Maybe you just got a job that requires you to spend more time outside, or perhaps you've adopted a hobby that involves outdoor activities. In either case, you're going to need to update your wardrobe to match your changing lifestyle. From sunshine to chilly wind, exposure to the elements can be tough on your body if you don't have the right clothing. Here are four tips for updating your wardrobe for a more outdoorsy lifestyle.
Purchase layer-able apparel.
When the temperature fluctuates throughout the day, you're going to want to peel off layers as you go. So one of the things you need to add to your wardrobe is some more layer-able pieces. Thin, long-sleeved shirts are a necessity. Consider buying some in a smaller size and a few in a larger size so you can wear one as a base layer and another over top of it. It's better to wear two thin shirts than one thick one since the two layers will trap air between them -- and the air acts as an insulator.
Don't forget about layer-able bottoms, either. A few pairs of leggings to wear underneath your outer jeans or khakis will keep you warmer on cool days. If you get too warm, you can always sneak away to the bathroom and peel them off.
Look for performance materials.
There's a saying among hikers: "Cotton kills." This is because cotton traps moisture and holds it against your body. When a breeze blows through and your cotton clothing is moist, you can become chilled to the bone in a matter of minutes. Even if you don't plan on taking long treks in the woods, it's important to buy clothing made from performance materials rather than from cotton. You won't have to go inside and warm up as often or worry about changing clothing partway through the day.
As you look at long sleeve performance shirts, look for materials that are advertised to wick moisture away from your body. Synthetics are common, but you'll also find performance long sleeve shirts and leggings made from wool -- a warm, natural choice for outdoor activities.
Get things that fit.
Sometimes, people like to use their older, worn-out clothing as their outdoor wear. One problem with this is that once you've had something for a few years, it does not always fit well anymore. It may have shrunk in the wash or you may have put on a few pounds. When you're active outside, poorly fitting clothing can cause abrasions and irritation. So, when you buy new clothing for your outdoor wardrobe, pay close attention to fit. If anything hits you in a weird spot or seems a little too tight, it will only feel worse after a few hours outside.
Buy items that will last.
Clothing that you wear outside gets a lot more wear and tear than clothing you wear when sitting at a desk. If you buy cheap brands and poorly made items, you may only get a few uses out of them. In the long run, you'll save cash by buying good-quality clothing from reputable brands. You'll spend more per piece, but the pieces you buy will last for many years rather than a few months.
How do you know a well-made item from a cheap one? Start by feeling the material. Is it thick and durable or thin and flimsy? Then, look at the stitches and make sure they are even, secure, and made from a thick thread. If you have any doubt, read some online reviews of the product and see what others have to say.
If you follow the tips above, you should have no trouble amassing a collection of apparel to better suit your new, more outdoorsy lifestyle.