Some like it hot: what to wear to the office during a heatwave

MT is tired of seeing flip-flops in the office, so it's consulted the experts and come up with this fool-proof guide on how to dress for work when temperatures are soaring.

by Emma Haslett

Heatwaves like this only come around once a decade, so no wonder us Brits weren’t prepared – but that’s no excuse for the number of strapless dresses, floaty ‘gypsy’ skirts and (shudder) flip-flops sported in the nation’s offices over the past few days.

MT could stand it no more: we’ve consulted the experts to bring you our idiot-proof guide to dressing for work in a heatwave. Handy hint: hot-pants will never be ok.

For the ladies

The sandal*

Obviously, it depends on your company policy, says Girl Meets Dress founder Anna Bance. As long as you’re nicely pedicured (or, indeed, hastily pedicured 10 minutes before you leave the house. Not that MT would ever do that), a sandal is ok.

‘There are so many nice leather sandals in the shops at the moment,’ she says.

But that isn’t your only option. If you’re in a more corporate office, go for a peep toe with a sling-back, which allows a bit of air to your foot without showing too much toe.

Bance recommends against ballet pumps.

‘They’re too hot. I start the day off wearing them, and end up taking them off,’ she says.

‘Most girls are lucky, though – we keep lots of shoes under our desks as backup, so we can mix and match.’

The strapless top or spaghetti strap

Let’s be clear: strapless tops are barely ok for the beach, let alone the office. In fact, MT firmly believes there’s only one place for those strapless jersey maxi-dresses, and that’s a beach in Thailand.

We digress: Bance says of both spaghetti straps and strapless tops that they can be ‘a bit revealing’, but if it’s sweltering in your office and you must wear them, keep a pashmina or scarf – or even a jacket – on your chair to cover up if you have anything important to do.

‘That way, if you’re called into a meeting with your boss, you won’t feel so exposed,’ she says.

The short

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