Are Cold Shoulder Tops Still in Style?

Cold shoulder tops are a favorite with women our age because they give an outfit a subtle, sexy vibe. Recently, I’ve had a few emails asking if they are still in style.

Although they’ve peaked,  cold shoulder tops have held their own and are still fabulous to wear in warm weather.  Travelers love them because they have a fun, carefree vacation vibe. Here are some of the best cold shoulder tops for women in stores.


green sequin cold shoulder top

For the Holidays!

Holiday Cold Shoulder Tops

Right now, the holidays are on everyone’s mind, and a cold shoulder top with black evening pants is a fabulous choice.



Cold Shoulder Tops - Pink

Shop floral cold shoulder tops

Floral Cold Shoulder Tops

Cold shoulder tops are flirty and feminine, so there’s no shortage of floral ones.  Dark floral cold shoulder tops are especially popular because the bright florals against the black background give a more sophisticated look. These look beautiful with your favorite jeans or a pair of black pants. 

To style, pick out one of the colors in this dark floral cold shoulder top and find a bag to match. This pink bag brings the dark floral to life and makes the outfit look coordinated.



Cold Shoulder Tops - Pink

Slit Sleeve Cold Shoulder Tops

One of the most elegant types of cold shoulder tops has long sleeves and fine slits rather than large cutouts. This bold pink ruffle neck cold shoulder top is a great example.

The sleeves are like long dramatic curtains that someone has opened a tiny bit to give a sneak peek. I  also love the dainty button that holds the slits together at certain points. Classy-looking looking top, especially with black!


Cold Shoulder Top - Yellow

Keyhole Neckline Cold Shoulder Tops

Keyhole neckline cold shoulder tops have added sex appeal. Pair this sweet top with something more rugged, like these faded jeans with the raw edge step hem to look modern.

Braided mules enhance the boho vibe. A slouchy bag with gold chain detail makes it a Haute Hippie. Remember some dangly earrings to play up the cold shoulder detail.


purple ruffle cold shoulder

Ruffle cold shoulder tops

Ruffle Sleeve Cold Shoulder Top

Ruffles are a pretty way to highlight your neckline and bare shoulders. The vibe is romantic.





Cold Shoulder Tees

Cold Shoulder Tees

T-shirtCold shoulder tops tend to fall into one of two camps:  soft, flowy, and romantic or simple, comfy and t-shirt-like. A t-shirt style looks great with shorts or jeans on vacation. It’s a natural, breezy, beach-like look.



Eyelet - Cold Shoulder

Eyelet Cold Shoulder Blouses

A pretty white eyelet cold shoulder top will have you floating through summer. Intricate eyelet embroidery and cinched sleeves make this fresh and feminine with a pair of your favorite jeans and some white sandals.


cold shoulder top - red

Long Sleeve Cold Shoulder Tops

I’m always getting asked about long sleeves in summer, and here is the perfect top. This pretty cold shoulder blouse gives you the arm coverage you crave but keeps you cool with its ruffled shoulder cutouts. Pair it with flare jeans and taupe accessories for a casual but classy look. The V-neckline is beautiful and always flattering, especially if you are big-busted.


Want to see more? Check out this cold shoulder sweaters post for fall/winter looks.

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10 thoughts on “Are Cold Shoulder Tops Still in Style?

  1. I like & appreciate Also, I agree w/ Lulu, who said, “…they are now a little dated but can still be worn another season or two. I just purchased one from Old Navy…I think it looks pretty; I wish it were here to stay.” I wish it were here to stay too. Why can’t it be here longer than a couple more years? Many women like cold shoulder tops & I’m sure many guys like seeing women in them too. Of course, there are hard shoulder tops I don’t like, but others I’ve loved since they came out & will continue to. Some fashion comes & goes while others are timeless classics, but why can’t those of us who love cold shoulder tops request them from stores & make them (or at least try to make them) more timeless than just a couple? More years? Just as there are always options of many types of necklines & sleeves for different tastes, in a perfect world, the cold shoulder would continue to be made available to women who like or love it & no one would judge others about it.

    Clothing manufacturers often push something new to SELL more. I’m not talking about the creative folks in fashion design. I mean the cold, complex world of business, including corporations. Corporations don’t care about millions of families’ limited wardrobe budgets or that, often, the money someone is about to spend unnecessarily on fashion could better be donated to refugees, etc. Sometimes (not always), it’s people who are relatively shallow or self-centered & who have money to throw around who proclaim things ‘out of fashion because *their* high-flying budget allows them to change even their furniture when they so much as get a little tired of it. I love the fabulousafter40 dot com website & fashion tips. Also, nothing beats the company of women! Just remember that w/ gas & housing prices as they are, & things looking like we might be going into recession, people’s 1st-world problems such as ‘what might that shallow/judgmental person over there think of my cold shoulder top’ start looking a bit different. I like fashion, but a sense of perspective & a higher value system can be called for, too. There are videos on youtube about how Americans see America when they come back (at least to visit) after living abroad for years. One of the video makers said the 1st thing she noticed was “consumerism & materialism mentality…” which other returning-American video makers saw. Forex, this is a perfect video for anyone interested (just copy & paste the title to youtube): How I See the US After Living Abroad for 15 Years [CULTURE SHOCK]

  2. Admittedly, they’re not my favorite style of tops. However, cold shoulder tops will have their periods of waning popularity, and like a phoenix, they’ll rise from the ashes. I don’t want to see CS tops oversaturating the retail market like they did a few years ago.

  3. I don’t understand why these cold-shoulder tops are popular. To me, they look sloppy, show an odd part of the body and look unflattering to everyone.

  4. I don’t like them much, but it’s good to have to stay calm if you don’t want your upper arms but have good shoulders. They can hide that aging thing under your underarms. Some fashion bloggers say these tops are out; I haven’t seen any in the stores.

  5. My friend called cold shoulders “covid vaccine tops” cuz they make it easy to get your vaccination :-)

      1. I love your site, Deborah. I went out and got three new pairs of long shorts this week after reading about them here :-)

  6. I’m glad you posted this. I’ve been wondering the same. My take is that they are now a little dated but can still be worn another season or two before they look downright dated. I just purchased one from Old Navy, a blue tropical floral. I think it’s such a pretty look; I wish it were here to stay.

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