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If you’re going to visit the Pacific Northwest, be sure to buy a quality pair of hiking boots. And definitely a rain jacket. Being the self-proclaimed queen of style and the girly-girl that I am, it took me awhile to come to terms with wearing something as casual and sporty as hiking shoes and attire. (The most sporty look I’ve ever worn are my golf outfits when hitting the course. But even those typically include a pretty cute mini skirt or golf dress to embrace my feminine nature!) If you’re relating to this at all, stick with me. I’ve mastered the art of pulling together cute hiking outfits that won’t make you feel like a burly lumberjack. And most importantly, finding practical attire doesn’t mean your style has to suffer! Use the following tips to feel confident, sexy, and prepared to get your hike on.
- Leggings and biker shorts are your best friends.
- Find a quality pair of high performance and high-waisted bottoms to accentuate the hips and slim the waist.
- My favorite leggings are from Morgan Stewart Sport and Zyia Active, and my favorite biking shorts come from Bo & Tee.
- Morgan Stewart Sport may be a little harder to find outside of shops like Poshmark since they used to be sold under LA Collective but now don’t seem available anymore! But for neutral or single-tone colors, I love MSS. For more fun patterns and designs, and brighter neon colors, Zyia definitely has a better selection. Bo & Tee has typically more neutral or single-color options, but has a great selection of bright colors too.
- Choose matching sets.
- The easiest cute hiking outfits come in sets. I love buying sets that include a sports bra with matching leggings or biker shorts. I buy both neutral tones, as well as bright colors that attract a lot attention (in a good way, of course).
- For legging and bra sets, I get mine from Morgan Stewart Sport. This brands also has matching sweatshirts and shorts, though I’ve never bought either of those.
- For biker shorts and bra sets, I get these from Bo & Tee, which also offers new workout tanks and matching jackets.
- Get sports bras with more coverage.
- I prefer a sports bra or that slightly covers more of my waist and comes just above my leggings. This allows me to get a little midriff look without feeling completely naked and exposed. And if you’re not at your most thinnest — or a weight where you feel comfortable showing off more — this helps suck in some of the extra body we don’t want hanging out.
- Get some sturdy hiking socks.
- There’s just about no way to make sturdy hiking socks into a fashion statement, but it’s imperative you have them so you’re not at risk of getting injuries like blisters (totally, not sexy).
- Invest in a quality pair of hiking shoes or boots.
- For the same reason as the above point, you’ll want to spend a little extra $$ for a decent pair of hiking shoes that will protect you. Why? Because the terrain while hiking is usually a lot rougher, unsteady, and slippery (if not inundated with water). Having a great pair of proper shoes will save you so much of a hassle down the line.
- My hiking shoes are an older version of the Columbia Women’s Redmond III Waterproof Hiking Shoe in a neutral brown tone. I can match these with just about anything and still pull off cute hiking outfits.
- Have a variety of jackets and coats for more extreme weather.
- The important thing to remember about hiking outfits is that just because it’s cold outside doesn’t mean style has to go out the door. You will, however, find the need for more layers and less midriff. Always have a selection of go-to jackets and winter coats on-hand that will pull together any outfit and keep you warm and comfortable.
- Columbia has a great selection to choose from and I have their Columbia Women’s Heavenly Jacket in icy blue, which I got from Dick’s Sporting Goods, and is great for chilly fall days or mild winter days.
- For mild fall days, my favorite jacket is Active USA’s Women’s Long Sleeve Quilted Padding Zipper Pocket Jacket, which I originally got from Amazon and is no longer available there, but it’s listed on Poshmark.
- My favorite long winter sports coat is my Eddie Bauer Sun Valley Down Parka in dark green, which is awesome for extreme winter weather, but is also slimming, giving you that feminine feel.
- Lastly, my favorite rain jacket is the Diamond Candy Women’s Rain Jacket Waterproof with Hood Lightweight Hiking Coat on Amazon.com. This jacket is a must-have, especially when exploring especially rainy areas like The Olympics.
Hopefully these tips scare away thoughts or stereotypes that were keeping you from enjoying the outdoors! You absolutely can enjoy nature AND look good doing it too. Just remember to never sacrifice warmth for style. I have made this mistake too many times during brutally cold outings, and trust me, it is much more unattractive to be shivering uncontrollably and not having a good time than it is to just dress appropriately for the weather.
Ready to get your hike on with your new hiking ‘fit? Check out my blog post “The Best Hikes in Washington for Mountain Views, Beaches & Waterfalls.”