The perception of the woman executive has evolved in the best of ways, if you ask me. Gone are the days of women dressing like men to work in powerful positions. Women are not dressing more feminine and fashionable in executive roles and still are getting the job done, well, very well.
In this new era of business and start-up culture, your dress code to work can go from t-shirts and jeans or a blazer, blouse and tailored slacks. But there is always a dress code that is enforced in professional settings, whether is more casual or professional.
There are some things that you should keep in mind when building your professional wardrobe to make sure you are dressing your best for success. But don’t fret because, it’s not a 50 page manual and some things you need to keep in mind applies to when curating your wardrobe.
Power dressing has been around for ages, but it looks like it is on the rise to make a comeback according to Forbes. What is power dressing exactly? Power dressing is a fashion style that enables women to establish their authority in a professional and political environment dominated by men.
For an executive woman, power dressing can be very beneficial. An executive woman needs to walk into the board confident letting everyone in the room know she belongs there and she means business.
Power dressing is not about wearing an “uniform” nowadays. It’s more about wearing clothes you feel the most confident in and reflects where you are and the path you are on in a stylish way.
Being a power dressing woman consists more than dressing as an authority. Because you can think you’re dressed like an authority and still look a hot mess or not come off powerful at all.
So I want to share a few things to keep in mind when you are power dressing.
Wear clothes that reflect who you are
Do not be out here in these professional streets dressing as a fraud. You can wear clothing that is professional that also reflects your personality. You do not have to be “beige” in the workplace anymore, unless your place of work requires it.
Also, if there are designers or labels that align with your personal beliefs or values, if possible invest in those pieces. Being conscious about the clothing you invest in and what they represent definitely shows you have power not only in your professional life but also fashion wise. There is power knowing the story behind your clothing and what they represent.
Fit is it
Wearing clothes that fit you is extremely important. If you truly want to master power dressing, you need to befriend a tailor ASAP. A tailor can help make sure that all your clothing fits you like a glove and give your garments a more custom feel. Also dressing for your body type is extremely important and you can read more about that in a blog post I wrote here.
Adjusting and pulling at clothes all day in work environments can be annoying and distracting. You do not want to be presenting at a board meeting tugging at your clothes the whole time. Not a good look in professional setting.
It’s all about quality
Do not go the cheap route when purchasing pieces for your professional wardrobe. You should not have to purchase pieces every couple of months due to wear and tear. Invest in pieces that you can mix and match season to season with the plan of them lasting forever.
Investing in suitable pieces saves you time with building your professional wardrobe due to them lasting longer than less expensive options. You should invest quality pieces that are signature to you and that make you feel like a boss babe every day.
If you are wearing quality pieces and not properly groomed, it will cancel the quality pieces out. Of course you want to be clean, but also you want your clothes ironed or pressed. Walking around in wrinkled clothing is not the move, especially in professional environments.
Dress for the job you have
Dress within the dress code at your place of employment and your job role. Depending on your job, you may have to wear pieces that are more business formal, for example, a lawyer, but if you work as an executive at Vogue, then of course you would dress more fashionably or experiment with more trends.
It would be rude of me to provide you all of this information without showing you some examples which are always my favorite part. Check out below some examples of how a stylish executive should dress in the workplace.
Keeping simple and chic with this look here. If you work for a job with a more traditional wardrobe, you can wear something like this. This look screams powerful woman who has a great since of style.
Earth tones works in the professional settings as well. This look here is kinda of monochromatic which I like to add interest to this look. Just because you are dressed professionally does not mean you have to be boring.
The Power Dress
Every executive woman needs a “Power Dress” in their arsenal. What is more powerful than a stylish woman wearing a dress with a high level position? Back in the day, woman in high level positions wearing dresses were frowned upon, but in the 21st century, they encourage a woman rocking a dress that is covering her up in all the right places. You do not have to dress like “one of the boys” to be respected.
Black is the new Black
This look would work well for an executive working at Vogue, Loreal or any job that is less traditional. So beauty, fashion, and even music executives could rock this look and still exude the power to get the damn job done.
Lady in Blue
If you have a position where you need to gain trust, why not look cute and fabulous in blue to do so. This is another look that would be great in a less traditional environment, but even in a traditional environment, you may get away with this as well.
Plaid gets the job done
Take this look from day to night with ease. I love a look that you can wear to work and also for a date after to work. I added the touch of brown in with the bag to tie in the brown in the earrings. The bag is patterned as well, but mixing patterns is not against the law, and how could it be when it looks this good.
Lace in the office space
You can wear lace to work, and this look here proves it. Wearing fabrics that embrace your feminity to work is perfectly fine, as long as you are not showing too much skin when doing so. I would certainly rock this to work to break up the monotony of a boring corporate office culture. The lace does not make you look any less powerful.
Turn up at work in a skirt
Any woman wearing a look like this is going to own the room and maybe everyone in it, lol. Some may frown on patent leather at work, but not me. You can still be professional and exude power with some boots like these here. This look is very simple with a touch of edge in the most fashionable way.
This is such a classy look. I imagine a very well put together fashionable woman wearing this. This woman is about her business and looking good while doing so. The blazer adds some “umph” to this look to make it not so boring, while remaining professional and powerful looking.
Buffy the 9-5 Slayer
This look is the perfect mixer of power and feminine elegance. Traditional jobs may only be able to get away with a look like this on casual Friday but the beauty, fashion and entertainment executives could easily wear this Monday-Thursday without skipping a beat on any of their job responsibilities and showing their employees who’s boss.
There you have it boss babes. 10 whole looks you can use as inspiration for you own office slay. You no longer have to dress so “manish” at the office. You can show your feminine side through your clothing and still command the respect you deserve as the powerful, confident and stylish boss babe you are. All that I ask is that when you are curating your outfits and playing dress up, to have fun while doing so.
If sure where to start with curating your professional wardrobe, click this link here to download my free guide that will show you the 10 must haves you need to build your professional wardrobe to get you started.