First impressions last they say, and nowhere is this more true than when you go to work. No matter how productive or skillful you are, the manner in which you dress makes a huge difference. Companies have different dress codes of course, but the following are the most common way how men should dress for work.
More and more companies are adopting the casual look, but the minimum limit is a shirt with a tie or a polo shirt paired with khakis. Even in a casual business environment you cannot wear open toe sandals, shorts or T-shirts. Denim isn’t acceptable in these settings either, although in younger business environments it may be allowed.
Everyone has an idea of what semi-formal should be like, but in most cases a nice looking, clean dress shirt paired with a tie, trousers or chinos will be sufficient. A sports coat will also look nice depending on the business environment. Variations of the semi-formal wear are virtually endless and you can mix and match colors provided they’re not too loud. Unless you’re working in a place with a very strict business dress code, semi-formal will do fine most of the time, and it makes you look stylish without appearing too casual.
Formal Business Wear
For formal business meetings, nothing less than a finely pressed shirt will do as well as a tailor made suit and a traditional tie. Different kinds of ties are available but the pinstripe is still the most ideal, while a vest can be a welcome addition too. Mixing and matching isn’t recommended for formal wear, and loud colors and patterns have to be avoided. To keep things simple, use solid subdued colors for your suit.
Dress for the Occasion
You should have several kinds of dress shirts so you’ll be ready for whatever comes up be it a causal meeting or a formal business gathering. Even if you don’t have a designer suit in your wardrobe, having a wide array of shirts creates a positive impression and makes your suits look different. Just make sure that the shirts match your suits so it won’t look out of style. Speaking of styles, tie your necktie in a Windsor or double Windsor so it looks solid and impressive.
As stated earlier, casual business attire is popular now, but even if the occasion calls for formal business wear, don’t overdo it. It is one thing to look elegant and another to show off with useless accessories, overflowing with jewelry and displaying designer labels. Showing off at the workplace isn’t going to impress anyone and will just make you look insecure. If you want to wear jewelry, a watch and a ring will do, no more.
Finally, use only high quality portfolios, briefcases and pens. This isn’t just for style but for practicality as well, as nothing is more embarrassing than having a faulty pen when you need to sign something.
The fanciest clothes won’t mean anything if you don’t keep yourself neat from head to toe. Even if you’re working in a casual environment that doesn’t mean you should let yourself go. Regardless of the dress code, keep your hair clean, and don’t let it grow below the shirt collar. You should also keep facial hair clean, nails trimmed and brush your teeth. It might seem like these have nothing to do with your attire, but it does because if you’re not groomed properly, people will notice.
Don’t Use Too Much Cologne
Wear the Right Shoes
Rubber shoes and sneakers are for casual business environments only, but for semi-formal and formal, black or brown leather shoes are the safest bets. Regardless of the dress code, always wear clean and polished shoes because dirty footwear ruins your entire getup.
Regardless of the kind of outfit you wear to work, don’t scrimp on the budget. This isn’t about showing off but more to do with how you present yourself. Second, poorly made clothes wear out quickly and you’ll be forced to buy new ones again, which is more expensive.