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Work Style Basics: What NOT to Wear vs What TO Wear

Gone are the days of women feeling like they have to dress like a man in a man’s world to be taken seriously in the workplace.  Wearing the power suits popular in the 80’s and/or even forced to endure long days squeezed into flesh-toned pantyhose, even worn UNDER your pants is a thing of the past!

Today’s workplace is a much more casual environment and allows for more creative styles. But if you’re not fashion inclined or even known for your signature style, it may be a bit difficult to know what to wear to work and what to save for the weekend. Remember, you should let your workplace be your guide (obviously if casual day at the office means flips flops and jeans then by all means, indluge!) but ALWAYS make sure you are mended, well groomed, tidy and above all else presentable with a flawless attitude.

To help you out, here are 10 items that should not be worn in MOST offices.

1. Cut off jean shorts or short shorts… some shorts are acceptable though, and they usually hit just above or just below the knee.  Dress them up with blazers, button down shirts, lace up oxfords, loafers or simple heels.

2. Ripped or torn clothing, even jeans.

3. Dirty clothes… yesterday’s clothes.

4. Crop tops, halter tops, items that are too small, too short or too tight or anything showing too much skin.

5. Sweats, sweat suits, track suits, etc.

6. Workout sneakers.

7. Leggings worn as pants. Instead, wear them with a long dress, tunic or sweater that hits mid-thigh and accompany them with knee high riding boots, ankle boots, lace-up oxfords, ballet flats or loafers.

8. Too much makeup and really too much of anything {including cologne}.

9. Hats, bunny ears, big bows, tiaras, bandanas…  Scarves are okay.

10. Shiny items, including but not limited to: glitter, lamé, and sequins. 

Now, here is an example of what you SHOULD wear…

Work attire should be simple yet bold, and sticking to classic silhouettes is a great way to command power and remain work-appropriate. Build your wardrobe from basic, yet flattering, shapes and colors like pencil skirts and crisp, white button-down shirts. A great black blazer can create new looks when worn with skirts or classic wide-leg pants — or even a great-fitting pair of cropped pants. Keeping your color palette in neutrals — like black, white, flesh tones, and grays — really gives you the most opportunity to mix and match and extend your garments into unforgettable ensembles. Leopard print works as a versatile neutral with a hint of an edge while adding a few red items adds a bit of pop to any wardrobe. Any of these pieces {as shown below} can be mixed and matched to create a lasting impression at the office… and keep you chic throughout the year.

Work Appropriate


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Maegan Tintari

LA native & lifestyle blogger Maegan Tintari writes daily at sharing beauty & style secrets, including fashion DIYs, how-to nail art manicures, hair tutorials, recipes & home decorating ideas, as well as a look into her personal life, her journey & battle with infertility & recent relocation to the mountains by a lake in search of a better life with her adorable French Bulldog brothers, Trevor and Randy.

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