For many of us working from home has become the “new normal”. When working from home it can be difficult to choose attire which strikes the right balance between keeping professional and comfortable.
Top designer Laurent Guinci, founder of Lolo creative, has worked on numerous high-profile projects (from Harry Potter to James Bond) so he knows exactly how to dress someone to make them feel and look the part. Here are his top 6 work from home tips…
Keep to your usual routine
When working from home it can sometimes be hard to maintain enthusiasm for work. That’s why it’s important to maintain your regular morning routine to help kick off a productive day. Don’t give in to those extra hours of sleep, get up at the same time you normally would have for work (or earlier if you can) leaving enough time to prepare yourself for the day.
Get into work mode
Ditch your PJ bottoms. Sure, they’re comfortable but it can make you feel sluggish. I only wear them for a relaxed day on the sofa catching up on Netflix with my iPad. You wouldn’t turn up to the office in your pyjamas, so don’t do it at home. If I need to work from home I get fully dressed for work, with proper trousers (except for shoes as I have a “no shoe” policy at home). I am obviously not saying that you should wear a suit or be absolutely dolled up, but casual attire is nice and more presentable. It’s all about mind set – dress properly and you’ll be in the zone ready to go into action!
Dress for you
Looking good can truly make you feel good (+ there’s proven psychology around this). So, wear something you look nice in and that makes you feel confident. Think about colours and shapes that suit you – I would never wear something just because it’s fashionable if it doesn’t look good on me. Also, you’re at home at the end of the day you do not need to overdo it, a skirt is probably not necessary, trousers will be more comfortable anyway. Guys, bear in mind, I still believe that pairing fitted jeans and a T-shirt is one of the sexiest combos. You honestly don’t have to try hard and it doesn’t have to cost a fortune either, my favourite white T-shirt is from H&M in premium cotton and only costs £12.
Be selective with fabric
If you want to stay comfy look at the labels, favour a more natural fibre (apart from linen I hate it with a vengeance it creases and looks messy) and avoid unbreathable synthetic fabrics like polyester. Although some tops do need a bit of polyester in them to keep the colour, it’s fine as long as it’s not 100%. Go for fabrics mixing cotton and elastane, which allow fitted shirts to have a bit of a stretch. And if you still have to wear a blazer, find one in jersey fabric. Uniqlo has some great ones. They are comfy and look professional enough without being too strict. Talking about blazers, I would go for softer colours. If you go for a white blouse, a nice marl grey blazer could look very nice. I feel it should always be darker than your top, or the same colour.
Think head to waist
The best thing is that you’ll be behind your computer, on your Zoom meetings no one will even see your bottom half, so you do not have to wear suit trousers. Therefore, you can make more effort with your top half and opt for something more relaxed on the bottom half. However, I’d still avoid joggers and instead invest in a pair of jeans you feel good in. Nowadays, they do great denim fabrics with lycra, which is really handy for comfort. That said, you now also find some really nicely cut classy trousers (Uniqlo again) with stretch in it. They look the part and are super comfortable.
Make the right impression
Important virtual meeting? Say no to a T-shirt! Opt for a shirt, a nice top or a really lovely polo shirt. I’d also probably avoid loud colours or prints. A fine knit jumper works well too. It’s cool, it’s modern, it’s sexy. Go for a navy or a dark blue colour. Something classic. Be well groomed, keep your beard trimmed or clean shaven and if you want to wear makeup keep it nice and soft you don’t want to look like you’re about to go clubbing. Make sure your hair is done too, no wet hair or bed hair.
You’re selling an image; this is especially important if you haven’t met them before and this is the first impression they have of you. Me and my team always make sure we look the part when we meet clients, no matter the weather (Universal in Orlando for example). Nicely fitted trousers, a beautiful light cotton knit polo shirt and impeccable shoes will do the trick. Even though on Zoom they may not necessarily see the full outfit. It’s all about yourself knowing and it will empower you and give you more confidence trust me.
Laurent Guinci is the founder of Lolo Creative