Business Casual For Those Who Hate Business Casual

YAY! A new blog post! I was so excited to finally have the time to sit down and write this post for you guys. I’m doin’ the best I can to make sure I serve up super fresh content on a somewhat regular basis, so let’s get back to your weekly blog programming.

For today’s post, I wanted to focus on something that really annoys me: business casual. Let me explain. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked at invitations or employee handbooks and seen the words “business casual” under the dress code and been like, “WTF is business casual?!


Pardon my language, but seriously, who came up with business casual anyway! I don’t know why it annoys me so much. It probably has something to do with the fact that people are always asking me what they should wear in their business casual office setting. But, I don’t work in an office — and even when I did, I didn’t follow the dress code. Sorry not sorry.

Business casual is just as confusing to me as I’m sure it is to everyone else, but I’m going to share my take on it anyway! In all honesty, when it comes to dressing in a business casual setting, use your best discretion. You know your employer better than I do, so if you think something’s not appropriate to wear, you’re probably right.

Alright, done rambling — let’s get started!


If I worked in a business casual setting, this would be the outfit I would use as the foundation for building a work appropriate wardrobe. These wide-leg trousers are the perfect crop to show off booties or mules -— plus the black and white plaid coordinates with so many colors and textures.


I haven’t worn this silk tank too often, but I love pairing it with these trousers. It pulls out the slight pink detailing that runs throughout the pattern. The short sleeve sweater was a last-minute addition to this outfit that I was really surprised at how well it pulled it all together!

Of course, you could pair a silk or satin cami with a cardigan or tweed jacket for a work day, but I chose not to for today’s look. I’ve worn these pants with a camel-colored suede cardigan before and it still looked elevated, so also a great option!


I jazzed up this outfit with the hat and faux fur coat, but maybe for your work setting you would omit those two items entirely. Like I said, it’s completely up to your own discretion because you know your employer better than anyone else.

I want to take a second to point out that if you are shopping for business casual clothes, you don’t have to place yourself within the confines of stores that sell that kind merchandise (i.e. Banana Republic, LOFT). I’m not throwing shade at those stores. I just think it’s important to know that you can find bits and pieces of your work wardrobe from any store.


So, what are my biggest tips for dressing business casual if you hate dressing business casual?

Don’t shy too far away from your personal style. I know this can be hard when it feels like you’re letting an employee handbook dictate the way you dress. You can still be YOU, even if you’re dressed up a little fancier than you are for a dinner date with friends.

Blazers and slacks do not ever have to be a thing in your wardrobe — unless you want them to be.

Avoid feeling bored with your work outfits by spicing them up with your favorite jewelry, or maybe even a hat you don’t wear often.

Dark wash denim is a-okay for a business casual setting, in my opinion. However, if you do choose that option, you should elevate your top half in some way.

Last, but certainly not least. When questioning whether something is appropriate for work or not, ask yourself this: Would you want to meet someone for the very first time in the outfit you’re currently wearing at work?


Well, there ya go! A few things to ponder upon the next time you’re confused about a business casual dress code. As always, feel free to ask me questions in the comments below. I would love to help! 🙂

Until next time,

Alicia <3 


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