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How to Dress Well When You’re Freezing Your Ass Off

Advice from an NFL Network sideline reporter and other people who know too much about looking good while shivering

Are you one of those guys who wants to look stylish but finds it doesn’t come all that naturally? Sick of condescending fashion articles telling you why you need to buy $200 T-shirts? Just want to know how to look, well, good? We feel you. Welcome to “Help Me Dress Myself,” an advice column for men who just want some practical advice for not looking like crap.

The Question

I have an important meeting/interview/family function/date, and it’s negative 10 billion degrees outside. What do I wear when I’m freezing my ass off but want to look good, and not like a wobbly stack of bald tires?

The Expert Advice

Ian Rapoport, NFL Network reporter who regularly covers winter games: Wear thick wool socks and foot warmers in your boots. Wear long johns or tights — I’ve worn my wife’s LuLaRoe tights, anything to keep your base temperature up is good! That way, you can look as normal as possible: I don’t like to wear an overcoat or a scarf, so I focus on keeping my feet and hands warm, then try to look as normal up top as possible. I want people to ask, Is he really cold? I can’t tell.

Amanda Mull, NYC-based fashion writer (and coat expert): There are three key things that guys can pay attention to when getting dressed year-round, and they’re especially important in cold weather (when it’s incredibly easy to look like a sentient pile of laundry): color, texture and fit.

For color, consider adding pieces to your wardrobe that are versatile but non-neutral colors (instead of only black, gray and navy). Dark green and purple are just as good-looking for a beanie or sweater, but these colors look like you purposefully picked something out instead of simply ordering whatever was cheap and well-reviewed on Amazon.

The same goes for texture: Picking a nice knit sweater will keep you just as warm as yet another plain hoodie, but you’ll look like an adult wearing it. Corduroy, flannel, wool, shearling and whatever else are also good options — winter is so full of texture opportunities!

And for fit, making sure your clothes aren’t oversized, baggy or saggy is always a key to looking put together — and that’s especially true in winter, when you’re wearing a lot of clothes at once.

Randy Moss, Minnesota-based NBC Sports and the NFL Network reporter: The main objective is to (obviously) achieve as much warmth as possible, while still achieving at least some semblance of style. Living in Minnesota, I’m sometimes asked to appear on live TV while outdoors in near zero or even subzero temperatures. And I can say from firsthand experience that trying to speak through chattering teeth or while shivering becomes an epic reporting fail no matter how sharp you look.

To avoid that, wear layers, preferably with thermal underwear. Glove liners underneath winter gloves work well, and those small individual heat packs provide extra warmth against the skin of your hands. Forget expensive ties and opt instead for a bright turtleneck, since a winter coat typically covers ties up, anyway.

Speaking of coats, a nice designer heavy coat is always a good investment. Or maybe you have good bosses like mine at NFL Network and NBC Sports to supply you with free winter coats with the network logos. On those bitterly cold days, about the only other fashion statement a reporter can make is to don a matching winter beanie and neck scarf with bright colors that “pop” on camera during a dreary day.