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How to Dress like a Parisian in Winter: What NOT to wear in Paris! + Packing List

During winter, Paris is quite a charming and magical place to visit.

You’ll find holiday lights around every corner and department stores like Gallery Lafayette will have unique Xmas window displays.

But you’ll need some warm clothes to brave the chilly temperatures.

To help you prepare for your Paris winter trip, I’ve nailed down exactly what to wear in Paris to dress like a Parisian in winter to keep you cozy and warm, yet looking as chic and feeling as comfortable as possible.

In this post, you’ll have all your questions answered with a list of must-have items to pack for Paris in the winter.

Is it cold in Paris in winter?

PARISIAN WINTER

Winter in Paris

During the winter months, expect chilly temperatures. Of course, “chilly” is relative depending on where you live. If you’re visiting from  a place where subzero temperatures are the norm, this weather could feel mild. However, if you’re visiting somewhere like Florida, the temperatures could be a bit of a shock for you.      

On any given day, there’s a big chance of cloudy, rainy weather and of course for snow too.

Snow is possible, but not necessarily likely during your winter trip to Paris. In December 2010 in Paris, there were temperatures as low as -10 °C / 14° F and even lower outside Paris.

Is December a good time to visit Paris?

December is a great time to visit Paris. The weather is cold, but the city feels alive with busy cafes, beautiful lights & decorations and interesting events for visitors.

Is January a good time to go to Paris?

If you are on a budget, January is the best time to visit Paris because airline fares are at their lowest during the off-season. With the holiday season over, prices drop. Besides airfare, just about everything will be cheaper, travel expenses, tour guide, hotels….

Is Paris too cold in February?

Paris in February tends to be cloudy and cold, however, there can be a few milder afternoons, especially near the end of this month. Expect temperatures to be around 6-8 C (in the low to mid 40s F) early in the month warming slowly to 8-10 C (into the upper 40s F) near the end of the month.

How many days should you spend in Paris?

First-time travelers should try and plan at least around 4-5 days so that you’ll have time to enjoy some classic Parisian sightseeing.

What should I wear on an overnight flight to Paris? 

You don’t need to be fashionable. Go comfortable and go for the weather.

Basic black elastic waist pants or leggings and 3/4 with a dark color top that won’t wrinkle.

Add some layers like a cardigan and scarf,as airplanes tend to be chilly.

I would also take your heavy coat with you.

As airplanes tend to have air blowing all the time, which is drying to your skin. Make sure to take something for chapped lips and some lotion. I always wear little or very light makeup, taking into account it isn’t good for your skin to put on lotion over a lot of makeup.

I always take toothpaste, facial mist and a face mask with me, as well as deodorant, clean underthings and comfortable slippers.

What should you not wear in Paris?

It’s no secret that Parisians always look put together and effortlessly classy.

Here are a few items you should be away from while visiting Paris !

SWEAT PANTS

Who doesn’t love sweat pants! They’re of course the most comfortable piece of clothing in our closet !

But they just don’t work in Paris!

Parisians know how to balance comfort and looking put together and even though sweat pants are comfortable, let’s just agree that they’re not the most chic items.

Heavy Make-up

Yes, of course, Parisians do wear make-up! What they just don’t do as a norm is wearing heavy makeup with thousands of layers.

It’s just not common here.

If you want to act like a Parisianne, try to wear makeup in moderation.

STILETTOS SHOES 

If your plan is to wear them as your everyday shoes, you may want to think twice! 

Firstly, you need to know that Paris is best discovered on foot and that Parisians like to wear comfortable shoes to run around the city.

What should I wear in Paris when it’s cold?

PACKING TIPS FOR WINTER IN PARIS 

Parisians love black, so pack a black pair of jeans and dark colored. A pair of tights or leggings to layer under your pants is also a good choice.

Winter accessories can really make a statement for your winter in Paris. A hat, gloves, and scarf can really elevate your outfit.

You’ll need, of course a winter coat. A heavy black pea coat is a warm and a classic option.

Since winter coats take up so much room in your suitcase, I’ll recommend you to take one that you can easily match with all your outfits:

  1. 1-2 sweater dresses
  2. 1-2 pairs of jeans which you can wear over leggings if it’s especially cold.
  3. 2-4 warm sweaters.
  4. I recommend wool or cashmere
  5. 1 coat
  6. 1 blazer to layer underneath a less warm coat. 
  7. You can keep this rolled up in a day
  8. 1 pair of leather boots or similar boots that can face the snow and rain.
  9. 1 hat
  10. 1 pair gloves
  11. 1-2 ultra cozy, warm scarves.
  12. 1 cross body purse 
  13. 1 small one if you are planning to go out for dinner

What to wear in Paris to dinner ?

PARISIAN OUTFIT IDEAS

 In Paris, people like to be always chic but never overdressed. As being overdressed might be perceived as tacky. 

Consider casual chic dressing and focus on accessories: shoes, belt, necklace and bag can always make a statement.

For most restaurants and bars, the dress code is casual chic. So, if you do decide to go with a cocktail dress, the best is to wear it with tights and a light jacket or sweater.

This would avoid you to have some funny looks by people wondering how cold you must be.

If you’re indulging yourself to go to some fancy restaurants the dress code will likely be stricter you should avoid wearing jeans.

Go for a skirt, tights, and a nice blouse—paired with either boots or heels. If you’re ever unsure of what would be allowed, opt for semi-formal attire: a dress or skirt always with tights.

What to wear to the Paris opéra? 

What should I wear to the Palais Garnier opera?

Unless you are going to a gala evening event, almost no one will be in gowns or tuxedos.

what to wear to the Opera in Paris
@AnneLaureMais

For women, a dress, a blouse with a skirt, or a blouse with tailored pants is fine. 

For men, a dress shirt, nice pants, and nice shoes are fine.

Can I wear sneakers in Paris?

If you were wondering if Parisians women wear sneakers, the answer is: yes definitely!

winter shoes to wear in Paris
@mathildelacombe

Sneakers are a staple that all French women own. If you already went to Paris you might have seen that uncomfortable high heels are not very “French”. Parisians women love to wear sneakers to make an outfit casual chic.

  • Adidas
  • Veja.
  • Golden Goose
  • Converse
  • Nike

What to wear to Disneyland Paris in December?

  1. Bring a winter coat.  
how to dress in winter in Disneyland Paris
@leilasfeiz

2. As well as a warm coat, I would also recommend taking layers. Layering up will give you options.

In case it is warmer than average, you can peel one of the layers or by wearing a vest underneath your regular clothing will add to the warmth if needed.

3.Hats and Gloves

4.Hand warmers are also a good idea.

5.Take Boots   

Taking a pair of boots will no doubt keep your feet warm, especially if you layer up on  tights!  

What to wear in Paris men?

Parisian Chic style for men

The Parisian man does not like to show off. He does not wear big watches or ostentatious accessories.

They can easily mix expensive clothes with a vintage belt found at a flea market, or a cashmere sweater with old jeans.

Men’s fashion in Paris loves to layer things like putting a shirt underneath a sweater or a tailored jacket underneath a coat.

Paris travel essentials for winter to get the Parisian style for men:

1.  Neutral button-down shirt 

2.  Cotton T-shirt

3.  Sweater

4.  Tailored Jacket

5.  Black or navy blue coat

6.  Pair of chinos 

7.  Pair of jeans 

8.  Classic black belt

9.  Leather pointed shoes 

10. Sneakers

11. European-looped scarf

I hope this fashion guide will help you for your trip to Paris during winter.

Do you have a fashion or style question? You can contact me here!

or Book a FREE Discovery Styling Call with me!


I’m Linda, your go to Stylist, Personal Shopper and Curator.

Whether we can walk together down the streets of Paris, or you would prefer the contactless virtual experience, I will enhance your wardrobe through inspiration, styling tips and tricks, and a curated shopping experience.

Read more about my story here.

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