How To Dress For Summer: 7 Common Style Myths Debunked
Don't you just love the summer? It's arguably the best time of year!
Everyone seems to be in a good mood, the sun's shining, and the days are longer.
We're no longer hibernating in our homes and offices.
It also seems like the summer encourages people to come out of their shells (in more ways than one).
Summer style is lively, colourful, and easy-going.
You'll notice brighter colours and less "stuffy" outfits.
But in some cases the style becomes too easy-going.
With the laid-back atmosphere comes a relaxed approach to style.
Unfortunately some men slip into "all-inclusive resort mode" even when they're still working 9 to 5.
Have you noticed more faded t-shirts, sandals, and baggy shorts?
You're not alone.
I was once guilty of letting my style slide during this time of year.
My Volcom flip-flops would often be paired with baggy cargo shorts and an oversized polo shirt.
Of course it was comfortable but I wasn't dressed appropriately for my age.
My goal was to be taken seriously and appear attractive.
In those days my style achieved anything but that.
Over the years I've come to learn a few lessons about the myths we buy into during the summer months.
This article is meant to shed some light on those.
So if you find you've been taking a much more laid-back approach around this time of year, keep reading...
1) You Can Only Black and Grey In The Winter
If anything, you can't have enough black in your wardrobe these days.
Of course you don't want to go full gothic but it's the easiest colour to outfit (plus it makes you look sophisticated).
Critics will say that wearing black in the summer is a horrible idea since it only amplifies the heat.
I can't argue with that (coming from the guy who wore black jeans and a black bomber jacket while going out for ice cream).
But there is a way to beat the heat.
Your best bet will be to wear lighter weight materials.
Breathable cotton, linen, and chambray are a few great options to choose from.
2) Your Summer Wardrobe Should Be Separate From Everything Else
Ideally this wouldn't be the case.
Of course there will be certain items you can only where seasonally.
Wearing flannels in the summer is a surefire way to overheat.
But for the most part you can get away with owning a wardrobe that's versatile enough to be worn all year-round.
Your jeans, t-shirts, and most of your button-up shirts would fit into that category.
Other items like heavyweight sweaters and coats won't be as versatile.
To help you decide what works and what doesn't is to pay close attention to the material each item is made out of.
If it only makes sense to wear that specific item in harsh conditions, then you'll likely have to find a substitute for the opposite season.
3) It's Too Hot For Layering
It may seem counterintuitive.
Layering isn't one of the first things most men think of when it comes to dressing well for the summer.
When not done properly it can lead to feeling hot and comfortable pretty fast.
In the winter, layering plays both a stylish and practical purpose.
It keeps you warm and adds some depth to your look.
Your best bet when it comes to layering for the summer is to focus on wearing breathable materials while choosing the right colours.
In this case you'll want to stay away from piling one dark colour on top of another.
For example: if you plan on wearing a navy blazer with dark blue denim, go with a striped t-shirt in a lighter colour like white or a shade of grey.
Another smart way to layer for the summer is to invest in unlined suit jackets.
As long as the material isn't too heavy, you'll notice a difference that an unlined jacket can make when it comes to staying cool.
4) Completely Ditching Your Socks
You'll notice a lot of well-dressed men rocking the "no-sock" look.
Some guys are totally against the idea whereas others actually prefer it (even in the winter).
At the end of the day it's all personal preference.
Popular to contrary belief, there's no need to completely get rid of your socks when the temperatures rise.
I'll let you in on a little secret in case you're not sure what I'm hinting at.
Rather than ditching your socks all together and risk messing up your shoes, invest in no-show socks.
You get all the benefits of wearing socks (like protecting your feet and added comfort) without making your shoes smell bad.
This happens when the sweat from your feet soaks into the material of the shoe.
Over time the bacteria builds up and leaves that nasty odour you may be familiar with.
Of course that's not an ideal situation if you ever have to take your shoes off in front of other people (like if you're going to a friend's place for dinner).
5) Show As Much Skin As Possible
Sun's out gun's out...
You might want to save this approach strictly for bbq's and patio drinks with your buddies.
Though it's tempting to ditch as much clothing as possible when the heat becomes unbearable, proceed with caution.
A true gentleman never gives away too much.
This means picking and choosing your summer outfits wisely.
If you're in the mood for a tank-top, consider a lightweight pair of chinos to balance it out otherwise you could risk looking too casual.
6) Open Toe Shoes Are Acceptable Everywhere
Sorry to break it to you...
But nobody wants to look at your toes while they're sipping a cold beer on a hot patio.
Though there's a few pairs of sandals you can get away with, this style myth specifically addresses the typical flip-flops a lot of men tend to wear this time of year.
These are best reserved for all inclusive resorts or for showering at the gym.
You might be thinking, "But they're so comfortable, especially when it's hot out!"
You make a valid point but hear me out...
Yes a good pair of flip-flops sends a "carefree" and "laid-back" message but they're also not very practical.
The main drawback to them is that they're super casual.
If you're a busy man who's always on the go, this could be an issue.
This means you'll need to carry a back up pair of shoes to change into for work, going out for dinner, or if you'd like to do something active.
Not exactly the most versatile option (especially if you don't like to think about your wardrobe too much).
So if you're a flip-flop fan, it may be time to reconsider.
7) It's Ok To Wear The Same Footwear All Year-Round
That's the key here.
A common myth many men buy into is that it's ok to wear the same footwear all year-round.
In some cases that's ok.
Generally speaking, you'll want to pay close attention to what you're wearing.
This is especially true if you live in a city that goes through four seasons a year.
With the temperature rising in the summer you'll want to avoid wearing footwear that doesn't allow your feet to breathe.
First of all, your friends will thank you when you take your shoes off.
Secondly, you can also regulate your temperature since your feet can increase or decrease your how hot or cold you are.
You can get away with certain shoes throughout the year (like Chelsea boots or casual sneakers) assuming the weather isn't too extreme.
The simplest way to approach this is to adapt to the weather and to focus on pieces that are suitable for multiple conditions.
Hopefully you enjoyed today's article.
Thank you for taking the time to read it.
While you're here, you should check out the free style guide below...