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Corporate Fashion 101: Your Ultimate Guide to Workplace Attire

There was a time when the word fashion or looking fashionable was only associated by either the glam world or when you had to attend weddings, parties, and special events. It was also some odd perception that fashion means experimenting with unusual looks even if they make you look whacky. However, thankfully the perceptions have changed greatly and the fashion industry around the world has grown to impact our lives at a very ordinary level. Fashion is now a lifestyle phenomenon where people aspire to look good and visually appealing at every occasion be it a wedding, a college dinner or at the workplace. The key is to understand how to dress right according to the time, place and occasion, which is perhaps the trickiest part.

Quite a large number of men and women struggle with dressing right at their workplace. There was a time when corporate dressing was all about wearing suits. However, today with more millennial joining the corporate world, they cannot dress monotonously every day but they also find it hard to keep a balance between looking professional and looking stylish at the same time.  This balance is what makes corporate attire often tricky to pull off for both men and women, especially those who are not fond of wearing suits every day and want some variations in their looks. If you are someone who is struggling with the same problem, here is a quick guide that will answer all your workplace attire queries and will help you look your best.

The Confidence and Personality

Before you move on to deciding what to wear and how to wear it, it is very important that you understand the imp[ortance of wearing your confidence and exuding positive energy. When you are in the workplace, you will be communicating with a lot of people. For many jobs, such as sales and human resource, good communication is also a vital job requirement. Even when you are not communicating with anyone, your personality always has a certain aura and vibe that others around you can feel. It is very important that you make sure that your personality gives out a confident and positive vibe. A slouched posture or a frown on your face will easily overshadow that expensive suiting from Giorgio Armani. On the other hand, a pleasant smile and a confident walk can give out a lot of positive energy and will attract people towards you even if you are dressed ordinarily.

The Dress

In order to look confident, it is very important that you are comfortable with what you are wearing. Picking up the right dress is very important to look at your professional best. When picking up a dress, factor in key influences such as the corporate culture and dress code at your workplace if any, the general implied culture of your region and the comfort level of your dress and ease of carrying it without it causing hindrance in your work. Besides that, pick up something which is not too loud or over-the-top and complements your personality. For men, a suit or a tuxedo, or even a collared shirt paired with dress pants or denim, if your workplace allows smart casuals, would be a great pick. Women should avoid anything with too much color or loud print. Stick to solid hues and make sure there are not more than two shades in your dress at max. Avoid wearing anything that is either too revealing, distracting or something that makes you uncomfortable or unable to perform your tasks effectively.


Just like your dress, your shoes should also be very comfortable so that you can easily perform your job efficiently. However, that does not mean that you can walk into your workplace wearing a pair of Hawaiians. Wear a pair of smart closed-toe shoes that are comfortable, breathable and give your feet the right grip. If your job requires to walk or stand for long hours, pick a pair that is comfortable enough. Although heels remain the top choice for women because of the elegance they bring in, but wearing high heels cannot be everyone’s feat. If heels are not your thing, you can opt for kitten heels or shoes with a bit of a platform. 


 The accessory is an important part of your styling and the right use of accessories can give your entire look the right oomph. Being professional does not mean that you should not accessorize yourself at all. The right accessories can add class and exclusivity to your attire. Women can usually be tempted to wear a lot of jewelry to work, which should be a no-no. Two rings on your fingers, a pair of small subtle earrings and a simple delicate chain, with or without a pendant should be more than enough, You can add a watch to your wrist for a more professional look. There are not many accessory options for men but wearing a wristwatch is highly recommended. Many younger executives are not very fond of wearing vintage style, classical wrist watches and if you are one of them, there are also many other types of watch style selections to choose from.  If you are into tech, some of these cool smartwatches for men will have all the necessary features you are looking for. If you are looking for something to pair to a formal event, go for watches that are sleeker such as a black dress watch, and the list goes on. There are many types of styles and timepieces that works for everyone.


Whether you are a man or a woman, bags are an important part of workplace style. Many executives, especially men take those ugly looking laptop bags to carry their belongings to the workplace. Its high time you ditch those and consider a good leather briefcase or a backpack. Backpacks are the best choice for people who commute via public transport as it is much more comfortable to carry them on your back. Interestingly, backpacks have also been a major fashion trend last season and it seems like the trend is here to stay. Backpacks also work amazingly well for women, but still, if you want something more feminine, an oversized tote or a cross body bag can be a great choice. You can add ancillary accessories to your bag for a better organization such as a laptop sleeve, phone covers, and holders, pen holders etc.

About the author


Muhammad Tayyab