Whether your office dress code is creative and casual or polished and put together, no woman wants to get noticed at work for making a fashion faux pas. But dressing for work can be something of a sartorial minefield. Follow these foolproof rules to stay strictly on the right side of business casual, yet still look trendy.
Don't Flash Too Much Skin
When it comes to flaunting a little flesh, it's best to err on the side of caution. Too much cleavage or leg on show can detract attention away from what you have to say. Instead, opt for tailored shift dresses or feminine silk blouses paired with a blazer to stay office-appropriate.
Cover Up Tattoos and Piercings
Personal feelings regarding tattoos (and creative industries) aside, most corporate environments still consider tattoos and piercings on-show as unprofessional. Remove piercings and keep tattoos out of sight to play it safe.
Avoid Color Overload
Too many bright and competing colours can be distracting. Instead, opt for a bright top to add a pop of colour to a plain tailored suit in a muted tone or a statement necklace to inject just the right amount of personality into your look.
Keep Hair Tidy
Stepping into the office with dishevelled hair can make you look disorganised or lazy. For bad hair days a spritz of dry shampoo into the roots and a hair pulled into a topknot or low bun at the nape of the neck look sleek and sophisticated.
Look To Your Colleagues
Keeping an eye on what your colleagues are wearing can be helpful, particularly when starting a new job. If the guys are wearing suits, shirts and ties, stick to formal attire. If the men are in jeans or chinos, then it's safe to keep things a little more casual.
Change Things Up
Find yourself reaching for the same old pieces without a second thought? Outdated or ill-fitted clothes can make you look out of touch. If you're still throwing on the same old jacket complete with shoulder pads, invest in a new slim fit or waterfall blazer to stay ahead of the curve.
Skip Ripped Denim
Sure, while many offices have casual Friday's, it's worth keeping in mind that just because you can dress super-casual doesn't mean you should. A pair of dark denim skinny or slim fit denim jeans still look casual on dress down days without looking sloppy.
Dress for The Job You Want
Looking for a promotion? Then it's a good idea to dress for the job you want, not the job you have. Dressing slightly smarter than necessary projects a professional image at all times. It will also be subconsciously remembered by your seniors when it comes to promotions, pay rises and reviews.
Keep Accessories to a Minimum
Designer Coco Chanel famously once said, "Before you leave the house, take one thing off." Allow your personality, not your jewellery to do the talking in the boardroom and stick to one or two pieces, rather than pile-em-high accessories.
Stick to Fresh Faced Make-Up
While concealer and mascara may be your daily essentials, heavy and dramatic make-up never works in a office setting. Keep things simplistic and natural-looking and save the smoky eyes for the weekend.