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How to dress for comfort and confidence during menopause

BY Alice Gawthrop

19th Oct 2023 Lifestyle

3 min read

How to dress for comfort and confidence during menopause
With Google searches for "what to wear during menopause" on the rise, we share some expert advice for dressing comfortably and confidently in this phase of life
For many of us, menopause is a totally natural part of the journey through life, but it brings with it a whole bunch of changes—some welcome, some not so much. Amid the mood swings and hot flushes, something that doesn’t always get the attention it deserves is the question of how to dress during menopause.
"Menopause brings with it a whole bunch of changes—some welcome, some not so much"
According to Google search data, there has been a 2,000 per cent increase in people searching for “what to wear during menopause” in the last 12 months. What’s more, sixty seven per cent of women in the UK report a loss of confidence during menopause. As our hormones shift and our internal thermometers go haywire, finding the right mix of style and comfort becomes essential.
When considering what to wear during menopause, the key things to keep in mind are comfort and confidence. What makes you feel good? What makes you comfortable? If you’re wondering where to start, here are a few tips to keep in mind, although ultimately it comes down to the clothes that you feel best in.

Wear natural fabrics

One of the most common symptoms of menopause is hot flushes—sudden feelings of heat spreading through your body and face, often accompanied by sweating. They can occur at any time of day, and last for several minutes. 
100% cotton t-shirts
A good way to mitigate this is by avoiding synthetic fabrics like polyester, nylon, satin and cotton mixes. Dr Ella Russell, the Yorkshire Menopause Doctor, says, “Where possible, steer clear of heavy denim and leather jackets. These items tend to trap heat in, potentially exacerbating hot flushes and discomfort. While garments crafted from these materials may well be stylish, they aren’t the best choice for women experiencing symptoms of menopause.”
Natural, breathable materials like cotton and linen allow air to pass through the fibres. This can help to regulate body temperature. It’s worth considering these fabrics for sleepwear too, so that you can manage hot flushes whenever they strike!

Layering up

Layering isn’t just for the autumnal months! Incorporating adaptable layers to your wardrobe, such as lightweight jackets and cardigans, allows you to easily add or remove pieces according to your fluctuating body temperature.
"Layering is one of the best strategies for creating a menopause-friendly wardrobe"
Layering is one of the best strategies for creating a menopause-friendly wardrobe,” explains Dr Ella, “Items that can be unzipped or unbuttoned are a great option for allowing more air to circulate if you’re experiencing hot flushes.”

Choose loose silhouettes

“Loose silhouettes can significantly help to promote comfort as the body undergoes changes during menopause,” says Dr Ella. 
Woman wearing a midi dress
Loose midi or maxi dresses, button-up shirts and wide-leg trousers provide a relaxed fit that allows air to circulate through your outfit. They are also versatile, suited to both professional and casual settings. The best of both worlds!
Jane Reik, buying director at clothing retailer Joe Browns (who have worked with Dr Ella to launch a menopause-friendly capsule wardrobe), points out that in any scenario, “The secret to dressing confidently is to feel comfortable. The more comfortable you feel in your outfit, the more you enjoy what you're doing at work or a night out with the girls.” 

Embrace vibrant colours and fun patterns

Don’t give in to the temptation to swamp yourself in loose fitting clothes in an attempt to become invisible! While dressing comfortably is important, it should boost your confidence, not diminish it. Pair your looser silhouettes with bold colours and playful patterns. 
"While dressing comfortably is important, it should boost your confidence, not diminish it"
Whether you love animal prints and geometric patterns, or just can’t get enough of a rich solid colour, have fun with it. You’re allowed to take up space and you don’t need to hide!

Invest in your accessories

Your clothing choices might prioritise comfort, but your confidence can really shine through with your accessories! Fun accessories are a great way to add some flair to your daily outfits. Now is the time for bold bracelets and statement rings to brighten up your look. Elevate your ensemble with colourful pieces that really show off your personality. 
Particularly in the autumn and winter months, you can get creative with hats and scarves to add some extra dynamic to your layered outfits. Remember, fashion should be fun!
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