A Capsule Wardrobe for Hot Weather: What to Wear in a Heatwave

What to Wear in a Heatwave

The temperature is rising and the UK is on track for another heatwave. For some, the hot weather can't come soon enough. For others, the mere mention of sunshine is enough to make them cry.

While figuring out what to wear during summer to keep cool and comfortable is everyone's goal; pulling together a stylish outfit when it's scorchingly hot can be quite the feat!

If the thought of a heatwave stresses you out, this guide has everything you need to know about dressing for hot weather, from what to wear in a heatwave to summer outfit inspiration.

What should you wear in a heatwave?

Whenever the topic of what to wear in hot weather arises, the first thing to get mentioned is colour; and if you're someone who likes to wear all black outfits, even in summer, you'll inevitably be asked: "aren't you hot in that?!"

It's a myth that dark clothing makes you hotter. While it's true that black absorbs sunlight and white reflects it. Other variables—such as fabric thickness, how tight or loosely a garment fits, and even the weather—are far more important than colour for keeping you safe and comfortable in the heat.

What is the coolest thing to wear in hot weather?

The most important choice when deciding what to wear in a heatwave isn't the colour of the fabric but the clothing itself. Tight-fitting clothing will trap heat and make you feel uncomfortable no matter what colour it is.

Lightweight and loosing-fitting clothes are essential. They need to be made in breathable fabrics, such as linen, cotton, rayon or hemp clothing, to allow the air to circulate around your body. This will help you to keep cool keep in the sun.

Always avoid synthetic materials, like polyester and nylon, as they trap the heat making you feel hotter. If you prefer wearing dark colours, it's even more important you choose very loose-fitting clothing made from breathable fabrics.

What colours to wear in a heatwave?

The best clothing to wear during a heatwave is lightweight, breathable, and loose-fitting. But what is the best colour to wear in heat? There is a huge debate over what colours to wear in a heatwave and whether it's better to wear dark or light clothes in the sun.

While lighter neutral shades, like white, beige, and even pastels will reflect the sun's rays and keep you feeling cooler. Darker colours absorb more UV rays, offering your skin better protection. Brighter colours absorb even more UV rays than white or black, meaning the more vivid the colour the greater the protection.

So what colour is best to avoid heat? Ideally bright or light-coloured clothes on sunny days—or loose-fitting dark clothing—and as little as possible at night.

What to Wear in a Heatwave

A Heatwave Capsule Wardrobe

Summer is my favourite season and I love the heat. I never used to though. It was only when I figured out how to dress for the hot weather that I started to enjoy the heatwaves when they hit.

A huge issue is that traditional summer attire—shorts and t-shirts and sleeveless dresses—don't work for everyone; making it difficult to know what to wear in summer. If these outfits make you just as uncomfortable as the heat does, I've got some better options for you.

This is a heatwave capsule, pulled together using my current wardrobe. I've chosen items that maximise style and versatility without sacrificing comfort. From only a few pieces, I can create numerous outfits that all look and feel good to wear in the sun.

  1. Jumpsuit
  2. Wrap Dress
  3. Midi Dress
  4. White Shirt
  5. Embroidered Shirt
  6. Green Shirt
  7. Linen Trousers
  8. Swimsuit
  9. Maxi Skirt
  10. Circle Bag
  11. Sandals
  12. Sunglasses
  13. Bamboo Hoop Earrings
  14. Sun Hat
  15. Satellite Necklace