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Can You Wear a Windbreaker in the Summer?

Young women wearing windbreaker jacket under the sun.

If you are looking to buy a windbreaker, you might be wondering if you can wear one in the summer, too. After all, a windbreaker looks more like a winter jacket than something that would be appropriate to wear on hot summer days. Many people wonder if they can wear their windbreaker during warm-weather months as well and the short answer is yes!

Keep reading to learn more about whether or not you can wear your windbreaker when it’s warm outside.

What are Windbreakers?

Windbreakers are lightweight, thin jackets worn over shirts or sweaters as an extra layer of protection from wind and rain. They have elastic waistbands that allow for easy wearing and take up very little space when stored away. It’s not always the best time to wear one though. How would you know if you can or not?

It all comes down to your climate’s level of humidity, whether it’s hot or cold outside, and how warm you want to be while walking around town.

Do Windbreakers Make You Hot?

Long gone are the days when we windbreakers were reserved for colder, blustery months. Today, you’ll find windbreakers being worn all year long—and not just by sailors, either. If you’re trying to decide whether or not to wear one, though, ask yourself these questions:

Is it hot outside, and/or is there an air conditioner involved? Both of these things can determine whether or not a light jacket is appropriate in the summer (and if so, how thick it should be). A good rule of thumb: If you feel like you’re sweating too much underneath your windbreaker, take it off.

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Do Windbreakers Keep You Cool?

A women wearing windbreaker jacket while holding red gumshoes.

The answer to whether you can wear a windbreaker in hot weather actually depends on what type of windbreaker you’re wearing. For example, if you’re wearing unlined nylon or polyester shell with no sweat-wicking properties, it’s true that adding even an insulating layer can potentially trap sweat and heat against your body, making you feel hotter. (This is especially true when your arms are moving around.)

But if you opt for a windbreaker made from natural fibers like cotton, wool or leather that breathes as well as blocks wind, then yes—you can wear a jacket over your T-shirt and shorts on warmer days without feeling too warm.

Do Windbreakers Actually Break the Wind?

If you’re wondering if you can wear a windbreaker during summer months, it really depends on how breathable your jacket is. If it’s lacking in ventilation—most windbreakers are designed to offer as much protection from harsh winds as possible—then yes, you’ll be sweating just as much as if you were wearing an equally thick leather jacket. On top of that, all that extra material around your torso will trap heat and make it difficult for your body to regulate its temperature.

No matter what type of weather conditions you’re hoping to face, the best way to stay cool is always with breathable fabrics that don’t limit mobility, like jackets made of nylon or polyester.

Your Climate’s Level of Humidity

Fitness runner woman wearing a gray windbreaker jacket.

Before you say no, take into account that if your climate has high humidity, wearing a windbreaker may actually help to regulate your body temperature. By trapping warm air between your skin and jacket, it can work like extra insulation in a sleeping bag; it makes sure you don’t get too cold or hot. But it’s important to keep track of how much wind is penetrating through; if you start feeling cooler than usual or if you find yourself sweating even when temperatures are low, chances are that means your jacket isn’t doing its job anymore.

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If that’s the case, ditch it for something waterproof—it’ll be more breathable and more effective at keeping out cold winds.

How Hot is Your Summer?

You can wear a windbreaker all summer long if your style allows for it. Look for a technical piece that has performance benefits like mesh lining or water-repellent fabric to make sure you stay cool when the mercury rises—in some places, it’s still cold in the summertime in the northern hemisphere. While everyone else is getting ready to take off their cold-weather gear, you can look like spring has sprung.

Just be sure that your windbreaker isn’t too bulky or heavy for summer wear and it doesn’t clash with your other summer outfits. To find out how hot it will be where you live, check out. Some places get pretty hot during the summer months; if you’re looking for something more lightweight than a traditional jacket, try wearing one as an outer layer on top of another piece of linen T-shirt.

If you want to wear your windbreaker year-round, just make sure it’s made from a breathable material like cotton or nylon so that it doesn’t trap heat inside when worn in warmer weather.

The Benefits of Wearing a Windbreaker

Breathable Fabric

If you’re looking for something that is light, waterproof, and breathable, then a windbreaker jacket is what you need. These jackets are ideal for cool and breezy summer nights spent on long walks with your friends or even a day at work if it’s rainy outside. The nylon fabric used to make these jackets is lightweight and also allows air to flow through them so your body remains cool even if you’re wearing one in warmer weather.

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If you want something that’s less heavy than most raincoats and other outerwear for summer, then look no further than a windbreaker.

Waterproof

Despite its name, many manufacturers treat windbreakers with special water-repellent treatments, which make them completely waterproof. This means you don’t have to worry about being drenched when it rains. Just don’t let your windbreaker soak up too much moisture; dry it out as soon as possible after use to prevent mildew from forming and ruining your jacket.

Comfortable and Lightweight

A man wearing a windbreaker jacket in mountains for fitness and exercise.

When you look at your windbreaker, you probably think of hot, sticky days with it tied around your waist. The truth is that many windbreakers are just as light and breathable as a light jacket or short-sleeve shirt. What’s more, they can be made from high-quality fabric (like silk) that will keep you cool even when it’s hot outside.

So yes, you can wear a windbreaker in summer. Just make sure to buy one made from lightweight material—and don’t get carried away with your layers (always opt for one base layer).

Fashionable

While we wouldn’t suggest wearing one of these jackets when it’s 100 degrees outside, it’s perfectly fine to wear a windbreaker when it’s 70 or 80 degrees outside. They tend to run lighter and are more breathable than winter parkas, so you won’t overheat. A light jacket will also help keep you warm on early morning and late evening walks.

However, if it does get cold—below 65—we still recommend bringing along an actual winter coat for insulation.

Sources:

University of Wisconsin – Not Going to Sugr Coat It – All the Jackets You Should Be Bringing! 

Ann Arbor District Library – Naval Airman Likes Jackets Made Here