Style Tips for Staying Warm Without Looking Bulky
Now that the fall season is in full swing with golden leaves and nippy weather, it’s time to bundle up and bring out all the layers.
The chilly air is the perfect excuse to bring out the puffy vests, chunky coats, and thick sweaters hiding in your closet to keep you toasty.
While such items are helpful for keeping warm, wearing them may come at the expense of looking chunkier than usual.
Dressing for cooler weather doesn’t have to mean skipping body-flattering garments.
With a few sneaky strategies, you can layer up without taking the spotlight away from your silhouette and style.
Try the following tips on how to pull off layered outfits and look cool while staying warm.
Avoid Wearing Too Many Chunky Items Together
As a general fashion rule, you must avoid wearing bulk over bulk so you don’t get swallowed up by your clothes.
Don’t pile on large trench coats over oversized sweaters to mitigate unnecessary textures.
Ideally, you should keep your outerwear slightly thicker and longer and your underlayers tighter. Your base layers can have thinner fabrics as long as they fit snugly and are made of insulating materials like wool or cotton acrylic.
For your top layers, it’s fine to go cozy with big coats, blazers, knit sweaters, and leather jackets.
Keep Your Legs Cozy with Tights and Leggings
Tights and leggings are absolute must-haves for the cold-weather months. Apart from protecting your lower body against cold drafts, a pair of women’s tights or leggings can be easily paired with other items in your closet to elevate your outfit.
You can wear your tights under a dress, a short skirt, or an oversized knit sweater for a flattering fall look.
For a more sophisticated vibe, you may want to wear your leggings with a turtleneck under an overcoat or blazer and a scarf.
In terms of footwear, ankle boots work best with hosiery.
When wearing tights or leggings under a skirt or dress, it may be a good idea to wear a slip. You can wear a half-slip or full-slip as an undergarment to keep your body warm.
Plus, they can keep your skirt from sticking to your leggings all day. When choosing your slip, it’s best to go for spandex, polyester, or nylon fabrics that trap your body heat.
Wear a Base Top Under Everything
Bone-chilling wind can sometimes permeate your outer layers and keep you from staying cozy. To eliminate the need for too-thick coats and jackets, you may want to wear a basic, body-hugging tank top or undershirt as your base.
And of course, it would be ideal to wear tank tops made of heat-trapping fabrics to keep you insulated.
You can wear a tank top under a dress, sweater, or shirt to provide warmth at the core of your body.
Invest in a Turtleneck
Turtlenecks are another cold-climate essential and an all-around fantastic layering piece. As a fall staple, turtlenecks keep your neck warm and look great under coats and vests.
Alternatively, you can wear a long-sleeved turtleneck as a standalone top along with a pencil skirt, trousers, or wide-leg pants.
When choosing turtlenecks, it’s best to go for ones made from insulating fabrics like cotton, wool, or polyester.
Opt for Sleeveless Outerwear
Sleeveless garments may not be the first thing that comes to mind when it comes to fall fashion, but they can be great layering pieces as well.
Sleeveless coats can make you look extra chic when you wear them with a long-sleeved turtleneck or tight sweater. Similarly, you can wear a vest under a basic top to exude a casual-chic aesthetic.
If you want to stay on-trend, you can go for a quirky, retro sweater vest to be worn under a figure-hugging top or button-down shirt.
Layer Up Your Summer Clothes
Summer may be over, but you don’t have to set your warm-weather staples aside for next year. Sundresses and full slips can also serve as layering pieces over a turtleneck or a fitted shirt.
Usually, wearing a summer dress as an outer garment can keep you warm enough to skip the puffy jacket.
To top off your outfit, you can wear chunky sneakers or combat boots, perfect for walking through the fall foliage.
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A sweater or long-sleeved shirt can also look great with a maxi skirt and boots, but you can keep yourself extra warm by wearing a heat-sustaining tank underneath your top.
Denim cutoffs and dress shorts are also typical summer staples, but you can make them work for the colder seasons, too.
If you want to recycle your shorts for fall, try wearing them over a pair of tights and ankle boots.
Look Fall-Ready with Some Creativity
Fall is the best season to start refining your skills in the art of layering. At its core, fall fashion is all about balance.
As the air gets colder, you need to stay stylish without sacrificing the comfort of warmth.
So, while now is the right time to bring out your longer and thicker pieces, you can still show off your sleek silhouette with some expert layering tactics.
When it comes to dressing for fall, all you need is some practical styling sensibilities mixed with a dash of creativity.
Do you have any other tips for staying warm without looking bulky?
Let me know, til then—cheers m’deres!
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Nancy Polanco is a freelance journalist, lifestyle content creator, and editor of Whispered Inspirations. She is a proud Mom to Gabby and Michaela and partner and best friend to Darasak. Having worked as part of a health care team for almost a decade, Nancy is happy to be back to her passion. She is a contributor to the Huffington Post, TODAY’s Parents, and an Oprah Magazine Brand Ambassador.