How to Be Fashionably Appropriate in the Workplace
No matter the environment you work in, there’s a certain dress code that is expected of you as an employee–even if your office is pretty laid back. Your attire can help you to fit in at the office, but it can also indicate your level of professionalism, and determine how seriously coworkers and customers take you. However, there’s still room for you to express your personal style within office guidelines. Adding a bit of trendiness to your workplace wardrobe can boost your mood for the day, and even give customers a good impression about your company.
If you’re working in a corporate setting where employees are expected to wear suits or blazer and skirt or pants separates, you can experiment with patterns a little to add some life to your outfit. For instance, if you’re wearing a gray or black pantsuit, choose a blouse in a stripe or paisley print to compliment the suit. This adds a bit of “life” to the outfit, and you can keep the blazer buttoned to show only the collar and cuffs of the shirt for a more conservative look.
Your office may require you to wear heels that are no higher than two or three inches to maintain a polished appearance at work. If this is the case, choose neutral-colored heels with slight embellishments on them. This will keep you within the company dress code, while allowing your attire to fit your personal preferences. Black heels with gold or leather accents on the heel or tip of the shoe are often workplace appropriate, as are gray or brown heels made of leather or suede.
For a casual office, it’s important that you still maintain a presentable appearance. Jeans with a dark wash are best, and the boot cut variety are ideal for the office. A high-rise jean is also appropriate, since it doesn’t fall too low at the hips. Wearing a blazer or cardigan with jeans gives you a business casual look; adding a pop of color with a blouse or scarf is eye-catching but not too overwhelming.
To compliment your work attire, keep your makeup light and within the neutral color palette for your skin tone. Men should keep their facial hair neatly trimmed. If you color your hair, make sure it’s a natural hair hue (red, brown, blonde), but doesn’t look too extreme. Even if it’s OK to push the envelope a little when it comes to attire at your place of employment, maintaining a fashionable yet fitting look during your time in the office is sure to make you stand out. If you maintain the professional expectation indicated by your wardrobe with quality work, chances are you’ll be a valuable team member for years to come.