If you have landed your first ever job or internship position – congratulations! Now that you’ve done your best and dazzled them with your wit and skills, it’s time to show what you’re made of. Of course, aside from putting all your amazing skills into practice, there is a little matter of presentation and appearance, which is still quite important in the corporate world.
While the millennial generation is certainly paving the way for a more relaxed dress code in the workplace, there are still plenty of employers who stick to the old dress code rules. According to Los Angeles Times, 47% of the senior managers said their employees dressed “too casually” while 32% of managers said their workers showed “too much skin.”
Where is one to find that golden middle – to dress in a way that will be considered professional and office-appropriate while still being able to hold on to your personal sense of style? That is exactly the puzzle we’ll be solving today.
Suits And Blazers
Now that we have finally witnessed the return of the power suit, we should rejoice and fully embrace it. The new power suit comes in a variety of cuts, and every style persona is bound to find something that speaks to them.
There are the wide-leg pants and fitted blazers as seen on the models walking for Stella McCartney. Then there are high-waist checkered trousers with oversized blazers that look super stylish while maintaining a certain ‘corporate vibe’. Finally, there is always the option of a suit with a double-breasted blazer that exudes the most professional vibe while also being the trendiest one.
The colors are yours for the picking. If you’re feeling bold, embrace the power of red, and if you want to blend in, there are amazing grey and plaid options that are also trendy. Of course, you’ll also be needing a top, and while you can go with something classic and ‘corporate’ like a silk blouse, fitted and high-neck tops will add a touch of that beloved casual into the mix. So, feel free to take this route when wearing a suit. Classic pumps or even classy flats are a super-cool choice with this type of combo.
Keep It Simple In A Dress
They say that a dress is the simplest and most effective thing a woman can pull out of her wardrobe, and that is completely true. Now, you can choose among a variety of dresses, but there are some rules to bear in mind. The dress should definitely not be too busy – in the sense of overwhelming patterns, loud colors and sequins – leave those for Friday nights.
The office environment calls for something simpler in terms of color, so solid color dresses or something in a professional, murky floral category is a much better option. You can go for a boat neckline, or high-collar, short sleeves or no sleeves at all – just avoid spaghetti straps and slip dresses.
If you’ve gotten the lay of the land and realized that your place of business allows for a more relaxed approach when it comes to clothing, feel free to play a bit, but still keep things professional. For instance, if you see that jeans are okay, still go with something that exudes a bit more professionalism than a pair of plain skinny jeans.
There are dark denim jeans which will look super-preppy with a crew sweater and a long white shirt that peeks under the sweater a bit. Loafers, ballerina flats and even ankle boots will look gorgeous with this combo. You can even get away with a leather moto jacket, although with the return of the trench coat, you might want to consider this timeless option as well.
Finally, you can always go with simple and minimalist cotton tees, paired with culottes and pumps in either a slimmer of block heel – whichever you feel more confident in. Pleated skirts are still going strong, and always add a touch of whimsy and romance to your look without taking anything away from the professional side. These can even go amazing with sandals and slides, and you can top things off with an oversized checkered blazer – fool them into thinking you’re super serious while being incredibly trendy.
Don’t Forget Your Purse And Jewelry
Your choice of bag speaks volumes of your skills and has a major impact on your overall presentation. Stick with solid totes in neutral hues as well as smaller cross body bags, again, devoid of embellishments. After all, you’ll probably be carrying plenty in those bags, so a larger tote might be the best choice, plus, they’re still incredibly stylish.
As for the jewelry, do keep things on the mellow and inconspicuous side. Etiquette coach Barbara Pachter recalls a woman who had a ring on every finger, and that’s the only thing she could focus on. Therefore, avoid anything that is too flashy and ostentatious, as it will shift the focus from your performance, and that’s the last thing you want.
In addition to that, be mindful of the importance of neatness. Clean and minimal makeup, neat hair – these things speak volumes, so make sure that what they’re conveying is positive.
Author Bio: Mia Taylor is a fashion and beauty enthusiast from Sydney and writer for www.highstylife.com. She loves writing about her life experiences. Travelling and enjoying other cultures and their food with her husband is a big part of her life. She is always on the lookout for new trends in fashion and beauty, and considers herself an expert when it comes to lifestyle tips.
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