Chances are, if you’ve landed a new job, you’re ready to dress to impress. That calls for a trip to the department store. Even though your office may not have an official dress code, or it hasn’t been updated for years, there are still office outfit no-nos to avoid. Remember, to act the part, you first have to look the part, and your wardrobe is a sign of your professionalism and confidence. Luckily, psychologists have got your back, as they reveal what 9-to-5 style will help you climb up the corporate ladder in Business Insider’s “What Your Clothes Say About You” video.
To effectively project a positive image at work, just stick to the classics. Women, stick to a black dress — not your LBD — or a blazer, and adorn your feet with sensible pumps. Men, it’s as simple as wearing a suit and tie to exude determination and confidence. Clinical psychologist, Dr. Jennifer Baumgartner refers to this phenomenon as the “psychology of dress,” in her book You Are What You Wear: What Your Clothes Reveal About You.
Men, although a suit and tie can do the trick, getting your suits tailored will take it one step further. A 1996 study conducted by Neil Howlett, suggests tailored suits give off a more confident and successful impression. They also project a nice appearance compared to ones off the rack.
A 2011 study, also conducted by Howlett, found women in position of power are heavily judged based on what they wear. Women who dress in proactive clothing are judged less favorably compared to those in conservative clothing. “Women generally have a wider choice of dress style for work than men, but still have to maintain an identity that balances professionalism with attractiveness and the skirt suit may achieve that balance without appearing provocative,” wrote the authors.
When it comes to color hues, we can easily be caught in the middle of choosing light or dark tones. Fashion designer Denise Ng suggests lighter tones are less intimidating and help perceive people as more friendly, Business Insider reported. To give off a more authoritative and confident vibe, she suggests opting for darker tones.
The color blue has long been associated with knowledge, power, integrity, and seriousness. It evokes a sense of calmness while stimulating creativity. In a 2009 study, Dr. Juliet Zhu found the color blue can have this same effect on your coworkers as well as when you wear it. When in doubt, go for blue.
These five clothing tips will help you dress for success and be perceived as more confident in the workplace.
To view the complete video, click here.