You have your fail safe dating outfit – you know the one I mean, the Little Black Dress and semi-comfy heels for the ladies, the smart dark shirt and leather loafers for the guys.
However, when the temperature outside is rising at an unprecedented rate, what on earth do you wear in order to still be comfortable, cool and chic – without turning into a sweaty, red-faced, parched fish out of water?
Well, I have some answers for you. None of these outfits should require more effort than you would be putting into a date outfit anyway – some may even require less. They will all keep you cool, calm and collected, ready to meet your date in style and go forth to have a fantastic time. Let it never be said that it was the outfit that ruined the date.
If you find yourself invited to attend a formal event on the arm of a suave gentleman, first things first – Google the event and find out the exact dress code. You laugh, but people have been shunned at excessively formal events for nothing more than wearing the wrong colour, the thickness of their straps or the angle of their headgear. I don’t say this to scare you – just to warn you that knowing exactly what you are preparing for is the key to success.
After you know the etiquette of strapless vs. plunge, coloured nail polish vs. nude and heels vs. wedges (never attend an open air event on grass in heels!), you will be better equipped to put together your outfit.
- Stick to classic lines that you know suit your shape. A 50’s style dress is usually a winner, flattering everybody and helping to keep you cool due to the voluminous skirts.
- Wear appropriately coloured underwear in your size – sounds obvious, but many ladies persist in wearing black thongs a size too small under their floaty Summer dress and heads up; we can all see way more than we ever wanted to.
- Choose light, Summer colours and fabrics. Berry velvet is stunning in Winter, sweltering in Summer. Raspberry pink silk chiffon however, keeps you cool and suits the season.
Possibly the trickiest of all dressing situations – you have to somehow seamlessly mesh demure, hardworking, empowered women with flirty, fun-loving empowered women. Not to mention you still have to look good at a time you would usually be stripping off your work day clothes and slipping into some fresh and more relaxed.
The key with this one is preparation. Know how you are getting from work to your date, where it is and how to find it. Sort out your transportation tickets, or where you’re going to park beforehand. With all of the important stuff behind you, you can take that little bit of extra time to freshen yourself up.
- Your hair is the easiest way to move from day to night. Pack some travel-sized hair products in your bag and remove yourself to the ladies bathroom once you’re done for the day. Wear your hair in a bun for work, then shake it loose, add dry shampoo and hairspray to voluminise and add shine.
- Change your top and shoes. Ditch the smart shirt and blazer from your skirt suit and add a silk camisole or simple tee shirt and tuck it into your skirt waistband. Pop out of your courts and into some sexy coloured slingbacks or comfy leather wedges.
- Touch up your make-up, with a little accentuation on either your lips or your eyes for the evening ahead. Re-fresh your perfume, brush your teeth and wash your hands. You are good to go!
The temptation to wear shorts, flip flops and a vest top can be overwhelming – as can the temptation to just not move at all when it’s hot outside. However, it’s still a date, you want to look like you have made some effort! Decide what you’ll be doing on the date – whether going for a stroll, grabbing some croissants to eat in the park or heading to the beach for ice cream and paddling. Use that to theme your outfit and take all the stress out of deciding what to wear.
- Keep your hair up off your neck with a sleek, stylish ponytail or messy ballerina bun. Use headscarves and hats to keep your head protected from a day out in the sunshine, as well as add a finishing touch to your look.
- Feel free to wear a supportive bikini under your outfit to be ready in case you go for a dip in the sea and to avoid bra straps popping out from under your carefully chosen racer back vest top.
- Wear proper sandals, with painted toenails instead of battered old flip flops and dress up your trusty vest-and-shorts combo with a lightweight cardigan in a bright colour or ditch it entirely and choose a pretty Summer dress for your date.
Ah no! The dreaded suit and tie situation. Well, as with the ladies, its a good idea to do a little bit of prep work before sorting your outfit for your date – no point pulling out the trusty black suit if the occasion you’ll be attending has a ‘Summerweight light grey morning suit only’ policy. Consider hiring the appropriate suit if it is unlikely you’ll need to use it again, or ask around your friends to see if one of them could lend you the right style. Don’t cut corners – if the dress code says ‘morning suit’, don’t turn up in tails.
- Fabric is your friend here – choose a suit made of a cotton and silk mix. Linen creases like there is no tomorrow (and no one wants to be ironing in the heat!) and man-made fibres will have you sweating buckets, as will Winter weight wool and tweed numbers.
- Choose a light colour if possible – if not for your actual suit, then for your shirt, with a brighter accent colour on your tie. Soft grey and yellow work well, as do white and pale green.
- Never underestimate the power of your feet to make your entire day uncomfortable if they are not properly taken care of. Slip on thin silk knit socks for the occasion, or if you know your shoes are comfortable, go sockless. Don’t feel ashamed to carry blister plasters, just in case.
This can be pretty easy for guys. Feel free to play around with colours and fabrics, but the classic cuts usually favoured for work attire will take you almost anywhere.
- If you work in a formal environment, switch your shirt over for a fresh one, ditch your tie and leave the collar and top button undone.
- If your office is a casual affair, switch out your shorts for some proper trousers and shoes and consider changing your tee shirt if its been sweltering that day.
- Wash your face with cool water and gently dry your skin with a handtowel. Freshen up with some cologne, brush your teeth, wash your hands and you’ll feel much better.
As with the ladies, determine where you are going for your date. You’ll want to be prepared at a moments notice to deal with possible situations, from a dip in the local pool, to a picnic under the trees in the park.
- Proper shoes are required wearing in almost any restaurant, cafe or venue. Ignore your flip flops and wear loafers, boat shoes, even TOMS are better than the usual thonged sandal.
- A brightly coloured tee shirt is always a good choice in the heat, but be wary of any with potentially offensive slogans – better to keep those for guys night, huh? Otherwise, casual cotton shirts can have their sleeves rolled up and the top buttons undone to keep you cool in more ways than one.
- If you’re going with shorts instead of trousers, keep them board-short style, in a darker fabric. No jean shorts, hawaii print shorts or, god forbid, short shorts allowed. Ever.