For women, professional dress is often a topic that causes a lot of confusion.   For our Back to Business Women’s Conference, we always suggest that attendees dress as if you were going to an interview – use it as a practice run so that when you get that interview you aren’t suiting up for the first time in a long time.  Our motto is: keep it simple and err on the conservative side.


Professional Business Attire

Here are a few suggestions for what constitutes appropriate business attire –

  • You can’t go wrong with a black suit and a light-colored blouse.  Both pantsuits and skirts are fine, just make sure the skirt is not too short.  A skirt that ends at your knee looks both stylish and professional.  You shouldn’t have to spend a lot of money for a basic black suit.
  • A pair of solid-colored pants or a skirt with a blouse works well also.  Avoid loud patterns and low-cut necklines. If you’re not going to be wearing a suit to work once you get that job, don’t invest in a suit now. Instead, go with a nice-looking pair of dark pants or a skirt and blouse that fit well.  Go for tailored pants, avoid both tight-fitting and flowing styles.
    • Everything should be clean and well-pressed.
    • Keep the jewelry simple.
    • Much has been written about the impression that shoes make during job interviews – they don’t have to be fancy, but they do need to look polished, not worn.
  • Avoid trendy looks and go for more of a classic style.  You don’t have to be boring, but a well-tailored, professional look says a lot of positive things about you before you even open your mouth to wow a potential employer.  First impressions count for a lot, so make a great one!


Business Casual Attire

And here’s a word about “business casual” because this is a phrase that often leaves people wondering what exactly they should wear:

Business casual should be more business and less casual!  My advice is that while a full suit is not required, you should wear either a skirt or suit pants and a blouse.   You’ll still want to make a businesslike impression.


Now go put your best look forward and make a great first impression!

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