12 Cooling Clothes for Summer Hiking and Travel

12 Cooling Clothes for Summer Hiking and Travel

Whether you’re spending the summer in the scorching United States, a sweltering European city, or anywhere temperate in between, you’ve probably felt the need to shed a layer of your clothing once or twice — or maybe you’ve been sweating right through them. I’ve personally discovered, after spending almost a year in Thailand, that the worst material you can wear in very hot weather is cotton. Yes, it’s breathable, but it’s also highly absorbent, so you’re kind of soaking in your own sweat. It’s best to invest in cooling clothing specifically designed to keep you comfortable in the heat.


Focus on moisture-wicking fabrics to carry you through harsh summer weather or outdoor sports like hiking and running. Moisture-wicking fabrics — usually nylon or polyester — work by lifting sweat from your skin and pushing it to the outside of your clothing, where it evaporates and leaves you dry and cool. Many cooling clothing come with a built-in UPF as well, which is the equivalent of broadband SPF and stands for UV Protection Factor. Amazon has a range of bestsellers that fit the bill, and I’ve rounded up selections from head to toe—or from our top-rated Columbia sun hat and neck gaiter to hiking pants and even lightweight, breathable boots.





Columbia Bora Bonnie Hat

Amazon





This ultra-protective and breathable Columbia sun hat uses 100% moisture-wicking nylon fabric so you can keep your head cool. They also feature a patented Omni-Shade material to deflect UVA and UVB rays, keeping you dry and safe whether you’re on the boat or in the backyard. What’s more, this Amazon bestseller has over 14,000 perfect reviews. “I needed a sun hat for traveling in Greece and Turkey, and this was perfect! It rolled up easily to pack into my bag and purse. It was lightweight and very cute,” one fan wrote.



Ticon neck gaiters

Amazon





Stop the old bandanna trick and finally invest in a neck gaiter for biking, hiking, yard work, or anything that exposes you to the sun. This polyester from Ticonn is loved by Amazon shoppers for its ability to wick away sweat, for the way it also protects from wind and cold, and for its machine washability. “You can use it when hiking up the mountain at night to block the freezing wind or while playing ultimate Frisbee to soak up the sweat! Or you can just shake it!” one shopper wrote.



Meriti Racerback Sports Bra

Amazon





Perhaps the worst kind of sweat: breast sweat. But this nylon and spandex sports bra will stave off annoying sweat whether you’re engaged in a strenuous ride around town or going about your daily life while trying to play it cool. Not only does it absorb sweat, it has ventilation panels for ventilation. “It’s good for long walks, being outside for hours a day, or exercising. “It keeps me cool, which means that even if I’m sweating, it doesn’t make me feel uncomfortable while I’m outside for a long time,” wrote one five-star reviewer Stars who number more than 41,000.



Pack of 5 Real Essentials V-Neck T-Shirts

Amazon





Throw away your cotton T-shirts and make room in your bag for these sweat-wicking polyester T-shirts that will serve you well at a yoga retreat or while touring a new city. Featuring four-way stretch plus interlocking seams that won’t cause irritation, the bathroom shapes your way to total comfort. “Since I train almost every day and live in the South, it’s nice to always be able to have a new shirt, even if it’s the second shirt of the day. They’re quick to dry, cool, and economical,” wrote one great customer.



Baleaf UPF 50+ Sun Shirt

Amazon





Don’t you dream of a summer workout in a long-sleeved shirt? Think again. This sweat-wicking polyester sunshirt from Baleaf has UPF 50+, so not only do you stay cool and dry, but you also don’t have to reapply your sunscreen. Wow! “I’ve worn this twice now, once on a run and on a 12-mile run. Both times it didn’t make me feel overheated and kept the sun off me, which is nice. I like that when you sweat, the shirt doesn’t get wet. I’ll definitely be buying more!” wrote a sports reviewer.



A great classic men’s polo shirt from 32 Degrees

Amazon





Are you planning to get out on the green or in the sun at your tailgate? There’s no protection from the heat outside – unless you’re wearing that cold polo shirt in 32 degree weather. The streamlined, lightweight upper is a one-piece cut with anti-odor technology, four-way stretch, and a tagless collar. It’s a pleasure to wear, according to shoppers. One fan wrote: “I live in Arizona, and the heat this summer has been something else. I have about three of these shirts – super soft and comfy but thin enough that the Arizona summer doesn’t make you sweat like crazy. Definitely worth every penny.”



Movis Cargo Caprice

Amazon





Meet the cutest and most practical cargo pants ever to join your travel wardrobe. While this pair of MoFiz looks like your average style for daytime exploring, it’s actually made from a lightweight nylon-rayon blend designed to wick away moisture and dry quickly. It has plenty of pockets for things like keys, cosmetics, and phone. “I’m going on a trip to Israel in a few weeks and needed something suitable, cool and comfortable to wear. When I received these, I couldn’t believe how soft and comfortable they were. The fabric is breathable and stays cool. I loved them so much I ordered three more,” one happy traveler wrote.



Baleaf women’s quick dry hiking pants

Amazon





Your new favorite pair of hiking pants is here. This pair from Baleaf, an Amazon bestseller, is made with a water- and sun-repellent material that provides comfort, even on the roughest rides. It’s also very durable, won’t pill, and is machine washable. “I can wear these while hunting in 100 degree weather, they are cool and they don’t have nasty sunscreen on my hands and legs,” one pleased customer wrote.



Tbmpoy Men’s Lightweight Travel & Hiking Pants

Amazon





Another pair of lightweight, quick-drying hiking pants for men, the Tbmpoy is made from sweat-wicking polyester and is lightweight, breathable and has four-way stretch for the more active hikers or heavy hikers out there. One shopper explained it like this: “You know when it’s too cold for shorts, but warm enough that regular hiking pants make you sweat? These are just right for that area. Long to keep your legs warm, and light so you don’t sweat as much If you stay active enough, they will likely do so even if temperatures drop below 50 degrees Fahrenheit.



Lightbare dress with 3/4 sleeves and pockets UPF 50+

Amazon





Travelers who want to get around in style and effortlessly, this is the product for them. This moisture-wicking dress from Lightbare has UPF 50+ protection, so it protects you from harmful UV rays all day long while keeping you as cute as possible in your vacation photos. “In this sweltering hot weather, this is the dress to wear. The shape is beautiful too,” one reviewer wrote.



Saucony Women’s Multi-Performance Heel Tab Athletic Socks

Amazon





Stay cool to your toes with Saucony cooling socks. Made from sweat-wicking polyester, they also feature the brand’s signature AirmeshVenting technology, which basically means no sweaty soles for you. They’re also padded at the heel and toe, making them a practical must-have for all-day walking. “My feet tend to sweat, and these socks are thick enough to be comfortable while still being breathable enough to prevent a swamp in my shoes. I’m so glad I bought these!” Shopper Books.



Joomra Women’s Simple Barefoot Running Shoe

Amazon





Amazon shoppers love these barefoot shoes that feature lightweight, breathable mesh for comfort and stretch for traction. They’re the next best thing to not wearing shoes at all, yet they’re durable enough for running and hiking, and are a #1 Amazon bestseller for mountaineering. “True size and feet can breathe…ah! So comfy! Sold!” exclaimed one of our nearly 14,000 five-star reviewers.


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