Surviving SLO Weather: Tips From a SoCal Native

Contrary to popular belief, this really is a serious issue.

As most SoCal natives are used to 70 degree weather and wearing flip flops year-round, cold weather is a foreign concept. When it does get below that optimal 70 degrees in SoCal, which as a matter of fact does happen every once in awhile, most of us can throw on a scarf and a sweater and call it a day.

With Cal Poly being located on the central coast, the weather here is generally warmer for NorCal students, but generally much colder for SoCal students. Cal Poly seems to bring NorCal and SoCal onto one campus, giving these two opposing sides of the golden state an opportunity to butt heads. Most NorCal students would scoff in response to hearing a SoCal peer complain about how cold the weather is. To our fellow SoCal mustangs: we’re here for you. Winter is coming and we’ll get through it together.

Invest in more winter coats and jackets.

Living in SoCal during fall and winter time means living in summer or spring clothes with an added layer or two. Most of us in SoCal find we rarely have to have a complete and separate wardrobe for the colder weather, but here in SLO, we need to protect ourselves at all costs. SLO is no New York when it comes to winter, so the parka isn’t quite necessary. However investing in a nice jean jacket isn’t such a bad idea. The added layers are a must to survive the chilly temperature, and coats or jackets work seamlessly with any outfit. This faux-sherpa lined denim jacket ($89.95, American Eagle, is a great option!

Did I mention layers?

SLO is a unique location as it is both fixated between peaks and mountains and only a 15 minute drive away from the coast. By essence, it’s going to get cold no matter what so it’s time to embrace it. It’s easy to work with clothes you may already own, even if they’re meant for springtime. Just wear a cami or even a long sleeve underneath, and you can turn your favorite summer night outfit into a fashionable wintry statement. This layered turtleneck and slip dress combo (  is perfect!

Ditch the sandals, girl.

It’s hard, but your feet will thank you later. Although rain boots aren’t a SLO essential, any shoe designed to battle frigid winds or the occasional sprinkle is a staple. You can easily warm your toes with fuzzy socks and any pair of boots. Booties are quick and easy to slip on before rushing to class, and make for a smooth transition from the everyday flip flop sandal. These faux leather booties ($48.99, Target, are simple and can dress up even the laziest outfit.

Stock up on hand warmers.

If you haven’t already, buy yourself a supply of hand warmers. They’re ready for use as soon as you open them, and provide hours of warmth to your hands. You can even stick them in your new winter boots while you’re walking in between classes to give your toes some extra heat. These warmers come in different packaging for your hands and feet, but for us SoCal natives, we’ll definitely feel we need both. Amazon offers a variety of these products to satisfy our needs (Amazon,

Create your perfect “cozy time” winter routine.

Cold weather makes anyone a little more lazy and ready to get snuggle up with our favorite movie and blankets rather than our textbooks and assignments. Going to class may be a struggle, but having to walk 10 or 15 minutes in the blistering 65 degree weather (brrr), makes it so much more difficult to get there. Having a routine ready that gets you cozy and relaxed will make going to class feel so much more rewarding once you’re back in your heated room. Whether it’s taking the time to put on furry slippers, keeping your fuzzy blankets ready for you at your door or turning on your favorite holiday tunes as soon as you get home, anything that gets you feeling cozy will warm you up on the inside.

So stock up on your winter essentials and get ready for the temperature to drop it like it’s hot, even though it sure isn’t anymore. It’s going to be a long winter SoCal friends, stay cozy and stay warm!