Been soaking up the sun these last few months? The unseasonably warm weather has quickly turned as we head into December and January. If you have been finding yourself shivering on your way into your office, only to then be overdressed for a well-heated office, then it might be time to look into the art of winter wear. Having the right clothing when you go out, can make or break your day, whether you are hitting the slopes on some gorgeous mountains or getting to work to bring your A game at sales. In this article, we will cover the top three tips and must-haves for office wear whether it’s raining, snowing, or just extremely windy.
First things first when it comes to getting dressed for the snow any seasoned winter lover will tell you that being comfortable in the snow and in the cold rain requires layers, layers, layers. And what materials those layers are made out of is also very important. Most of us know that we need long underwear underneath our first layer of clothing if we are planning on staying outside for an extended period. It is important to feel both fresh and easy even when you are sprinting into the office through snow and rain. Your long underwear should act as a layer that moves moisture away from your skin, sweat and melted ice included. Wool is perhaps the best material to use as it keeps you dry and warm. However, if you are allergic to wool, do not stress about being wet and shivery, try underwear made out of polypropylene. Whatever you do, do not wear cotton long underwear, as it dampens super easily, and will take ages to dry as you get cold. No one likes spending an 8+ hour day in the office in the cold and the wet. That shouldn’t be where you stop layering, though, for a comfortable time in the snow, two more layer levels are needed, that is the middle layer and the protective layer.
Your middle layer should be considered the insulating layer to your clothing, your warm dry skin needs to stay that way in order for a comfortable day. Your middle layer should be made of materials that also dry quickly, but you have a bit more leeway as they are not the ones immediately close to your skin. Check out materials that are polyester, fiberfill and wool. Lots of business clothes are made out of these types of material, so while you are revamping your wardrobe for the new season, make sure to look at the material tags. So now that you got your inside layer and your middle layer, you may think that you are safe and warm, however, no matter how good your materials are you are still going to get wet.
This is when your last layer, the outer layer or the protective layer, can keep the elements off and keep you toasty. Protective layers are to help with the wind, rain, and snow. The gear itself has to fit over all of the layers we just mentioned, so it needs to be large and resistant to the elements. This is the layer that you are going to hang up in the office and watch it drip dry. What we highly recommend for your outside adventures and your, “in office days” is any clothing made with Gore-Tex. This fabric is waterproof, breathable and repels liquid while still allowing water vapor to pass through. The fabric is designed to be lightweight, so you don’t have to worry about being weighed down as you move through your day. These layers we are talking about are not just about jackets, this protective layer applies to your pants as well. Most people will deck out on top, having their three layers and top of the line jackets, and then just be wearing jeans or cotton pants. This is not the best way to go especially if you are planning to be sitting in your office chair for the majority of the day. Make sure your top layer of pants is made out of a Gore-Tex-like material to keep you dry all around.
Outside of your pants and tops, we need to talk about your feet. They will release heat, and if they get cold your extremities are opened up to not only frost bite, and a little less severe damp chilly toes and feet. Make sure that your socks are made out of wool or a wool substitute. This way they will wick moisture away from your feet and will keep you very warm, once again stay away from cotton as they will stay damp. In the same thought, you will want to invest in a good pair of gloves that allow for plenty of hand movement but also keep you warm. Try to avoid the cutesy cotton gloves if you are going to a place known for snow or water, as they will end up making your hands colder and wetter in the long run. Not only that, they won’t be dry by the time that you are ready to leave the office and walk back out into your winter wonderland. You will need to wear gear from your head to your toes as well. Your head will be where you lose heat from your body the fastest and in the greatest quantity. Invest in a good beanie and/or hats that cover your head and your ears.
It may seem like quite the investment but having the right layers and the appropriate gear to go on your hand’s, feet and face will make your day in the office so much more enjoyable and dry. If you are prepared, you can really enjoy the snow and the winter season instead of dreading it for three to four months.