10 First Date Outfit Ideas That Make a Good Impression

Keep things fun and flirty with these fits.
Collage of first date outfit ideas
Design: Tiana Crispino; Photos, from left to right: Abercrombie & Fitch, Aritzia, Sam Edelman
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Sofia Deeb
sofia deeb headshot
Sofia Deeb
Assistant Fashion Commerce Editor
  • Sofia writes and edits articles for The Knot Worldwide with a specialty in fashion and e-commerce.
  • Prior to The Knot Worldwide, Sofia was a writer for Santa Barbara Life and Style Magazine.
  • Sofia studied cultural anthropology and journalism at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
Updated Jan 31, 2024
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Being asked out on a date can bring about a number of emotions. From the excitement to the nerves, to wondering what on earth you're going to wear. Luckily, we've got you covered with plenty of first date outfit ideas. Whether you're breaking the ice over coffee or showing off your skills with a round of mini golf, these looks are guaranteed to make a good first impression. Keep scrolling to discover our expert advice for choosing a first date fit, then browse through our 10 curated outfit ideas for every venue. Did we mention you can seamlessly shop your faves with the click of a button?

One of these looks just might help you secure that second date, but don't let your outfit do all the talking. Be sure to read up on our guide to first-date questions to ask to help avoid any awkward silences.

In this article…

How to Choose a First Date Outfit, According to Experts

Your first date outfit should reflect your own personal style. After all, your date is there to get to know you. Before you get dressed, think about how you want to feel throughout the day and pick out clothes that reflect that. Doing so can help turn the pressure and nerves into excitement. Of course, there are a few other tips you should also keep in mind throughout the process:

Consider the Venue

Nobody wants to experience a fashion faux pas on the first date. That's why it's so important to take the date's venue into account when planning your outfit. While you'll undoubtedly want to look good, you should also strive to feel good in whatever you are wearing. Grabbing a quick coffee? Keep things comfortable and casual. Dining at an upscale restaurant? Go ahead and get dressed up, but be sure to choose a pair of shoes you can walk in if dinner turns into a late-night stroll.

Consider Seasonality

Dressing for the season is about more than just making sure your outfit is weather-appropriate. It's also a chance to lean into the specific colors, fabrics, and prints that are 'in' for that time of year. Velvets and jewel tones, for instance, offer a sultry vibe that's perfect for a fall or winter date. On the other hand, floral prints and bright, pastel colors offer a playful and fun look that you'll love for spring. Needless to say, you should still check the forecast beforehand and pack a coat if necessary (unless of course, you're hoping they'll offer you theirs *wink*).

Go With Your Gut

When it comes to picking out an outfit for the first date, use your intuition. Choose a few words to describe the way you want to feel and that capture the vibe you're going for, then use those words as the foundation for your outfit. These guidewords can be a handy lens to help guide you through different clothing options as you identify what aligns with your words and what doesn't.

First Date Outfit Ideas You Can Count On

Okay, okay. So now that you've read up on how to pick the perfect first date outfit, you're probably ready to go shopping. Well, you can skip the trip to the mall. We've rounded up timeless options from some of our favorite online retailers below. Use them as inspiration for your next date night, or shop your favorite pieces directly with the click of a button.

For a Coffee Date

There's no better way to get the romance *brewing* than with a coffee date. Seriously, we love them because they offer a casual setting to get to know each other, without the pressure of having to spend the whole day together. Of course, if the date is going particularly well, you might choose to keep it going. For that reason, we think your outfit should be both stylish and versatile. If you're hoping to go from clinking cappuccinos to strolling the city, we recommend coming prepared with sunglasses and a comfortable pair of shoes. Likewise, you might also want to wear layers, so you can be ready for whatever the day may bring.

Casual first date outfit idea for women
Coat: Reformation,Shirt: Madewell,Jeans: J. Crew,Sunglasses: Le Specs
Casual first date outfit idea for men
Corduroy: Bonobos,Shirt: Abercrombie & Fitch,Pants: Bonobos,Shoes: Todd Snyder

For a Dinner Date

We think everyone should have one of two things in their closet: A timeless midi dress or a classic blue suit. That way, when the inevitable invitation to a dinner date arrives, you can skip the stress and slip into one of these trusty looks. We believe that there's no such thing as being overdressed, especially on a first date, and a stylish dress or suit is guaranteed to make a good impression. Oh, and remember, in order to put your best foot forward (literally) you'll also need a nice pair of shoes. A sleek set of kitten heels or vintage-inspired penny loafers are sure to do the trick.

Dinner first date outfit idea for women
Dress: Park & Fifth,Necklace: Mejuri,Bag: Quince,Shoes: Dolce Vita
Dinner first date outfit idea for men
Shirt: Ted Baker,Suit: Bonobos,Shoes: Banana Republic

For a Movie Date

PSA: Don't make the mistake of showing up to a movie date in a pair of 'standing pants'. Instead, opt for a comfy-yet-cute ensemble that you'll be able to tolerate being seated in for several hours. Athleisure might be the first thing that comes to mind, but when we're talking first dates, we recommend thinking a little more outside the box (after all, you'll likely want to stand out). Knitwear pieces, like sweaters and two-piece sets, can be just as cozy, while offering a slightly more elevated vibe. Not to mention, they're also irresistibly touchable (cuddling, anyone?).

Movie first date outfit idea for women
Two-Piece Set: Lulus,Bag: Reformation,Boots: Everlane
Movie first date outfit idea for men
Sweater: Abercrombie & Fitch,Shirt: Everlane,Pants: Abercrombie & Fitch,Shoes: Tilly's

For a Bar or Brewery Date

Had a hard week? A cocktail date is sure to lift your spirits (pun intended). Our formula for the perfect outfit is simple: Jeans + a cute top = a foolproof look for a bar or brewery setting. We recommend sticking to darker colors like black, navy blue and red. If you're heading straight from the office, you can take your existing look from day to night by throwing on a sleek leather jacket or stylish pair of boots. Oh, and don't forget to accessorize.

Bar first date outfit idea for women
Shirt: Reformation,Jeans: Agolde,Earrings: Mejuri,Shoes: Tony Bianco
Bar first date outfit idea for men
Jacket: ALLSAINTS,Jeans: Levi's,Necklace: Mejuri,Boots: Ariat

For a Bowling, Mini Golf or Arcade Date

So, you want to show off your skills at a bowling, mini golf or arcade date? You better bring your A-game (especially when it comes to your outfit). Since you'll most likely be on your feet throughout much of the night, be sure to keep comfort in mind when coordinating your fit. Jeans and a pair of sneakers is a classic combo that can be easily dressed up to be more date night appropriate. Top off your look with a trendy leather jacket or cozy flannel. Not only will it take your look to the next level, but it will also come in handy if the date is taking place outdoors.

Activity first date outfit idea for women
Jacket: Abercrombie & Fitch,Bodysuit: Aritzia,Jeans: Abercrombie & Fitch,Boots: Sam Edelman
Activity first date outfit idea for men
Flannel: DXL,Sweatshirt: Old Navy,Jeans: Everlane,Shoes: Banana Republic Factory
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