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How To Dress For A Summer Internship

We all know the feeling of walking into an overly air-conditioned room after being outside in the summer heat. Usually, it’s comforting; you let out a deep sigh as your skin stops melting from the sun, and soon, you’re cooled off and rejuvenated. But have you ever worn a cute summer sundress that’s perfect for the weather, only to realize that when you get to the office, it feels like an igloo? Figuring out how to dress for a summer internship can be tricky, but with a little creativity, you can make sure your ‘fits work for the heat and the cold. Here are five items to add to your summer internship wardrobe ASAP.

flowy pants

It’s pretty safe to assume that no matter the dress code at your internship, you probably won’t be allowed to wear short shorts (ugh, sorry). The next best thing, however, can be a skirt or a dress that’ll keep you comfy and cool all day long. But if those don’t suit your style, wearing a breezy pair of pants to your summer internship is the way to go. 

Personally, statement pants are my go-to for any and all occasions — from going out to dinner to working in the office. When it’s hot outside, you can go for a pair of linen wide-leg pants that’ll let your legs breathe in the summer heat, but will still keep you cozy and covered when you’re inside. These Huston Pull-On Crop Pants from Madewell are made from linen and cotton, so the fabric is super breathable, and the look can be easily dressed up with a blouse and flats. You may also love these wide-leg pants in white, which create a look that’s crisp and polished — perfect for dressing to impress at your summer internship.

a chic blazer

Blazers are a classic staple for any internship outfit, but if you’re not trying to look like every other 9-to-5 commuter in the vicinity of your office, there are many different ways to elevate your blazer game. Instead of a stuffy, old-school blazer, try rocking one with a fresh look for the summer months — whether it’s choosing a hot pink style (like above) or finding one with an interesting cut or pattern. A light fabric like linen works perfectly, and a color like white or a light beige will match just about anything in your wardrobe. H&M has a bunch of different blazers you can try out, like this linen-blend jacket which is classy and professional, but still feels summer-appropriate.

When rocking this look, you can totally channel last fall’s blazer-with-bike-shorts trend, but instead of the bike shorts, try a dress, romper, or dark jeans. If your office is more formal, try a simple blouse and skirt — the blazer will just add an extra layer of professionalism and tie everything together. Virtually any item can work with a blazer, and you can bet that you’ll feel comfortable at your summer internship, even with the AC blasting. 

a breezy dress

Who doesn’t love rocking a comfy dress in the summer? Apart from being cozy and easy to throw on, dresses are super versatile — they work for the office, the beach, and everywhere in between. Remember, the type of dress you wear may largely depend on the dress code at your summer internship, but if you’re lucky enough to have some freedom and flexibility, you can create some awesome looks. 

As for length, maxi and midi-style dresses are great for summer because they’re super breathable, but have enough fabric to keep your legs from shivering when you’re inside. You can always throw something on top for an added layer of warmth —whether it be a pullover sweater or a simple tee. Try this midi dress from Lulus or this adorable button-down dress from Target (the bright orange color will add a pop of color to any dreary office!).

a comfy jumpsuit

Athleisure is everything, and sporty jumpsuits like this will keep you cool when you step out of the office mid-afternoon to grab iced coffee. If you have a summery jumpsuit — like one with thin straps or an open back — you can absolutely still wear it to work and style it with a cute sweater or pullover.

Although wearing a jumpsuit to the office can prove to be a hassle when you have to go to the bathroom (we’ve all been there), it’s a summer staple that strikes the ideal balance between casual and put-together. You’ll love this Brooklyn Jumpsuit from Athleta, which feels soft, modern, and helps you stay comfy while offering inclusive sizing. 

layers on layers

If you’re feeling stuck and unsure of what to wear to your summer internship, layers are about to become your best friend. Whether you pair your favorite jeans with a crop top and blazer or a vintage t-shirt with a colorful skirt, there are many ways to get creative with your summer internship outfits. Pro tip: always keep a light sweater or cardigan in the office just in case, like this Ribbed Long Cardigan from MANGO or maybe one with a fun print and buttons to add personality to your look. This sweater from Forever 21 is a great option to pair with jeans, pants, a skirt, or even over a romper, and open-front cardigans like this one are perfect for layering when the office air is way too cold.

Just because it’s 100 degrees outside doesn’t mean it has to be 30 degrees inside — a nice 75 would do just fine — but chances are, your office hasn’t caught on just yet. If you’re wondering what to wear this summer with that chilly office climate in mind, fear not — you can still wear your favorite summer looks without getting the shivers. No matter what your style or preference, it’s all about comfort, showing your personality, and styling yourself in a way that feels authentic. Once you grab a few pieces that can easily transition between hot and cold, you’re good to go! 

Makena is the Decor Section Editor, and former Style Section Editor and Editorial Intern at Her Campus. She is a senior at Marist College majoring in Communication with a concentration in Journalism and a minor in Graphic Design. One day she hopes to put her writing skills to work at a magazine or women's publication.  Follow her on Instagram @makenagera and Twitter @makena_gera.
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