How to dress in summer without black (for men)

How to Power Dress in Summer Without Black (for Men)

I’ve talked a lot in previous posts about high-contrast dressing. It’s a powerful way to immediately project confidence and strength in the business world. I find that most people choose to create their high-contrast outfits using black; it’s often the easiest option. However, in summer, black is usually the last colour you want to wear as it soaks up the sun much faster than lighter colours. I want to share with you some tips and advice for both men and women to help you figure out your power wardrobe for summer.

Gentlemen, this week’s post is all for you.
Ladies, please visit “How to Power Dress in Summer Without Black (for Women)” here.

Start With a Cooler Fabric for Your Suits

Cotton, wool and linen are popular fabrics for men’s summer suits. The natural fibres allow your skin to breath and help keep you cooler. Most people think of wool as a winter fabric, but there are many lightweight varieties of wool available for suits that can be just as cool as cotton. I would personally advise against a linen suit; it wrinkles easily and can look unprofessional by lunch.

Combine Vibrant Colours – For Men in Creative Industries

When working in a creative industry, you can be a little more adventurous with colour. Step away from dark navy or black, and start with a lighter base colour of grey for your suit. Add a crisp white shirt with French cuffs for elegance. Then incorporate vibrant citrus colours such as orange or green to your suit combination. Less is often more, so the best place to incorporate these colours into your outfit is with your tie, an Ascot tie, or a pocket square.

Combine Authoritative Colours – For Men in Traditional Industries

When working in a traditional industry, you have to be more conservative with the colours you choose. You can still start with a base colour of grey for your suit, but choose a style with pinstripes for added authority (Want to know why? Ask me in the comments section below). Add a crisp white shirt with French cuffs. Then mix in a royal red or crimson colour tie, Ascot tie, or pocket square.

Focus on the Details

The key to a polished and powerful look for men – no matter your industry – is in the details.

Cufflinks: choose quality cufflinks and if you can, match the cufflink colour with your tie.
Belt: the buckle should be understated and your belt colour should match your shoes.
Shoes: for a grey suit, black is best and make sure they’re polished all over, even on the heel.
Socks: match your sock colour with the colour of your pants.

What suit combination do you usually choose for summer? Do you often wear a tie in summer? I’d love to hear more about you. Please leave your comments below.

About Kara

Kara Ronin is an international business etiquette expert and founder of Executive Impressions. Kara’s advice and unique perspectives have been featured in Time Inc., Business Insider India, Ignites Europe (a Financial Times Service), The Daily Muse, Women 2.0, and more. Kara offers corporate seminars and online training programs on business etiquette, leadership skills, and executive communication around the world. Get Kara's insights delivered straight to your inbox