Corporate Styling Tips For Working Women
You can have anything you want if you dress for it.
Women of today- they rule almost every sphere of the corporate world.
Despite all the added challenges they had to face, they achieved success and power and what arose from this was a new age woman, the Working Women. Aware of her powers, her brilliance, and her abilities. As they moved forward into the corporate world, so did their wardrobe. The wardrobe of working women was a combination of success, restraint, rebellion, strength, fun and of course a little bit of drama. Women started to dress in clothes which made them feel powerful and invincible.
The question then arises, “Why so much stress on work wardrobe”? Well, why not! Here are some reasons I can think of:
If we dress well, we feel more confident and our body language portrays that. People we work with perceive us as more authoritative, competent and reliable. Nothing can match up to the feeling one gets when they know they are looking good. If you look good, you feel good and you work well. This automatically makes you feel powerful. Over time, you realize that you can control how you feel about yourself and this again is a great feeling to have. First impressions matter. We always associate a person with the first impression we have of them, the image that was stored in our minds within 5 seconds of meeting them, and that image lasts a lifetime. As someone truly said, “ There are no second chances to a first impression.” so make it a good one.
Without a doubt, the way we dress plays an important role in our work life. So make a little effort to learn about it, spend a little time to work on it and use this subconscious visual association to your advantage.
“Vain trifles as they seem, clothes have, they say, more important offices than to merely keep us warm. They change our view of the world and the world’s view of us.”
– Virginia Woolf.
Now let’s talk about some do’s and don’ts for the wardrobe of a Working Women:
- Always dress according to what’s appropriate for your workplace. If there is a dress code, FOLLOW it. Read a little about the dress code and apply it to your everyday dressing. It creates a positive impression of you. Clothes must always fit well. Too tight or too loose is distracting. Inappropriate clothes can give a wrong impression too. After all, you want to be remembered for what value you bring in and not what you wore. Right!
- The perfume you wear has to be subtle and not strong. If you cannot figure out on your own which perfume to buy for work, ask the store lady for a mild one. She’ll guide you.
- You need to wear appropriate shoes and they must be clean and in good condition. Heels look good, but it’s a personal choice. Go for wedge heels, kitten heels or even flats, as long as you are comfortable. But they need to go with what you are wearing and they need to be appropriate. You cannot wear bathroom slippers or open sandals to work, just because you find them comfortable. Nor can you wear the shoes you will wear while you go out partying. Follow the dress code. But still get a little adventurous.
- Personal hygiene is precious. Bad body odour, dirty hair, unkempt hands, and feet will not take you too far. Be well groomed.
- Get regular manicures and pedicure, especially if you want to wear open shoes. The sight of chipped nail paint is not professional at all.
- Keep your hair clean and neat. If you can’t manage the hairstyle you have without elaborate parlour work, you definitely need a change. Visit your hairstylist and tell her what your requirements are. Take tips from her on how to manage your hair easily. Never reach work with wet hair. It shows that you are not organized and lack time management.
- Pay attention to colour choices. Darker colours always give a stronger impression. Never wear colours that will blend in with the background. You want to stand out, not fade out.
- Don’t get carried away with accessories. You cannot wear the same kind of jewellery to work, what you would wear to a pub or discotheque. And your jewellery definitely cannot make noise. Keep it striking, yet subtle.
- Carry a bag that is neat and stylish and not something that has your stuff pouring out of it. You cannot carry a suitcase either while at work. If there is a lot of things you need with you, make a little storage space where you work. A bag has to look like the stylish accessory its meant to be, yet it should blend in with the professional image you want to project. So, no gym bags, plastic bags or shiny or embellished clutch to work.
- Don’t overdo makeup. Smokey eyes are for parties. Wear the amount that would make your complexion look flawless and yet natural. Also use moisturizer always, for face, hands, feet, legs… It makes you look fresh and awake.As far as work makeup is concerned, LESS IS ALWAYS MORE.
- Leggings/tights are not trousers. You cannot wear them to work !!
- Come up with your own style, which works well for you. Nothing will ever compete with your own signature style. This might take a little bit of effort, but its worth it. Once you know your style, be consistent with it.
- While dressing, don’t forget that you are a woman. Take pride in who you are.
- You are strong, powerful, magnificent, smart, intelligent, efficient and beautiful. Believe in this. And the word will believe this too. Wear the right attitude.
Dressing right for work, once mastered, is an empowering and liberating experience. It’s an armor you wear to work every day and definitely spend two-thirds of the day in it. So, why not make your Working Women look stunning one!
“Fashion is what you’re offered four times a year by designers. And style is what you choose.”
– Lauren Hutton
Here are some looks I have created for you to help you with your work wardrobe.
Sarees look really elegant, as long as you can manage to drape it well and keep it well draped throughout the day. Wear saree with a little heel (adds grace) and no hanging and chunky jewellery with it. Keep it all minimal and noise free. In a saree, you would definitely leave an impact on anyone. Its probably the most powerful attire I have seen. Salwaar- kameez is very comfortable too. Wear well-fitted ones.
Any of these outfits can be altered according to the weather. Use a colourful knitted scarf or warm well-fitted jacket or both. Just don’t add too many colours, we don’t want you looking like a fruit basket. For a professional woman, style is her expression of confidence, power, and success. Finding your style and following it will give you a definite winning edge in this ever so competitive world. With our world getting so visual, with technology developing almost every hour, the visual impact has gained immense importance.
So all you gorgeous ladies, its time to let your visual voice speak and make sure it gets heard loud and clear. Get out of your comfort zone where work dressing is concerned; don’t clone but find your true style and you will shine even more.
This post was contributed by, Divya Singh Vishwanath.
She is a style coach from Mumbai, India. She has done her designing course from NIFT, New Delhi and has worked with a few designers and fashion houses. She took a break for a few years to raise her family and for the last three years, she has been working as a stylist and a personal shopper. She started her blog stylefashionshimmer in September 2017 and have been working as a style coach ever since.
If you have any questions, she is there to help.