If you want success, you have to dress for it! Most everyone is familiar with the saying, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” However, hardly anyone seems to follow that advice. People do judge other people by how they look and by what clothing they are wearing.
Quite often, it seems as if the “cover” of the book or our clothing is much more important than the book’s contents. This isn’t fair, of course; however, that’s just the way life is.
The reality is that you are going to be judged based upon what you are wearing.
Your boss, your colleagues, your clients and sometimes even your family and friends – all of these people and more will be looking at what you are wearing and making decisions about you based upon what they see.
Here are some suggestions on how to make sure that your clothing makes a great impression upon everyone who matters:
1. Don’t just buy clothes off the racks at the store – Often, those don’t fit everyone’s body types. Instead, purchase the clothing that fits you best; If you want to go the extra mile here, head to a tailor who can customize the shirts, pants, and jackets to your exact measurements. While you’re at it, have the tailor put cuffs on the pants. This makes the pants hang nicely and keeps them from climbing up your legs as you walk.
2. Wear mostly neutral or dark colors – The main parts of your outfit should be comprised of neutrals or darks; However, you can have a less common accent color as a small part of your outfit. For example: your tie or pocket square (if you wear one) could be an accent color.
3. No “super” flashy patterned ties – Yes, you can wear an accent color on your tie, perhaps with a mild, understated pattern; but, cutesy cartoon ties or loud patterns are not acceptable.
4. Wear dark socks and dark (preferably black) shoes – Brown shoes are acceptable as well with the right outfit, but make sure your socks match it. Your belt should match your shoes – and, yes, always wear a belt…no suspenders, ever.
5. Dress shirts should be white, off-white, or light blue – If you choose any other color, you will find it difficult to find a tie to match; therefore, you will typically wear the same tie every time you wear that shirt. People will notice after awhile, and it will become like a set uniform – you’ll become the Thursday – light-green-shirt-with-the-green-and-brown-tie guy.
Stripes and squares patterns are OK as well, but it should match your outfit and shouldn’t be too dominant.
6. If it’s not “Causal Tuesday” – avoid the Short-sleeved shirts – You don’t want to take off your sports or suit coat and be wearing a short-sleeved shirt. You aren’t going to get too hot in a long sleeved dress shirt – nearly everywhere has air-conditioning these days. However, even if you do get hot, rolled-up sleeves look better than a short-sleeved dress shirt.
7. All of your clothing needs to be neat, clean, and wrinkle-free – You could be wearing a high-end, expensive suit that has been custom-tailored – but, you won’t impress anyone if it has a stain on the pant leg or if the suit jacket looks as if it were slept in. Dry cleaning might be a little expensive sometimes – but it well worth it!