A Beginner’s Guide to Men’s Summer Fashion

With summer in full swing, it’s time to swap the sweaters for linens and the boots for boat shoes. But while men’s fashion is easy to pull off in the winter, the summer is an entirely different ball game altogether. I mean, looking sharp in 86°F weather can be a bit of a challenge. However, with a little bit of creativity and a basic know-how of men’s fashion, you can stay and look cool all throughout the summer.

Upgrading your summer wardrobe is less about buying new clothes and more about getting the right clothes, which usually involves getting regular items in either a lighter color or a lighter cloth. From there, it’s all about mixing and matching your options with the right mindset. Here are some things to keep in mind when dressing up for the summer: 

Fair Weather Calls for Espadrilles and Sandals

Espadrilles are casual flat shoes made of canvas or cotton with an esparto rope sole. They’re wildly popular in Europe and while they might look a little haute couture, they’re actually very subtle accent pieces that anyone can pull off.

But if you’re looking for a little more casual than that, flip-flops are the way to go. These sandals from Margaritaville remain fashionable while keeping your feet breezy and light. And for heaven’s sake, ditch your Crocs ASAP.

Get That Sockless Look Without the Discomfort

The loafers sans socks combo is a classic summer look on men, but it can get a little uncomfortable, what with all the sweating and chafing. However, you can still pull off this sophisticated look without the discomfort by simply sprinkling a bit of foot or baby powder into your loafers.

Too messy? No problem, loafer liners are a great way to keep your feet dry and cool without getting in the way of your fashion.

Bring Your Shorts Game to a New Level

Ok, let me address this right off the bat: ditch your cargo shorts. Seriously, you’re not 12 anymore. At this point in time, you should have a respectable collection of khaki flat-fronts and navy Bermudas. However, if you want to switch it up and be a bit more adventurous, try adding a pair of seersuckers or turn-up cuffs for a dressier look.

A couple of things to remember when it comes to wearing shorts: pair them with a nice button-down or polo shirt with loafers and you’ll look like a sophisticated gentleman who may or may not own a boat. Cargo shorts and a tee? Pass.

But Don’t Disregard Shirts

Upgrade your funny graphic tees with some nice, solid colors and interesting textures. C’mon, you’re not in college anymore, be more adventurous with the kind of shirts you’ll wear, whether it’s a collared polo or a short-sleeved Henley.

Remember: to avoid looking sloppy in a shirt, always make sure you have the right fit. Sleeves should start at the widest point of your shoulders and should not be baggy. For formal events, always go for a tucked-in button-down.

Handkerchiefs Are Never Out of Style

A simple white handkerchief discreetly tucked away in your pockets can mean the difference between a basic bro and a refined gentleman. Handkerchiefs might seem like something your granddad would carry, but it’s a timeless accent piece that’s so much classier than carrying a paper napkin all the time to wipe off your summer sweat.

Oh and, always carry two: one for you, and one for any lady who might need it. Trust me, a well-timed and well-placed hanky can do wonders for your dating life.

Spritz on an Appropriate Fragrance

I get it, it’s hard to resist a great sandalwood or amber cologne. While those are great scents, they’re more appropriate for cooler climes. For the summer, it’s a good idea to switch something a little more refreshing, something in the citrus and earth/woodsy spectrum.

Oh, and, a good, un-scented deodorant won’t hurt you either.

Make a Splash With Your Swimwear

The pool is the one place where you can go out and make a statement. Go for board shorts that are loud, bright, and bold. Just try not to wear anything too drab. Remember: if you’re wearing board shorts, you’re probably somewhere fun. Don’t kill the vibe with a drab color, wear something that just yells, “I’m down to party”

“Semi-Formal” Doesn’t Have To Be a Sweaty Affair

Semi-formal events at the height of summer can be quite the challenge, but it doesn’t have to be. Your best friend in these instances is a thing called “unstructured” jackets. Unstructured jackets are basically blazers with a thinner chest canvas, streamlined inner lining, and drastically reduced (if not completely absent) shoulder pads. They’re lightweight, cheaper, and much, much cooler.

Cotton or linen cloths are best for unstructured jackets because they keep everything nice and light and breezy. A full linen suit with an unstructured blazer should be your go-to summer wedding outfit.

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