How Tight Should Your Work Dress Be?

This is a question that I read about all the time and I feel a lot of women ask when joining Corporate America.  Let’s face it, if you are like me, I’m sure you’d like to be fashionable when going to work.  But we should remember to remain fashionably conservative =)!

Unfortunately, there isn’t a clear cut answer to this question.  It depends on the context: the length of the dress, the cut of the dress, and the woman wearing the dress.  The same dress won’t fit the same way on every woman.  I’ll never forget this.  One day, I wore a cream, ruched, Ann Taylor dress to work with one of my colleagues.  And, the dress looked completely different on her than on me.  I am curvier than she is, and as a result, the dress looked ‘tighter’ on me.  To downplay the fact that the dress looked tighter and accentuated my hips and derrière, I just wore a blazer.

So when deciding if the dress is work appropriate or not, ask yourself the following questions?

  • Is the dress fitting like spandex leggings? If yes, get a bigger size.
  • What is your body shape?  Take that into consideration.  If you are curvier, downplay the dress by wearing a long sweater or blazer.
  • How tall are you?  The taller you are, the more conscious you should be about the length of the dress.
  • Can you bend down comfortably when wearing without fear of tearing or ripping the dress?  If not, don’t wear the dress to work.
  • Most importantly, how do you feel wearing the dress?  Comfort is key.  After all, you are the one that has to wear it all day.

I found this example of Jennifer Lopez and Hilary Duff wearing the same dress.  The dress looks more conservative on Hilary Duff, mostly because of the difference in their body shape and height.

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