First impressions count, and your professional wardrobe is a big part of your first impression. Just because you work in a professional setting doesn’t mean you have to look stuffy. Here are a few guidelines for looking good but not “too” good.
Dress according to your job tasks. If you will be interacting with customers in a professional situation, you will need to dress sharply to make a good first impression. If you work at a casual company, in the back room or your job involves getting dirty, you may have more freedom in how you dress.
Wear clothes that fit you. You don’t have to be a size 0 (because zero’s not a size) to look good but you do need to wear clothes that fit you properly.
o Don’t wear anything too small. If your pants bunch around your thighs and waist, they’re too small. If you can’t cross your arms in front of you without your sleeves exposing your wrists, your shirt is too small. Also, if your buttons gape at the front, your shirt is once again, too small.
o Don’t wear anything too large, either. Choose clothing that fits you without being baggy or floppy. Shorten hems on trousers and sleeves if necessary.
Keep your hair and makeup simple.
o You’ll save time. Try to keep your morning routine for hair and makeup under about 30 minutes.
o You’ll avoid looking overdone. Have you ever seen people wearing so much hairspray they look like their hair might break if they fall? Find a balance between good grooming and endless primping.
Emphasize the positives. If you have great legs, wear skirts. Just make sure they’re an appropriate length (no more than 2 inches above the knee). Great figure? Well-fitting slacks with a sharp crease will look amazing on.
- Don’t have a lot of money to spend on clothes? That’s fine - keep it simple. Solids never go out of style. Having a few pair of slacks (black, tan, brown, pin stripe), some solid-colour tops and a few simple skirts will work perfectly well. Then you can just add a piece or two, a few accessories or shoes each season and your wardrobe will be dressed up.
- Know you look good! There’s nothing more attractive than a person who is confident, comfortable and happy.
- Try to find the balance between old-fashioned and modern.