How to dress business casual

How to dress business casual

Many companies are returning to work, which means it’s time for you to get out your PJs and put on your work clothes. According to a survey done before the pandemic, Randstad US, around 25% of offices have a business casual dress code, and if you need a refresher on what is—and isn’t—acceptable to wear to the office, you’ve come to the right place.

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The following are the guidelines you’ll want to follow when dressing for a business casual workplace, as well as several outfits to inspire your back-to-work shopping—because why should students have all the fun? Bonus: If you are looking for work through websites like ZipRecruiterThese look can be worn as interview attires, and will help you look professional and polished.

Casual business attire is acceptable

Business casual clothing is designed to strike the right balance between professionalism and comfort. According to The Job Market Outlook for GradsZipRecruiter released this report earlier in the year. It revealed that young professionals care more about workplace benefits like remote work, mental healthcare benefits, and relaxed dress codes when working in office jobs. Gone are the days of full suits, ties, and pantyhose—the youngest generation entering the job market wants to feel as good as they look.

Business casual clothing is often worn by women.

Business casual attire is for men:

  • Collared shirts and button-downs

  • Sweaters

  • Casual slacks such as khakis and chinos

  • Loafers, dress shoes, and nice boots are all acceptable. 

Some offices also allow nice denim—think dark, solid colors with no rips or tears—and open-toed shoes in the summertime. Before you wear these garments to work, make sure to check with your employer. 

1. Wide-leg trousers are trendy

Credit: Banana Republic/Faherty/Naturalizer/Reviewed

Here’s what to wear when you head back to the office.

A blouse and slacks are a timeless pairing for women. But, it doesn’t necessarily have to be boring. A pair of wide-leg trousers can be incorporated into your work wardrobe to stay on-trend. Islet PantThis fits the bill perfectly. They are made from a luxurious cotton/linen blend and come in white or light blue, allowing you the freedom to add a splash of color to your outfit.

These pants can be worn with any top, but we prefer the one with the hem. Faherty Willa Peasant BlouseThis shirt features a subtle pleated appearance with delicate ruffles on sleeves and collar. The shirt comes in five colors and is made from 100% organic cotton.

To complete the look, slide the slide. Naturalizer Kayden MulesPut them on your feet. These open-back shoes are very comfortable for long hours at work. They also have a trendy square top and a chain accent at the front.

2. You can keep it simple with a pretty gown

Credit: Ann Taylor/LifeStride/Mejuri/Reviewed

Here’s what to wear when you head back to the office.

A business casual dress is a great option for those days when you don’t feel like mixing and matching separates. The Floral Flutter Sleeve Flare DressIt is perfect for office wear because it has a modest hemline and short sleeves. The fabric is not too bulky and features a waist tie that flatters your figure, as well as a mock neck. It comes in a variety sizes, from 00 up to 18.

This dress can be worn with flats or heels. LifeStride Giovanna 2 PumpsThe shoes are available in a maroon shade that matches the floral motif. They are office-friendly with a closed toe and a zip up back that makes them easy on and off. The lower heel height is also comfortable to walk in.

The Thin Croissant Dôme HoopsThese elegant accessories add a classy finishing touch to this elegant outfit. They are made from gold vermeil, a thick layer of 18k Gold on top of sterling Silver, and will be a staple in your work wardrobe.

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3. Shop for wardrobe staples

Credit: Bonobos/Banana Republic/ Kenneth Cole/Reviewed

Here’s what to wear when you head back to the office.

Listen up, guys. You’ll need to bring a few pairs to work each week. Stretch Washed Chino 2.0It is worth adding to your wardrobe. These pants are both professional and comfortable, and come in more than a dozen different colors to match every style. Bonobos also offers a wide range of sizes, from 28 to 46 inches in waist size, to five different fit options, including slim, tailored, athletic, and tapered.

These chinos can be paired with a nice button-down shirt, such as this Organic Cotton Shirt. This shirt is 100% organic cotton and comes in a variety plaid and striped colors, as its name implies. The button-down has an asymmetrical hemline that falls right at the hips. This makes it easy to tuck into and is great for layering during winter.

You can also complete your casual business look with the Kenneth Cole Destin Slip-Ons. They are made from sophisticated cognac leather and look great in the office. The sole is cushioned for maximum comfort, even when you’re walking around on your lunch break or commute.

4. In cold weather, bundle up

Credit: BP./Anthropologie/Marc Fisher/Reviewed

Here’s what to wear when you head back to the office.

You can swap your usual blouses for a warmer one when it gets colder. BP. Rib Crewneck Sweater. It is available in four colors, including a bold, bright blue, and sizes XS through XXL. It features voluminous sleeves with chunky stitching and looks stylish whether it is tucked or loose.

This sweater can be paired with the Essential Slim Kick Flare PantsThis is a fashionable fall outfit. These tailored trousers are just above your ankle, so you can show off your shoes. They come in standard, tall, plus sizes. The black option can be worn every day, but you can also get the pants in other colors and patterns.

This outfit calls for cute booties. Marc Fisher Glorify BootIt is a great choice for your workday. These shoes have a leather upper with a pointed toe and stylish black or brown colors.

5. Bold prints are a great way to show off your personality

Credit: REISS/Banana Republic/Madewell/Reviewed

Here’s what to wear when you head back to the office.

You can show more of your personality in business casual wear with pieces such as the REISS Jackson Pencil Skirt. The high-waisted design, which is navy blue with a floral pattern in tan, hits mid-calf. It’s a work-friendly choice. The front has pockets to store your phone and a slit allows you to move more than traditional pencil skirts.

The skirt is best paired with a plain top such as this because of its busy pattern. Silky Collar Blouse. It’s made of a satin-like fabric, with a pointed collar. The long sleeves are easy to tuck in the skirt (or any other bottoms) with it.

This look can be completed with a layered necklace like the Women’s Coin Necklace SetMadewell It comes with three complementary necklaces that are staggered in length, making it easy to layer.

6. Cardigans are a great way to cover up

Credit: Calvin Klein/Banana Republic/Topshoeave/Reviewed

Here’s what to wear when you head back to the office.

A simple dress such as the Calvin Klein Sheath DressAnother essential piece for your casual business wardrobe is the X-Stitch. This classic design is available from sizes 4-14 in a variety professional colors. The dress features a flattering sheath silhouette and a sleeveless design. It also has an exposed zipper at the back.

Layering is a great option if your workplace is cold. Ramie Rayon Cardigan over your dress. This basic sweater is available in plain colors and has a V neck hem with three large buttons at the front. It has a semi-fitted silhouette that hits at the waist. This sweater is a versatile piece you can add to your wardrobe.

You can finish this look with the if open-toe shoes are allowed in your workplace Soda Topshoeave Wait Womens Open Toe Sandals. They come in a variety o colors, including natural, black, and white.

7. Warm winter sweaters keep you cozy

Credit: Ralph Lauren/Old Navy/Sperry/Reviewed

Here’s what to wear when you head back to the office.

Men can wear sweaters in cold weather under most business casual dress codes. Polo Ralph Lauren Cable-Knit Cotton SweaterThis is a classic choice. It features a classic cable-knit style with long sleeves and high rib-knit collars. The brand’s signature embroidered pony is also featured. It comes in a variety colors and can be worn with or without a button-down.

You can pair your favorite sweater and plain pants like this Ultimate Tech Chino PantsThese are available in many neutral colors, including brown, blue, or black. They’re available in sizes 26 to 54, and they even have a special lining in the pockets that cleans your phone screen—how’s that for innovation?

You don’t need to wear formal shoes when working in a business casual setting. You can choose something more comfortable such as the Sperry’s Authentic Original Boat Shoe. These iconic shoes are made out of full-grain genuine leather. They also have a hand-sewn moccasin structure that conforms to your feet for all-day comfort.

8. Layer up to create a stylish ensemble

Credit: rag and bone/Floerns/Old Navy/Crown vintage/Reviewed

Here’s what to wear when you head back to the office.

For a stylish and sophisticated work outfit, try the rag & bone Priya Tweed VestA sheer long-sleeve top, such as the Floerns Women’s Button Front Blouse. A black tank top or T-shirt is required to be worn underneath the blouse. The vest comes in sizes 00-16, and has an adjustable strap at its back for a perfect fit.

This layered look will make you want to wear simple pants like this one. Never-Fade Pixie Skinny Ankle PantsThese fabrics are available in fun colors such as Bourbon and Terrestrial green. The Never-Fade fabric is durable and will not fade regardless of how many times you wash it. Additionally, the high-rise waistband provides a slimming effect.

You can complete the look with a retro style shoe like the Crown Vintage Penny Loafer. They come with a platform sole for extra height. For a stylish, yet professional look, pair them with ankle socks.

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