Not every situation is easy to dress for. Some (job interviews for example) prove more frustrating than others. Rather than stand in front of your closet for what feels like hours, read through our ultimate get-ready guide and style tips for any style scenario.
The cocktail party
The little black dress, or LBD, is your number one, no-fail outfit for a cocktail party. Everyone should have a little black cocktail dress they feel good in. The dress should be a sexy, yet flattering length which will depend on your height. Someone petite should avoid dresses that cut them off at the knees and instead choose a hemline that falls about an inch above the knee. Someone taller can get away with more variety, but just above the knee or mid-calf dresses are always classics.
Make sure your go-to LBD has about five pounds of “wiggle room” for those days you don’t feel as toned as you’d like or if there happens to be a buffet table at the party you’re at. Plus, we all go up a few pounds around holiday time, so it’s best to leave yourself room to breathe in any all-purpose cocktail frock.
The job interview
You can’t go wrong with a well-tailored, crisp-collared white shirt. It will always ensure you look polished and well put-together. You can go affordable (H&M, Zara) or more upscale (Pink Tartan, Jill Sander), but the result will be the same — professional and sophisticated without trying too hard. Pair your white shirt with a narrow black pant and fitted blazer, and the look is complete — sans headache from stressing about what to wear.
Tucking in your shirt for an interview is also an absolute must so you look as neat as possible. We also suggest you avoid being overly feminine. This means lay off anything frilly, lacy or too pink. A job interview also isn’t the place to strut your fashion-forward sense of style. Keep it simple and polished and you’ll do fine.
The important business meeting
Don’t take business casual too far if you’re trying to close a deal. A proper business suit, something tailored and that fits you properly (not too tight and not hanging off of you) will always do the trick. Keep your accessories muted and no logos on any pieces of clothing, please.
This is another situation where your well-tailored white shirt will come in handy. The neckline is always flattering without being too feminine, and it will give you a professional, tasteful look. Pair it either with a chic business suit in basic black or charcoal gray, or add a black pencil skirt, black pumps and a fitted blazer.
The first date
To start with, dress like you want to be there. This means no ripped jeans, leggings or sweat pants. But alternatively, don’t over-sex your outfit, and avoid too much cleavage. You want an outfit that lands somewhere in the middle.
For an elegant, go-anywhere outfit, pair narrow black pants with a black turtleneck, ballet flats and a fitted denim jacket. Grab a mid-size, Hermes-style Birkin bag and you’ve got a casual, yet stylish outfit that exudes confidence. Above all, you want to be comfortable on a first date. The last thing you want to be worrying about is your choice of outfit, so it’s best to stick with flattering, yet simple attire.
Meeting the future in-laws
He wants you to meet his parents for the first time and you have no idea what to wear. The key: Be yourself but err on the side of conservative. For this, or any other stress-inducing meeting that doesn’t involve work or the office, strike a balance between professional and casual-chic. Try a narrow black pant, paired with your crisp white shirt, but instead of going with a blazer, choose a fitted cardigan in a pretty pastel.
A splash of color will help brighten you up, without going over the top. Complete the outfit with round-toe flats or a low-heeled pump and a trench coat. You’ll look naturally stylish and pulled-together, but also be comfortable, which helps tremendously in high-pressure situations.