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The morning routine is different in 2021. While most of us have had to make a few significant changes to our routines, the changes are especially apparent for those of us who are working from home. If you work from home, how often has your morning routine looked like this: wake up, roll out of bed, grab your most comfortable sweatpants, and hop online for a morning Zoom call?
Don’t worry. We’ve all been there, especially since the beginning of the pandemic. After all, one of the perks of telecommuting is that no one really knows what your whole outfit looks like. However, if these mornings are happening more often than not, it’s high time to reevaluate your morning routine and put more consideration into what to wear when you work from home.
Why Dress Up to Stay Home?
We’ve all heard the saying, “when you look good, you feel good.” Within the context of the work environment, the concept is a more apt “when you dress better, you work better.” Due to this perception, most people who work in a formal business setting are conditioned to associate nice clothes with the office and comfortable clothes with lounging and relaxing. As a result, there are even people who change from suits or dresses into sweatpants and well-worn t-shirts as soon as they walk in the front door of their home after a long day of work. However, when the lockdown began, so did the blurring of the lines between workers’ personal and professional lives.
When your workspace is next to (or in) your bedroom, it can be tempting to skip the preparation for your day you once practiced every morning. However, research has shown that this isn’t healthy for your self-image or productivity. A study conducted by Joy V. Peluchette and Katherine Karl for Human Resource Development Quarterly found that the clothes you wear can have a direct impact on your productivity. When workers dress in formal business wear, they report increased feelings of competency, authority, and trustworthiness. So, if you’re ready to give yourself a confidence and productivity boost, shirk the sweats and form a clear distinction between work and personal hours.
Staying Stylish While Staying Home
Your Zoom looks don’t just affect your perception of yourself. In fact, continuing to “dress for success” while in quarantine or working from home can help others view you as more put together. While you should always prepare thoroughly for a constructive Zoom meeting—especially if the meeting involves company higher-ups or important clients—don’t neglect the impact your look can have on your perceived preparedness.
Unfortunately, after a year stuck inside, your old work wardrobe may not speak to you anymore. 2020 was quite the transformative time for many, leading people to learn more about their own style. As you make the transition from sweats to more professional Zoom attire, we’d love to help you find your unique approach to a polished work look.
Your Spring Remote Work Look Book
Shopping in person may be a distant memory for those of us under quarantine, but not being able to leave the house doesn’t mean you can’t snag the top fashion trends of this coming season. If you’re looking to up your Zoom game, you should try out some of these warm-weather-friendly, working from home fashion trends for every type of company culture:
Casual Work Clothes
For remote employees of companies with a culture that allowed casual clothing at the office, it’s a good idea to maintain that style from home to fit the work climate your superiors have crafted. Fortunately, casual can still be classy. In this case, you may want to invest in a set of well-fitting t-shirts in a variety of different colors. These shirts, especially the classic “plain white tee,” are paired easily with a casual denim blazer or unbuttoned collared shirt for a quick, easy and casual, yet put-together look.
Be sure to select breathable materials like 100% cotton to keep you comfortable during long hours at your desk. Some blazers are even lined with satin or fully crafted from materials that feel like your comfortable sweats but look stylish. You can even invest in a good quality pair of jeggings (jean leggings) as an easy transition away from yoga pants or pajamas without sacrificing any of the comfort.
How cute is this Milumia Women’s open front blazer? We’d rock this with a t-shirt for a Zoom meeting for sure. You could easily dress it up with a nice pair of pants and heels for a meeting and it’s Chic enough for after work drinks…. You know, for when we can all go to meetings and happy hour again.
Business Casual Looks
If your workplace required business casual attire, you may have had trouble figuring out exactly what that meant at the office, let alone in your home. Fortunately, there are specific trends that help you wear this essential line between casual and formal. Start by purchasing a few light-weight, looser-knit sweaters and cardigans in soft materials. These will keep you as cozy as any sweatshirt but provide an air of professionalism. It’s worthwhile to shop around for layers in both neutral and bold colors, helping add some interest to your standard white button-down. 2020 may have been a big year for neon colors, but 2021 is proving to be all about pastels and sorbets.
Another trend that’s experienced a major resurgence in recent years is wearing high-waisted, fitted pants with cropped or baggy sweaters. If you’re feeling bold, you can even try the French tuck popularized by fashion designer Tan France. This style is tucked in the front and long in the back, not unlike the mullets that are making their way back into the alternative fashion scene.
This v neck cashmere sweater comes in several colors and it looks really cute with a French tuck as shown on the model:
Formal Business Attire
Those of us in positions that require formal business attire may experience the most cognitive dissonance when it comes to the blending of home and office. Many employees accustomed to donning a suit or skirt every day are now faced with the conundrum of what to wear during frequent video conferences. Fortunately, work-from-home business attire doesn’t have to be uncomfortable or traditional for people to take you seriously.
If you’re used to wearing a full pant or skirt suit, there’s plenty of room to play with your look while remaining within the bounds of formal business attire. Linen suits are a great solution to add comfort to a professional silhouette. Also, consider adding some color and patterns to your wardrobe. Suits in floral, plaid, or bright and unusual colors are making their way down the runway, both in the world of men’s and women’s fashion. Similarly, sheath dresses in muted colors pair excellently with any formal outerwear, and many jumpsuits come in high-end materials that exude elegance and simplicity.
Slay them with this sexy, two-piece casual but elegant business suit, shown here in floral light blue, but they have several other styles as well.
The Importance of Accessorizing
Now that you’ve got an idea of what to wear to zoom meetings, you still may not feel ready to take on your next video conferencing call with renewed vigor. In fact, many women feel their outfit isn’t complete without certain extra touches. This highlights the importance of finding the shoes, jewelry, and other accessories you need to look your best, even from your home office.
Many remote workers have simplified their morning routines, skipping extra steps and accessories that may feel unnecessary, especially on days without any video conference calls. However, if wearing makeup, styling your hair, or selecting jewelry that matches your outfit helps you feel good about yourself, reclaim your ritual and watch your spirits lift with each passing day. For many workers, that includes choosing a good pair of shoes that easily translates from work to home. We suggest purchasing a few new pairs of shoes you wear only in the house, such as boat shoes or mules that you can slip right on.
We love these Twisted X Women’s Boat Shoes that come in a ton of different colors and styles.
Or, for something a little more affordable, these comfy leather loafers are not only cute, but at only $20.00, super affordable as well!
Proper Work Attire Helps You Keep a Healthy Work/Life Balance
At the end of the day, there is no feeling better than removing your work attire and throwing on your most-loved lounge clothes. Don’t strip yourself of that experience just because you’re not traveling to the office. Getting ready in the morning and changing at the end of a long day is a recipe for success when it comes to striking a work/life balance, especially when working remotely. By following the above trends, you can create work from home outfits that feel just as professional and polished as you look.