Most women understand the struggle of dressing for work. The general idea includes some sort of heeled shoe, a skirt or dress pants, and the ever-reliable blazer. If only it were that simple. Men can rely on suits or dress shirts and ties with little thought or effort. But that doesn’t go both ways. Dress for work is an increasingly complex task for women that actually requires thought and planning. There is a history of politics attached to women’s fashion that makes it difficult to navigate in real life.
A History of Professional Women
Let’s start with a little history. Women in the professional world didn’t become prominent until the 1970s. Feminism’s second wave was on the rise and making an impact on many young women. Who were attending college at higher rates. There was a struggle between the traditional fifties and rebellious sixties that left women in the seventies at a crossroads: embrace traditional femininity or try to fit in with the boys. That same crossroads exists in the workplace today.
First Impressions Make a Difference
Whether you’re running errands to the grocery store or scheduling services with Alpha Elite Roofing, first impressions are incredibly important. A positive interaction with a company representative can encourage you to hire them just like the look of a crowded parking lot can deter you from going to an event. You make decisions based on quick interactions and first glance impressions, which is why appearance can be so important.
In the professional world, within that first minute women are judged on their clothing, hair, and use of makeup. In some cases, a bare face is considered unready for the work day. While in other cases, women who spend too much time on makeup and grooming can be viewed as unprofessional or stereotyped as unintelligent. There’s no doubt about it, it can be a tricky situation to dress for work in the morning.
Read More: Seven Awesome Fashion Tips Women Should Know
Be Comfortable and Confident
For women dressing for the business world, the best advice is to obviously be comfortable and confident in what you’re wearing. Make sure you can perform your job without any fashion mishaps and according to whatever company guidelines you were given. Speaking of your company, consider the culture of your workplace. Is it a relaxed environment or high power and high pressure? Will you be on your feet and moving all day or is your role primarily behind a desk or presenting to others? If you need inspiration, don’t hesitate to look back again in history with a power suit from the eighties featuring bold colors and broad shoulders. Or maybe take a more contemporary androgynous approach. Just dress to make you feel confident and you’re sure to be a success.