The Do’s and Don’ts of Office Wear


WOMENS OFFICE ATIREIt is important that you understand what is referred to as office wear! Therefore it is critical that you understand how work related clothing is normally categorized, as white collar or blue collar.

White-collar refer to those jobs that require that you wear a shirt and tie in an office setting.  They are highly skilled and trained professionals.

Some white-collar workers such as lawyers, bankers, real estate agents and accountants provide professional services to clients, while others such as consultants, architects, engineers provide services to businesses, companies and government.

Blue-collar refers to workers that perform labour intensive work, mostly using their hands. The skills for a blue-collar worker would vary by occupation, some of which require highly certified and trained workers to perform very technical jobs, such as electricians, plumbers, technicians and mechanics. Low skill blue-collar workers perform menial jobs such as maintenance, cleaning, driving and cooking etc.

When it comes to business wear, every business should have a dress code which differ from company to company and type of occupation. A professional business environment would require that its employees wear either skirt suits, pants suits or a dress suit.

In a less structured business environment, what you wear will be determined if there is not a dress code in place. If a dress code is not in place, it would be advisable to see what your other work colleagues are wearing in the office and try not to over dress.Do not make your co-workers feel that you are better than them or feel uneasy by trying to outdo them, you want to fit in, be a team player and wear what the others are wearing.

It is important that you dress appropriately at all times, because when it comes to promotion, if you carry yourself in a sloppy manner, that could be one of the reasons why you might get over look. Your clothes can tell a story about you and determine your work attitude, personality and work ethics.

It is important that you pay attention to and adhere by the Do’s and Don’ts of dressing for the office. Do not wear clothes that are too tight or baggy. Tailored suits should be a preference over off the rack clothes. If purchased off the rack, you should have a good tailor or seamstress to make the necessary alterations in order to get that professional looking fit.

The length of skirts should not be shorter than two inches above the knee or longer. Miniskirts should never be worn in an office environment; it is just not proper business wear. Never wear jeans to work. Never wear a floor length dress to work; it is not appropriate for business wear. Do not wear tight clothing that reveals the lines of your underpants or brassiere.

Wear enclosed shoes and never open toe shoes. Do not wear excessively high heels, back out shoes or slippers. Wear a moderately heel shoe and fully enclosed. Do not wear see through garments. Do not wear sleeveless shirts. Do not show too much cleavage, it is inappropriate and attracts too much attention.

Some businesses have a casual day and which is mostly acknowledged on Fridays. Casual day does not mean that you can wear just any old thing to work, it is still a working day and the company’s image and reputation still has to be upheld.

Do not be too casual, wear a pair of dress pants, a polo shirt or short sleeve blouse or shirt and should be worn inside the pants with a belt. Never wear T-shirts or sleeveless tops.  Do not wear jeans pants or denim outfits of any sort; fade out clothing or torn garments. Definitely slippers or sneakers are a no-no for wearing in an office environment.

Where accessories are concerned, do not over kill your outfit with a lot of jewllery, it looks sloppy, all that is needed is a few pieces to enhance your outfit. Do not wear extra large or long earrings and no more than two rings. Do not carry an oversize bag, you are not going shopping at the supermarket, a small leather bag is more suited for a professional business look and for the office.

It is an office setting and you should at all times be professional in your work ethics and your attire, look the part and dress the part.

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