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What’s Your Summer Look?

Are you more Youth Soccer Player or Your Mom Before She Settled Down?

Photo: Corbis/Getty Images

Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.

Summer is fast approaching, and with it comes the opportunity for reinvention. I recently decided that I wanted to spend my summer low-key cosplaying as your friend’s older sister, hanging meanly and hotly around a high school pool party; I like the idea of chin-length hair and shoulder-baring tops, of nailing just the right combination of carefree summer-before-college enjoyment with ugh-you-nerds-will-never-understand-me scowling. And so I harassed my co-workers into telling me what they, too, hoped to accomplish with their summer aesthetics. Alanna Okun, senior editor

The Only Girl on the Team

After being given a old-looking baseball cap, I am wearing it backwards over a low ponytail in homage to the preteen girl who can play just as well as the boys but is secretly pretty. But in the off-season (which is what I call the time when I am not wearing my hat), I'm wearing as much as possible of this flowy coat-cape-scarf that looks pretty Stevie Nicks/Auntie Mame/Penny Lane but for only for the Dead. Meredith Haggerty, senior editor

Harry Styles If He Were Broke and Untalented and Had Boobs

Harry Styles singing and wearing a nutty shirt Photo: C. Flanigan/Getty Images

This is a look that sounds really complicated but really isn’t. Harry wears a lot of shirts that look tacky but cost $800, so the secret is to wear shirts that are just actually tacky, like this $15 flamingo shirt I just bought on eBay. Like with Harry, they’re sexier when you wear them without a bra and pair them with black skinny jeans and hair that has literally never been washed. I can’t wait. Rebecca Jennings, associate producer

Your Mom Before She Settled Down

I usually make a Pinterest mood board before I buy any new clothes seasonally — this is what keeps me from wandering into an H&M and dropping $100 on crap I'll never wear. This fall, my look was sort of “1970s grad student” — jeans with turtlenecks and fitted sweaters in colors like burgundy, mustard, rust, and a lot of navy. It was a good look!

I think my look this summer is that same girl but after graduation, sort of on a low-key groovy bender. It includes a lot of Levi's jeans and cut off-shorts and spaghetti-strap tank tops tucked in and Maryam Nassir Zadeh sandals that look vintage but aren't. I'll accessorize with that sort of tan you can only get if you spend every waking minute outside. Tiffany Yannetta, shopping director

Doris Day Goes to Tuscany

Because I am *actually* going to Tuscany this summer, I've been buying a lot of clothes that look like an Italian dream Pinterest board: button-down dresses in bright colors, slim capris, espadrilles. But back in real life, I'm wearing a lot of collared shirts, and I’m very into curling my hair to beat the weird, ever-changing weather we're having, so I don't anticipate giving up either of those during my trip. Annemarie Dooling, director of programming

The Lady Version of Zac Efron’s Character in 17 Again

GIF: Warner Bros.

A cinematic classic if ever there was one. After being magically de-Chandler-Bing'd and waking up as his sexy younger self, Zac Efron (aka. Mike O’Donnell) opts for fitted tees and denim in classic black and white, plus the odd plaid button-down and classic white sneakers. It should be mentioned, by the way, that this look dovetails nicely with my other current favorite aesthetic: Taylor Swift In Between Albums. Elana Fishman, entertainment editor

Youth Soccer Player, Tie-Dye Edition

Who's that youth soccer player in the groovy tie-dye T-shirt clutching an extra-large glass of rosé? It's me, in the summer of 2017, trying to reclaim the boundless nothingness of school vacations while combatting New York's swamp weather in baggy athletic shorts, Adidas sneakers, and breathable cotton basics. Eliza Brooke, senior reporter

Indoor Kid

Summer is for suckers! The heat! The humidity! NOOOO THANKS, SIR. I will be wearing sweaters and jeans (but with sandals!) for as long as I possibly can while seeking refuge in icily air conditioned homes, which I will lament for being too damn cold while also enjoying the never-ending supply of Popsicles (the chemically kind — artificial flavors ONLY). Julia Rubin, executive editor

Do you have a Summer Look you’ve been secretly brewing? Did this slightly deranged post inspire you to devise one of your own? Let us know in the comments, or send an email to