4 Fabrics to Wear When the Weather Gets Warm

a man looking at clothes

A man shopping | Source: iStock

It’s such sweet relief to watch the mercury climb after a long winter. Thankfully, spring is here, and it’s time to really start dressing like it. To help you choose the right clothes for the season, it’s important to know these 4 essential seasonal fabrics, which will allow you to choose appropriately styled clothing, give you some breathing room, and minimize excess sweat.

1. Cotton

One of the most obvious, adaptable, affordable, and readily available of all of the fabrics that you already have hanging around in your wardrobe is cotton. In fact, it’s one of the most widely used natural fibers in the world and you’ve probably already worn it every day this year. What makes it so great for warm weather is its great capabilities. Here are some of the pros to wearing cotton:

It’s completely breathable

Cotton is very well known as a very breathable fabric. That means it won’t trap hot, moist air between you and what you’re wearing. In addition, its moisture-wicking properties will actually help to draw moisture away from the body.

It’s lightweight, soft, and retains its structure 

Cotton, before it’s turned into a fabric, starts out as a tiny puff that looks like a cloud, and it’s incredibly soft to the touch. Luckily, none of those properties are lost when it’s woven into shorts, blazers, and tees: The softness of the fabric lives on. In addition, it’s not all fluffy, it’s actually a very fine fiber that’s lightweight and can be transformed into weaves that are thin, yet strong, and structured as well.

Just make sure to not over-dry the cotton; you’ll witness some of your favorite lightweight cotton pieces shrink to a fraction of what they once were.

2. Linen 

a blazer

A linen blazer | Source: Macy’s

Linen is probably one of the best known warm weather fabrics, in fact, you probably only associate the fabric with warm weather. Similar to cotton, linen is a natural fiber and equally adept to keeping you cool in hot weather. In short, it’s way too useful of a fabric to not utilize during the warm weather months of the year. Here are some of the great benefits to wearing linen:

It’s a tough fabric

If you’re looking for a great warm weather fabric, then count linen in. It’s actually a pretty strong natural fiber with staying power, so feel free to purchase linen pieces like a linen blazer that’s muted enough to wear for warmer seasons to come.

But seriously, it doesn’t get better than linen

Linen has been around for a long time, which means its heat-beating credentials are pretty hard to beat. The main benefit of the fabric is its low thread count, which means fewer fibers and more of that breathability that you need when the temperature considerably rises. Wearing linen is the closest you’ll get to not wearing anything at all.

No problems with moisture 

Generally speaking, natural fibers are usually great with water, because they too grew outdoors and have been subject to moisture and water. Linen’s great in this respect: Its hollow fibers gain up to 20% moisture before the piece even begins to feel damp, which means that if you’re sweating profusely, you won’t get soaked.

It gets better over time

Although linen can feel a little rough at first, with time it becomes incredibly soft. Unlike cotton, which can get coarser over time, washing and drying linen actually makes it gradually softer, as the process gradually breaks down its tough fibers.

3. Silk

bomber jacket

A bomber jacket | Source: Topman

Silk is one of the fabrics that at the very mention conjures up thoughts of luxury. That said, silk is probably not on your short list of spring fabrics; however, when it’s worn sparingly, it can keep you cool when the temperature is uncomfortably hot outside. Here is the great benefit to wearing silk:

You won’t even feel it

Silk has a weightless feeling to it, and while it’s not over utilitarian, sometimes it just looks good, especially in this season’s hottest style — the silk bomber jacket. Think of silk as more of a warm spring fabric and not one that you would want to wear basking in the sun, because it doesn’t fare too well in direct sunlight and heat. The sun’s rays will break down the silk’s fibers while the color of the dyed silk fades when it’s exposed. So keep the silk bomber or shirt to springtime wear.

4. Light Weight Wool

Light-weight wool jacket

Light-weight wool jacket | Source: The RealReal

Yes, you read that correctly. However, it’s not the cold weather fabric you know and love, rather, it’s not as dense or heavy and it deserves a place in your fair-weather wardrobe. Tropical weight wool is woven less densely than cotton, and happens to be thin, and just as breathable as other warm weather fabrics. Here’s why you need this fabric in your life:

It’s a great suit fabric

Just because the summer hits, doesn’t mean you don’t have to go work or not have to wear a suit (unfortunately). Most of your suits are made of wool, which happens to be one of wool’s main draws. It gives a sense of structure to your silhouette. Sure, your linen suit is going to look and feel just as cool, but it may be slightly too casual in a corporate atmosphere.

It won’t wrinkle easily

Unlike linen and cotton, tropical wool will not wrinkle as easily, thanks to its shape-retaining fibers. But just be sure to steer clear of water or excessively dry temperatures, which the material cannot handle very well. However, you can still wear this fabric in the summer even if you tend to sweat a lot, because it would take an excessive amount of sweating to cause any kind of damage to the fabric.

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