Summer Guide for Business Women: Beat The Heat
As soon as summer goes from hot to over the top hot, “work appropriate” attire quickly becomes unbearable and unwearable.
Unfortunately, simply popping out a few softer colors won’t beat the heat outside and won’t help with the freeze when inside.
Follow these 7 simple and actionable tips to Rock Your Office Dress Code When It’s 100 Degrees Outside.
#1 Single Layers
Like the blazer look? Then lose the lining. Chances are your blazer lining has a high percentage of acrylic tissue.
Unlined blazers generally have softer lines, due to their lighter weight, giving your body a little room to breathe. A sharp polished style without all the heat.
Shamask linen sweater vest; $795
Joie Mehira blazer in chambray; $298
Berek "Daisy" lace blazer; $238
Other options are lace tops and cardigans. Softer, less constricting fabrics leave allow your skin to release the heat, keep the cold air off your back, and keep your look professional at the same time!
Go for unlined dresses and skirts if they are not transparent when backlit. In this case, opt for unlined items and wear a light-weight, high-quality slip.
#2 Natural Fabrics
Unless you work in a gym, as cool and comfortable as they are, hi-tech sportswear fabrics do not belong in the office. Instead, natural, breathable fabrics like cotton, linen, silk, summer cashmere and natural woven fabrics.
"Loretta" dress by Elie Tahari features scrolling trim down neckline and center front; $348
Eileen Fisher organic linen jersey tunic in your choice of color; $178
Mini dress in linen blend with medallion embroidery by kate spade new York; $498
Some fabrics, like linen, wrinkle easily. If this is a no can do for you, try a blend of natural and acrylic fibers. These blends are cooler, more wrinkle-resistant, and polished. Fine cotton blends or crepe de chine are perfect fabrics for fine, hot weather clothing choices.
#3 Wear Light Colors
Rebecca Taylor mini dress in optic tweed; $475
Lela Rose midi skirt with scalloped lace and edge; $1,295
Veronica Beard shirting top in stripes; $250
Women’s business casual summer wardrobe should avoid all black or deep blue clothing as they absorb heat. Unless your company dress code requires, think lighter colors.
Opt for lighter colors; whites, beige, and pastels help to reflect the sunlight instead of absorbing all that heat.
#4 Think Soft and Wide
Diane von Furstenberg linen-blend culottes; $368
Nanette Lepore "Hook Up" pants in cotton blend; $398
Badgley Mischka pique dress; $440
Loose fitting clothes like polished palazzo pants, wide leg pants, or trapeze style dresses that look amazing on women in the summer outfits. Leave the super relaxed, boho styles for the weekend.
#5 Don’t Forget Your Feet
Most offices have relatively relaxed shoe-codes, so unless your job requires protective footwear, there are great options out there.
Manolo Blahnik mesh bootie with sequin and floral appliqués; $2,135
Christian Louboutin floral-embroidered velvet pump with patent leather trim; $1,795
Christian Louboutin napa leather pump, decorated with spikes in geometric formation; $995
If you are one of the well-heeled set and are drawn to pumps, peeps-toes and d'Orsay pumps are great options to keep your toes cooler. Footwear summer trends are adorned and embellished with studs, flowers, and beading. Sure to catapult your ensemble to new heights.
Flip flops or beach sandals are never appropriate office wear. Neither are sneakers, as cute as they are. There are tons of kitten heels, flats, and perforated. With the many exquisite perforated styles, all shoe lovers can find some fashion respite and keep your feet breathing!
Jimmy Choo suede mule sandal in galaxy star print with floral embroidery and nailhead studs; $1,275
Balenciaga satin fabric mule pump; $665
Alexander Wang leather mule sandal; $550
One final thought. Mules are trending this summer and are super cute in and out of the office, but never when you need a pedi. Do it!
Due to more frequent washing, sunlight, and less colorfastness of natural fabrics, most of our summer clothing is like a very expensive summer fling. Buy quality but opt for less pieces and focus on more mixability.
Christian Louboutin dyed calf hair (Italy) tote bag with mixed-stud trim; $2,890
Valentino leather shoulder bag with beaded embellishments; $375
Kendra Scott "Dani" statement earrings; $130
Choose neutral colors for basics like slacks, dresses, and jackets. Then have some fun with colors in your handbag, jewelry, and shoes. Two to three neutral blazers, suits, and cardigans are enough to allow you to create many different outfits.
#7 Find a Summer Do
No matter your morning ritual, it is almost guaranteed wind and heat will not be your friend throughout the day. Experiment with different updos like topknots, twists, and simple ponytails. They’ll keep you cooler and you can rock those fabby new earrings!
Choosing the right fabrics, colors, styles, and accessories can change your attitude and overall workday experience. Eliminating inappropriate items from your summer wardrobe will make dressing a breeze. And a little less morning frustration will increase your productivity as well as your self-confidence.
Spend a few hours over the weekend to get things in order and try a few different hair style. Come Monday, take a double take in the mirror and hear yourself say, “You’re rocking the cool girl!”
We’d love to hear about your personal closet updates? Please share your thoughts below!
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