You have probably not thought about this idea. Has much skin should you show at work? Probably, way back when there were rules about this. Now, post-pandemic with our more casual work wardrobes, who knows? But nonetheless, I do think it’s worth examining.
An Indiana Wardrobe Stylist’s Work Wear Advice
As an Indiana Wardrobe Stylist, I recall a couple of years ago working with a corporate client who employed individuals who traveled around the country basically at health fairs and other companies making presentations. These were men and women marketing high-priced medical services. I was supposed to help select some items that would travel well and look professional and suitcase friendly.
It seemed like an easy task to me basically because I didn’t even consider sleeveless tops/dresses for women or short sleeve tops for men. How archaic, you might think, please hear me out. There is a widely held notion that showing lots of skin at work is not as professional as covering it, up-for men and women.
My client said to me, as I was thumbing through some options, sleeveless is fine. I thought, no not really. This might not surprise you. You’d probably expect this from an Indiana Wardrobe Stylist. What do I think about this? For me, sleeveless is distracting. Let’s face it, if someone has beautiful arms will attendees be looking at her presentation?
They won’t. It’s distracting. I am not just talking about women here. Indiana Wardrobe Stylist, I think men should wear long-sleeve shirts to work as well. Attractive arms on a man are distracting, too. I love this graphic that shows, for women, what is considered the most professional. In addition, covering up a lower neckline, adding a collar and even a blazer (a touch of menswear that I love) creates an even more professional presentation.
Men’s Wardrobe Advice from Your Indiana Wardrobe Stylist
For men, in my opinion as an Indiana Wardrobe Stylist, wearing a long sleeve shirt is just a mainstay of professional work attire. It doesn’t have to be a formal button-down shirt with a tie, but covering arms is just a sign of respect as well.
Also, I encourage my male clients to trim beards, mainly as a means of creating a neat put-together appearance. This also includes grooming beards, daily cleansing of the face, 1-2 times a week scrubbing the face to avoid dry skin, and wearing a good sunscreen.
As an Indiana Wardrobe Stylist, I review ways to improve hygiene, hairstyles, etc., with all-male clients, and female clients, if requested. It is surprising that not all men even think about their faces. Another important part of taking care of yourself is wearing a moisturizer. Even men need it.
I actually can recommend a few brands I really like such as “Every Damn Day” by Duke Cannon and Kiehl’s products. The Duke Cannon product is sold at Target, and Kiehl’s products are in stores, shopping centers, etc. It is also a moisturizer. There is also an oil-free version for face lotion/sunblock if you have more oily skin.
Now, back to what you wear to work. At some work locations, employees can wear shorts. I suppose that is okay at times, but I wouldn’t make a habit of it. As an Indiana Wardrobe Stylist, I am a firm believer in your dress for the job you want — not what you have. Wearing shorts does not communicate professionalism to me.
Want some help in dressing for work! I am here to help you elevate your look. Please reach out for a discovery call at 317-416-2782.
Keep it sassy, Indy!
Beth Divine, MA, AICI-CIC
Indiana Wardrobe Stylist