As a resident Washingtonian for 12 years, I learned the art of staying warm and somewhat fashionable no matter what Mother Nature sent our way. Here's a few tips for those of you that don't know how to dress for the arctic tundra and a few reminders for those of you that simply forgot.
- Layers. People, there's a reason someone out there invented long underwear - it keeps you warm under your clothes! These days long johns have come a long way and they are thin and fashionable and can be worn under most anything. Pick some up at your local department store and wear them! Your legs and arms will thank you.
- Hats. I know you don't want hat head but experts have been saying for years that 80% of all body heat escapes from the top of your head. And you wonder why you're shivering? Cover up your cranium! There are so many adorable hats out there and something will fit your style. Let's face it - it's so cold, no one's really having a good hair day anyway so cover up!
- Gloves. This should be a no-brainer. If your fingers are cold, they are useless. And since most of us use our phalanges, you need to keep them warm. Enter the glove. Gloves come in a variety of colors and fabrics. Gone are those mittens lost by kittens - fun and functional gloves are everywhere and fit every hand as well as every budget. Look for a few different well fitting ones that you can stash in your coat pockets so they are always on hand.
- Scarves. In the last few years, scarves have become a wardrobe staple. But I'm not talking about a fancy Hermes or a gauzy accessory. Go out and get a nice, warm neck covering. Everyone is selling them. And don't worry about the how-to as there's a few schools of thought on wearing it. Do what works for you. Some tie a knot in front while others opt for wrapping - either way, you can look fashionable and stay warm. From J.Crew to Target, there's one out there for you.
- Boots. Repeat after me: a good pair of boots will compliment most anything. No matter what your geographical location, boots are a must. They are functional and add a little something to your winter wardrobe whether its jeans or a sweater dress. Dress them up or dress them down, boots are like the chameleon of your closet and will go will most anything. They come in many styles and because they're basically black or brown, they are as versatile as they are chic and definitely a must-have.
- Coats. Invest in a good, fashionable, warm coat. Even the department stores here in Florida carry them so there's no excuse. Have at least one in your closet that will go with everything. It might hang there for most of the year or maybe even several years, but on the odd occasion when the temps really drop (sound familiar?) you'll be happy you have that old friend to turn to and keep you toasty as you brave the outdoors.