What Not to Wear at the Office This Spring and Summer


For most of us, warmer weather means shorts, sundresses, tank tops, and bikinis to beat the heat. But as the weather gets warmer, how are you supposed to cope with sweltering temperatures within the four walls of your office?

While some companies may allow business casual attire once a week on Friday, it turns out that a large majority of young professionals don’t know the meaning of a “business casual.”

If you want to avoid an embarrassing reprimand from your boss this spring and summer, it’s important to put a little thought into your warm weather wardrobe to find out whether or not it’s suitable for the office.

Office Attire DON’TS for Warmer Weather

When in doubt, steer clear of the following outfits when dressing for a professional office environment this spring and summer:

  1. Shorts. Unless you’ve been specifically instructed to wear shorts by your employer (if they happen to be part of your uniform), don’t walk through the doors. Consider slacks or a knee-length skirts instead.No matter how warm the weather may be, and no matter how stylish your shorts may look, shorts are almost never acceptable as office attire for men or women.
  2. Flip-flops. Fancy flip-flops and sandals are acceptable to wear at the office. However, noisy flip-flops that you wear to the beach are not.Not only is the “flopping” annoying, but if they are the same shoes you wore to the beach or pool, there is a big chance that they stink. You don’t want to be known as the “smelly foot” coworker.
  3. Jeans. Just because it’s summertime doesn’t mean it’s OK to wear jeans to the office. Even if your employer allows for Casual Friday, make sure to check specific requirements to see whether or not denim or ripped jeans are allowed.
  4. Tank tops. Men shouldn’t wear sleeveless shirts under any circumstance in the office. Likewise, women should only wear professionally cut sleeveless blouses that button above any visible cleavage; spaghetti strap tank tops and halter tops should be avoided.
  5. Belly-baring tops. Ladies should avoid any tops that show several inches of their midsection. To stay on the side of caution, make sure that your top covers your midriff fully – even when you lift your hands above your head. Better safe than sorry!

If you’re lucky enough to work at an office with Casual Friday, make sure you understand the casual dress code inside and out before trying out any questionable summer outfits. You want to dress to impress; not dress to standout.