As the world watches New York City for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, BlackEnterprise.com is ushering in a new style series. Check us out once a week for tips on how to upgrade your power look, whether you’re a newbie graduate at her first gig or a seasoned C-suiter.
We have all experienced fashion offenders in the workplace, from the over-accessorizer to the blah-plain Jane. Ever wanted to call a flagrant fashion foul on a co-worker?
Wait, are you absolutely sure you’re not the offender everyone’s whispering about?
Even if you’re not a die-hard fashionista, your style of dress speaks a very clear language to your employer and co-workers. Yes, clothes talk, and yes, fashion is a language. Workplace attire can reflect your confidence, intelligence and authority.
As the fall season approaches, here’s a quick brush-up on six rules when choosing your workplace look, especially if you’re just starting at a new company:
Uniformity wins. You may think the uniform protocol is dated and boring but remember, you don’t want to call attention to yourself for anything other than the positive attributes related to your position. Be aware of the dress code, whether spoken or unspoken, and follow it.
Use your best judgment. Trust your gut. If you have to stare at an outfit for 15 minutes to make it work, it’s probably not working.
Keep it refined. You may have the best-toned arms in the world or a Coke-bottle shape that would put Nicki Minaj to shame, but the workplace is not the right place to hug every curve.
Keep your underwear underneath. Women are the biggest offenders when it comes to peeking bras straps and panty lines. Investing in the proper undergarments not only allow for a better fit, but avoids the type of distraction you don’t want to get promoted for.
Practice smart sheer layering. I’m not opposed to light, transparent fabrics. I love a beautiful, silk blouse paired with a high-waist skirt. But if you don’t have the proper undergarments, pass on this trend.
Yes, leave the flip flops for the beach. It doesn’t matter if they are cutest Tory Burch slippers from her latest resort collection, unkempt feet and clacking soles around the office is not OK. Opt for a flat sandal with an enclosed heel or a sandal that has a strap.
OOTD INSPIRATION: To help you stay fashionably on track with your power looks this fall, check out a plethora of chic workplace combos with power blazers and shoes for the everyday woman from the minimalist to the bold visionary. Welcome to the world of tailored separates that mean business at the office and fun after 5.
Shea Zephir (@sheazephir) a bonafide Renaissance woman who balances diverse careers as a journalist, makeup artist and dancer. Whether she is compiling a story, doling out a makeup look, or crafting choreography, Shea always encourages the celebration of the black community, inspires self-examination, and promotes the positive portrayal of black women in entertainment. She holds a bachelor’s degree in fashion and marketing from the Art Institute of Philadelphia and is a graduate of The Makeup Designory in New York, with a concentration in Beauty Artistry.