Your guide to the cutest 'n' trendiest summer tops

Say goodbye to your basic crop top. Summer 2021 fashion is all about trendy tops that take your whole ‘fit to the next level. From tanks and tees to button-downs, there are shirts for every aesthetic and style. We’ve rounded up some of the cutest ones, as seen on your fave influencers. Use this guide to find out which styles you like best, then thrift or shop for similar looks in stores.

The Scarf Top

Image: Instagram/@hannahmeloche

Looking for a top that’s soft, sleeveless, and stylish? You’ll love the scarf top, modeled above by Youtuber Hannah Meloche. Known for its distinctive triangular shape, the scarf top is exactly what it sounds like: a top made from silky scarf fabric, cut so it folds into a point in the front. This top has always been a hit during festival season, but recently saw a surge in mainstream popularity. Use a scarf top to elevate plain denim shorts, or pair it with a chic skirt for a fancier look.

The Halter Top

Image: Instagram/@skyleraboujaoude

You might already own a halter top and not even know it. Instead of the typical tank top straps that go over your shoulders, the straps of a halter top tie together behind your neck. That’s what makes a top a halter—whether it’s cropped, backless, or long is up to personal taste. We love how Chicken Girls star Skyler Aboujaoude paired a black halter with bandana-print pants. 

The Corset Top

Image: Instagram/@itssissysheridan

Fans of Regency-era shows and films (or just the #royalcore aesthetic) are probably already familiar with the corset top. Taking influence from the fashion of the past, corset tops combine the regal, structured look of a corset with modern fabrics and cuts. Whether you rock this unique top on your way to grab shaved ice with your BFF, or to a dreamy summer picnic, your sure to turn heads. Bonus if you happen to match the wallpaper like Raven’s Home actress Sissy Sheridan in the above pic.

The Classic Button-Down

Image: Instagram/@indistar

Of course, not every It top of summer 2021 is sleeveless. The classic button-down is a multi-season favorite because of its elegant silhouette and lightweight feel. The polo tee’s way-cooler sibling, this top can be paired with high-rise shorts or tucked into your fave overalls like Indigo Star Carey. If you’re looking to transition your Dark Academia wardrobe into summer, a classic button-down is a must.

The Quote Tee

Image: Instagram/@irisapatow

Why say it when you can spell it out on your shirt? The quote tee is another one you might have in your closet already. With endless sayings, colors and styles to choose from, this top is whatever you make of it. Go for a girl power moment with a bestie in matching shirts like BFFs Iris Apatow and Olivia Rodrigo in the pic above.

The Crocheted Tank

Image: Instagram/@ishtitches

The most one-of-a-kind trendy top this summer has to be the crocheted tank. A lot of people picked up crocheting during quarantine last year, which means there are so many great small businesses to shop. Upgrade from the basic crochet tank by picking one with a peplum hem, as seen on fashionista Ish in the above pics. 

Which summer top is your fave? Let us know by tagging @girlslifemag on Insta!


by Bailey Bujnosek | 7/7/2021