Business Casual Dress Codes: What to Wear and What to Avoid

Casual offices may be not that strict when it comes to wearing pantsuits and closed shoes, but you still have to go for a professional look. Many businesses these days have a casual dress code, especially for those non-client facing personnel, but still many people wear clothes that are inappropriate for a work environment, making them look unprofessional. Before thinking of how fashionable your work outfit will be, keep on reading for our guidelines to know what is appropriate in the workplace which will make you capable of making good decisions.

  1. If it shows too much skin, it’s not appropriate for work.


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Fall season is a lot safer when it comes to dressing for work as summer months are often much more likely to bring out inappropriate clothing as when it’s cold, it’s easy to stay covered up. If you’re looking for a work outfit, keep in mind that garments that shouldn’t be worn include anything strapless, anything cropped that shows your stomach, leggings when not under a skirt or dress that comes no shorter than just above the knee. It not only affects your credibility at workplace, but also how you’re perceived by your bosses and co-workers. Skin is considered to be ‘exciting’ the more you show, the more exciting you become, instead you become less sensible, responsible and able to make good decisions in the eyes of your employer.

  1. If you’d wear it to clean the house, it’s not appropriate for work.

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Always remember that this is still a place of business, studies have shown that being overly casual in dress ends up creating more problems with inappropriate behavior in the workplace. If jeans, tees, and sneakers are completely acceptable in your workplace, try to make them neat and polished as possible. Go for tailored over oversized and skinny over baggy. Like fashion blogger Jennifer Selmanovic, you may go for a chic sweater that fit you well that will add a sense of professionalism to your looks.

  1. If you’d wear it to a nightclub or a party, it’s not appropriate for work.

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The reason the suit is called ‘corporate armor’ is that it does keep people on a more formal footing, making things like inappropriate advances less likely. Overly formal in a casual setting may also seem inappropriate. So, instead of going for pantsuit, think of a pair of sleek jeans that you can wear with a blazer to add some polish on your casual outfit. Like fashion blogger Jennifer Selmanovic, you can get away with a chambray shirt and skinny jeans as long as you wear them with a sleek coat that will add some polish to your casual look.

  1. If it’s not in good condition, it’s not appropriate for work.

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Always go for streamlined, polished, and neat outfits to keep your image reputable and professional. By heeding our guidelines, you’ll be able to dress appropriately in your casual workplace, while keeping you stylish and comfortable.

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