If you’ve looked out the window in the past 10 minutes or so, you might’ve noticed that spring is here – and with that comes the urge to splurge on new summer outfits! But what fabrics should you buy to stay cool and fresh in summer instead of feeling sweaty and gross?
We’ve already gone over a similar topic for winter, just that the focus was on staying warm and cozy during the colder months of the year, so it’s just right and fair to have a look at materials that will help you look your unsweaty best in summer! So let’s get a-going!
The classic and a total no-brainer for summer as everyone will tell you. Cotton is rather inexpensive and versatile. There are so many finishes and qualities out there, there’s something for everyone! Cotton is breathable, absorbs moisture and retains it, therefore it helps your body to cool down. If you can, opt for organic cotton. It’s better for the environment and simply the healthier option for everyone involved (including cotton farmers and you).
Another classic. Clothing made of linen is usually not as soft and fine as cotton items but Linen is breathable, absorbs moisture and dries quickly which is a blessing on hot summer days! It’s definitely a statement fabric you can wear year after year. It does require frequent ironing though, but that’s a small price to pay to stay fresh and cool all summer long!
Extremely lightweight, keeps you cool in summer and warm in winter. It is one of the most luxurious materials out there and therefore also on the pricey side. But you can get lucky in sales and when thrifting. It is a very delicate fabric though and requires special care. But treated well you will have an investment piece that will make you happy for years to come.
Also, for those of you who want to wear silk but shy away from it as common production methods kill off the silkworm inside it’s cocoon, there is good news: Ahimsa silk is what you want to invest in. This kind of silk is more expensive and also more difficult to find, but its production methods focus on letting the moth hatch, either naturally or by cutting open the cocoon at the right moment. You can read more about Ahimsa silk here.
Silk is hands down one of the best fabrics for summer and winter!
Viscose (or Rayon) didn’t get much love from me when I talked about the perfect fabrics for winter, but it’s actually pretty great for summer! Lightweight and soft it feels oh-so-good on your skin, so many consider it a great alternative to silk. It’s also much cheaper and less delicate than silk. It is prone to shrinking if washed too hot though, so better be careful there.
I already talked about wool, cashmere, Alpaca, Angora etc. excessively in my article about how to stay warm in winter. These materials are great in summer too and if you want to learn more about how and why, you can read all about it here.
Hemp is among the best fabrics for summer for more than just one reason! Aside from its durability and ability to keep your body cool and dry as it absorbs a great deal of moisture without feeling wet on the skin, it also has antibacterial properties. In other words: you can get more wear out of it before throwing it into the laundry bin. Hemp fabrics can feel super soft and comfy on your skin. Bonus points to this great material for also protecting you from UV rays!
You might have noticed, that I’ve only talked about natural materials so far. But what about synthetic fibers in summer? They are colorful and dry quickly, after al! Well, I don’t think they belong among the best fabrics for summer. The thing is: most synthetic fibers don’t absorb moisture. So what happens is that your body heat and sweat gets trapped underneath all that pretty polyester. You feel soaked in sweat and your clothes start to smell in no time. You usually can’t wear them more than once before you have to wash them. All of that is – literally – not cool at all!
High quality gym wear absorbs moisture to some extent and dries quickly, so it’s great for exercising. But most people do not wear gym wear to the office, school or college. And again, most people only wear their gym outfits once before washing them.
Blended with natural fabrics synthetic materials can be worn in summer. And again, synthetic fibers are lightweight, colorful and cheap! Just make sure that the item of your choice contains more natural than synthetic fibers to get the best of both worlds.