Your Last Semester: Transitioning Your Style from College to the Workplace

November 27, 2016

Fellas, let’s be honest.  College fashion isn’t really about style at all.  In fact, it’s better known as quite the opposite.  After four years of all-night cram sessions, 8 a.m. classes and multi-course workloads, your personal style was likely the least of your concerns.  But as you prepare to enter the workforce, you have to start taking your appearance seriously.

Recycle & Reuse

When you’re building a professional wardrobe from scratch, it’s important to buy pieces you can use time and time again.  Instead of statement items, opt for garments like a charcoal suit, white woven dress shirts and brown oxford shoes.  You need pieces in your closet that you can wear in multiple scenarios.

Pay Attention to Fit

You’ve become accustomed to spending most of your week in an XXL hoodie and sweats.  But now you have to start caring.  Regardless of how much you can afford to spend on your new looks, fit is everything. It’s the difference between sabotaging a luxury purchase and elevating a cheap one.  As a general rule, avoid classic fits in both shirts and pants.  They tend to be unnecessarily baggy and sloppy.

Casual Friday Isn’t What You Think

The college definition of casual and the professional one are worlds apart.  At best, casual Friday in the workplace means you can forgo the tie.  You might even be able to get away with a dark indigo selvedge jean.  But you can forget about your beloved hoodies, t-shirts and sneakers.

While the professional landscape has certainly changed over the years, there’s still a base level expectation of presentation.  With your looks, it’s important to prove to your new boss that you’re ready for the new adult life that lies ahead of you.