What To Wear On A Plane

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What To Wear On A Plane

Words by Mr Stuart Husband

11 July 2016

Ah, air travel. A gentle stroll through an airy departure lounge, a friendly wave through passport control, and into the spacious cabin with ample leg room and a pre-takeoff Kir Royale or two… oops, sorry, we were briefly teleported back to the 1950s there. No, everyone knows that today, unless you’re firmly turning left when you board the plane (and if you are, jolly good luck to you, we’re not jealous at all, honest, but please try and resist the temptation to pop your head through the curtain into coach and yell: “How can you live like this?”), air travel can be a not-totally-stress-free process of queues, security, queues, delays, overcrowding, and, er, queues. Picking the right outfit for the flight won’t automatically lead to plane-sailing travel, but it could help relieve at least some of the cabin pressure. Scroll down for the pieces that will help you tune out the turbulence.

The sweats

Three words to make any air journey feel less long-haul: comfort, comfort, and comfort. Don’t be hoodwinked by that hoary “dress smartly and you might get upgraded” urban myth; we’ve all seen the broken-spirited guy tearing off his tie and mashing up his blazer as he runs the gauntlet of smirks during his walk of shame to seat 53G. Hang loose, and travel soft, in supple sweats like Sunspel’s throw-on-and-go cotton-jersey shirt and Solid Homme’s wool-cotton breathable sweatpants, and you’ll keep your cool while the never-made-the-graders are losing theirs.

The shirt jacket

Shrug off the random peaks and troughs in cabin temperature with a nifty shirt jacket, as the air-con inevitably does its whimsical thing. This steadfast cotton-canvas number from Private White V.C. can be pulled on over a T-shirt when the conditions get Arctic, but, true to its utilitarian principles, it can also serve as an impromptu pillow if things take a more tropical turn. Apropos of which, keep an eye cream handy for post-nap de-planing – Dr. Barbara Sturm’s is infused with golden root, sugar beet and yeast to mitigate puffiness. After all, the only bags you want to exit with are your carry-ons.

The bag

Speaking of carry-ons, a sleek mini wheelie suitcase is often the most useful piece of cabin luggage for short-haul business flights, but on all other occasions, a capacious Mulberry holdall is just the thing. This pleasingly speckled olive-green bag is big enough to stow all your in-flight necessities in (it holds up 24 litres), flexible enough to throw over your shoulder for a pre-flight march around the airport, and stylish enough with its classic design to come in handy for day-to-day adventures once you’ve reached your destination. The first thing to pack? A nice hand cream like this one from Aesop – yes, it’s less than 100mls – to counteract the effects of mid-air desiccation.