How do you stay stylish while working from home? That’s what the world has been asking itself since the outbreak of COVID. Thankfully, this is something many freelancers and psychologists have already answered as the “work-from-home” lifestyle has been on the up-and-up for quite some time.
So, let’s have a look at tips for how to stay stylish while working from home!
Dress for Success
Constantly wearing your pyjamas, onesie, or tracksuit, might be tempting at first, but how does it make you feel? Yes, it’s comfy, that’s for sure, but does it make you feel good?
If you stay in this kind of clothing day in and day out, you risk the following:
- Feeling like a slob.
- Feeling like there’s no set time for relaxation and play—it all blurs together with work.
- Feeling less motivated as you aren’t in your “work-gear.”
While you might want to take part in “PJ Fridays” to celebrate the end of the week, staying in your pyjamas all week, is generally not a good idea.
Because it sends your brain the signal it’s time to relax, but you have to be working. As such, your motivation will tank. You may also feel, after a long day of work, that there is no real difference between work day and relaxation time. Not only are you already at home, but you’re also already sporting the clothes that you usually change into after a long day.
Setting boundaries is important. This is, because it can be tempting to reply to emails and do other work-related tasks after hours. As well as, of course, perform non-work-related tasks during work hours!
Ask yourself this when getting dressed in the morning: do these clothes motivate me today? Do I feel like a success story wearing them? If not, change your clothes!
The Full Monty
If you feel that you need to wear business attire to be at your sharpest, then go for it! There’s nothing saying you can’t dress to kill, even if you’re working from home.
If, on the other hand, you feel like a more relaxed outfit, keep reading!
Leisurewear That Works
How can I stay stylish at home while still being super comfortable? That is the question.
The answer? Leisurewear.
Leisurewear is the perfect solution for those who crave comfort, but still want to stay stylish.
You find two trends in leisurewear: activewear and loungewear. Activewear is stylish athletic clothing. It was designed in response to people wanting to hit the pub after a yoga class, or walk, without looking out of place.
Loungewear is very similar, in that it was designed in response to people wanting to look stylish while lounging at home. In short, something a little bit more upscale than your average pyjamas or bathrobe.
As both activewear and loungewear have become incredibly popular in recent years, you’re spoiled for choice when picking your outfits.
These days, high streets brands such as H&M and Marks and Sparks also tend to offer both loungewear and leisurewear. You will even find that Next has a “work from home” range! Similarly, department stores like John Lewis, House of Fraser and Debenhams will have plenty of choice. And ASOS has a massive collections of both activewear and loungewear to choose from online. In fact, you can shop all the other stores online as well!
Of course, sports brands like Nike, Adidas and Puma also have activewear wear ranges—both for men and women.
Not into shopping? Want to keep it simple? Then choose a matching sweater and lounge pants, or use some other combo that makes you feel comfortable, but is a tad fancier than your pyjamas, or regular tracksuit. Something that at the very least allows you to change into your “work clothes” in the beginning of the day, and change out of them at the end of the day!
Colour Is Important
Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, believes that colour affects your mood. She told Today Magazine, “Generally, hotter shades like orange, red, yellow or reddish-purples are connected to activity and are really good to get you moving and get your adrenaline pumping. The cooler shades, like blues or blue-greens, are more relaxing. You need to choose what works best for your needs at a given time.”
In other words, if you need a mood boost, choose warm colours for the daytime and cooler ones for the night. Who knows? Maybe that’s the only dress code you need to feel happy with your wardrobe choices when working from home!
When working from home, you may prefer to be barefoot, or only wearing your socks. If you have cold feet, or simply like to wear shoes, invest in a pair of comfortable slippers or UGGs. You may even buy a pair of “indoor shoes” that you only wear when working, such as a pair of high heel slippers, or smart slippers, as opposed to your regular ones.
When You Feel Lazy (but Have Video Calls Scheduled)
If you have a day when you are feeling lazy, but still want to look somewhat decent, dress well from the middle and up. This is the part others can see when you’re on a video call and, usually, the part you see when looking yourself in a mirror!
The Optimal Rule: Do What Suits You
If you feel like having yellow Mondays, high-brow Tuesdays, PJ Wednesdays, masquerade Thursdays and glam Fridays, there’s nothing stopping you! You may have a video call, or two, to take into consideration during the week, but save from that, it’s only yourself you have to consider.
You want to feel good about yourself and be productive. Those are your two primary goals. And that’s really all you need to bear in mind when choosing your outfits.
Dawnn Karen, a fashion psychologist, told Bustle, “I have a theory in the fashion psychology field called ‘mood enhancement dress.’ Mood enhancement dress is dressing to optimise your mood. So when you desire to get out of a funk, dressing up or practicing mood enhancement dress would be proven most beneficial.” And that pretty much sums it up!
We also spoke to Anoushka from Anoushka Loves, who told us: "Working with a no holds barred dress code certainly played a key part in how I felt both mentally and physically whilst at home. I was wearing my cosy clothes which I'd save for weekends during the week, and because of this, I felt like my standards were slipping in how I approached my work tasks. I always wore some form of smart casual attire for work even with a relaxed dress code so I created a capsule wardrobe of work clothes that were easy to rotate whilst still looking smart and gave me the comfort I needed. A neutral colour palette made up of white t-shirts, black leggings or joggers, a variety of cardigans or wraparounds, some very comfortable shearling slippers, and even a funky hoody for my own version of dress down Friday. Adding in a tinted moisturiser and mascara also made a huge difference to my productivity as I felt I had a reason to wear the makeup, however minimal it was."
Lozza from Girly Gabble also touched on the topic of feeling good about yourself. She told us: “Make some time each morning to do your hair and your everyday make up.
"Even if you won’t be seeing anyone that day, I find that you feel your best when you look your best. I also feel that making time for yourself to do this is a great form of self-care and it makes me want to complete the rest of my look. Feeling good can also make you be more productive as you feel confident and energised.”
What should you wear when working from home? In short, dress in a manner that makes you feel good and focused. You want to feel switched on, not just comfortable.