My absolute favourite thing is when people assume I’m wearing designer when I’m actually wearing a bargain high street piece, and it’s my H&M looks that I can humblebrag about the most.
H&M’s actual premium collection was once a fashion editor’s best-kept secret. It was closer to Arket (its newer sister brand) in terms of silhouettes and styling, and with a heavy nod to lust-worthy designer labels The Row, Toteme and Max Mara, it was always the section I’d head to first online, and again for the sales.
The price points are higher, the fabrics more luxurious and the shapes more classic. But take one look at H&M’s current new-in section, and the core collection is looking more and more like the premium one. That’s great news for all of us since it comes without that premium price tag, and even better news for our new-season looks.
But what of the quality? I did the hard work for you. I hit three separate stores to bring you a haul of the most expensive-looking H&M pieces available right now. You don’t need me to tell you the best pieces won’t be on the e-shelves for very long, so shop smart and shop fast…
The best pieces to buy in H&M right now
The summer co-ord
This is super luxe: soft, silky and expensive-looking, and I figured it’d be my go-to for heatwave drinks on the weekend. It’s the perfect shade of cobalt that really pops in the sun – I’ll be wearing it with strappy flat sandals (see below for the best pair), and an oversized denim jacket, for a cute casual look.
The non-maternity maternity dress
Ok, this isn’t technically a maternity dress, but given the super-stretchy ribbed fabric, and slit up the side that makes it easy to walk in, I’d say there are going to be a fair few stylish bumps wafting around in this minimal frock this summer. It comes in four other shades – the sage green is my favourite but it’s selling out fast…
The It girl shoes
It’s never chic to be hobbling home after a bottomless brunch in too-high heels. The answer? Strappy flats. If dodgy gladiator pairs spring to mind, allow me to reintroduce you to the notion by way of the sleekest pair around right now. In a suits-everything black, minimal but not painfully so, flat soles and satisfyingly pared-back straps, these are perfect for every summer occasion from drinks to weddings. Sign me up.
The best beach cover-up
A towelling playsuit is an underrated beach cover-up, IMHO. Getting into a dress or separates on the beach, when all you want to do is head to the bar for a cocktail top-up can be a faff, but a playsuit that you can just step in and out of is a stylish no-brainer.
This cream one is timeless and minimal so I guarantee you’ll pack it summer after summer.
The workwear summer dress
When you have to show office-face in the heat, a little black number is a failsafe that won’t look out of place in serious meetings. Always team with elevated accessories – this isn’t the time for your heart-shaped sunnies or your giant straw tote. Instead, pair with a coloured leather bag and smart sandals for a professional but summery look.
The chicest dress you’ll ever see
Ok, this is the hero piece. Of all of mini dresses I’ve tried this season, this one comes out top. With a floaty sleeve, interesting neckline and a subtle-sexy length, it’s a failsafe holiday evening frock. Team with gold sandals and fabulous sunglasses and expect a ton of compliments.
The versatile shirt
This striped wrap shirt gives Ganni or Cos vibes depending on the styling. I’d team it with metallic jeans and trainers to look like a #gannigirl, or with wide-leg navy trousers and white Birkenstocks to tick the modern workwear vibes that Cos nails so well. Either way, it looks much more expensive than it actually is.
Read more on new season high street buys:
- The best Zara new-in pieces to buy ASAP
- These are the new & Other Stories buys you’ll keep forever
- From denim to midi dresses, here’s the best of Mango new-in
- The 6 It Zara dresses trending right now that you can still get your hands on
The wedding guest bag
If you’re anything like me, you’ll have weddings galore this summer, and will be in need of special accessories that’ll add a new season feel to the dresses you may or may not have worn for other weddings last year (it’s called cost-per-wear, ok?). This shimmery bag is it. It’s the perfect size for all of the essentials, and more – I tried it in-store and could fit a pocket umbrella in it, and if that’s not a British summer essential, I don’t know what is.
The best high street trousers
I’m so pleased H&M has bought these trousers back. I tried them on about six weeks ago and loved them, but for some reason, I left them behind and hadn’t seen them since. I’m always asked about the best wide-leg trousers and the best linen trousers, and I can safely say these are the first pair I’ve found that tick both boxes. Snap them up ASAP.
The could-be-designer pyjamas
Looking expensive on a budget is a lifestyle, so even if we’re lounging at home and binging Love Island, a chic look is a must. If you love luxe silky Olivia von Halle vibes, but haven’t got a spare £400 to spend on pyjamas, look no further as H&M has come up trumps. This animal print set looks so much more expensive than its price tag suggests.
The quiet luxury blazer
On the surface, the untrained blazer eye might see this as just another cream tailored jacket, but it’s SO much more.
The lapels are the perfect size – not too slim that it feels like old-school workwear and not too big that it steers into 80s territory. The cream (chicer than optic white, IMHO) colour is cool rather than warm so adds an edge to any outfit, and the heavy linen makes it look double the cost on the price tag. The contrast pinstripes are the perfect finishing touches. With a linen dress and strappy sandals, this gives me huge rich-chic-woman-at-Wimbledon vibes.