You’re a new graduate and you’re about to enter the corporate world. Do you know the first thing about business formal wear?
Business dress standards have relaxed over the years. You’re still going to be called upon to wear formal business attire in some instances, though.
If you’re used to wearing jeans and a t-shirt thinking that you’re like Mark Zuckerberg, you’ll soon realize that you’re not. You still need to dress and act like you belong at the power players’ table.
Want to know how to dress for success? Keep reading to find out the top formal business attire tips for both men and women.
Do You Still Need to Dress Up?
It’s true that business standards have relaxed over the last 30 years. Some workplaces treat every day like casual Friday.
Despite these lax standards, you still need to make a good first impression. Studies show that there is a correlation between how you dress and your income.
You can actually use business formal wear to your advantage. Most people dress casually to work these days. You can dress like you care about your appearance and care about the fine details in your wardrobe.
That can stand out more these days. You’ll project the impression that you care about yourself and your appearance. That can lead to the impression that you’ll be detail-oriented and professional in your work, too.
That kind of attention can lead to job offers and promotions before you know it. Employers can trust that you can meet with clients face to face and not embarrass yourself or the company.
Business Wear for Women
You don’t need to be a lifestyle mentor to set an example to dress well. As a woman, navigating formal business attire can be tricky.
Your clothes are looked at and judged much more closely than a man’s. You might be wondering what is appropriate in the workplace.
Many women wear the power suit to fit in with the boys in the room.
Hilary Clinton brought the pantsuit into style during her presidential run. TV characters like Scandal’s Olivia Pope have their own line of clothes you could try out
What works in the office for women? It depends. Some offices are going to be more conservative than others.
If you’re working at a bank, for example, you can expect to be in an environment that is more conservative than an ad agency.
The second thing to consider is your personal sense of style. Do you prefer to wear pants and boots or skirts with heels?
Once you get these general ideas, you can then put together a few outfits of formal business wear. These are the things you need to keep in mind.
You want to keep the colors solid and consistent. Depending on your office, you can go with bright vibrant colors or keep things more traditional. You can’t go wrong with neutral tones or a dark blue.
Keep your accessories subtle and elegant. You don’t want your jewelry to draw too much attention. Accessories are meant to be a compliment to what you’re wearing, not a statement unto themselves.
You want to make sure that your hair is neatly styled. If you wear perfume, keep it to a minimum. People in office environments can be allergic or sensitive to perfume.
Your nails should be manicured. It’s not necessary to have them polished. If you do, keep the color subtle. Lime green fingernails wouldn’t send the right message.
The outfit can be either a pantsuit or a skirt suit. A blouse that matches the suit and is comfortable is important, too. Your shoes should also be comfortable and closed toe.
Formal Business Attire for Men
Formal attire for men can make a man stand out. Go for a formal business look.
You already know that a business suit is going to be appropriate to wear. You can fashion your style like Cristiano Ronaldo, one of soccer’s best-dressed players.
For a man, the suit matters, but the accessories you wear matter more. Suits tend to dull a personal sense of style and personality. You can make that up in the accessories you wear.
A belt is the most important accessory for a man because it completes the outfit. With formal wear, you want to make sure that your belt matches your suit and your shoes.
A man’s watch can be large and stand out. A silver watch accompanied by a dark suit can create enough contrast to draw attention without looking gaudy.
When someone looks at your watch, you want to present the best on your wrist. You’ll want to invest in designer watch brands to make a great impression.
Cufflinks are worn with French cut shirts and scream formal wear.
Most men don’t think about cufflinks, because our society has become so dressed down. Cufflinks present a great opportunity to stand out.
Cufflinks can be made of sterling silver, steel, platinum, or gold. You can also go for a deeper tone of copper to be a bit more unique.
Business Formal Wear Can Make a Difference in Your Career
As you’re just entering the workforce, you need to put your best foot forward. You have to make a great first impression, but you also need to look the part of someone who should be taken seriously.
While everyone else is dressing down, you can make a lasting first impression by dressing in business formal attire.
Dressing up for the office can pay dividends and increase your income. While you’re raking in the big bucks and getting promotions, those committed to the casual look are wondering
When you have your new career underway, you’ll be ready to start looking at homes. Take a look at this guide for first-time home buyers.