7 Hot, Cold-Shoulder Summer Tops For Women!

Once summer arrives, shoulders become a main fashion focal point, and we start seeing more off the shoulder and one shoulder styles. But by far, the most popular for women our age are cold shoulder tops. 

Here are some of the hottest cold-shoulder tops, and what to wear them with.


What is a Cold Shoulder Top and Why Do Women Over 50 Love Them?

A cold-shoulder top (also known as an open-shoulder top) is a top or blouse with peek-a-boo cutouts at the shoulders and upper arms.

They’re more popular than one-shoulder and off-the-shoulder tops because they give you that hint of skin peeking through, which is youthful and sexy, but they are more comfortable. You don’t have to wear a strapless bra.


1.  Cold Shoulder T-Shirt Top

Summer is T-shirt time, but your basic tee can get a little boring, so an great way to spice things up is with a cold-shoulder tee. Bright colored t-shirts like this blue ruffle sleeve tee are cute  with some light colored chinos and wedge sandals. 


Cold shoulder top - green

2.  Cold Shoulder Ruffle Sleeve Top

Bell or Ruffle sleeve cold shoulder tops are  looser than the more fitted t-shirt cold shoulder top.They’re great if you want a more romantic, feminine vibe than t-shirt cold shoulder tops.



3.  Cold Shoulder Top with Straps

Some Cold Shoulder tops are a little trickier to wear because they have skinny straps. Sometimes you find one with thicker straps but most often you see spaghetti strap style like this. This is the one cold shoulder top that requires a bra.






4.  Cold Shoulder Top with Long Sleeves

Many women prefer tops with long sleeves but don’t want to look dowdy so they opt for a long sleeve cold shoulder blouse like this.  Just remember that with all that flowy volume up top to keep things closer to the body on the bottom. This pair of skinny white jeans works perfectly to balance your shape.

Cold Shoulder Top Black Yoga Pants


5.  Split Shoulder Top

The slit shoulder  is another variation of the cold shoulder top. It has more of a slash at the shoulders which makes it edgier looking than a round cut hole.



Brown Silk cold shoulder top

6. One Shoulder, Cold Shoulder Top

This is different. It’s  a silky half cold shoulder.  This satin fabric and more dramatic style makes it perfect for a special function or evening out.


Cold Shoulder Top - Yellow

7. Keyhole Neckline Cold  Shoulder Top

Combine a keyhole neckline with cold-shoulder cutouts, and you have one of the prettiest cold-shoulder tops for summer. Wear this summery floral cold shoulder top with your favorite jeans or shorts, and add some fun accessories for a great everyday look.

How do you like cold shoulder tops? Are they frumpy or fabulous after 40, 50 and beyond?

For budget freindly women’s cold shoulder tops check out Amazon.


More Cold shoulder top posts here: 

Are Cold Shoulder tops still in style?

How to Rock a Cold Shoulder Top in Fall and Winter

3 cold Shoulder Dresses Perfect for Special Occasions

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27 thoughts on “7 Hot, Cold-Shoulder Summer Tops For Women!

  1. I’m sorry, but I agree with others who think this is not at all a flattering style. The first few times I saw it, I couldn’t believe anyone would ever intentionally buy it. It looks like something from Forever 21 that didn’t sell, like something a prostitute would wear. It’s trying so hard that you end up looking ridiculous. Why not wear something classier? The cold shoulder is trying to copy much more elegant styles such as boatneck or off-the-shoulder. Let matching cami or bra straps show — which looks like a sexy, beautiful top. These two styles look like what cold shoulder is trying to copy on the cheap.

  2. I’m sorry, but I agree with Bentley, Joan, Janna, and Sue. These tops, to me, are non-flattering, not sexy, and not as comfortable as some think. It is a trend. I do not have arm or other body issues, but I think these tops look cheap, tacky, and somewhat un-ladylike. It’s aggravating when looking for a shelter in stores when you finally find one in the color, size, and design you like, then remove it from the rack only to see these darn holes! Waiting for the trend to PASS!!

  3. Hi. Nice article!
    I ordered a cold shoulder top that I liked. My only issue is that my bra strap shows mainly on one shoulder. Is that appropriate since I’m 45? I cannot wear transparent belts, so that option is out. Should I keep the top or return it?

    1. Hi Anuprita,
      Thanks for dropping by. I am not a fan of bra straps showing at any age. I think it ruins the look of the top and doesn’t look classy. I would try clothing tape. It is double-sided, so it holds things in place. I use it for all kinds of dressing problems. You will find it here: If this doesn’t work, I would suggest a strapless bra. All the best, Deborah

  4. I am 57, and several of my fit and attractive friends have appeared lately in the cold shoulder look. They looked dumpy and unattractive in them. I think this is a horrible fashion trend that tall, rail-thin models can ONLY pull off. I’m sure it will go away soon, thankfully.

  5. I don’t find this style tasteful or age appropriate. Timeless classic styles are attractive to all ages. This style is neither. It is symbolic of the age of sloppy manners and sloppy dress in which we live. Could you picture Katherine Hepburn, Jackie O, or your grandmother wearing any of these tops? I am old enough to remember LADIES and still try to emulate them. I do love the jewelry, handbags, and shoe selections.

  6. I am 61. I am tall and in fair shape. Can I wear off the shoulder? I have one cold shoul that looks good on me with slacks.

  7. This is a guy’s perspective: Sorry, gals, but you have been lied to. This “cold shoulder” or whatever is akin to the mullet. Ugly and red-neck. Unless you can pull off daisy dukes (you know who you aren’t) and grasp adult beverages in one hand and a cigarette in the other near the tailgate of a jacked-up F250 -run from this style.

  8. Could I have been dreaming… This is the only age-appropriate fashion site I subscribe to. What happened to the photos of the long sleeve Ella moss cold shoulder top in coral with the bib necklace? I purchased them but forgot to save your pictures.. lol.

  9. I am 55 5ft 3 inc 9th 10ilbs; I will be the bride’s mother and do not know what to wear to my daughter’s wedding. I am known for as warm color, dark hair, sallow skin, and green eyes. Can you help me choose, please?

  10. I have a couple of these tops, and they are very feminine. One is a longer, shirred, fitted length with long sleeves, and the other is slightly blouson with elasticized cuffs. Great cruise wear. You can dress them up or down. I’m in my early 50s and think every woman can rock them. Men find women’s shoulders very sexy. I say go for it!

  11. Yes,I love this
    Without this post I think I wouldn’t have considered it,thinking it would not be ok to wear .
    I’m glad you encourage me to try some more fun styles Deborah !

  12. I am in the process of editing my wardrobe, and I came across a cold shoulder top I bought a few years back but never wore. Now I am wondering if it is “age appropriate”.. I really do love the open shoulders so I may need to find one similar to the first one shown above to wear with my white jeans, absolutely love it!

    1. Hi Barb, These tops are great for women our age because showing a bit of skin is youthful. Many women are self-conscious about their arms, but everyone has good shoulders. These tops expose a bit of shoulder and sometimes a bit of the peninsula, so they look sexy and modern but not too revealing. Trendy this summer. Do it; tweak your chic with a cold shoulder top! Cheers, Deborah

  13. This one misses the mark for me but hey, I’m 65. However, I’m still drop dead gorgeous with no makeup and no surgery — except for a problem with my upper arms. So instead of cut-outs I’ve had to go out and buy a whole new wardrobe to replace whatever is sleeveless.

    When you hit your mid-60s, you’ll see!


  14. Now seeing the way the cold shoulder tops look, It makes me wonder why I never considered trying them? ( this was a “duh” moment) I think they are a great summer look, with white jeans, which I am very fond of wearing. I am 71 years old, and I have never felt as pretty, or as stylish as I have in my later years. that seems a bit strange, but I am loving it, and the sleeveless tops I have decided to wear. love this blog. theresa

  15. I recently purchased a peasant style cold shoulder top. I went totally out of my comfort zone and was pleasantly surprised! I love how the eye is drawn away from my middle up to my shoulders!!! A plus size woman’s dream for sure!

  16. This isn’t the first time around for this trend, and it won’t be the last. I don’t really care for it, but I can see how it allows some women to show skin and still wear a bra without exposing the straps. I am so tired of seeing bra straps (or, even the bra) through a sheer top, or mostly exposed. So, I guess this is an improvement. I agree that I have never seen a woman with ugly shoulders, and we all like emphasizing our good features!

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