The Desk Sweater, How to Keep Warm at Work

Oct 17, 2017

Are you cold?  Office thermostats are notoriously controlled by men, so most workplaces are freezing.  And being productive when your frozen stiff is basically impossible.

So how do you stay warm when you can’t have a space heater, need to look professional, and don’t want to spend the whole winter whining about the cold?  Here are some tips for keeping warm at work.

One. Buy a Desk Sweater.  A desk sweater is an oversized, chunky cardigan that can be layered over any work outfit.  You want it to be big enough that you can basically wrap yourself in it.

A good desk sweater should come in a neutral color.  Grey and beige work best, but black is also a good option.  The material should be cozy and warm but make sure it’s not going to shed on your work clothes. These six sweaters would all make excellent desk sweaters.

These six sweaters would all make excellent desk sweaters.  You’ll notice they’re all under-$75.  A desk sweater will get spilled on, it will be infrequently cleaned, it shouldn’t be a piece you spend much money on.

Upper Left Chunky Cardigan Vest ($65) //  Fisace Knitted Cardigan ($32) // Old Navy Open Cardi ($38)

Bottom Left Shaker Knit Cardigan ($42) // F21 High-Low Cardi ($58) // ASOS Curve Chunky Cardi ($51)

Two. Use a Heating Pad or Foot Warmer.  Most offices won’t allow space heaters, they’re a power suck and a fire hazard.  But never fear, sitting on a heating pad or using a foot warming pad will have much the same effect.

This oversize heating pad can spread on both the seat and back of an office chair.  This plastic foot warming pad is a nice option.  If you’re lucky enough to have a desk no one else can see underneath, this Dr. Scholl’s slipper-warmer is sublime if you suffer from chilly toes.

Three. Grab a Coffee Cup Warmer.  A hot beverage is a great way to keep warm.  This Mr. Coffee Mug Warmer is a $7 miracle.  It also makes a great white elephant gift.

Four. Move Around as Much as Possible.  Moving around to get the blood flowing is a good way to stay warm.  When I worked at the Capitol, I would do two flights of stairs or walk the halls for a few minutes every hour or so.  If you get really cold, just get up and move.

{featured image here; commission may be earned from the links in this post}

Career Style, Work

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  1. Anna says:

    I second the desk sweater idea, but my biggest issue is cold feet. Can you highlight some good covered foot/comfortable shoes that you can wear with warm socks- trying to find non boot options/ feminine options is really difficult!

    • MM says:

      I agree! I would love to see a post on winter shoes. I have no idea what type of shoes to wear in colder weather except for boots/booties (and I find those don’t always go well with the straight leg dress pants I often wear).

  2. Julie says:

    This comment was inspired by the “Saw it on Social” post regarding Glossier products. I really appreciate your unbiased reviews and would love to support the blog more with my purchases. I was interested in the Glossier Wowder, but the page linked directly to the Glossier site. Ugh! I am loathe to create a new login on yet another website, and pay shipping charges when I’m only buying ONE product. It’s a bit more effort for you, but I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to have affiliate links for Amazon, Sephora &/or Ulta (e.g. post multiple links for the same product so readers can purchase from a preferred vendor, but still thank you by going through the affiliate link).After I noped out of the Glossier site, I immediately went to those sites to see if I could get it there. Ultimately, the light bulb went off that those sites don’t carry Glossier, so while this isn’t a great example, I think the concept still has merit.

  3. E says:

    Would also recommend a lap blanket, if you think it would work in your office. I have a navy fleece blanket that I keep over my lap to help keep my legs warm when it gets chilly. It’s dark and blends in, and it’s easy to take off when you get up. Also, no worrying about leaving it plugged in like with a space heater or lap warmer.

  4. Kayla says:

    Yes to the desk sweater! I have a black sweater blazer that now lives at my desk. As the weather gets colder I will also bring in my black blanket scarf to use on my lap.

  5. Kara says:

    Love this!! I am always freezing at my desk and unless I just happen to be wearing a sweater that day I am usually kicking myself for not having one there all the time.

  6. Mel says:

    The flannel blanket scarf from Old Navy is my favorite low cost item. it can work as a wrap or blanket.

    https://oldnavy.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=1067530&pcid=1049702&vid=1&pid=775285012

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