“Before you leave the house, take a look in the mirror and take one thing off.” – COCO CHANEL
Another day, another dollar, another outfit. Some women love getting dressed for work. So much so that they have outfits picked out for the next day or even the whole week. Others dread it, putting it off until the morning right before they leave. This process can be quite time consuming as they may change their minds and outfits three or four times. Dressing for success is not a new concept. While some women may view it as a chore, others view it as a great way of expressing themselves. The number of women joining the corporate world has greatly increased in the past forty years. This means that clothing markets have a whole new audience of professional women in the workforce. Powerful women in large businesses recognize this as an important factor in the careers and even employ Image Consultants or Stylists to help them look their everyday best.
In this blog, I am going to give some basic tips for the budget conscious, every day business woman. The key is to be fashionable while remaining appropriate. Many times I’ve come across fashion websites that will categorize certain clothing as “Wear to Work”. I’m always astonished to see what some online retailers consider okay to wear to work. Remember, fashionable but appropriate.
Basic colors are a good place to start for the professional woman on a budget. Black, white, grey, brown, and navy are great places to start for a wardrobe. Why? Because these are good starting points for the colors of suits, be it a pant suit or a skirt suit. That way, later on you can mix with gem colored blouses and shirts such as red, purple, blue, green, yellow and pink. For a young professional women there’s a line that should not be crossed. You want to dress in today’s styles without making the mistakes of looking too flashy, immature, unprofessional or dressing as someone beyond your years.
Some women like suit jackets, but those may be too rigid in the certain environments. Others may opt for sweaters or casual blazers. Unfortunately women are judged on their appearance. It may garner the wrong kind of attention and could affect the perception of a serious business woman. There is a fine line ladies, and you must watch it carefully.
Clothing stores such as JC Penny, Macy’s, The Limited, Express, Banana Republic, The Loft, Ann Taylor, and New York & Company have great clothing options for young women. The Victoria Secret catalog has more than lingerie. They also offer work clothes and blouses. Though they may be on the pricey side, the purchase will be well worth it in the future when the piece lasts for years.
Singing up for the flash sales are great ways to find great deals on fashionable clothes. Flash sales are websites that offer very fashionable, very discounted pieces. Ideeli, Haute Look, and Gilt are flash sales that operate by acquiring excess or sample merchandise and selling it within hours at very steep discounts to their members. Those three online stores also have apps that alert you so you don’t miss out on any sales. For those of you who have special work occasions coming up, Rent the Runway is an alternate solution to wear clothes designed by today’s top designers.
If you walk around a lot like I do, flats can be a lifesaver. The same suggestions apply for shoes as they do for suits. Using basic, safe colors allow you to have a solid wardrobe to play around with. If you do not want to wear flats, you have plenty of options, such as high heels. Heels with the platform in the front are more comfortable to walk in than without because less pressure is placed on the toes. Finding the most comfortable, fashionable shoe is also key to any woman’s success.
Still having a hard time looking for fashion inspiration? Check out Pinterest, fashion magazines, and look at TV shows for the newest fashions that can help inspire your next purchase. Walking down the street can even give you inspiration.
YouTube is filled with videos of new fashion trends and women who give advice on makeup trends, hairstyles, and other tutorials. Typing in “everyday makeup tutorials” provides a long list of results for all kinds of people. They show you exactly how to apply your makeup, and can’t beat that.
It could be a chore to get ready in the morning, or it could be an adventure. Fashion is an expression of yourself and extension of who you are. With the right outfit you can define yourself and show others who you are.