20 Office Wardrobe Rules for Men


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Office Wardrobe for Men. This has a greater impact on your career than you can imagine. Here are a few rules that should never ever be broken.


1.  Clothes should be clean and pressed.

Stained or crumpled clothes portray a sloppy nature. Employers/ Customers/ Clients get a negative impression and assume that if a person cannot take care of their own belongings, how will they be responsible about their work.


2.  Clothes should not show age such as frayed collar and cuffs.

Fraying (threads coming out of the seams and rough puckered edges) shows the age of your garments or rough washing and misuse. Again this portrays neglect of your personal self.
It also shows extreme stinginess which is not always a good thing.


3.  Jackets and trousers should not be shiny, squeaky or chemically impregnated from over dry cleaning.

Learn how to maintain your clothes by investing in a standing steam iron. It increases their life and maintains the ‘new look’. Also when home take the time out to air dry your clothes not crumple them into a ball and throw them in a corner. All these measures will also reduce hefty dry cleaning bills. Get to know your washing machine, always put clothes on a gentle wash cycle.


4.  Jeans should have no holes, frayed pockets or the faded look and be well pressed.

Leave fashion at the door when you enter your workplace. Even if you are allowed to wear jeans the should be a dark even blue with a straight cut. No tight skinnies, bootcuts, ripped effects or coloured jeans. Despite the general understanding that jeans should never be ironed, when you are in office EVERYTHING has to be well pressed.


5.  Do not put bulging wallets into the back pocket of any trouser.

A bulky wallet in your back pocket is extremely tacky and makes your backside look lopsided. Your wallet should only contain some money, your credit cards and driving license. Anything more than that just points out your complete lack of organizational skills. Its should be of good quality & condition and thin enough to barely leave a bump, if you must keep it in your back pocket. Otherwise it goes in your jacket pocket or bag/briefcase.


6.  Antiperspirants are to be used at all times. If you stay in a dry climate then use deodorants.

There is nothing worse than bad body odor. Staying in India and travelling by public transport is unavoidable, so please take into consideration other people’s sensibilities and make liberal use of anti-perspirants and deodorants. If you arrive at a place particularly sweaty, a quick trip to the bathroom to freshen up is acceptable.


7.  Wear white cotton t shirts or vests under all dress shirts.

Wearing a layer prevents perspiration patches and also increases the life of the fabric of your clothes. The acids released from our body through sweat shortens the life of the fabric in the long run. A t shirt or vest absorbs this. If it is a particularly hot day, you can carry a change of t shirt/vest and freshen up mid day. Please note the t shirt should be a plain white, short sleeved crew neck/V neck. Vests should be plain with no ribbing.


8.  Your socks should always cover your ankles.

Your ‘mankles’ should never show at work, formal dress socks always stop above the ankle. Wear socks matching to your pants. Plain socks not patterned and colourful.


9.  Shoes should be well shined and repaired, Nails should be regularly manicured or kept short and clean.

The first thing a woman usually notices about a man are his nails and shoes. Both should be well maintained and shiny. They are also signs of subtle elegance and wealth.


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10.  Pants should cover the instep of your shoe.

Ill fitting pants are never an excuse. Pants bought off the rack always have to be altered to fit your body shape. the break is where your pants fall on your shoes, creating a horizontal crease in the fabric across the front of your pant leg. It is simply a result of the length of your pants. A good break is not only visually appealing, but it also lets you know if you’re wearing your pants too short. Ask your tailor to adjust the length of your pants to hit midway between the top of your dress loafer and the top of your shoe sole.

11. Shirt sleeves should be hemmed just below your wrist bone.

Sleeve length should be about one inch below your wrist bone and allow about a quarter inch to be seen from the sleeve of your suit. All these small alterations show that your clothes have been made for you (even if they are off the rack from a sale) and make you appear stylish and groomed. A few reasonable adjustments go a long way in changing the impact of your clothes.


12.  Update your eye glasses regularly.

Eye glasses are a very important accessory that can make or break your face and your look. They can either enhance your personality or make you look terrible. This is why they are considered an investment and should be bought after careful consideration. They should complement your style not define it. Take professional help and take into consideration your face shape while choosing the shape and colour. Go for the thinnest width of glass possible in your budget and get your numbers checked regularly. Wearing the correct prescription prevents squinting and squinting is the major cause for wrinkles at the corner of your eyes.


13.  Keep your hair short.

One of the main advantages is fuss free and low maintenance. It conveys a very groomed, efficient and neat personality. You can style it neatly for work and mess it up for a night out. Invest in a good quality haircut, a road side barber doesn’t cut it anymore. Highlights and hair straightening are a strict NO.


14.  Nose hair, ear hair and overgrown, unruly eyebrows should be trimmed regularly.

Hygiene and grooming! I don’t need to elaborate on this. There is nothing uglier than hair growing out of everywhere possible.


15. Ties should cover the belt buckle.

Your tie should never fall below the belt buckle, depending on your knot and the size of your stomach, it should fall between the top edge to bottom edge of the buckle.
Also the metal of your belt buckle has to match the metal of your watch and cufflinks.


16. Get regular health check-ups, preferably every 6 months.

Gum diseases and mouth bacteria cause horrible bad breath. Bad health often results in body odor. No one will ever tell you.


17. While buying clothes and accessories, always concentrate on quality not quantity. It will save you a lot of money in the long run.

Good quality clothes that are maintained last longer and are less prone to fading and fraying. since the fabric quality is much better, it changes the look of your outfit. No one will notice if you repeat clothes in different combinations but everyone notices cheap and bad quality clothing.


18. In India, natural fabrics such as cotton, wool and silk blends work best. Never ever buy polyester or nylon.

Natural fabrics allow the skin to breathe and increase our comfort level. The possibility of getting a rash or body odor is greatly reduced. Artificial fabrics stifle the skin, look cheap and trap in sweat resulting in odors and rashes.


19.  Never ever wear ties with cartoon characters or modern art or your favorite characters or your favorite alcohol.


20.  Jewelry should be kept to a minimum.

Chains should not be visible (if you must wear them), NO bracelets. ONE ring, ie. your wedding ring. If you aren’t married, wearing a ring will highly reduce the chance of you ever getting married or getting a job. (No astrologer can help you with this either)


– Serena Rayani




(To know about Image Management and Etiquette Training services by Serena Rayani, please click here)

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