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What is business casual clothing? | About career

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Defining business casual clothing has always been difficult. In many cases, it depends on your corporate culture, your industry, and your boss. When people were working remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic, the defined work wardrobe became blurry or non-existent. This raises many professionals questions about what is appropriate to get to work.

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Some companies have rewritten their dress code to make it more casual to wear on a daily basis, encouraging employees to dress more comfortably when re-adapting to work in the office. Retail chains are also switching to casual wear at work and touting “work leisure” and “business comfort” to promote sales. This also means that what was considered a business casual before the pandemic is likely no longer in fashion in 2022.

All of this can be confusing when you return to the office. Employees may not be confident about how casual they can work now. Whatever your company’s dress code is, here are some basic guidelines: Think about the outfits you will wear when you meet your most important clients for lunch. This is also true when working virtually. I don’t know when I need to jump into a last-minute Zoom call with my boss or client.

Basic business casual dress fOr woman

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In general, women’s business casual clothing includes office skirts or slacks, blouses, blazers, heels or flats. Retailers are currently making skirts and slacks with elastic waists. This allows you to feel sophisticated comfort. If your industry prefers heels, try low heels or wedge heels for a more comfortable fit. Otherwise, ballerinas or dolce flats are a good option for a comfortable and professional look.

Basic business casual dress for men

In general, men’s business casuals include chinos and slacks, button-down shirts, belts, dress socks, and dress shoes. Colored button-down shirts are more casual than white button-down shirts. In the cooler months, breathable fabrics such as cotton and linen are more comfortable, but they tend to wrinkle. Look for a cotton or linen blend to stay more sophisticated throughout the day. Many retailers also manufacture dress shirts and slacks that are suitable for business casual wear, are less likely to wrinkle, or are not ironed. In some industries it may be appropriate to wear a tie. Cotton ties and fun-printed ties are more casual than traditional silk ties.

Are jeans business casual?

The answer depends on your company’s dress code. Some industries and businesses do not allow jeans, even on casual Fridays. However, if your company allows jeans, it depends heavily on jeans cutting and washing. Trendy cuts like flared jeans and tight skinny jeans are not suitable for business. There are no torn or faded wash jeans. Jeans can be business casual if they have a dark wash such as dark blue or black. Also, stick to classic trousers and straight leg cuts. Dress shirts and blazers can enhance the overall look when wearing jeans.

Examples of business casual dress codes that are not worn

  • Leggings and jegging.
  • Something that is too tight or explicit.
  • Things that are too baggy.
  • T-shirts or connections with offensive images or words.
  • Old T-shirt.
  • Mini skirt.
  • Beach sandal.
  • Tennis shoes.
  • Distracting accessories.

Where to buy business casual clothes

When buying business casual clothing and shoes, look for stylish classic items rather than trendy clothing. If you want to try trendy items, get handbags and accessories that can be easily replaced as the trend fades. Here are some chain shopping locations to find business casual clothing.

  • Banana Republic.
  • Everlane.
  • H & M.
  • J. Crew.
  • Madewell.
  • Target.
  • Zappos.

Still not sure what to wear? Some industries are very formal, such as government and law, but others are much more relaxed. Check with the HR department for the company’s business casual dress code. Another great way to understand the company’s business casual clothing after COVID is to check out social media channels and websites. You can also check out industry leaders’ social media channels to see what they’re wearing.

Finally, keep in mind that while business casual is becoming more commonplace, how you dress tells a lot about you. If you are looking for a job or want to be promoted, always dress more formal than required by a casual dress code. And if you’re a leader, remember that as the definition of business casual continues to evolve, employees look to you as a model of what you wear to work. It balances a professional look with a comfortable stay, allowing you to adapt to your office life after COVID.