6 Guidelines for Your Summer Work Wardrobe

Dressing for summer in the office can be tough. Ninety-degree weather and a suit jacket don't exactly mix, but neither do guys in shorts and corporate boardrooms. Not to mention the fact that, at any given point during the summer, it's about 40 degrees cooler in the average office building than it is outside.

But it is possible to create a summer work wardrobe that's comfortable yet professional, and cool yet collected. Here's how.

1. No flip flops

Ladies, this faux-pas is typically committed by you, so listen up: "Flip flops are beach wear which transpired into 'commuter-wear' and then slowly into office wear," says Lizandra Vega, author of "The Image of Success: Make a Great Impression and Land the Job You Want."

Not only do they look unprofessional, but their namesake "flip-flop" noise is an easy way to drive your co-workers nuts every time you walk by their desks, so opt for strappy sandals, espadrilles or ballet flats instead.

2. Choose light colors

"Lighter color garments help you keep cool during hot summer months," Vega says. "Dark colors absorb heat, while light colors reflect heat." That said; make sure the color isn't too light. See below.

3. No peep shows

Summer clothing is often made of lightweight, lightly colored fabric. This can make for a comfortable commute, but it can also make for awkward over exposure. "Avoid apparel in fabrics that are so lightweight that they are see-through," Vega says.

4. Wear an undershirt

It may seem counter-intuitive to add an extra layer when it's hot out, but (men especially), if you don't already wear an undershirt, you might want to start now. The extra layer will help absorb sweat during a mid-summer commute.

"Wearing a cotton undershirt actually helps men feel cooler as it will absorb perspiration," Vega says. "[Plus],if a lighter fabric shirt is chosen, the undershirt will prevent it from being see-through."

5. For women, dresses are best

Women are at a serious advantage when it comes to dressing for summer at the office for one simple reason: They can wear dresses.

"Dresses are a great option because it avoids having to wear a jacket," Vega says. "A wrap dress, a sheath or shift dress are appropriate options."

If you will be forgoing the jacket, look for styles with short or three-quarter length sleeves, even sleeveless if you feel comfortable. Tank-style dresses are too casual for the office without a jacket or cardigan, though.

6. Keep an extra layer at work

Women can keep a wrap or lightweight, neutral-colored cardigan in their desks in case the air conditioning is kicked into overdrive. Men can do the same with a blazer or sweater.

What is your go-to outfit for summer? What's the biggest faux-pas for office attire? Share your opinions in the comments section, below.

Next: How to Make Your Work Clothes Chic on the Cheap

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i love the advice! honestly, 36-around41% were real eye-openers for me! thest i enjoyed reading as well! and the parts regarding the no wearing see-through/too-tight/revealing/tattered or messy or unkept-looking/ no bras poking out,let alone no cleavage {!!!} and many of thes rest, are common sense, do you agree? the advice was stellar and friendly, and i realy adored yoru style! :) thank you for letting us women know how to dress for an interview! :)

June 03 2011 at 5:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

not sure how aol has any of your money....you do know it is free right. My mother has been paying for 10 years and i just told her to stop it is now free....but of course aol would never tell her

June 03 2011 at 5:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

What is going on? AOL, need some help up there? Plenty of people looking for a job.

June 03 2011 at 5:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I see no palace.

June 03 2011 at 5:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Little Savage

Yep, I am starting to feel that AOL has enough of my money, also. Dont like anything about the change.

June 03 2011 at 4:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Where's the palace,already?

June 03 2011 at 4:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I want to buy the palace. Downsizing is in my future. But since I was forced to read this article my comment is how a women should dress is up to her. I think alot depends on the type of business ie: manufacturing, retail, etc. But being on display is way to much of a distraction. Cover up.

June 03 2011 at 4:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Seems to me that Aol and our government share a lot of the same qualities... both claim to want nothing but the best for the people that depend on them, yet neither one LISTENS to those same people.

June 03 2011 at 4:26 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

I agree with Billy!!!!!

June 03 2011 at 4:24 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Way to go Aol! Another brilliantly done screw up. Although I personally believe the destruction of the profiles was the pinnacle of stupid. and lest we forget the elimination of the unsend mail feature. I really would like to meet the brain trust you guys have making all these decisions, so I could kick them in their collective a$$'z.

June 03 2011 at 4:22 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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