Sunny Skies: 35 Men’s Summer Style Essentials

Jul 10, 2017

Category: Style

A guy’s wardrobe should change with the seasons. Not just because we say so, but because summer is hot, winter is cold, and you’d be an idiot to pretend like temperature doesn’t effect you. Of course, the key here is to try and find pieces of clothing that are as comfortable as they are good looking. This isn’t always easy, especially for guys who feel more at home wearing long sleeve shirts, coats, and big boots.

Not to worry. We’ve pulled together a list full of fun pieces from small clothing and everyday carry brands, broken them all down into different sections, and given a bit of background on each. Whether your summer is going to consist mostly of grinding it out in the office, or going on an extended vacation, we’re confident that we’ve got what you need right here. From fun printed shirts for the beach to more formal outfits for all of those summer weddings – we made sure to pick pieces as attractive as they are cool and comfortable. Take a scroll through and see for yourself.

Basic Tee: Buck mason Sterling Costa Crew ($42)
Raglan Shirt: Iron and Resin Cooper Tee ($50)
Polo: Lululemon Metal Vent Tech Polo ($88)
Short Sleeve Shirt: Todd Snyder Glenn-Plaid Shirt ($128)
Camp Collar Shirt: Outerknown Cayman Shirt ($195)


Summertime Classics

Is there anything more classic than a summer tee? Probably not – but there definitely are more options out there than just a plain t-shirt. Looking for something a little more beach-ready? Outerknown’s camp-collar shirt, an exclusive with Mr. Porter, is cut from a breezy jacquard fabric making it cool to wear even during hot weather. Not as much a fan of the trendy camp-collar look? You can just as easily pick up something like Todd Snyder’s short sleeve button up. It boasts a traditional button down collar, a plaid design, and a super soft linen fabric. Of course, if none of that is your bag there are always the classics like a Raglan tee or a breathable polo shirt.

Swim Trunks: Aether Swell Swim ($95)
Chinos: Taylor Stitch Democratic Chino ($98)
Shorts: Oliver’s Capital Short ($98)
Riding Shorts: Rapha Cotton Shorts ($140)
White Jeans: Nudie Jeans Grim Tim Ecru Twill Selvage ($137)

Shorts and Pants

Lightweight and Breezy

Ok so we are going to come out and say it – shorts are great. Don’t listen to people who tell you that men’s legs are ‘gross’ or whatever. That is ridiculous. Especially when it gets to over 80 before noon and you’ve got a million things to do around town. There are lots of choices you can pick from when it comes to shorts. One of our favorites is Oliver’s Capital. Made from a combination of nylon and spandex it’ll stretch and flex – allowing you to tackle any task without restricting your movement. Looking for something a little more conservative and slim fitting? Rapha’s cotton shorts are an ideal pick. They feature a reinforced crotch designed for city commuting, but they look sharp even when you aren’t in the saddle. Finally – because we are magnanimous – we also threw in a pair of solid chinos and a lighter pair of jeans for those who’ve drunk the no-shorts kool-aid.

No Show Sock: Richer Poorer Walden Sock ($13)
Tie: The Hillside Red Chambray Tie ($85)
Pants: Kit and Ace Bidwell Pant 2.0 ($128)
Shirt: Mizzen and Main Hull Shirt ($145)
Sport Coat: Ministry of Supply Going Places blazer ($325)


Summer Wedding-Ready

This is a particularly vexing category for guys. The unwritten rules of men’s formal attire require you wear long pants, a long sleeved shirt, and then a sport coat no matter the weather. This, my friends, sucks. Or at least it does if you don’t have the right clothing. Thankfully, getting the lightweight threads for summer weddings has gotten increasingly easy over the past few years. A number of young menswear brands are using breathable and dynamic fabrics to build out slacks, dress shirts, and blazers that can be worn even when it is super hot out.

Denim Jacket: Levi’s Trucker Jacket ($70)
Crewneck Sweater: Outerknown Transit Crew ($88)
Windbreaker: Patagonia Men’s Houdini Jacket ($99)
Overshirt: A Day’s March Herringbone Overshirt ($130)
Shirt Jacket: Topo Designs Breaker Shirt Jacket ($150)


Nights On The Beach

Even the warmest summers have their cool moments; offices crank the A/C a little too high, cool fogs come rolling in on the beach at night, or camping trips take you up into the mountains. Whatever the reason – you should be prepared to throw on some light summer layer for the occasion. Our hands-down favorite here is probably the Houdini jacket from Patagonia. The thin ripstop nylon windbreaker provides the right amount of insulation from cool nights and can be easily folded up and thrown in a good backpack until you need it again. If you’re looking for something a little more hefty, Outerknown’s simple transit crewneck sweater is perfect for warming back up after heading in from catching some early morning surf.

Espedrilles: Havianas Premium Espadrille ($58)
Gum Sole Sneakers: New Balace x J.Crew 791 ($75)
Canvas Sneakers: Seavees Legend Sneaker ($78)
Knit Sneaker: Native Mercury Liteknit ($120)
Leather Slippers: FEIT Hand Sewn Slipper ($520)


Picks For Kicking It

Summer is the season to proudly wear cool sneakers. Whether your favorites are espedrilles, canvas sneakers, white gum soled sneakers, or super breathable shoes – you need to wear them now before the rain, snow, and salt once again rule the sidewalk. One of our favorite summer kicks is most definitely the Seavees Legend. While the all black sneaker may not scream ‘summer’ – the silhouette has a classic blacked out look that is hard to beat. Looking for something a little less classic and more forward thinking? Native’s Mercury Light Knit is both breathable and incredibly comfortable. And for those on the hunt for something truly unique – you should consider FEIT’s slippers. These shoes are hand-sewn and boast a beautiful single piece leather upper that’ll stand out on the summer sidewalk like no other.

Key Ring: Maxx and Unicorn Pill Keyring ($30)
Backpack: Matador Freerain24 Backpack ($60)
Bracelet: Miansai Rope Single Casing Bracelet ($85)
Wallet: Bellroy All Conditions Wallet ($110)
Watch: Leather Timex Weekender Chronograph ($128)


Summer Carry Essentials

Everyday carry isn’t necessarily something that we’d consider seasonal, but it is such a big part of how we think about an outfit that we couldn’t help but give it its own section. Plus, if you’re going to be getting a new pair of shorts or pants – you’ll need something to throw in all of those new pockets, right? Don’t have enough pocket space? No worries. There are always things like Matador’s Freeman 24 backpack. The EDC backpack can fit up to 24 liters of gear, and easily fold down to a small pouch when you are done using it.

Socks: Falke Cool Kick Knitted No Show Socks ($24)
Ball Cap: Mollusk Cotton-Twill Cap ($45)
Belt: J.Crew Woven Leather Belt ($55)
Headphones: Apple AirPods ($160)
Sunglasses: Shwood Francis Titanium Shades ($189)


Finishing Touches

Summer isn’t summer without a ball cap, a pair of sunglasses, and some tunes. We rounded up three of those things as well as a solid woven belt from J.Crew and a pair of no-show socks for this section. The latter, in our eyes, is an important pick. It’s very much the style now to cuff pants to show a bit of ankle – especially when it is hot out – but ditching socks will have your shoes smelling awful and your feet even worse. Do yourself (and everyone around you) the favor of picking these up.

50 Best Men's Wardrobe Essentials

Looking for a more well rounded wardrobe? We put together a list of the 50 best men’s wardrobe essentials fit for any season.

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