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10 Ways your Wardrobe is holding you back at Work


As the saying goes, dresses make a man. People form a first perception about you in their minds when they see what you are wearing. All firms have their own established set of dress codes, which they expect their staff to adhere to.

Even in firms and organizations where there is no fixed dress code, there sure are certain set expectations regarding how an employee of the firm should be dressed. And many employees who fail to understand this expectation may lose significant opportunities even when they are perfectly qualified for the same.

While your wardrobe appears to be just another piece of furniture in your house, it sure plays a significant role in forming a good career. Here are some ways in which your wardrobe may be acting as an impediment to your progress at work:

Office Outfit Ideas

Office Outfit Ideas to Avoid:

1. Opting for outfits that are way too casual:

Semi formals or casual outfits are suitable for wearing at the office occasionally. But you need to select the exact type of casuals that you are going to wear at your workplace.

It is true that most firms just allow casuals on Fridays and Saturdays. Other days, you have to be dressed in perfect formals. It is also true that staying bereft of the freedom to wear attractive casual attires of your choice the entire week may make you crave sexy casual attires on those two days. Yet, in a professional environment, even casual clothes should be selected wisely.

You need to keep many different things in mind. Low quality material attire may make you appear truly cheap. If you go for an attire that is too loud, it may cause doubts regarding your taste in the minds of seniors.

Every dress creates a different impression and you should know clearly what impression you wish to create when you select an outfit for office casual day.

2. Wearing outfits that flaunt too much of skin:

You may look trendy, stylish and youthful in strapless or sleeveless outfits. But that doesn’t mean that you can dress like a fashionista at your workplace. Short, skimpy outfits can create a bad impression among your colleagues and may create a negative perception about you in their minds.

Outfits that reveal your skin in a vulgar way can make you a laughing stock at your workplace. You may even find your co-workers bitching about your dressing sense.

Therefore, it would be wiser to opt for outfits that are sober and suitable for wearing in a professional environment. This will ensure that you are not noticed in the office for the wrong reasons.

3. Apparels that are a complete mismatch with the occasion:

Special occasions such as Christmas parties, New Year celebrations, etc. happen occasionally. These are the occasions when you can try new outfits that you are not likely to wear during normal working days.

However, if it doesn’t go well with the theme of the party, then you may end up being the subject of ridicule among your peers. A wise person knows how he looks in his outfits. His wardrobe adds to his confidence.

So, be selective about the clothes you wear at the party. Check out what your peers are planning to wear during such an event. Instead of sporting a different look, blending with the crowd can be a wiser decision during corporate parties.

If there is a fancy dress or a weird theme for the party, you must not hesitate to wear something weird as long as you are going with the flow.

4. Clothes That Are Badly Maintained:

Wearing outfits that suit your persona is not enough. They need to be neat and properly ironed. Shabby attires of the best quality do not make a positive impression. It is thus vital that you maintain your clothes well.

Therefore, while dressing, one of the first things that you need to do is to check yourself in the mirror and find out how you look. A smart outfit can help you create a good impression in the minds of co-workers and superiors.

Dresses and outfits that you wear to the office should be ironed and pressed regularly. You need to check that there are no loose threads and all the buttons and hooks are well in place.

You also need to check whether the color of your outfits is intact. If your clothes start fading, it is best to avoid wearing those outfits to formal occasions.

5. Opting for shades that don’t look good on you:

The color of your clothes needs to go well with your complexion, height and body shape. Usually, people with a fairer complexion have a greater selection of colors to choose from, as compared to people who have brown or dusky skin. If you have a dark or wheatish complexion, then you need to avoid colors like yellow, pink and maroon as they will look odd on you.

Apart from that, you also need to know the significance of each color and whether there are myths related to certain shades. Usually certain shades like pink, light blue or orange may be regarded as feminine shades. Consider all these aspects while selecting the perfect outfit for office wear.

6. Wearing clothes that don’t fit properly:

There is nothing more awkward than wearing clothes that do not have a proper fitting. Apart from marring your appearance, they may also reveal your lack of professionalism among peers as well as the higher authorities within your organization. It can not only ruin your image but also harm your promotion in your organization.

Very often, people tend to neglect trivial aspects like fitting. Yet, it may not be as trivial as it seems. Well, fitting outfits are known to create a positive impression on onlookers.

The modern generation has the benefit of finding outfits of many different sizes in malls and shopping centers. Yet, if you do not come across well fitting readymade outfits, it surely is worthwhile to opt for a tailor for your attires and outfits.

7. Dresses don’t match with office dress code:

If you are a member of a specific team, try to adapt to the dressing styles of other members within your team. Find out the general dressing pattern that other members follow.

Clothes that come with bright shades and funky designs are more suitable for wearing at parties but not within the office. Therefore, it is always better to go for neutral tones.

Similarly, even when you are wearing a perfectly formal attire but something obsolete, you may still become a laughing stock. Try to avoid this by choosing your outfits wisely.

Bell bottoms and safari suits were acceptable office outfits in the 1980s, but today people around you will have a jolly time laughing if you wear something like that to office. Spend time but choose what is in vogue and does not look out of place.

8. A dearth of good formals within the wardrobe:

Formals such as suits or tuxedos can be worn only once in a while, during client meetings or board meetings. Therefore, if you have a lack of formals in your wardrobe, then you can make it up by wearing semi-formals. Pair them up with accessories that go well with formals. This could prove to be a good temporary solution.

If you do not frequently need office formals like these and yet they may be necessary once in a while, it may be a good option to rent these apparels and outfits. Do not invest money on an outfit that you may wear just once a year.

9. Clothes that pull down your value and stature within the organizational hierarchy:

The lack of proper dressing sense may prove detrimental to your image and may make you look way too lower in the professional hierarchy within the organization. The modern world is way different and marketing and presentation matter much more than quality in every field. The image you carry matters more than the real self inside.

Higher management usually prefers people who have a high level of self-respect and professionalism. Though you may be a skilled professional, a lack of proper dressing sense may create a bad impression, which doesn’t go down well with your superiors.

You may even have a senior who may advise you regarding dressing sense and similar other facts, especially if you have ascended the success ladder. When you are ahead in the competition and are the face of the company, your attire, outfit, brands, and other factors tend to count a lot.

10. Poor Choice of Accessories:

There are several people who aware of brands for outfits but have a poor choice when it comes to accessories. You need to create a perfect image and this means you should look perfect from head to toe.

You cannot afford to neglect the shoes, tie or even a brooch on your coat. People will easily note even these trivial factors and it may damage your image.

Make sure your wardrobe has the right selection of outfits and accessories so that it may not hold you back in your career. The recipe for success is complicated and presentation is sure one of the main ingredients.