How to Dress Like a Street Style Maven in Neon

Neon has been one of the biggest color trends since spring 2018 on and off the runway. Many may be intimidated by the ultra-bright hue, but there are so many ways to incorporate this key trend into your wardrobe without looking like a highlighter. Get your feet wet by adding a neon belt to your look or go big with a monochromatic neon ensemble. Learn how to dress like a pro straight from the street style of fashion’s finest during fashion month.

Here’s the breakdown: follow the styling tips based on your comfort level with this not-so-subtle trend. For those who are hesitant but intrigued and want to experiment, start with the tips for newcomers; for the truly daring who have styled with fluorescent hues before and are looking to up their style game, skip ahead to expert status. Take it from street style mavens spotted everywhere from the Jardin des Tuileries to Spring Studios on how to incorporate neon into your everyday look.

Newcomer: The Little Things

Shoes in highlighter hues were all the rage on the streets during Milan Fashion Week. If you’re a newcomer to this trend, try a neon shoe, sock, belt, mask—you get the idea. Just a small addition that’s easily incorporated to brighten up your outfit; the possibilities are endless!

Advanced Newcomer: Peak-a-boo

With a neon apparel piece as your base, layer your favorite neutral blazer or jumpsuit overtop for a pop of color. Coordinating with neutral tones balances out the look. You also have enough layers, so the fluorescent color doesn’t overpower the outfit, yet just enough for a peek-a-boo effect.

Skilled: Matchy Matchy

Match your neon apparel piece with a similarly colored neon accessory. Your ensemble will look coordinated and sophisticated with such a trendy touch. Do like this street style maven and match a pair of kitten-heel mules and a flowy satin skirt for a romantic and polished approach. Or pair a blazer with some pumps for a sartorial take on the trend.

Expert: Color on Color

Bold color on bold color is a surefire way to make a statement. Coordinate a look consisting of complementary (opposite) colors on the color wheel like this fashion phenom who matched a yellow ensemble with a neon purple coat. Or pair analogous (side by side) hues together like this other street style pro who layered a blue-green coat over her florescent green dress.

Seasoned Expert: Monochromatic Magic

This one’s a hard one to pull off, so you’ll need the confidence to match. A common misconception about the monochrome look is that each piece has to be the same shade of a particular color, but that’s not true! Create the same effect with varying tones of the same color, meaning a lighter or darker version of the same color dispersed throughout your outfit. Layer and mix textures like a lightweight knit with a satin to add interest. 

Veteran: Print Preview

Proceed with caution: this styling tip is only for the truly daring among us. Neon prints are the boldest of bold; you’ve got the fluorescent hue on top of a loud print. That means accessories should be minimal and styling should not distract in order for the attention to stay on the bold print. Unless, of course, you’re at Fashion Week in which case go all out like this styling pro who paired her splatter print coat with an equally loud tie-dye outfit, matching shoes and makeup for an ensemble that works in it that all pieces vie equally for attention.

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