Dressing for a Casual Office Without Looking Like a Slob
As more millennials start businesses and the tech sector grows, many offices and workplaces are becoming more casual. While most people, both men and women, might have been expected to wear a suit to work not too long ago, there are now many offices where even a T-shirt and jeans won’t look out of place. When you start a new job and discover that the office has a casual dress code, it might freak you out. Even though you have permission to dress casually, you can’t shake the feeling that you need to look professional. Not necessarily for others, but because it puts you in the right mindset for work. If you want to dress casually without looking like a slob, try these tips.
Don’t Go Too Casual
It might be a casual office, but that doesn’t mean you have to get too casual. A lot of the time, particularly in small tech companies, the men will happily come in wearing jeans and T-shirts. However, that might feel a bit too casual for you, especially if that tends to be your lounging at home outfit, rather than something you would wear in public. You might wear a smart pair of jeans, but they will look more stylish with a chic top or jacket than with a T-shirt with your favorite band on it. A smart pair of shoes can help too, so don’t default to sneakers (even though they are comfortable).
Be Modest But Stylish
When you have almost free rein to wear what you want, it’s tempting to put on anything you feel like wearing. However, even if the office is casual, it is still a professional setting. You can dress stylishly, but you don’t want to look like you’re ready for a night on the town. Keeping things a bit more modest than you might when you’re not in the office is a good idea. Try shopping at some boutiques online if you want some options that are stylish but not too revealing. You can find plenty of smart-casual dresses and other items that are great for the office.
Follow the Dress Code
A casual office will often not have a dress code, but some of them do set out some basic ground rules. Although you might be able to dress casually, there could be rules against dressing impractically or inappropriately for the office. However, since it’s a casual workplace, they’re likely to be things like not wearing flip-flops or avoiding extremely low-cut tops. If you have an employee handbook, check it for a dress code to see if anything is banned.
Know When to Get a Bit Dressier
Sometimes, it’s sensible to dress up a bit more. If you have a meeting or a video conference coming up, wearing a smarter outfit is probably a wise decision. While your office might be casual usually, meeting with clients or higher-ups could call for a more formal outfit.
If you’ve never worked in a casual office before, it might seem a bit daunting. But you’ll soon get into the swing of it and work out your work wardrobe.