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Clothes and Careers

Henry Ward Beecher said: “Clothes and manners do not make the man; but when he is made, they greatly improve his appearance.” Your outfit often reflects your position in the company, as well as the level of professionalism our coworkers and clients can expect when doing business with you. Because of this, it is necessary to pay special attention to workplace attire. We are going to go over some dos and don’ts of your outfit, as well as the impression it makes and the effect it has on your career.

Dress for the Job You Want

Even if you have a low position in a company, proper business attire displays your dedication to get things done. Not only that, but it is important to bear in mind that your appearance reflects the company’s appearance.

Men wear suits when they want to look professional and elegant. If you want a job as an office clerk, the jacket is optional. If, however, you are aiming to impress and have the title of a manager or CEO one day, you should wear a full suit. You can’t go wrong with black and navy blue.

Women don’t have to wear pantsuits, though it doesn’t hurt. You can wear a dress that is discreet and serious. Alternatively, a shirt paired with a skirt gives the air of respectability. You should focus your attention on darker colors.

Don’ts

While suits and pantsuits can sometimes be too formal, there is a fashion faux pas or two that must never occur in the workplace.

Tattoos and Piercings

Your company might be lax with this rule, but many potential workplaces and clients will not do business with someone with visible tattoos and piercings. Take off your studs and try to cover your tattoos with your clothing.

Hair Color and Style

Provocative hair colors can, but don’t have to, send a wrong message. Try to avoid unorthodox styles and colors in the workplace. Stick with your natural look.

Skin

You should be comfortable with your body. That being said, showing too much skin can be considered unprofessional and narcissistic. While skirts are generally okay, there is no room in the workplace for a mini-skirt or shorts. The abs and biceps are natural parts of your body, but they should be covered, as well.

Not-So-Casual Friday

If you appear in the workplace wearing sweatpants, a hoodie, or an untucked shirt, you look messy, like you’ve just got out of bed. Clients and coworkers that don’t know you will not be sure about reliability. These wardrobe combinations are perfectly fine if you’re a freelancer working from home, but they are out of place in an office.

The Effect

Apart from how you look, clothes often affect how you feel as well. If you switch to a more professional attire, you will begin to notice that your demeanor also shifts toward being more business-oriented. Proper wardrobe provokes you to do some proper grooming as well. You will begin to see yourself the same way you want others to see you – as someone hardworking, serious, and reliable.

As for the effect your outfit has on the environment, suffice it to say that you need more than your skills to move up the ladder. Charisma also plays a big role. That’s why people with serious apparel get promoted ahead of those with the same skillset. They look like people ready to do business.

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