General Tips

  • Make sure that your clothes are always clean and free of wrinkles and tears, no matter the dress code.
  • On the first day, it is always better to overdress than underdress. You can always take off a tie or blazer, or roll up your sleeves if you see that the environment is more casual.
  • Gauge the office environment before you wear items that are more casual, more fashionable, or more colorful.
  • For the first week, dress more conservatively until you get a feel for what other people are wearing.
    • Ensure that you are not showing too much skin. Do not wear anything too short, midriff baring, or anything very low cut. Make sure that your socks are tall enough to not show skin when you sit down, if wearing socks.
  • Make sure that your hair and nails are always neat and well-groomed. This includes facial hair. In some conservative industries, facial hair may not be appropriate. Ensure that dyed hair is still a natural color.
  • Keep perfume/cologne to a minimum, or do not use it at all. Some people may have fragrance allergies.
  • When picking out garments, make sure to hold it to the light. Some garments may be slightly transparent and therefore require the appropriate undergarments such as a slip or an undershirt.
  • Be conservative with your jewelry/accessories. Make sure all bags, purses, and briefcases are professional in both color and style.
  • Be conservative with makeup and nail polish. Stick to subdued and neutral colors.
  • You are not expected to be able to afford the same quality of work attire as your supervisor.
    • Second-hand shops and inexpensive clothing stores like Forever 21 offer professional style clothes on a budget. However, you must ensure that the clothes fit well and are in good condition.
    • Aim to buy clothes with multiple uses and that can be worn in both business casual and more formal situations. Dark colors are the most versatile.