Staying cool in the summertime is a top priority for many women. One of the best ways to ensure your comfort is to select clothing made with breathable fabrics. Breathable textiles allow air to circulate through your clothes, wick moisture away from your skin, and help keep you dry.
One challenge is determining which are the best breathable fabrics for hot weather. By reading labels and online product descriptions, you can select the best garments to wear on warm days.
The Big Three Cooling Clothing Material
While the weave and weight of fabric has a lot to do with its breathability, there are still three materials that are known for providing cool comfort on hot, humid days:
Cotton: Cotton is king when it comes to hot weather fabrics. Lightweight, affordable and incredibly versatile, cotton is a natural fiber that is not only breathable but also quite comfortable. Look for lightweight cotton garments for maximum cooling: Cotton gauze is particularly attractive and provides maximum breathability. Chambray is another fabric made from cotton that offers the look of denim but at a lighter fabric weight.
Linen: Linen is a particularly elegant fiber that is made from flax. It is also known for its cooling properties and is much beloved by travelers to hot, humid areas. Linen is also known for wrinkling easily, so you may need to iron your linen garments before wearing them. However, some linen blend fabrics are less prone to wrinkling, and some people feel that slight wrangling adds to this fabric’s charm.
Rayon: Rayon is a man-made fiber created from wood pulp. It is lightweight, versatile, and wrinkle-resistant. It is not quite as breathable as cotton or linen, so you may want to consider this when choosing clothing for a particularly hot day.
Other Tips for Choosing Fabrics to Stay Cool
Choose garments that don’t cling tightly to the body: Tight -fitting clothing holds moisture and heat next to your skin. You should also select light-colored clothing which reflects the sun rather than absorbing its heat.
Finally, consider dressing in layers on hot days. This may sound counterintuitive, but it offers some real benefits. Keep in mind that you will probably be moving from warm environments, such as the outdoors into air-conditioned buildings. This can lead to some discomfort, so wearing a light topper over a tank top or cami can be a good way of staying cool. In addition, if you are spending time outdoors, a light jacket or blouse can protect your skin from damaging UV rays.
What are your favorite summertime fabrics? Let us know in the comments.