Bouts of intense, unexpected sunshine can leave us Brits feeling adrift when it comes to finding suitable day-to-day clothing. From negotiating ridiculously hot public transport to getting comfortable in stuffy offices, summer in the UK can often leave you looking more sweaty than stylish. However, follow this handy guide and you’ll soon know how to dress in a heatwave.

The Best Fabrics to Wear in Summer

Once temperatures rise, we recommend avoiding heavy fabrics such as wool or denim, or water-resistant fabrics like polyester. Instead, opt for lighter fabrics such as linen, chambray or cotton. Linen garments – i.e. linen shirts, suits or jackets – allow heat to escape from the body whilst absorbing moisture and drying pretty quickly. Cotton is a natural fibre, which allows air to circulate freely through the fabric – ensuring airflow that will help dry out sweat patches.


The Best Summer Alternative to Jeans

If there’s ever a time to put your jeans on the back burner, it’s during summer. They may look great, but they’re certainly not the most comfortable when things get a little heated. Why? Denim is a durable, heavyweight fabric, and it’s not breathable nor stretchy. Try swapping your jeans for chinos or – if you’re not afraid of showing off your legs – tailored shorts cut just above the knee. Note: if you’re dressing for work, be sure to check the summer dress code before choosing the latter.


The Best Shirts to Wear in Summer

There’s no need to let your standards slip just because the sun has arrived. Simply trade your winter shirting for short-sleeved versions or those of the linen variety. By making this small change, not only will you retain a smart profile, but you’ll avoid becoming too hot and sticky.


The Best Shoes to Wear in Summer

Be sure to avoid any sartorial meltdowns this summer by investing in some appropriate footwear. There are plenty of pulse points around the feet and ankles, so by keeping your feet cool your body temperature will naturally decrease. To combat the heat, we suggest putting away your robust brogues, Chelsea boots and Derby shoes, and turning to lighter alternatives such as suede loafers, espadrilles and boat shoes.


The Best Outfits to Wear in a Heatwave

Not sure what pieces look best together? Below are three outfits that will keep you cool whilst still looking smart:

  • Linen shirt, chinos and suede loafers
  • Short sleeve shirt, chino shorts and boat shoes
  • Crew neck t-shirt, chinos and trainers

Top Tips for Keeping Cool in a Heatwave

While dressing appropriately for the heat will bring your temperature down, there are also other precautions you can take to help keep you cool. Take a look at our top tips for keeping cool in a heatwave below:

  • Stay hydrated – drink plenty of water
  • Eat cooling foods such as salads, fruit and vegetables
  • Stay out of the sun between 11am and 3pm
  • Take a cool shower
  • Close curtains and blinds
  • Invest in a fan – before they sell out!