dress, $138
Just because it’s wintertime doesn’t mean ultra-tight clothes get tossed out the window and into the snow. Keep it sexy in this French Connection pick fashioned from a ribbed sweater-like fabric that clings to your curves.
The Hype: 4.7 out of 5 stars and 27 reviews on Nordstrom.com
Best For: Body-con
What They’re Saying: “beautiful dress: I’m normally a 10-12 in dresses I ordered a 10. The dress is form fitting but not ridiculously tight. It’s sits nice on my body…I am 5’10 198lbs for reference. I’m not super curvy but the pattern enhances my shape. The material is not thin but it’s also not super thick…it’s just right. I’ll be ordering the green one as well!” – Zoezoesbetter, Nordstrom reviewer
Fraiche By J Body-Con Midi Dress, $49.97
Update your selection of winter wardrobe staples for a just $50. This easygoing black number is one you can count on for all sorts of occasions, featuring a low scooped neck, long sleeves, and ruched details at the waist.
The Hype: 4 out of 5 stars and 3 reviews on NordstromRack.com
Best For: The LBD, winter edition
What They’re Saying: “Very nice material! Keep in the mind the bottom of the dress is not fitted/pencil! Thought it was gonna be but it’s not, still a nice dress though! True to size.” – LMH95, Nordstrom Rack reviewer
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Pact Sweatshirt Dress, $90
Think your favorite sweatshirt… but with a little extra fabric. The sweatshirt dress is the comfiest, coolest way to rock a frock for winter, and this one is made without toxic chemicals from an organic cotton material that uses 81% less water than its conventional counterpart. What’s not to love?
The Hype: 4.5 out of 5 stars and 76 reviews on WearPact.com
Best For: Eco-conscious shoppers
What They’re Saying: “Favorite! I have this dress in all three colors (bought each one over a period of a few months since it was intermittently available) and I truly love it. I am honestly so happy to wear it every single time. It fits me well, is comfortable, and looks great. I feel silly about how excited I get to put it on… but I’ve genuinely never been so enthusiastic about an item of clothing. Highly recommend.” – Xox66, Pact reviewer
Hill House Home The Ellie Nap Dress, $125
The Nap Dress rose to fame in 2020, and each new iteration of the style that’s dropped since has got shoppers going a bit click happy. The Ellie is an A-line version of the dress with elasticated smocking, ruffled shoulders and a tiered midi skirt that looks great on its own or layered over a long-sleeve turtleneck for winter wear.
The Hype: 4.9 out of 5 stars and 84 reviews on HillHouseHome.com
Best For: Cottagecore hibernation
What They’re Saying: “Addictive: Hands down the most comfortable dress I have ever owned and also my favorite. I now own 8 Ellie’s and find myself obsessing about the “one I didn’t get”, and I just learned of the nap dress existence a few months ago. My new hobby is tracking down old drops on secondary markets. Gone is the day that I reach for anything in my closet that isn’t comfortable. It’s hard to compete with a dress that’s so magical it makes you feel like Cinderella, each time you put it on.” – Angie, Hill House Home reviewer
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H&M Rib-knit Turtleneck Dress, $49.99
From H&M’s Conscious collection, consider this straight-cut, relaxed-fit garment that pretty much looks like a hug in a dress. Plus, the sage green color is both fashion-forward and season-less, making it an eye-catching pick that’ll stand the test of time.
The Hype: 4.2 out of 5 stars and 14 reviews on HM.com
Best For: Turtleneck-turned-dress
What They’re Saying: “Warm and cozy. Nice knit. Definite wardrobe staple.” – Anonymous, H&M reviewer
Bardot Tie Dye Dress, $114
Tie-dye had a major moment last year, and the popularity of this print has yet to wane. But what was once reserved for matching sweatsuits and at-home life is now being used in garments made for the outdoors, like this comfortable yet cool long-sleeve tie-dye dress.
The Hype: 4.1 out of 5 stars and 8 reviews on Revolve.com
Best For: Updated pandemic style
What They’re Saying: “Loved this dress! True to size and perfect length!” – Corey, Revolve reviewer
Everlane The Tiered Mockneck Dress, $100
Another big 2020 trend? Tiered dresses. This 100% cotton option features an extra-high neckline and boxy silhouette that looks great over thick tights, boots, and whatever other seasonal staples you turn to as soon as the temperature drops.
The Hype: 4.63 out of 5 stars and 19 reviews on Everlane.com
Best For: On-trend basics
What They’re Saying: “This is the chic pilgrim dress of my dreams. When I wear this dress I feel like 1,000,000 bucks.” – Lizzzzzzooo, Everlane reviewer
Gentle Herd Pleated-Front 100% Cotton Shirt Dress, $88
At first look, this midi dress appears charmingly simple, but get a bit closer and you’ll notice the curved drawstring and pleated accents that add a subtle touch of elegance to this ultra-wearable piece.
The Hype: 4.36 out of 5 stars and 14 reviews on GentleHerd.com
Best For: Day-to-night
What They’re Saying: “I’ve received multiple compliments each time I’ve worn this dress. It looks good, is comfy and fits well.” – Larisa Barannikova, Gentle Herd reviewer
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Tory Burch Jersey Striped Dress, $348
An irresistible nod to Seventies sportswear in the form of a roomy striped dress, courtesy of the classic American designer Tory Burch.
The Hype: 4.2 out of 5 stars and 4 reviews on ToryBurch.com
Best For: Designer pick
What They’re Saying: “Imagine your favorite sweatpants in a dress that you can wear out and about or working from home when you want to be pulled together for the zoom calls yet be totally comfortable. That is what this dress is!” – Rviviani, Tory Burch reviewer
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Nadaam Turtleneck Dress, $250
Slip into this 100% Mongolian cashmere and it’s possible you’ll never want to slip out of it. Smooth, sophisticated, and sustainably made, this dress checks all the boxes of a special purchase that’s made to last a lifetime.
The Hype: 4.7 out of 5 stars and 42 reviews on Nadaam.co
Best For: Investment piece
What They’re Saying: “Minimalist cozy versatility: this dress is a stunner. Amazingly soft and can be worn in so many ways. Will be great if we can ever travel again. Sooooo worth the money. Thinking of buying another….” – Christine, Nadaam reviewer
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