Red Dress Run is one of the most Nola events in Nola. Only in this beautiful city do thousands of people wake up on what is guaranteed to be the hottest afternoons of the year, put on red dresses and spend the day celebrating life on Bourbon street. Organized by the New Orleans Hash House Harriers, Red Dress Run is officially a charity run benefiting small non-profits. Unofficially, it's a great excuse to just spend the day in the quarter with mostly locals. However, a great afternoon is quickly ruined by realizing that you've chosen the wrong dress.
Throughout the years of dressing Daniel for this occasion, I've learned a lot of essential lessons for choosing the perfect men's dress for Red Dress Run. Here's my tips for optimal dress selection:
1. COMMIT TO THE DRESS - THE TACKIER THE BETTER
You have already committed to wearing a dress, you might as well make it a good one. A simple dress is a boring dress. Look for something with a little pizzaz - some sequins, a good fringe, a pearl broach. Be your best self - the flamingo in a crowd full of pigeons.
2. FOCUS ON THE FABRIC
The best dress is a dress that breathes. 100% cotton is ideal, but the most stylish dresses will rarely have this asset so you will have to compromise. Be smart - as perfect as a silky red number will seem in the store, I guarantee that it will not stand up to the test of 90+ degree weather and excruciating humidity. Silk acts an insulator and will trap all of that delicious August Nola glisten on your skin. If your dress comes with a lining, cut it out.
3. SHOW SOME SKIN
So, your dress doesn't exactly zip. Have no fear, it doesn't matter. Look for dresses that show some skin, the less fabric, the better. Make sure you're flashing just enough spice to keep everything nice - A side cut out is a beautiful thing when it's 95 degrees out.
4. TUTUS ARE CHEATING
I'm a firm believer in this one. Tutus are for quitters, especially if you are wearing them with shorts. If that guy over there can have a great time in a prom dress, so can you. The fun of this event lies in the IDGAF attitude it is known for. The tutu is a sad in-between that comes off as a lack of reverence for the holiday. Even if you wait until the last minute to find a dress, there will still be a sad red number hanging at the platos closet/goodwill/forever21 that everyone else was too scared to commit to. Embrace it.
5. ACCESSORIZE - COMPLETE THE ENSEMBLE
Nothing brings an outfit to its peek potential like a great headpiece. Find yourself a sequin headband, hair bow or Sunday hat. I'll warn you now that a wig is a lot to commit to in August, but I'll celebrate the effort all the same. It's also a good idea to consider how you'll carry your belongings without the pockets that you are accustomed to.
Here is a sneak peak at the dress that Daniel will be debuting this year:
May the red dress shopping odds ever be in your favor.
Found a killer dress for this year's RDR? Share in the comments!