It’s early-morning, you’re prepping for your daily commute into the office, and right before you run out the door you take one last glance at your finished look. Outfit, check. Makeup, check. Briefcase and handbag, check. You look awake, fresh, put-together, and ready for the 8-hour work-day ahead of you.
Fast forward and you step into the office and make a bee-line to the bathroom. You realize no amount of blotting paper could ever save the foundation streaks and smeared eyeliner, and your hair got so frizzed from the new summer heat that you quietly pray that you have a stray hair tie lying among the scramble of post-its on your desk. Summer is here, and as much as you would love to don that light summer dress or skirt and cami you sported over the weekend, you as a working woman now have the seasonal dread of selecting what work attire to wear that can bear the rising heat.
The work dress code can unfortunately be hard to get around sometimes. Luckily most of the basic regulations including slacks, skirt, button-down shirt and pumps vary widely enough to give enough options to transcend one season to another. However, the one distinguishing piece of the outfit mandatory during all presentations, meetings, and other important days at the office, is the blazer. It is lined, it is long-sleeved, it is heavy and it is work-required.
I know all of us working women would love to kick off our closed-toe pumps and toss off the blazer for shorts and a t-shirt, but unfortunately that luxury usually isn’t included in the benefit package. Luckily however, some loving designers have realized this working plight, and offer some â€œcoolerâ€? options for the warmer working months.
The most joyous alteration of the traditional blazer has been made to the sleeve-length. Options not only include three-quarter sleeves, but also short- and capped-sleeves and even career-friendly baleros and capelets. Yet before you buy any jackets shorter than the wrist, check your dress code policy to see the rules on bearing arms.
And remember that the lighter the fabric, the more comfortable the jacket. Some materials to look for include silk, cotton, rayon, polyester and the best summer fabric of all, linen. Also take note of the color of your garment. A common misconception is that white and light colors are the most cooling clothing shades â€” actually the opposite is true. Darker colors soak in the most sun thereby keeping you cool while protecting you against harmful UV rays.
On a final note, when examining blazers in whatever shape, length or style â€” remember that not all will fit comfortably into the summer work wardrobe, but all will provide protection from the summer indoor air-conditioning.