How to Stay Warm in Your *COLD* Office

Even during the warmer months, our offices and hotel meeting rooms can get so cold that we secretly wonder if we’re working in an igloo. You know the feeling: the heat inside can’t compete with the tundra outside, and the drafts from the windows and doors nearly paralyze you as they enter your precious, scantily-heated space. Fortunately, many companies these days offer a casual dress environment so you can dress comfortably for frigid weather.

Instead of freezing to death in your chair, why not take defense against the cold and enjoy the rest of your winter? After all, it looks as though it’s only beginning for those of us in the more southern and/or eastern areas of the continental US. So, let’s just try to deal with it together until April! In the meantime, here’s some good news–the days are finally getting longer as sunset edges closer to 6 pm, so pretty soon we will see a little sunlight when we get off work.

Some pointers:

  • Wear (at the very least) a long-sleeved shirt and a sweater to the office each day. I really like these layering ideas, for starters. And if you’re looking for an excuse to find a perfect second layer, many clothing retailers are marking down their jackets and sweaters right now (get them before they’re gone!).
  • Ask about your office policy for space heaters. If you’re allowed, bring one from home; just make sure your trusty old heater is up to building code for your specific office.
  • Ditch most of your cotton clothes until March and find fabrics such as light wools, corduroys, and tweeds. Polyester blend sweaters are warmer than cotton cardigans.
  • Draping your coat or jacket over your lap looks a -bit- more professional than a blanket or Snuggie. But, if it’s really that cold and you have nothing else on hand, sometimes you have to do whatever works!
  • Think back to the mid-00s fashion of fingerless gloves. If you’re a Millennial, you probably wore them in middle school or high school.
  • Ladies, if your office allows them, throw on some fleece back leggings like these. Guys can wear comfy thermal long underwear under your work trousers, and no one will ever know.
  • Wear plenty layers (including hats, scarves, and gloves) when you walk into work. Your body won’t struggle as much to ward off the less-than-optimal temps in the office.

 

Did you know? US office temperatures are adjusted to accommodate a 40-year-old man who weighs 155 lbs, according to research by Boris Kingma. Since approximately 47% of the modern workforce consists of female employees, the right office temperature for the 1960s isn’t working so well now. Look around the office–you’ll finally understand why it’s mostly women who are draped in blankets. You didn’t hear it from us, though!

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