I have traveled to many countries and states that have humid climates and the worst thing about humid climates is feeling dirty and sweaty as soon as you step out of the shower. I have always felt unprepared or more exhausted and hot when I have traveled with clothing that didn’t really work for my needs. With my trip to Thailand quickly approaching, I thought now would be the perfect time to discuss how to dress for humid climates. Now, the clothes I am suggesting are not going to make you feel more refreshed in humid climates, but it will help you feel more prepared and ultimately get you thinking to make decisions that make you feel comfortable in hot climates.
Personally, for me, I like to have materials that breath. I know a lot of people will go with cotton for humid climates, which will probably help, however, for myself, I seem to sweat more in cotton materials which make me feel hotter. If I do choose a cotton top, it is mostly a very loose lightweight V-Neck shirt and tank tops or spaghetti straps to wear under clothes that are more breathable such as chiffon, lace, and other shear materials.
There are many benefits for packing these types of a materials because they breath better allowing air flow which can help cool your body down. Second, they are great to use as swim suit cover ups. Third, if you happen to be in a bind and/or you feel sweaty after cruising around in Southeast Asia, these fabrics are easy to wash and dry extremely fast. Finally, most of these items are fashionable beautiful which provides you with great photo opportunities and effortless fashion.
When it comes to the lower half, I choose jeans shorts. Now, these might not be the best in making you feel cooler, however, since I like to pack light, jean shorts almost go with everything especially if you get one that is stylish in cut and wash. A second option could be a lace short, khaki, and/or flowy skirts such as a maxi or skater skirt. You could even go with a flowy wide leg pant like pictured.
When it comes to shoes, I try to pack light. I am traveling to a tropical destination and I want shoes that are comfortable, easy to walk in and breathe well (lol how many times do I have to say the material needs to breathe?!).
For me, that leaves me with my absolute must Saltwater Sandals. These are perfect for walking, fashionable, great for the beach and so much more. I love these sandals and I don’t have to worry about losing them in the water. Now if you happen to be going out I would avoid heels, but instead go with a wedge sandal or stylish sandals. I may sometimes even pack a pair of Tom’s or flats as well. I try to avoid bulky shoes, mostly because they take up valuable luggage space and I end up not wearing them as much as my Saltwater sandals making it a waste. However, if you do choose to pack a shoe/walking sneaker, I would choose something light weight with a mesh material that breathes better.
Do not forget to pack your swimsuit! Any will do! But I love to wear my high-waisted bikini’s and also pack a one piece for more adventurous things, mostly because personally having a large chest makes it more difficult to keep the ladies in lol. I also like to pack a lightweight towel to use for the beach and that dries really fast like my REI Multi Towel Light in X-Large.
Now, I know this doesn’t have much to do with clothing, but I also love to bring a backpack that breathes as well. I usually will bring my hiking backpack because most likely when you are traveling in Southeast Asia you will be taking the public transportation and when you buy souvenirs or need to go to the beach, a bag is a must. You do not want to keep your hands full while traveling. My favorite bag right now, other than my herschel little america bag is my REI Women’s Trail 40 pack which you can find here. If you don’t want to wear a backpack for your trip, a nice crossbody bag will do, just make sure it is a bag that will go with everything you pack.
I always pack an empty water bottle, especially since my hydroflask will keep my drinks cold and my body hydrated. If you haven’t heard of a hydroflask, it is a double insulated aluminum water bottle that can keep your drinks cold for at least 24 hours and drinks warm for at least 6 hours. This is a lifesaver! Just make sure to bring it empty before going though security.
And there you have it, these are the bare essentials that I need to have for my trips to Southeast Asia. Don’t forget items like bugspray (because believe me, there are mosquitos everywhere!), deodorant (which are great for other areas like your feet and thigh chaffing in humid climates) or motion sickness pills for rides such as ferries or boats.