I will start this post by saying what to wear in hot weather if you are plus size is COMPLETELY up to you and what you’re comfortable in. However, I just wanted to help a little more with ideas and advice from a size 26 person who hates the hot weather!
With ‘mid-sizes’ on the rise and lots of people becoming plus size for the first time, searches for what to wear in hot weather if you are plus size and how to stay cool when you are plus size have soared. As a professional plus size person that has been plus size all of my life, I’m here to save you a lot of time and sweat. Honestly, looking back to when I was just starting off in plus sizes around a size 16/18, I would absolutely love to go back in time and slap myself for what I used to wear in summer. I would nearly bake to death because I didn’t think I could show off my skin because I was bigger than my friends. So trust me when I say, put down the leggings. You are allowed to show skin and you should!
Before we get into what to wear in hot weather if you are plus size a few important points that will really help you on your self-love, body confidence, or even just body neutrality journey:
Follow Plus Size Creators for inspiration
To find places to shop, to see other people your size, your shape (and bigger) wear the styles you’d love to and look amazing doing so. Flooding your social media channels with people who look like you and how you want to dress really helps your overall confidence. Be sure to clear out and stop following any accounts that make you feel bad about yourself at the same time!
Remember, no one is actually going to look at you.
I promise in all the years of not wearing leggings in summer, no one has looked at my legs and if someone does look at you, they’re most likely thinking how nice you look, or how they wish they’d take off their leggings or cardigans too.
Underwear / Anti-Chafing Underwear
To start with what to wear in hot weather if you are plus size and also what will help you stay cool if you are plus size, your underwear. The first things you put on are super important. Badly fitted bras and thick shapewear is going to make you super uncomfortable. Grab a tape measure or head to your nearest bra shop which measures and get fitted properly. If you’re newly plus size or wearing the wrong sized bra this will dramatically change your shape, posture, and how clothes look on you. Wearing a properly fitted bra is more comfortable and therefore, won’t cause discomfort and overheating. I highly recommend Bra Stop as they stock lots of great brands.
Shapewear in the summer is an absolute must avoid, it’s SO not worth it. Instead, get some cotton knickers that fit comfortably and don’t dig into your skin. I always wear anti-chafing shorts from Chaffree, I started off as a customer, then started working with them, and now I’m just a customer again who really loves the brand. Chaffree shorts are made from special CoolMax material that helps to keep you cool, I haven’t chafed in years because of them! Sure there are lots of other versions available but because of them being tight materials, they won’t have the same cooling effect.
Chafing just doesn’t happen between your legs, if you chafe in other places then Chaffree’s sweat liners might be a good option for you!
I have tried so many different creams, balms, and powders and unless I’m using them whilst just in swimwear, they don’t work long enough for me. However, everyone is different, we all have different body shapes so it’s definitely worth trying out different brands and seeing what works for you, especially if you’re wanting something for when you’re wearing swimwear or something too short for Chaffree/anti-chafing shorts. Plus Size Travel Too has a full guide on all the different anti-chafing balms and products on the market right now.
I’ve personally tried CurveBalm, Ivyverdure and BeYou anti-chafing balms.
What To Wear In Hot Weather If You Are Plus Size
Now we’re onto actual clothing, there are lots of places to shop from but ideally, you want to be looking for things that are:
- Loose Fitting
- Light Colours
- Thin/airy fabrics
If I am wearing a cardigan then I make sure it’s a see-through fabric that is very airy and comfortable. These light-knitted cardigans are my all-time favourites, I have them in black, white, green, light blue, and dark blue, they last for years, wash easily, dry quickly, and most importantly, don’t overheat me!
Often beach cover-ups are a great option for the hot weather if you are plus size. They can make great going-out cardigans/jackets for summer holiday nights as usually, they’re see-through and very lightweight. I own lots of lace and see-through cover-ups that I’ll wear throughout the year. For example, this Lace jacket from Shein was in their swimwear section but would look amazing at night with a strappy floaty dress, it’d even work in the winter!
Short / Midi Dresses
There are so many options of what sort of dress to wear in hot weather if you are plus size, it’s just about finding the style of dress you’re most comfortable in! I personally loved Collectif Dolores dresses before I outgrew the brand (they mostly stop at a 22), they’re a vintage style of fit and flare. Lady Volup Lyra dresses are 30% of my entire wardrobe (plus they’re an inclusive brand going up to a size 32), they come in such bold vibrant prints, perfect for summer, with short sleeves and just below the knee. I always wear these through the airport too as it’s such a comfortable style! Hell Bunny is new favourite now they’ve extended to a 6XL/UK 26.
No one is expecting you to wear a cardigan in hot weather if you are plus size. Unless you’re covering up to avoid burning, put some SPF on and take that cardigan off, get your arms out! You’ll cool down so much easier and remember, there’s probably no one looking. It’s hot, it’s normal to have your skin on show, and it’s completely fine to have your arms out.
I personally haven’t worn shorts/trousers/jeans in possibly 10 years but shorts in the plus size world have come a LONG way from what I remember! You can get every print, fabric, colour and of course, size. There really is so much choice and some of the more impressive collections I’ve seen have been at Yours Clothing. Just look at all those options in just one style up to size 32!
If you have seen me out and about these last few years, you’ll have seen me with one of my many portable fans! These are absolutely amazing for helping keep cool! They come in black, white, teal, and pink so you could even match one to your outfit. They last for about 3 hours on setting 3, 6 hours on setting 2, and 10 hours on setting 1. Usually, I’ll carry a portable charger for long days or just a spare fan but these have saved me so much over the years and everyone always asked about them! You can find them on Amazon.
Be sure to check out my list of plus size brands to shop from!
I hope you enjoyed this post on what to wear in hot weather if you are plus size! If you have any suggestions please do leave them below and most importantly, remember to have fun, be in photos and make memories!