The Best Lightweight Suits, Because Summer Isn’t Over Yet

Warm-weather suiting demands a special set of rules

Updated August 18, 2023 11:22 am
a collage of lightweight suits
The best lightweight suits for men are viable through October.
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August may be coming to a close, but we have it on good authority that your social calendar is still booked to the brim through October. Making up for lost time, we see. As such, there’s a very good chance that you are in need of some new tailoring that isn’t ravaged by tequila shots or Father Time. Given their general functionality and staying power well into fall, we’d recommend picking up a lightweight suit to see out the seasonal festivities.

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What Makes a Suit “Lightweight”?

We acknowledge that lightweight suiting is nominal vague — an intentional choice on our part, given the breadth of styles available — but hope you can accept a loose classification as suiting designed to keep you cool, as opposed to warm, via lighter fabrics and breezy constructions.

Common culprits include 100% cotton and linen blends, although there are a variety of exotic materials (read: seersucker and tropical wool) that all fit the bill. Likewise, looser, off-the-body fits are almost always preferred — less of a chance for sweat-induced disaster. As a general rule of thumb, breathability is king, fellas!

Household heritage retailers and Italian luxury labels alike have answered the call of the lightweight suit with a slew of sick options for stunting at the summer (and early fall) function. We’re here today to highlight some of the worthwhile lightweight styles. From an all-gas-no-breaks Corridor banger to a classic chambray cut courtesy of Bonobos, the best warm-weather suits will keep you feeling comfy while looking hot. Below, our favorite warm-weather suits to keep things cool this summer.

The Best Warm-Weather Suits for Men:

For the Do-It-All Guy: J.Crew Ludlow Italian Chino Slim-Fit Suit

Fabric: 100% cotton | Fit: Slim-fit | Jacket: Single-breasted

J.Crew’s trusted Ludlow suit has been a staple in average guys’ closets since 2008, but don’t think it’s the same suit as it was all the bloghouse-y years ago. Updated with a (slightly) more relaxed take on the slim-fit style and premium Italian cotton chino cut at the revered Duca Visconti di Modrone, it’s the sole suit on this list we’d literally wear anywhere. Toss in a burnished tobacco color (brown suits are in), and what’s not to like?

For the Modern Man: Alex Mill Mercer Linen Suit

Fabric: 100% linen | Fit: Relaxed-fit | Jacket: Single-breasted

Despite its linen construction, Alex Mill’s Mercer Suit is perhaps the most casual on this list — a relaxed fit and slightly cropped suit trousers make sure of that. Not that this is a bad thing. We’d be thrilled to see you out on the town in a crispy white tee and a very wrinkled Alex Mill two-piece. Your date’s going to love it.

For the Wedding Warrior: Bonobos Jetsetter Italian Stretch Cotton Suit

Fabric: 100% cotton | Fit: Regular-fit | Jacket: Single-breasted

Much like the previous J.Crew style, the Bonobos Jetsetter is milled from Italian cotton and finished with wedding-appropriate details. Unlike the ‘Crew suit, however, Bonobos’ patented stretch adds a ton of movement and breathability to the garment, making it all that much easier to jump, boogie and get down to Usher all night long without worrying about looking like a crumpled mess.

For the Serious Savant: Stòffa Unstructured Washed-Linen Suit

Fabric: 100% linen | Fit: Relaxed-fit | Jacket: Double-breasted

Stoffa’s double-breasted black linen suit is a vision in luxe, laid-back comfort: using a single-unit production model — individually cut, sewn and finished in Campania, Italy — and featuring a uniquely relaxed double-breasted cut, it truly is one of a kind. Let the extra-fine washed linen wear in for some naturally rumpled charm.

For the Lightweight Luggage Lad: Buck Mason Carry-On Suit

Fabric: 97% cotton, 3% elastane | Fit: Regular-fit | Jacket: Single-breasted

If your destination necessitates packing light, Buck Mason’s aptly-named Carry-On Suit will work swimmingly. A cotton-elastane blend ensures a snap suit, even after the most turbulent of flights, and we’re particularly impressed with the vintage feel of the Khaki version.

For Linen Lover: Percival Linen Tailored Suit

Fabric: 100% linen | Fit: Tailored-fit | Jacket: Single-breasted

We spent the majority of our summer debunking the anti-linen conspiracy, and now it’s time for you to enjoy the fruits of our labor. For obvious reasons, Percival’s Linen Tailored Suit is one of the lightest you can buy, especially considering a new and improved fit through the body and unstructured format from the London-based label. Grab it in one of three dashing colors — we’re partial to this poppy forest hue, but a more traditional grey and blue are also at the tips of your fingertips credit card.

For the Seersucker Stan: Todd Snyder Italian Seersucker Madison Suit

Fabric: 97% Cotton seersucker, 3% elastane | Fit: Regular-fit | Jacket: Single-breasted

Seersucker is perhaps the most well know seasonal fabric of summer, with a renowned reputation for keeping you incredibly cool…and making you look like a boat captain. Todd Snyder flips that second factor on its head, with a crisp drawstring suit that’s perfect for a loosey-goosey wedding or family affair.

For the “Money Is No Object” Gent:

Fabric: 100% Wool | Fit: Tailored-fit | Jacket: Single-breasted

Neighbors across the pond Drake’s is renowned for elegant tailoring; the Tailored Suit, a close cousin to the Games Suit, is living proof why. Comfortable, practical and unfussy as ever, the get-up — remade with a tropical wool, which, despite its name associations, is basically a fine-milled performance fabric — has earned the mantle of king of the lightweight suits. It’s not cheap, but worth every penny.

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