What To Wear – In Dubai

Welcome back to real life everyone!

I don’t know about you, but I managed to spend all of my money on Memorial Day sales.  That was a bit irresponsible of me…  But, I’m confident.

In between all the sales & barbecues I hope people took a minute to remember what Memorial Day is all about – Men & women who lost their lives defending our country.

Whether you believe in the war that’s being fought or not, there’s still people out there fighting it…

(I really can’t imagine… helloooo BRAVERY!)

Changing gears –> What to wear when you visit Dubai.

I get asked this question all the time – Traveling to the Middle East & figuring out what’s appropriate for women.

I’ve previously written about women in the Middle East, and what it was like to live there as a woman… But this post is more for your vacation plans.  No need to get down in the nitty gritty of women’s clothing in the Middle East when you’re there on vacation.

I’ll start with saying, you can wear pretty close to anything you want, especially if you stick to the tourist locations. (<– which you should)

Dubai was created for tourism – locals know you’ll be wearing clothes you’re comfortable in & completely expect you to.

The only time I ever HAD to wear clothing that covered my body was going into a government center to process paperwork.  You likely won’t be going anywhere like that while on vacation and if you do, wear pants and a shirt with sleeves. That’s it.

The one place on my list that will require you to wear an Abaya, is the Grand Mosque. This is Muslim’s place of worship – OF COURSE you will be required to dress accordingly.

You can borrow an Abaya when you arrive, they’re very accommodating.  (You might even be able to borrow an abaya from your hotel – which would be awesome, then you can style it before you leave.  Sounds like an amenity that would be likely in Dubai hotels LOL!)

As far as The Dubai Mall, Dubai Marina Beach, your hotel, the desert safari, or any other items on my list.. You’ll be able to wear whatever you want.

I was watching the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills when they went to Dubai and noticed those ladies LOVED wearing the bright, colorful, kaftans…

You can do that if you want to, but none of the locals will be wearing them.  That style would be more for fun than anything else.  You might find an Arab woman wearing those extravagant kaftan’s at an engagement party, but absolutely not walking around the city.

{And did you know Muslims wear the black abaya because it’s discrete and doesn’t draw attention to themselves?  I wanted to point that out because I wasn’t sure if the housewives thought they were fitting in with their flashy robes, instead they managed to do quite the opposite… hehehehe}

Obviously, a little more conservative than normal, is the way to go.  More to be respectful than anything else.  I always did my best to play the conservative side, even though I didn’t necessarily have to.

But there’s nothing to be afraid of while you’re in Dubai.  WORST case scenario, a mall cop will ask you to change into pants.. LOL!  (Imagine?)

One time I saw this girl walking around Dubai Marina Mall and her entire ass was on full display (I’m not sure if it was shorts or a thong she was wearing).  I don’t think the mall cop told her to put pants on, but I wouldn’t be surprised.

Below is a list with a few options I would wear in Dubai today:

What to wear in Dubai

1. Express Cami Bodysuit

You will do no wrong with a shirt & jeans <—  A perfect go-to outfit while you’re in Dubai.  With a bodysuit, jeans, and a shawl – you’re outfit will look perfectly tied together.

2. Topshop Skinny Jeans

I loooooove white jeans!! But any jeans will do the job, perfect for any Dubai adventure.

3. Waterfall Cardigan 

Complete the jeans and bodysuit with a cardigan or shawl.  The cardigan will also help you feel covered up but still comfortable.

4. Crop Top and Wide Leg Trousers

If you don’t want to ride the Housewives train for your evening outfit – I think this would be an elegant twist!  White is eeeeverything in Dubai (and life) – it totally pops against the orange palette of the desert & sky.  This outfit would slay an evening dinner.

5. Cashmere Travel Wrap

A large scarf is kind of my travel advice for any destination, especially Dubai.  I carried a large scarf with me everywhere in case I went somewhere that I needed to cover my shoulders.  The scarf also comes in handy when you’re in a super air conditioned building OR during travel on planes. (Everyone needs one.)

6. Ruffle Front Maxi Dress

To get your Kaftan cravings in! Isn’t this dress gooooorgeous?! Major wish list item.  Even comes in Nude, which would also look extra stunning with your jewelry.

7. Embellished Caftan Dress

I thought this caftan or this shirt would look great over a pair of white jeans for the desert safari day… Like I said, white looks so pretty in pictures against the orange of the desert, and a flowy top in the wind? <— You’ll nail all your photo ops while out in the sand dunes.

8. Fallon Shalom Choker and Tory Burch Fitbit-Case Double Wrap Bracelet 

Don’t worry about over glamorous outfits, Dubai goes hard on the jewelry.  If you every wanted to experiment with your accessories, give it a try in Dubai.  Watches, necklaces, purses, bracelets —> That’s where you want to shine.  Dress up your average outfit with some shiny pieces.

9. Christian Louboutin So Kate Pump 

Similar to jewelry, shoes are what people watchers look for.  If you ever needed a reason to go for the fancy shoes, now is the time! (You can blame me)


I also included several options below (I just couldn’t decide)…

Remember, it’s hot! White & neutrals shine for your photo ops. Play up an average outfit with accessories AND conservative is always safest.




Shop more Dubai options:

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