Are you panicking about what to wear for your new job? Don’t worry, we’ve all been there. The complicated do’s and don’ts of professional dress codes can make compiling your work wardrobe seem impossible. Just follow these 10 tips and you’ll be an expert in no time.

 1) Thou shalt wear the right shoes

There may be some exceptions, but as a general rule of thumb, avoid sandals and open toed shoes. Heels are great, but only if you can walk in them.  If you can’t, opt for a cute pair of flats.

2) Thou shalt not be a human Christmas tree

It’s a given that every girl loves her jewelry but don’t overdo it in the workplace. Stick to the basics. Simple pearls or diamond studs, a nice watch, wedding or engagement rings, and a small, petite necklace are your best bet.

3) Thou shalt wear minimal makeup

The smokey eye and winged liner that you wear for a night out might not appropriate for a professional workplace. In regards to makeup, less really is more. Keep it classy with a natural eye look, a bit of blush and your favorite shade of lipstick.

4) Thou shalt dress to impress – even on casual Fridays

Casual Fridays are great, but think twice before showing up to a professional office in jeans. Go for a business casual look with a nice pair of pants and a nice blouse.

5) Honor thy blazer

Blazers can make or break your outfit. Stay far away from boxy jackets, this isn’t the 1980s. You may need to spend a little extra to find a nice fitting, well-made blazer, but it’s always worth it.

6) Thou shalt keep the past in the past

Never steal your business clothes from your mom’s closet. It’s always better to buy clothes for yourself, as they will definitely look and fit better. It’s important to keep your wardrobe  up to date.

7) Keep holy all neutral color palettes

Grey, black, white and nude are the four key ingredients to a professional look. However, accent colors are the spice in life. You can never go wrong with at least two neutral colors and one accent color, such as royal blue or coral.

8) Thou shalt be well groomed

This can never be overstated. Keep your nails trimmed and clean, use lotion to avoid dusty-looking legs, and never go anywhere with a wrinkled shirt or pair of pants. Your hair should always be well kept; try to tame frizzy hair with a smoothing serum.

9) Thou shalt dress modestly

You should like your business clothes the same way you like your government…conservative. Wear dresses and skirts that fall right above your knee, never wear spaghetti straps, and cover your cleavage. You should also pay attention to how tight your clothes are, don’t wear anything that feels like saran wrap.

10) Thou shalt be wary of tattoos

Tattoos may be more acceptable in society but most employers still require them to be covered up. If you have any arm tattoos, cover them up with a blazer. Tattoos that can’t be covered up with clothes should be covered with tattoo makeup.

While a professional dress code is not something you may be comfortable with right now, these tips will set you up for success in the next business environment you find yourself in. Professional attire will soon come naturally to you and will conform to your personal style, but it is crucial to keep the 10 commandments of a professional dress code in mind throughout the process.

Katie C
FFL Contributor