Dress for (summer) success
So you landed that coveted summer internship, and you’re starting to get the hang of things around the office. You’re finally adjusting to your commute and know the best spot for coffee. But what on Earth are you going to wear today? Since you’re a few months in, you might feel like you’ve run out of options. Maybe you’re wearing the same pair of pants every day, and alternating between your two button-up tops. Well luckily, office wear has come a long way from strict uniforms of pencil skirts and suits. If you’re feeling stuck on how to dress for the office in the summer heat, or are sick of wearing the same thing every other day, read on for tips on dressing for the summer heat, office style!
Consider the office environment
First things first, you want to make sure you have a good grip on the industry and office policies. If you look around and everyone is wearing suits, that’s a pretty good indicator that you shouldn’t be showing up in jeans and a t-shirt. On the other hand, if your office culture is more relaxed, you might feel overdressed going into work in stiletto heels. Find out if there’s a dress code in effect and whether your office has any sort of weekly casual day. You can also take a look at your supervisor’s outfits and follow in their footsteps.
Leave the jorts for the beach
Although it doesn’t feel like it just yet, we are in the summer months. You don’t want to be commuting to work in 30-degree heat wearing a wool-blend suit, but you also don’t want to show up in denim cut-offs. When choosing shorts and skirts make they pass the chair test – if you can feel any part of the chair on your behind when you sit down, they’re too short! Stay cool in short sleeves and sleeveless if possible, but bring a light cardigan or blazer to throw over your shoulders so you don’t freeze at your desk when the AC turns on. Leave the flip flops and shower slides at home. Instead, go for a pair of loafers, flats or sandals. Make sure your choice of footwear is comfortable. You don’t want to limp all through the office because your feet are covered in blisters!
Keep it loose
Wearing tight fitting clothes in the summer heat is about the least comfortable thing, especially if your internship involves you sitting at a desk all day. Opt for looser pieces like flared skirts and dresses that give a flattering silhouette but are airy enough to keep you comfortable. If you’re a victim of thigh chaffing in the summer, wear a pair of bike shorts under your skirt or dress, or apply an anti-chaffing product (deodorant also works wonders) on the area before heading out – it’s a life saver, trust me.
Jumpsuits can be an easy, breezy fix to put together a full outfit quick in the morning, but opt for a more structured style or add layers to make it work appropriate. If you prefer pants, wide legged pants and culottes are another great option for the warmer weather and look great with any top. Instead of wearing fitted trousers, try a more relaxed fit or chinos, or pair them with a short sleeve shirt to balance it out.
Don’t spend a ton of money
You don’t need to spend your full pay-check on a new wardrobe for your summer gig, especially if you know you’re going to go back to your sweats when school starts again. Go through your closet and see what pieces are considered appropriate for your job, and what still fits you. You’ll be surprised at the number of options you have once you actually look through your wardrobe. Dresses and jumpsuits can save you money in the end, because really it’s your whole outfit in one. Of course, if you need a few new things, there are always the more inexpensive stores like H&M and Zara that have a ton of office-friendly pieces at a decent price. You can also find some great options at thrift and second-hand shops – just make sure they’re in good condition!
There’s nothing worse than getting to work feeling great and ending up spilling your coffee all over your white top. Throw a detergent pen in your work bag in case of these little emergencies, and you’ll avoid trying to cover up the stain with your hair all day. Speaking of hair, keeping some hair elastics in your bag is always a good idea, but especially in the summer when it gets so hot that you’ve started contemplated shaving your head. Scrunchies and hair scarves are also in style this season, so there are a ton of ways you can keep your mane off your neck and still look cute.
.Throw some bandaids in your bag in case your shoes start to rub you the wrong way. Deodorant or anti-blister sticks are also great for keeping your feet sliding smooth in your shoes, so carry a small travel size in your bag. From getting a little too warm after your coffee run, to the ever annoying thigh chaffing, it will come in handy.
Last but not least, don’t forget to be yourself! Dressing for a summer job or internship can make you feel like you have to look like someone you’re not. Even if you’re limited to just suits, you can still add your personality to your outfits through prints, colours and accessories. It’s summer, after all, so make the most of it!