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This flattering Old Navy frock is the 'dress of the year,' a shopping expert says — and it's just $40

Toss it on every day this summer, whether you're heading to the beach, the office or a fancy dinner.

Where do you go when you're on the hunt for around-the-house pants that aren't leggings? When you're looking for sandals you can walk miles in? For me, the answer is easy: shopping expert Caroline Moss' online community, better known as "Gee Thanks, Just Bought It." There, you'll find a tribe of bargain hunters (lovingly called Geezers) who dispense tried-and-true shopping advice day in and day out.

I check the group's Facebook page religiously for gems, but I also enjoy Moss' newsletters, which highlight her personal picks. Recently — as she's done for five years — she declared 2024's dress of the year. Yes, it's a big deal: Geezers await this pick with bated breath as soon as the weather warms up. This year, Old Navy's Fit & Flare Rib-Knit Maxi Dress is "the one."

Once word spreads about how incredible this size-inclusive dress looks on different people, we're betting it will sell out, so don't miss your chance to grab it now. It's available in colors including fiery red, slimming black and this pretty pink.

$40 at Old Navy

Don't let the unassuming silhouette fool you: This $40 dress is magic, and its simplicity is what makes it amazing. It's a blank canvas to style as you see fit, depending on where you're headed. Pair it with a denim jacket and classic white sneakers or flip-flops for a casual look. Go a bit fancier with heels or sandals and a pair of dazzling earrings.

As for the fit, this dress is available in regular sizes up to 4X, plus petite and tall up to XXL. It really does work for just about everybody — and every body. It may look form-fitting in the photos, but the thick ribbed cotton isn't too clingy or revealing. It also has a bit of spandex, so it's stretchy and will move with you. And the maxi length? It's perfect for bending over without showing off the goods!

If you're wondering why Moss loves this dress, here's what she had to say in her newsletter: "A basic that will go with everything in your closet. Dress it up, dress it down! Layer it into fall and winter, wear it on its own in the summer. Endless possibilities."

old navy maxi dress
Go figure: This Old Navy maxi dress really does flatter all body types.

Still need more convincing that this dress should be at the top of your Memorial Day shopping list? Old Navy shoppers are just as enamored. There are more than 500 five-star reviews, with buyers heaping praise on the fit and quality of the fabric. They also love that it's not see-through!

"I bought three of these in different colors," one shopper said. "I thought if I don't like them, I'll just return. But gosh I love them. The weight of [the] material is perfect, not flimsy or cheap-looking. It also has a great little added material to give it more flare. It hangs perfectly."

Another customer commented, "I've gotten so many compliments already, and on top of that, it's so comfy! You need to get it!"

One common complaint? The length. That said, it wasn't a deal-breaker for most folks.

"Very flattering on a curvy gal," one person explained. "I bought every color except wishbone. [The dress] runs long for me, but I still love it."

Psst: Worried about your bra straps showing? Check out the best bras of 2024, including our favorite strapless option.

Shoppers say washing this dress is a breeze, plus it doesn't wrinkle easily — a boon for summer travel. 

$40 at Old Navy

The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.