What you wear to work depends to some extent on the kind of work you do and the organization you work for. If there is a culture of formal or casual wear, you will have to dress accordingly. For example, in the hotel industry, doing a front office or public relations job, you may have to be formally attired in a sari and cannot wear your favourite blue jeans. Indeed, there are a few aspects to be kept in mind about what to wear to work.
Balance and moderation are two qualities to strive for. This means that your clothes should be right for the place and occasion. Secondly, your clothes should not be such that attract attention. In some countries of the West, women are expected to wear formal clothes like a suit, consisting of skirt or trousers with a matching coat, the way men dress. The colours are also subtle, like black, beige, browns, navy blue and gray. These norms are followed so that what one wears blends with what everyone else is wearing. In India, we may not dress in suits, but you can keep this principle in mind that your clothes do not attract too much attention. For example, if you wear a low neckline or a tight, figure-hugging T-shirt, you are bound to attract attention for the wrong reasons and certainly not for your work efficiency. The working woman should keep a few important aspects in mind: First of all, personal freshness and cleanliness are extremely important. Needless to say, you should bathe daily and apply a deodorant or cologne. You also need to pay attention to details like hair removal, especially if you wear sleeveless tops. This is an absolute must.
Be discreet about your clothes, avoiding low necklines, tight pants (especially if you are bottom heavy), or tight T-shirts and tops, or transparent see-through fabrics. Long tops should be fine with jeans and pants. Chunnis and saris should be worn in a way that they do not come in your way. Pin them up at the shoulders. If you have to keep fussing all the time to settle your clothes, it detracts from personal efficiency, but disturbs others. Avoid loud and large prints. One-coloured outfits are best for work. You can always set them off with printed chunnis or scarf. Well tailored clothes, with simple cuts and designs would be appropriate. Choose wrinkle-free fabrics, to maintain your look right through a hard day’s work. Comfort is important, so you must wear what you feel comfortable in. But avoid very loose clothes. These make you look as if you are lounging at home and do not give you that efficient look.
Avoid too much jewelry. Jangling bangles, long dangling earrings are most unsuitable. A pearl chain with matching pearl ear tops would be ideal. Pearls give the picture of cool efficiency and sophistication. Or, you can wear a string of matching beads. Avoid long chains around the neck. An elegant watch is just the right accessory. Avoid very high heels at work. Here too, you should keep the comfort factor in mind. If your feet and back ache, you can hardly pay attention to your work. Also, they attract too much attention. Wear low-heeled and sensible shoes. They can look smart and elegant, especially if you co-ordinate them with your clothes. Get shoes in neutral colours like black, brown, beige, cream and gray.