Business Casual Dress Guidelines for Men

Cheryl Cirelli
Business Casual Attire

If you are confused by what business casual dress guidelines for men are, then follow a few simple tips to make sure you are dressed appropriately at work and not only look good but feel confident as well.

What is Business Casual?

Business casual is a style of dressing that is neat and comfortable while maintaining professionalism. It can be one of the most confusing terms used to define appropriate office dress. If you are in doubt about what your company considers to be a business casual dress code then ask your supervisor or the human resource department for clarification.

Basic Business Casual Dress Guidelines for Men

There are several business casual dress guidelines for men to follow. These are only guidelines and may not apply to every company's definition of business casual. When dressing for business casual, the basics to keep in mind are:

  • Slacks such as khakis are always acceptable to wear to work. Other pants to wear for business casual would be cotton trousers.
  • A collared shirt looks great with khakis. A button-down shirt would work as well. With business casual, there is no need for a tie or cuff links. Check out a polo such as the Izod Premium Polo or Polo Ralph Lauren Classic Fit Woven Shirt. Both are great choices for business casual.
  • A plain, crisp white dress shirt is essential for any man. It can be worn in many ways and paired with different pants for various looks.
  • Loafers or other slip on style shoes are great for business casual. Always make sure that they are clean and polished.
  • Be sure to wear dark colored socks that do not show skin when you sit down. A calf length sock is always a smart choice.
  • Choose basic colors such as navy, black or gray and you will never go wrong. Subdued pinstripes would also work well.
  • Try to look as well put together as possible. You want to achieve a professional and polished look.
  • If you plan on attending a meeting, a sport coat is a good choice to wear. It can be taken off during the day and put back on for your meeting.

One other important aspect to consider is just because the term "casual" is used to define the dress code, that does not mean that your appearance should be casual. It is important to be well-groomed and to have a neat and clean appearance for the office.

What to Avoid

There are several items that are not appropriate to wear for business casual. Remember, you still want to maintain a professional appearance, so do not wear something that you would wear to the gym or a club.

Some items to avoid when dressing business casual are:

  • Jeans
  • Shorts
  • Graphic tee shirts
  • Sweats
  • Sneakers
  • Flip flops
  • Overly trendy fashions
  • Anything extremely baggy or tight
  • Baseball caps

Also avoid wearing anything wrinkled, soiled or torn.

Final Thoughts

What you wear is often a direct representation of how people see you. You can still dress casually and comfortably while looking professional. By following a few simple guidelines you can make sure that you are dressed to look your best no matter what situation you may find yourself in.

Business Casual Dress Guidelines for Men