Dressing for work in the summer can be a real challenge for men. Because so much of classic men’s style is built on layering shirts, sweaters, suits and sport coats, it can be difficult to put together a refined look that wont have you drenched in sweat by the time you make it to the office. And while it’s made a little easier with an increasingly casual dress code these days, it’s still challenging to dress casual and comfortable without looking sloppy or unprofessional. That’s why we thought we would explore some great summer options for the guy who still wants to brave the summer heat to pull off a classic business casual look.
Cotton Sport Coats
While the days of suit and sport coats as a required uniforms for men have long passed, it still doesn’t hurt to show up every now and then looking a little more polished than usual. It tells people you are excited about your job and what you’re doing, and one of the most practical ways to do that in the summer is by adding a simple cotton blazer to your rotation. They’re often offered in unlined versions in every price range, and picking one up in navy blue can really extend your summer wardrobe. Try just tossing it on over a long or short-sleeved button down or polo. They look great with chinos and jeans, so you’ll get lots of use out of it at the office and out after work.
Oxford Cloth Button-Downs
While oxford cloth can feel a bit thicker than other synthetic blend fabrics used for button-down shirts, the cotton versions have a nice open weave that lets a lot of air in and out. It is naturally very breathable and wrinkle resistant – the perfect combination for summer! These shirts are everywhere and can often be overlooked by something that looks fancier, but it’s really hard to beat the classic look of a light blue (or grey) oxford cloth button-down paired with dark denim or a basic khaki. Try pairing it one of Lee’s classic straight leg jeans in a dark wash.
Loafers tend to get a bit of a bad wrap. They’re most typically associated with grandpas or black and white photos of old writers, but lots of great shoe brands make loafers that can be a great addition to a nicely tailored wardrobe. They are often made from thicker leather and are designed to take a beating. They look great with lightweight dress socks or even sockless (when done right!), so they can be much more comfortable in the summer than the more full-bodied lace-up shoes you already have in your closet.
Don’t be afraid to keep it simple during the hottest months of the year – you’ll look more fresh and put together if you aren’t over dressed for your commute. While these pieces have been around for generations, when they are used well they can really step up any mans wardrobe.