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The Best Outfits to Wear to Work in a Heatwave

What to wear to work in a heatwave? What to wear to work on hot days? When it’s really hot? How to dress for work when the air conditioning at the office is set on low, or, even worse, turned off entirely? While summer heatwaves weren’t much of a problem for anyone working at the office the last summer, things are a lot different this summer. We are turning off air conditioners to save energy. But what about the business dress code in the heatwave? Is the business dress code downgrading as we begin to swelter in temperatures topping 30°C? It certainly is! Point of view, not as much as it did the last year. Scroll down to see what to wear to work in a heatwave and learn all about the new heatwave summer business dress code for summer 2024.

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It is true; the usually very strict corporate dress code is being relaxed for summer 2024. Business people have been encouraged to dress more casually in the workplace in a move to avoid excessive use of air conditioners to save energy.

The new summer heatwave business dress code calls for cool power dresses, easy separates, breathable fabrics, and even sandals.

With the new summer heatwave dress code, you have the freedom to express your personal style while staying cool and collected. Embrace the change, explore new outfit combinations, and let your wardrobe be a reflection of your confidence and adaptability. Remember, the key is to dress for success while beating the heat wave. Your answer? Quiet luxury! You still want to look fashionable.

Scroll down to see/shop for the best summer heatwave work outfits.


By the way, all the collages and product galleries are pinnable and hyperlinked. Meaning you can shop for all the heatwave summer work outfits simply by clicking on the garments. A link will take you to the store where I found the clicked garment at the most honest price and with the smallest carbon footprint.

POV Most clothes, shoes and accessories are linked to European online fashion stores to ensure you benefit from the current exchange rate.

Still, I wanted to make sure you reduce your carbon footprint while shopping for your heatwave summer work wardrobe. Hence I linked garments to online stores with their warehouses near your city, also.


Indeed, the tides of corporate fashion are shifting, and the summer of 2024 brings with it a welcome wave of relaxed dress codes. Embracing a more laid-back approach, businesses have recognized the importance of conserving energy by encouraging a casual yet stylish aesthetic in the workplace.

Gone are the days of stifling blazers and suffocating button-downs. The new mantra for summer heatwave attire is all about striking the perfect balance between professionalism and energy saving. Enter the realm of cool power dresses, where sophisticated silhouettes meet lightweight fabrics, enabling you to conquer the boardroom with ease while staying breezy and smart.

Give traditional summer tailoring a modern spin by going for quiet luxury, pastels, loose-fit short dresses, tank tops, open backs, and slingbacks.


Daytime elegance comes assured with the knee length and short sleeves, whilst loose fit make sure you don’t swelter at the office as they set air conditioning on low.

Step into the realm of business formal attire while conquering the heatwave in style with the mesmerizing combination of the RED Valentino pink short sleeve loose fit dress and matching pumps. This outfit effortlessly merges sophistication with relief from the scorching temperatures, ensuring you remain cool and collected even in a hot office environment.

Long and svelte may be the silhouette for the office for summer. But in summer 2024, we are reaching for slightly shorter dresses that liven up each business formal look.

The knee-length and short sleeves of the RED Valentino dress (btw mine is sold out, but I found a similar RED Valentino dress for you – see the product widget below) exude daytime elegance, making it a perfect choice for professional settings. The loose fit not only adds a touch of comfort but also ensures you don’t swelter under the office air conditioning set on low. This delightful balance between style and practicality allows you to glide through your workday with ease and grace.

You can pair the dress with matching pumps (like I did) or with slingbacks (I love pairing this dress with Valentino Garavani rockstuds, but not for business formal when tights are still a must – despite the abnormally high temperatures).

Tights add a touch of refinement and polish to your outfit, enhancing the overall professional aesthetic. They create a smooth and uniform appearance for your legs, providing a more put-together look that aligns with the formal dress code. Minimizing any distractions that bare legs might cause. This can be particularly important in conservative workplaces or when dealing with clients and customers.

In formal settings, wearing tights is considered part of professional etiquette. It demonstrates attention to detail and respect for the expected norms of dress, reflecting your commitment to presenting yourself in a manner consistent with the professional environment.

Besides, there is no way to wear pumps without tights. Luckily, 6DEN tights don’t weigh you down much. Btw the tights I added to the product gallery above have the best waistband (it doesn’t have that unfortunate seam that slices into your skin), and they feel ok with any briefs. I wear cotton Calvin Kleins – they don’t show off. Not that that would be a problem when wearing a loose fit dress anyway.


But don’t limit yourself to dresses alone; easy separates are also key players in this sartorial revolution, especially if you hate wearing tights as much as I do.

Think breathable trousers (I swear to silk Max Mara trousers) paired with a tank top and linen blazer. These versatile combinations not only allow for effortless movement but also exude a sense of confidence that is vital in the workplace.

The linen fabric allows for ample airflow, ensuring that you stay cool and collected even during intense meetings or presentations. Point of view, it might wrinkle. Mine doesn’t, but my sister’s blazer, which is the same as mine (same brand, same style, same fabric composition – just different size), does. Whatsoever, I added a more wrinkle-proof linen blazer in the product gallery below anyway. Ps. The blazer in the collage is linked to a Pinko blazer and is very similar to mine – but it’s not linen.

Complete your business formal heatwave outfit with the iconic Valentino Garavani Rockstud kitten heels. These stylish yet practical shoes provide the perfect balance of comfort and elegance. The kitten heel height ensures ease of movement, while the distinctive Rockstud detailing adds a touch of luxury and personality to your outfit. Plus, they are the most comfortable summer office shoes you will ever own.


If you want to keep things low-key and formal, look to exquisite tailoring and sleek silhouettes in white.

To master this sartorial power move, opt for a well-fitted white blazer and matching pants. The monochromatic palette not only exudes confidence but also reflects sunlight, preventing excessive heat absorption. While the white outfit stands as a symbol of pristine professionalism, its secret weapon lies beneath the blazer.

Make sure you wear a white silk top under the white blazer as you take off the blazer after the general meeting. And yes, it can be a slip top – no one will ever know. This silky addition offers a cooling touch against the skin, ensuring you stay poised and comfortable even in the hottest of office environments. As the general meeting concludes and the heat becomes unbearable, discreetly remove the blazer to reveal the lightweight slip top that conceals your secret weapon against the heatwave.

Now, let’s talk footwear. Gianvito Rossi pumps step into the spotlight, adding a touch of sophistication to your outfit. These quiet luxury heels boast a refined design and impeccable craftsmanship, effortlessly elevating your look while keeping you poised for success. They are also the most comfortable pumps yet – even at the end of the day when your legs get swollen. Choose a nude or white pair to maintain the sleek monochromatic aesthetic or experiment with a pop of color for a bold yet refined statement.


Don’t get tied down – make the hottest summer yet with off the shoulder top and Max Mara pants that sculpt to the form.

Embrace a sartorial triumph that defies the scorching heatwave as you go to work in this business formal attire. Paired impeccably with Max Mara’s pink cotton pants, tailored to perfection, and adorned with the timeless charm of Valentino Garavani’s rockstud kitten heel sandals, a modern off the shoulder top is a masterstroke of refined style.

In the midst of the hot office, where temperatures rise, and the air hangs heavy, you remain composed and cool. A white off-the-shoulder top serves as a statement of your confident individuality, while its old money silhouette strikes the perfect balance between professionalism and feminine allure. It defies the constraints of the heatwave without compromising on sophistication.

The Max Mara pink cotton pants are a testament to your discerning taste. The lightweight cotton fabric ensures breathability and comfort, alleviating any concerns of discomfort in the sweltering office environment. As you stride purposefully through the halls, these pants exude an aura of refinement, commanding attention without sacrificing your cool composure. Btw, regarding the seizing of Max Mara pants – mine were taken in. All my Max Mara pants have been taken in. I always buy Max Mara pants in the smallest size (which is not my size, though) and then take my new pants to the seamstress. (POV You can save yourself the trouble and have them taken in by the retailer – check customer service.) She usually has to take in more than 7 centimetres in the waist. Anyway, make sure you check the size guide. They are true to the size – they just don’t have the smallest sizes.

Luckily, I don’t have any trouble with sizing when it comes to the shoes. Valentino Garavani rockstud kitten heel sandals – I bought mine in size IT36.5 make an undeniable statement. With their closed-toe design, they maintain the level of formality required in a business setting while infusing a touch of edginess. These iconic sandals add an element of sophistication to your outfit, making you a beacon of style amidst the heatwave.

Together, this outfit effortlessly embodies the essence of business formal attire, challenging the heatwave with unwavering authority. It showcases your ability to navigate the professional landscape, even in the most challenging conditions. As others wilt under the oppressive heat, you remain a vision of poise and confidence, seamlessly blending fashion and function.

In the realm of business formal, the heatwave is merely an obstacle waiting to be conquered. With this ensemble as your ally, you triumph over the challenges of the hot office, emerging as a symbol of unparalleled style and unwavering grace.


Admittedly, this outfit will turn out to be formal only if you are petite and the shorts end two fingers above your knees. Mine don’t. But still, let’s assume yours will.

For those who are petite and opt for shorts that end approximately two fingers above the knees, the resulting look is undeniably business formal. And the shorts will lend a sense of structure and refinement to your summer work party look.

The off-the-shoulder white top adds a touch of femininity and allure, while maintaining a sense of professionalism. Its graceful neckline accentuates your collarbones, exuding confidence and authority. I do hope you don’t have a collarbone tattoo. If you do, please, scroll down.

Embracing business formal attire for office party in a heatwave requires ingenuity, a keen eye for fashion, and clean skin.


In the realm of office parties during a scorching heatwave, finding the perfect balance between elegance and comfort can be a daunting task. However, fear not, for we have just the outfit that seamlessly blends sophistication with relief. Picture yourself in a short sleeve black knit wrap dress, a versatile choice that exudes effortless style, paired flawlessly with the coveted Valentino Garavani rockstud kitten heel sandals.

As you enter the bustling venue of the business party, the heatwave outside seems like a distant memory. The short sleeve black knit wrap dress, elegantly hugging your figure, allows for unrestricted movement and breathability, ensuring you stay cool and composed throughout the evening. With a length that modestly grazes two fingers above the knee, this dress strikes the perfect balance between formality and fashion-forward flair.

Point of view, my dress is slightly shorter. But I made sure the dress you will find in the product gallery below is longer than mine. Yet allowing you to withstand the heat of the night.

Complementing the dress, the Valentino Garavani rockstud kitten heel sandals make a bold statement of refined elegance. With their closed-toe design, these iconic sandals offer both style and comfort, ensuring your feet remain blissfully at ease throughout the night. The rockstud detailing adds a touch of edginess, effortlessly elevating your outfit and making you the centre of attention.


Lighten the mood at the office with charming cool designs in breezy colourways and natural fabrics. From statement tops in cotton, wool or silk and wide-leg pants in tonal variations of pink, to short office dresses and sandals (yes, you can wear sandals for work during a heatwave if the dress code is business casual), these business casual heatwave outfits will put a smile on your face.

Look into separates like tailored shorts that are easy to dress up or dress down. Colourful options are always fun. But don’t ignore the soothing influences of neutral tones when you are caught in the middle of the heatwave. From wide straps to cap sleeves and bold pinks to formal necklines, there is an interesting take to suit every style.


Revel in the soothing influence of black to keep you looking calm and collected. It is hard to keep cool as the days heat up. But we think a little black dress with no sleeves is the best way to make an elegant statement. Besides, it makes the sweat spots less obvious.

Imagine stepping into the office on a sweltering summer day, the heatwave showing no mercy, and to your dismay, the air conditioning system decides to take an unexpected vacation. As beads of sweat form on your colleagues” foreheads. But you remain unruffled, for you have made a strategic choice. You are wearing a little black dress, with a loose fit and no sleeves.

The office is abuzz with the collective discomfort of your colleagues, fanning themselves and seeking refuge in the shade. Yet, you exude an air of cool confidence as you gracefully navigate the hot office space. The sleeveless black dress allows the gentle breeze to caress your skin, offering much-needed respite from the oppressive heat.

As you pass by your coworkers, their eyes are drawn to your impeccable style. The simplicity of the black dress accentuates your poise and professionalism, proving that business casual attire can withstand even the harshest heatwave. Its timeless allure remains unblemished, while its sleeveless design becomes a practical necessity on days like today.

By the way, this outfit is more casual than the previous one (given the previous dress is less than two fingers above your knees) because of the lack of sleeves. No sleeves = business casual, no matter the length of the dress. But you might want to style it with a more casual business tote to make sure you don’t look party ready, but party ready nonetheless. Happy hours are fast approaching.


Sculpted and knitted, this season’s business formal heatwave outfits speak volumes. Go for a statement-making neckline and simple pants.

As you slip into the navy blue wide-leg pants, their loose and flowing silhouette allows for unrestricted movement, ensuring comfort in the hot office environment.

As you prepare for another day of work amidst the scorching heatwave, you’re determined to make a stylish statement that defies the stifling temperatures. Your choice for today’s business casual outfit should embody both comfort and fashion-forward sensibilities. Adorning yourself in a sculpted and knitted halterneck top, paired effortlessly with navy blue linen wide-leg pants, you will exude a refreshing elegance that defies the blazing sun.

The knitted halterneck top embraces the perfect balance between sophistication and breathability. It is casual but its unique texture adds a touch of contemporary flair to your outfit.

You can complete your outfit with Malone Souliers Maureen flat mules. These stylish and practical shoes boast a sleek design that effortlessly merges elegance with comfort. The flat mules, with their distinctive pointed toes and refined craftsmanship, make a statement while providing relief from the heat.

As the sun reaches its zenith, the hot office becomes a battleground for staying cool without compromising your professional appearance. But you, dressed in the knitted halterneck top and navy blue wide-leg pants, remain unruffled, embracing both style and practicality in the face of the scorching temperatures.


Maximum impact, minimum effort – update your summer work wardrobe with a tank top for hot summer days.

Go for tank top, and silk pants styled with slingbacks if you want some smart structure or flaunt those sun-kissed shoulders with a sleeveless style.

From whispering jolts of colour to a simple design that flatters to perfection, heatwave work dressing has never been so easy.


Relaxed and at ease, these casual work outfits will make working when it’s boiling outside a total breeze.

The crochet fabrics, linen and cotton designs I found for you provide the perfect amount of detail for something elevated that won’t set you down.


Go as lightweight as you can for summer work dressing; linen pants will lend themselves to repeat wear this summer. You can even pair them with sandals – if they are wide enough. Worry not, I found a pair that is even wider than my Max Mara pants – see the product gallery below. Those in collage are linked to Max Mara pants – same shape as mine, but in red. By the way, I plan to buy those. They will transition well into fall 2024 when red will be the most fashionable colour of the season.

Whatsoever, we still have two more heatwaves before fall. And there can be something deeply alluring about a lighter palette worn in the heat of summer.


Choose a soothing shade of neutrals or delicate pastels to keep you feeling calm and collected as the heat climbs up. We love swapping out blouses and pencil skirts for tank tops and linen trousers when we want summer work style with a more casual touch.

And we love stepping in sandal mules. Sandal mules have become synonymous with a more casual and relaxed aesthetic, making them a popular choice for those seeking comfort and style in a work environment that embraces a casual dress code.

Point of view, it’s important to note that the appropriateness of sandal mules for work can vary depending on the specific office culture and dress code policies. While they may be suitable for some casual work settings, it’s always wise to gauge the expectations and norms of your workplace to ensure your attire aligns with their standards of professionalism. They are OK if you are a content creator working in fashion, though.


While tank tops and sleeveless dresses are our new summer office staples, you better cover your shoulders if you work outside. Be smart and protect yourself from sunburn.

Ps. Whilst striped cotton dresses can sometimes seem a daunting prospect for work, white lace dresses are here for the hottest summer days. Clever frills along the front and sleeves ensure the perfect casual work outfit.


Airy long sleeve dresses and matching sandal mules are a great way to sample casual work style whilst working outside in the heat.

Besides, lace dresses offer a nice touch of movement to counterbalance the high neckline. Go for white for a touch of allure that is not too much for work in the sun. All in all, white summer clothes are perfectly suited for alfresco business activities and pair easily with heels after a busy day.

Ps. I added a longer version of my dress in the product gallery as well. You might find my dress too short if you work in service.


If you work as a hostess at a bar or restaurant and shift from two different climates every few moments, you need an outfit that offers a balance between warm and cold.

Intricate fabrics in simple silhouettes are a perfect pairing. Look for crochet tops and navy linen shorts. Styled with white sandal mules, they are the perfect blend of casual and summer smart.

The crochet short sleeve sweater adds a touch of intricate detail to your outfit, creating a visual interest that sets it apart from typical summer attire. Its breathable nature allows the air to circulate freely, keeping you cool amidst the scorching temperatures. The delicate crochet pattern adds a playful charm, while the short sleeves offer a welcome respite from the hot summer sun.

Complementing the crochet top, the navy blue linen shorts exude a relaxed yet polished vibe. The lightweight fabric allows for optimal ventilation, ensuring that you remain comfortable throughout the day. The navy hue adds a touch of sophistication, creating a versatile canvas for various styling options. Paired with the crochet sweater, these shorts strike the perfect balance between casual and summer smart, reflecting the casual work atmosphere of the bar or restaurant.

To complete the look, you slip into white high heel sandal mules. These stylish footwear choices not only elevate your outfit but also provide the necessary comfort and practicality required for a bustling work environment.


A nice pair of shorts takes you everywhere. Pair them with ballet flats if you need to do heavy tasks.


Feeling perplexed by the multitude of office outfit ideas for the heatwave? Unsure which concept to embrace and which ensemble to don for that cool and composed vibe? I feel you! Delve into the FAQ section, and rest assured, you will get the answers you seek.

What to wear to work when it is hot in summer?

Something light. Check the best summer heatwave work outfits in this article.

Has the business dress code been downgraded for energy saving policy?

Yes. The business formal dress code is being relaxed for summer 2024.

Can I wear sandals as business formal in the heatwave?

Slingbacks are a more professional option. However, you can style sandals in a way to look smart for any occasion. Check the best summer work outfits with sandals to see how.

How to dress for work during heatwave?

When dressing for work during a heatwave, it’s important to choose lightweight and breathable fabrics that will keep you cool and comfortable. Opt for looser-fitting clothing that allows air to circulate around your body. Choose lightweight materials such as silk, linen, linen and silk blend, cotton and silk blend, thin virgin wool. Wear linen blazers, and matching linen pants, or a slik and linene suit, linen dresses, thin virgin wool sweaters, linen dresses, loose shortsleeve knee high dresses, shortsleeve silk blouses, bermuda shorts, silk shorts. You can play with proportion and choose trend-led pieces like oversized blazers or wide-leg trousers. Whatever you wear, remember to check the fabrics first. Cotton and silk, but also thin virgin wool are great heatwave allies. Look for pieces in black or pattern, which will be better at concealing any sweaty creases. Make sure you always wear the appropriate underwear, especially if you’re wearing lighter fabrics. Make sure you pair your white clothes with underwear in your skin tone. Swap nylon tights with 5DEN tights made of silk that feel like the second skin and don’t weigh you down. Think carefully about footwear. Sandals and strappy shoes can be a great option, if you can dress business casual, but make sure they’re appropriate for your workplace.

What to wear to work on hot days?

Natural fabrics and simple silhouettes. Check the outfits in this article to find the most fashionable summer heatwave office outfits and the best outdoor summer work outfits for ladies.

How to dress up denim for work during a heatwave?

Preferably with a top in a breathable material and kitten heel slingbacks.

What are some breathable fabrics to wear during a heatwave?

Linen, silk, cotton, and thin virgin wool are the best fabrics to wear during a heatwave. Whereas cotton is a highly breathable fiber that absorbs moisture and allows air to circulate through the fabric, silk and linen dry faster. Silk is a natural fiber with exceptional moisture absorption, evaporation and breathability. Its porous structure allows air to circulate freely, promoting ventilation and keeping your body cool. This breathability helps to wick away moisture and sweat, preventing that uncomfortable sticky feeling often experienced during hot summer days. Its lightweight nature prevents the fabric from clinging to your body, providing a comfortable and breezy sensation. It minimizes the risk of feeling weighed down by heavy clothing, making it perfect for combating the heat and staying cool. Linen is another top choice for a breathable fabric for hot weather conditions. It’s lightweight, absorbent, and dries quickly. However, it wrinkles easily, so make sure you have an anti wrinkle spray for linen in your handbag. Or opt for virgin wool that wrinkles less and gives you the perfect soft feeling in the heat. point of view, when it comes to selecting fabrics for surviving a summer heatwave, wool may not be the first material that comes to mind. However, virgin wool defies expectations and proves to be an excellent choice for staying cool in scorching temperatures. While wool is often associated with warmth and insulation, virgin wool stands out as a lightweight, breathable, and moisture-wicking fabric. It is derived from the first shearing of a sheep, making it exceptionally soft, fine, and versatile. The natural fibers in virgin wool allow air to circulate, creating a cooling effect on the skin. Unlike synthetic materials that can trap heat and moisture, virgin wool helps to regulate body temperature, keeping you comfortable even in sweltering conditions. It has the ability to absorb and evaporate moisture, which helps to keep sweat away from your skin. This feature not only keeps you feeling drier but also prevents odors, making virgin wool a practical choice for long workdays or outdoor activities during a heatwave. Additionally, virgin wool has a natural elasticity that allows it to retain its shape and resist wrinkles. This means you can stay polished and put-together, even when the temperatures are soaring.

How to dress business casual if you work outside in the heat?

If you need to dress business casual but work outside in the heat, try one of the work outfits presented in this article.

What to wear to the office when it’s fucking boiling?

A cutout dress is a great option, but also all the summer heatwave outfits presented in this article.

How to stay cool in a hot office?

By wearing natural fabrics and cutout garments.

How to dress if the office is too hot?

Wear natural fabrics and simple fits that don’t restrict.

What do you need in your work wardrobe for a heatwave?

cutout dresslinen pants that don’t wrinkletank topsleeveless dresslight knitwearshirt dresstailored shortsmules, and slingbacks you will wear with your favourite summer work outfits once the heatwave ends.


Up next: how to incorporate summer trends into work attire.