In the May edition of Should I Buy This?, Leandra and Amelia debated whether or not we are on the cusp of exhausting the “pretty white blouse” trend. It may seem a little funny to call white blouses a trend, but the very particular iteration of white blouses that has reached ubiquity over the past year and change has all the characteristics of a prototypical trend in 2018:

+ It originated on Instagram (when Maison Cleo turned what was once elusive — a unique white blouse you might find tucked away at the back of a street fair booth in the South of France — and made it available with the click of a button).

+ It’s clickbait-y (as evidenced by extensive coverage on numerous outlets in addition to Man Repeller, like Refinery29, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar).

+ It is produced by a wide range of designers (from Jacquemus to Zara).

+ It is thrill-inducing (in that every time I come across one I haven’t seen before, my spine tingles).

Yep, pretty white blouses check every box set forth by the zeitgeist as we know it. HOWEVER, they also embody many of the same attributes I would ascribe to a category of fashion that exists on the exact opposite side of the spectrum from trends: classics. Like a black blazer or leather loafers, an aesthetically pleasing white blouse goes with everything, can be dressed up or down, and has very strong potential to withstand the test of time.

Given that I’ve been enamored with pretty white blouses for well over a year and no matter how many times I see them I have yet to get that “ugh — give me something else to eat!!!” kind of feeling (a tell-tale symptom of over-saturation), I think they might be one of those unique breeds of sartorial material that is timeless enough to transcend the fickleness of fashion’s sine wave and flexible enough that they can adapt to trends as they evolve. Like blue jeans.

Oh and speaking of blue jeans, just like your perfect pair of blue jeans differ from my perfect pair of blue jeans because that designation varies according to taste, lifestyle, shape, geography and the accounts you do or don’t happen to follow on Instagram, such is the case with finding your perfect pretty white blouse. Maybe you’re a nipped-in waist + puff sleeves kind of person, or a sheer fabric + stiff collar fan, or a vintage crochet + therapeutically roomy bodice type. I keep a keen eye on the marketplace offerings for pretty white blouses, and let me tell you, there’s one for everyone. I called in some of my favorites from around the interwebs to showcase them for your pretty white blouse speed-dating pleasure.

Before you hightail it to the slideshow, though, I want to mention that pretty white blouses diverge from blue jeans in an important way: They’re really, really fun to try on. Whether structured or billowing, they are the rare type of garment that feels consistently kind to my body. Perhaps that’s why pretty white blouses are such a staple of the Menocore aesthetic, because once I reach a certain age, I’d like to imagine that I won’t settle for anything less.

Now tell me, what does your perfect pretty white blouse look like? Brownie points if you found it inside this very story.

Photos by Edith Young. Modeled by Tierra Monet Lee

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