Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Dressing appropriately for the summer months at work

It's hot! The summer months are in. The sun is shining bright and the temperature is way up, but your job's dress code doesn't care about the temperature outside. As you sit at your desk or cubicle all you can think about is how soon can you take your clothes off once you get home. You secretly wish you were a lifeguard just so you can wear a bathing suit to work every day. How can you dress comfortably for work and the season?

  • Wear lighter colors

    When you see images of Middle Easterners and folks who live in the desert, did you notice how they don't wear anything darker than light brown? When you wear darker colors, they tend to absorb the heat from the sun which is why you catch yourself sweating in that black t-shirt you wore last Friday. Try switching things up by wearing various shades of white and brown. Try khacki pants with a white polo. Not only will you be more comfortable but you will still be within the rules of your job's dress code.

  • Layer properly
    Most corporate jobs are housed inside of a tall skyscraper. Luckily for you, you are privy to the wonderfulness that is AIR CONDITIONING. Although it may be 95 degrees outside, it's about 68 inside the building. Layer properly. Bring a sweater, cardigan or sport coat that can easily be taken off or put on. Make sure it's something that isn't too bulky, nothing is worse than having to carry a huge bubble coat when there is a heatwave outside.

  • Remember the finger tip rule
    Remember when you were in high school and you wore shorts because it was warm outside and your teacher sent you to the principle's office because they thought your shorts were too short? How did the principal normally measure the length of your shorts? THE FINGER TIP TEST!! If your shorts where shorter than the length of your fingertips on the sides...they were too short. Use the same rule when wearing business shorts or skirts to work.

  • Mix business with casual
    Your office does business casual right? Wear your favorite dark denim jeans with a button down and sport coat. Or pair a cute pair of flats with your favorite shirt and a skirt. Just because it has a business in front of it doesn't mean you can stretch the casual.

  • Try a different fabric
    Ever heard of the expression "fabric that breathes?" There are some fabrics where air passes through them comfortably essentially cooling you off...but not in the sitting in front of the fan kinda way. Linen and 100% cotton are some of the most breathable fabrics and of course you can style them in all kinds of ways! Try switching your fabrics and watch yourself sweat less during the summer months.

  • Take a note from the boss
    Every time I'm at work and see my boss wearing jeans and a t-shirt on a Tuesday, that's my cue to come in on Wednesday wearing jeans and a t-shirt. My belief is the boss sets the trend, the mood, and the dress code. So I take my lead from their example.

IT'S HOT!!! And I mean that in every sense of the word. Some of us love our jobs and most of us need it, but man can that dress code get in the way of our daily comfort. You don't have to sacrifice your comfort during the summer months by being hot and stuffy in a business suit. Most companies are more lenient during the summer months when it comes to the dress code, so definitely take advantage...but don't push the envelope. Bikinis and Speedos only work on the job if your office is the pool.

The Unemployed Entrepreneur

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