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18 Fashion Editor-Approved Holiday Party Dresses with Main Character Energy

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year—and not only because we get to experience all the pretty lights, delicious food and quality time with the family. These are definitely some of the best aspects of the season, but something that really gets us excited about the holidays is the dresses. Finding the best holiday dresses to wear for the season isn’t always easy, though. There are so many retailers pushing festive frocks that feel cheesy instead of special. It can be difficult to sift through all of them and strike holiday dress gold! Whether you need something to wear to a cocktail party with friends, your family’s annual soirée or a last-minute NYE bash, our fashion team has your back with the picks below.

To give you a bit of a rest during this busy season, we searched through all your favorite retailers to find the cutest holiday dresses out there. Think of this like your curated holiday shop—the only stop you need before you find the perfect festive ensemble. The holidays are approaching ridiculously quickly, so don’t wait to snag your favorite dress before you’re in a sugar cookie coma. (We’ve all be there, right?)

It also helps to be a bit strategic when searching for your own winning dress (or three). Keep an eye out for frocks you can wear throughout the following year in addition to during the holidays. If you can wear the dress to a wedding, a bachelorette party or even a dressy date night out as well as your annual Christmas Eve party, you’ve probably found a winner. Seek out unique textures and flattering silhouettes for looks you can wear over and over without getting sick of them.

Below, you’ll find 18 holiday dresses sure to get you through the entire season—and beyond. We won’t blame you if you end up purchasing more than one.

Our mission at STYLECASTER is to bring style to the people, and we only feature products we think you’ll love as much as we do. Please note that if you purchase something by clicking on a link within this story, we may receive a small commission of the sale.

Courtesy of Amanda Uprichard.

Allora Dress

A little red mini with big present-inspired bows? Now, that’s a gift.

Allora Dress $202

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Courtesy of Lulus.

Glow Goals Sequin Dress

Skip the gold and go for gunmetal sheen to mix a little edge in with your holiday metallics.

Glow Goals Sequin Dress $98

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Courtesy of Lavish Alice.

One-Shoulder Ruffle Dress

I’ve never met a ruffle I didn’t like, so this ribbon-inspired detail is an easy Yes.

One-Shoulder Ruffle Dress $140

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Courtesy of ELLIATT.

Harley Dress

Winter white always makes a strong statement, but coupled with a feather neckline? It’s especially divine.

Harley Dress $200

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Courtesy of Eliza J.

One-Shoulder Satin Cocktail Dress

Not into glitz? There’s no shame in your LBD game—just go for something with an asymmetrical neckline to add a bit of interest.

One-Shoulder Satin Cocktail Dress $158

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Courtesy of Fashion to Figure.

Victoria Faux Wrap Sequin Gown

Now, if you’re trying to cosplay as an actual snowflake, this glittering silver gown should be right up your snow-covered alley.

Victoria Faux Wrap Sequin Gown $113.97

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Courtesy of Kate Spade.

Beau Dress

Leave it to Kate Spade to dream up the sweetest little red dress (also available in black!). Puff sleeves and a bow front seal the deal.

Beau Dress $368

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Courtesy of Norma Kamali.

Diana Gown

SJP wore the baby blue version of this dress in a coming-soon scene from …And Just Like That. For the holidays, this metallic black version feels just right.

Diana Gown $245

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Courtesy of Eloquii.

Wide Neckline Leather Mini Dress

Leather is always a good idea, so it’s safe to assume that a ruched leather mini is a great idea.

Wide Neckline Leather Mini Dress $109.95

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Courtesy of Lulus.

Anjou Sequin Fringe Sleeveless Midi Dress

I always lean towards evergreen and emerald during the holidays, and this fringed sequin skirt gives a basic sparkly bodycon a little extra spark.

Anjou Sequin Fringe Sleeveless Midi… $74

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Courtesy of Selkie.

The Puff Dress

Selkie Puff Dresses serve major princess vibes, so whether you want to be a Holiday Princess, an Ice Princess or whatever else, snagging one is a good idea.

The Puff Dress $239

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Courtesy of Fashion to Figure.

Malina Velvet Bodycon Dress

Corset bodices are so in, and this unexpected blue velvet takes the silhouette up more than a few notches.

Malina Velvet Bodycon Dress $59.97

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Courtesy of Retrofête.

Feather Gabrielle Robe Dress

Retrofête is known for long-sleeved, robe-style mini dresses, and this winter white pick is splendid for a holiday soirée.

Feather Gabrielle Robe Dress $995

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Courtesy of Lulus.

Vision of Elegance Sequin Cross Back Midi Dress

Nothing beats a sequined midi dress with a pleated skirt made for twirling, am I right?

Vision of Elegance Sequin Cross Back… $98

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Courtesy of Eloquii.

Sheer Yoke Velvet Mini Dress

My newest obsession? The voluminous sheer sleeves on this black velvet number from Eloquii, adding just the right amount of drama.

Sheer Yoke Velvet Mini Dress $99.95

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Courtesy of Karen Millen.

Jacquard Bow Detail Bandeau Dress

Karen Millen does some lovely party attire, and the big bow down the front of this simple shift adds the perfect dose of holiday whimsy.

Jacquard Bow Detail Bandeau Dress $267.20

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Courtesy of Lavish Alice.

Beaded Fringe Bardot Corset Dress

The corset bodice. The olive green hue. The glittering rhinestone trim. Could it be any more perfect?

Beaded Fringe Bardot Corset Dress $285

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Courtesy of Zara.

Velvet Sequin Dress

Lastly, a sequined red mini perfect for any last-minute festivities, for under $50 bucks. Thank you, Zara.

Velvet Sequin Dress $49.90

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