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A Few Words on Business-Casual


Words to Live By

Be casual

Who doesn’t want to make a good impression at work? Clothes can make a good (or bad) impression not only on the women we meet but everyone else.

There are many business owners who are convinced that clothes are a determining factor in their success. They dress great five days a week and they expect the same thing from their employees.

Think about it: When was the last time you saw a representative of a successful company who was dressed like a douche bag?

Here’s another thing to think about: most franchises (McDonalds, KFC, Starbucks, you name it) always dress all their employees in uniforms (even if all they have to do is take orders).

Yes, image is crucial in business and selling.

The problem is, unless the company you work for has their own uniform, it’s left to you to decide what to wear. This is where the fun part starts.

What to Wear

I can’t possibly guess what type of job you have. But what I can do is give you a starting point to dressing like a professional. That starting point is business-casual.

Business-casual is all about feeling great and projecting a professional image at the same time. Business casual is not a uniform, it’s a dress code. It has loose rules and it focuses on individuality and showing your best physical traits, while not going over certain borders.

Here are the clothing items you should be thinking of wearing:

Khakis or chinos
Dress shirts

These are at the basics. Jeans are not really accepted so stay away from them. Go for a nice pair of khakis (no pleats, please) or chinos. You pick the color (as long as it’s not a bright color such as yellow, red etc.) and make sure it matches the rest of your outfit.

As you can see, business casual is not really about the suit BUT… if you’re in a very important function, you might want to stick to the suit and leave cardigans for when you know you don’t have business meetings.

A Word on Dress Shirts

Keep it casual

Unless it’s really hot outside, try to go for long-sleeved shirts. They’re more professional. And if you’re going to wear short sleeve, stay away from the tie. The combination of a short sleeved dress shirt and tie is considered very unbalanced.

A Word on Shoes

You probably know that in business attire, the shoes and the belt should match. But what you may not know is that you can take this a step further. Try and complement the shoes with the rest of your outfit.

For instance, if you’re wearing grey pants, (or navy blue), go for a pair of brogue shoes. Too many men wear black. By wearing brown you can differentiate yourself from other men in a very subtle way.


Depending on the temperature outside, you can choose to wear a cardigan over your dress shirt. If that’s the case, you need to pay extra attention to how you match it with the rest of your outfit.

Ideally you want to make a contrast between the cardigan and the shirt. At the same time, you should pay attention to the rest of your attire (your pants and shoes). Any two items on you should either match or complement each-other.

So go ahead and play with colors and shades. Experimenting is the only way you’ll create for yourself that professional image that everyone will admire (and increase the chances of doing business with you or buy from you).

For more from George “The Transformer” Laz?r, head over to his blog.

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About George Lazar

A geek in high-school and college, George became hooked on men's style because he saw it's amazing effects. After a few years of changing every aspect of his clothing and reading everything there is to know about the topic, he now looks amazing. He published his first book about men's style and was invited on TV to show it.

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