The summer is almost here and the temperature will stay warm, hopefully. Wearing summery clothes on the beach, in the garden and on vacation is easy. But what do you wear and avoid to office in the summer? Summer work wear can be something of a pain during these hot months especially when you just want to lounge by the pool. But what you choose to wear to the office in the summer is important. It says a lot about your judgment and how people think about you. How do you dress in a way that is charming and business like? Certain things you just plain avoid! So what are they? Well if you would like to know keep reading my article!
Sexy to work:
Especially in the summer we want to have fun and feel great about ourselves. But you don’t want to look too good and be too revealing! It’s distracting and inappropriate in a business environment. According to ‘Nationale Vacaturenbank’ many colleagues find it very irritating that women dress too provocatively for work during the summer months but say nothing about it.
Do you just wear what you feel like? Feeling good about what you wear is important but don’t overdo it. Don’t only think about your own taste but also about the effect you’re creating. Your choice of dress style directly impacts how others view you, respond to you and how effective you are.
In the summer it can be tempting to show off your skin to beat the heat over the summer.
But how much bare skin are you allowed to show before you’re seen as incompetent at the office?
Don’t go too bare in the summer! In the summer never show more than three bare parts including legs, arms, feet and cleavage. Dressing too sexy can drastically hinder career opportunities.
What shoes do you wear in the summer? Are open shoes appropriate for the office? Do you have a presentable job in a traditional field, then don’t do it. Classical pumps with a height of 4 cm in various neutral colors are the ideal work shoe. Do you sit the whole day, then in most cases an open shoe or peep toe under a pair of pants or dress up to the knees will work just fine as long as you have very neat polished nails and feet. Just check others or ask first to make sure. Stiletto heels are out of the question. Avoid ballerinas – they look too cutsy and lovely to be taken seriously at work.
Always wear two layers on top. Combine a top or shirt with a jacket or cardigan. What image do you want to project? To come across as powerful and having authority you wear a jacket. When you need to project a soft and friendly image you wear a cardigan which looks soft and friendly. So choose a jacket or cardigan according to the situation and your goal.
Skin colored tights are a must even during high temperatures at official occasions, visits and in the corporate world. But often it is accepted to go without tights. Just shave your legs of course! Thick dark tights really can’t be worn in the summer!
Avoid linnen pants, they wrinkle and look untidy.
Do you want to put up your hair? Just do it with nice hair pins not with a big hair clasp. Make sure your hair is put up neatly.
What men wear this summer or should avoid
The right fabric is essential as you usually wear layers in the summer. Sometimes you can remove your suit jacket and wear your shirt with an open-collar and rolled-up sleeves (check first if your colleagues do it to see if it’s appropriate). Make sure you’ve got no yellowed armpit stains they make even the nicest designer shirt shabby and old. Use a solid antiperspirant deodorant and apply only a thin layer to your skin before putting on your white shirt. Armpit stains form as a chemical reaction between your deodorant and the fabric. A short-sleeved shirt is not acceptable in the workplace. You don’t want to look like you’ve got wings. But it’s also a question of tradition. Shirt cuffs have to be visible for 1,5 cm underneath a jacket. Wear fitted dress shirts that conform to your body. No loosefitting shirts that walk on their own or tight fitting shirts that don’t allow you to breathe properly. Go for shirts with just the right amount of room to let you breathe, while glossing over the unshapely parts if required without adding bulk to your frame. Wear a clean and crisp (under) shirt every day. You can wear the undershirt as a sweat-absorbing layer but it should not be visible. V-necks are the most popular choice. Visible chest hair at the office is distracting so go for high-quality T-shirts with a slightly higher neckline but don’t go too high. When you don’t wear a tie only leave the first button open.
Stay cool by choosing thin lightweight materials that breathe efficiently. Cotton is an excellent material for hot temperatures because it permits movement of air from the skin through the fabric and also absorbs moisture well, keeping the skin dry. Use cotton instead of synthetic socks. Like cotton, linen is cool and absorbent, and very comfortable to wear. But it becomes wrinkled and creases easily so avoid it. It looks sloppy. A better option is linen mixed with cotton and cool wool. Silk is not a good choice as it retains heat. Light colored fabrics are often worn in the summer because they reflect light and heat. Navy blue (versus midnight blue), medium gray (versus charcoal gray) are common choices.
Accessories such as a handkerchief, cufflinks and tie are fun to wear and give your outfit a personal touch. In creative industries you can wear a knitted tie or tie with horizontal stripes. You can choose a tie in a light fabric such as silk and cotton. Shorts and open shoes such as flip flops are simply unacceptable. You’re not on vacation.
Carina van der Kloet is founder and personal stylist. She has twenty years experience. She has given numerous master classes and personal styling advice to thousands of people including management, executives, entrepreneurs, expatriates, diplomats working at various (international) organizations.
Carina van der Kloet grew up in French speaking countries in Africa and in the United States. She speaks English, French and Dutch.
"Carina van der Kloet is an inspiring speaker! With striking examples of how clothing works for you, she knows how to create a pleasant and intimate atmosphere. Great to see how you can create impact with few words."Miranda van Mondfrans, director Pro Assistance BV