Close
 
 
Career Services
A Job Today, A Career Tomorrow

Business Professional/Business Casual? What is the difference?

Business Professional Attire for Women

Women have more flexibility in the clothing choices than men, which means they also have more room for mistakes. Limit creativity to materials, patterns and cuts. Suitable professional attire for women includes: dresses, suits, and dress skirts that are no shorter than 3 inches above the knee; dress pants with dress blouses. Being the Valley, where it is always hot, a cotton-synthetic blend may be best. In addition to solids and pinstripes, various plaids may be acceptable. Charcoal, medium gray, steel gray, black, and navy blue are good colors and all look good with a white blouse. Hosiery is required with skirts at all times, along with dress shoes.

Examples of inappropriate business attire includes: anything sleeveless, denim clothing of any kind, stirrup or spandex pants, shorts of any kind or length, crop tops, hats, sundresses, leather pants, sandals, shoes that show your toes, and sneakers.

Professional attire Professional attire

Business Casual Attire for Women

Appropriate business casual attire for women includes: skirts, which are no shorter than 3 inches above the knee; blouses, sweaters, polo-style shirts, jumpsuits, khaki pants, which are neither too loose nor too tight, and which are not too faded, frayed or otherwise distressed. Boots, dressy sandals, and pumps are examples of acceptable footwear.

Examples of inappropriate attire are: novelty tee shirts (those with printed writing, slogans or numbers), shorts, spandex pants, crop tops, tank or halter tops, sweatshirts, sweatpants, hats, sundresses which are backless or have straps less than 1 inch in width, leather pants, and flip flops.

Casual attireCasual attire

Business Attire for Men

The best colors for suits are navy through teal blue and charcoal through light gray, followed by brown. Solid colors are best but subtle checkered patterns and narrow pinstripes are acceptable. 100% wool suits look and wear better than any other material. Two-piece suits are perfectly acceptable. Professional business attire for men includes: suits, sports coats, dress pants, dress shirts with collars, dress shoes and socks, and a tie.

Examples of inappropriate business attire includes: denim clothing of any kind, Dockers® style pants, shorts of any kind or length, hats, extremely casual shoe styles commonly worn, sandals, and sneakers.

Professional attireProfessional attire

Business Casal Attire for Men

Appropriate business casual dress for men includes: dress slacks, Dockers® style slacks, sports shirts, polo shirts, and sweaters. Clean topsiders and loafers are examples of appropriate footwear.

Examples of inappropriate attire include: shorts, novelty tee shirts (those with printed writing, slogans or numbers), sweatshirts, sweatpants, tank tops, cropped tops, hats, and lip flops. In summary, please keep in mind that clothes are not conservative and proper for work if the fabric, style or fit is too revealing or too casual. Business Casual is the opportunity to dress less formally, but still keep a professional appearance. It is not an opportunity to wear clothing better suited to the beach, home, yard, gym or bar.

Casual attireCasual attire