Dress To Impress At The Workplace This Summer

by Rachael Collier
Dressing for the summer can be a breeze, whether you’re enjoying a drink on the patio with friends, heading for a weekend getaway, or simply reveling in the warmth of a glorious afternoon outdoors. But, as the weather heats up, it’s tough to transition summer style into an appropriate look for the office. Throw in commuting to work, chilly air conditioning, and keeping up a professional appearance, and it can be difficult to know where to draw the line between beachwear and the boardroom. Spring-summer fashion does come with multiple choices, and sifting through the variety of clothing lines for the perfect work clothes can be a daunting task.

To help you stay fresh and look your best, here are our five top tips for summer:

1) Create a Summer Refresher Kit

Never worry about being caught in transit with broken air conditioning or a less‐than‐breathable blouse again. 

A simple, DIY summer refresher kit should be your go‐to this season. Start with basics like baby wipes, a travel-sized deodorant and facial blotting papers, along with hair elastics and bobby pins for a quick updo on humid days. Kits can be customized with travel‐sized versions of your beauty must‐haves.

Ask if any sample‐size freebies are available next time you buy your favorite moisturizer or toner to start building up your collection, or select samples when ordering online from retailers like Sephora. As an added bonus, you’ll have a refreshing travel kit ready to go for last‐minute summer adventures.

2) Inquire About The Dress Code

Many Fortune 500 corporations have seasonal dress codes, but not many know about them.

While many start‐ups and casual CEOs like Mark Zukerberg are unlikely to have strict rules, many companies have dress codes to take the guess work out of the summer season. If you are truly unsure about what is acceptable, ask your human resources department if a formal dress code exists. You will get brownie points just for asking, and always have a fall back if your manager ever questions your attire.

3) Splurge On Scarves

Buy at least two scarves: one in muted tones and the other in a vivacious splash of colours to brighten your day.

Then (gasp!) leave them at the office. Look for trendy muted shades like this season’s rose‐quartz and a bright coral to contrast. They will keep you comfortable when the air conditioning dips to Alaskan temperatures, and will also dress up your outfit for those on-the-fly big meetings.

Style Tips For Summer Office Attire

4) Bare If You Dare, But Always Carry Back‐Up

Bare shoulders are acceptable, but thin spaghetti‐type straps tip‐toe too close to beachwear. 

A tunic‐style tank top is the perfect compromise for the office, but keep a lightweight lapel jacket as an alternative to a blazer on hand to dress up your outfit. We love the dusty pink jacket from Zara as pictured above ($49.90).

5) Comfortable, Office‐Friendly Summer Footwear Does Exist

Flip‐flops are never ok unless you're a lifeguard at the beach. Full stop.

Try a trendy sandal like a block heeled mule (Mango, $69.99) for a colorful twist that still satisfies your need for a summer slip‐on while easily transitioning from the boardroom to post‐work drinks on a patio. You could also try the black ballerinas by Loeffler Randall ($250) for an everyday look that's comfortable, yet means business.

Images Courtesy: Mango; Zara; Loeffler Randall
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