Casual Fridays: How to Stay Professional without Sacrificing Style
Casual Fridays are a staple in many offices. It’s a chance for workers to leave their suits at home and dress a bit more comfortably. But there is a right way and a wrong way to dress down on Casual Friday. Read on for some useful tips to help you avoid committing any fashion faux pas.
The best thing about Casual Friday is that you can be comfortable. Leave the heels at home and enjoy wearing flats all day. Choose outfits that feel comfortable to wear, such as soft fabrics and well-worn jeans.
Just because your workplace has a Casual Friday dress code one day of the week it doesn’t mean you can treat it as an opportunity to put your clubbing gear on at 8 am instead of 6 pm. Choose outfits that are appropriate for your workplace. Casual Friday is likely to be a very different arrangement in an investment bank than, say, a small accountant’s office. If in doubt because this is your first week, check with HR or the office manager to see what’s OK and what isn’t OK.
It may be OK to wear jeans and a tee on Casual Fridays, but it’s not acceptable to throw on your paint-splattered joggers and a tee with holes under the arms. Even if you are allowed to dress down on Fridays, you are still the public face of your organization and managers won’t be impressed if you show up looking like a Goodwill reject.
Wear casual clothes but make sure they are smart and clean.
Style Up Casual Garments
Even if you are dressing down on a Friday, it’s OK to style up your more casual outfits. Casual Friday is a great time to add personality to your workwear. You’re not stuck in a suit all day and you don’t have to conform to the usual shades of black, blue, gray, and white most often seen in the workplace.
Add a cute scarf to a long-sleeved tee and dark jeans. Accessorize a shirt and jeans with a funky jacket. Leave the briefcase at home and pack your lunch and laptop in a Modern Picnic backpack. You will look stylish but casual while fulfilling the Casual Friday dress code with aplomb.
Don’t Try Too Hard
It’s easy to fall into the trap of dressing ten years too young when you work in an office full of Gen Z kids and you’re on the wrong side of 40. Don’t make this mistake. People that try too hard to look hip and cool always fail miserably. Wear clothing you feel comfortable in, even if it isn’t what your colleagues are wearing. They can get away with ironic tees whereas you’d become a walking joke if you tried it.
Experimenting with fashion is only OK when you are a genuine fashionista and know all the latest trends. Or you work in the Vogue office.
Casual Friday makes the end of the week something to look forward to. But only if you don’t commit fashion suicide. Follow our tips and you won’t end up as a MEME.
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