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Business Casual Dress

If you have a job that requires you to wear a uniform or if there is a very strict dress code, then you know exactly how to dress for work every day. But what if there is not a strict dress code, or uniforms?

Many workplaces have eased up on their policies concerning dressing for the office and have adopted what is called, a business casual dress code. This can cause confusion for some employees as they wonder what the difference is between business casual and just plain casual wear.

When does business casual cross the line and become too casual?

Looking professional is important when dressing for work, whether you are a man or a woman. It is important to look professional, but also to be comfortable in the clothing you choose to wear.

Rule number one is to be as neat and clean as possible. Make sure your hair is cut and styled as neatly as possible.

Ladies always wear understated makeup. In other words, less is more. Never overdo makeup at a job interview or at work.

Jewelry is fine but don’t wear anything gaudy or anything that could interfere with your work in any way. Fingernails should always be clean and neat. Nail polish is fine but save the bright, wild colors for a night out. 

For casual business dress at work, remember that casual does not mean sloppy. It does not mean that you should have body parts showing, or that you should dress like you are going to spend the day lounging on the beach.

Khakis always work for casual business dress and for the guys, a sport shirt or a nice sweater definitely makes the grade. Bear in mind, for both men and women, that even if your office has a business casual policy, on the days that you are scheduled to make a presentation or attend a meeting, it is best to dress more professional.

Pants, such as dockers and other forms of cotton, cotton blend, or synthetic slacks, work well for casual business dress, as do flannel slacks or wool pants.

Casual skirts and dresses are fine for the ladies, provided that they are a reasonable length, such as split at the knee or hang slightly below the knee. Very tight and short skirts are not appropriate for any office.

There are a variety of casual shirts that pass the business casual test, as well as sweaters, tops, dress shirts, turtleneck tops, cowl neck tops and golf-type shirts. Sport jackets and suit jackets would also fall under the category of business casual attire that is suitable for work.

Make sure you wear shoes that are in excellent condition and that they are polished and shined. Do not wear shoes with rips, tears, or any noticeable stains or scuffs on them. This is important for both men and women in the workplace.

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