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What does workwear look like in a remote world?

The coronavirus pandemic has altered everyone’s lives in both temporary and permanent ways. One of the biggest changes has been to the way people work. With the majority of offices transitioning to remote work, people have had to relearn how to manage their time, interact with coworkers, and dress for the workday.

The office dress code has taken a complete turn in the remote world. Gone are the days of slacks and blazers because who needs a business casual suit when your coworkers only see you from the shoulders up? Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean you can wear your favorite hoodie for every Zoom call. Keep reading to learn how workwear has changed over the past year, what you should wear while working remotely, and what the future of business fashion may look like.

Woman working remotely with her children
Ekaterina Bolovtsova/Pexels

How workwear has changed

Prior to the pandemic, there was already a slow trend toward more casual wear in the office. According to Hive, 36% of businesses allowed casual dress every day, compared to 19% in 2014. The pandemic has supercharged this shift. Without the confines of the office, many people have begun dressing much more casually, swapping their suits and dresses for soft fabrics, knitwear, loose clothing, and athleisure pieces.

The pandemic has also brought the “Zoom shirt” into popularity. This is essentially dressing in business wear from the waist up for video calls, while still wearing sweatpants or other casualwear from the waist down. Even while working remotely, it’s important to appear professional to their coworkers and business colleagues, even if they’re only seeing part of you.

Remote work video meeting
Chris Montgomery/Unsplash

What to wear when working from home

Casual dressing

When you’re working from home, employers don’t typically care what you wear as long as you look presentable. Wearing cozy, casual clothing can be a major comfort during these stressful times, and it can free up time and energy that would otherwise be used for getting dressed and ready for the workday. In fact, one survey of more than 2,000 adults found that 82% of workers believe that feeling comfortable in their clothes allows them to be more productive. So keep rocking those sweatpants!

Traditional office fashion

There are also benefits to dressing in your regular business wear, even when you’re working remotely. Wearing what you normally would to the office can help you maintain your daily routine and separate your work and home life. When everything else has changed, preserving this sense of normalcy can make the shift easier. Getting dressed for work may also make you more productive, as business professionals reported feeling most competent and authoritative when wearing formal business attire.

Dressing for your mood

One of the great things about working remotely is that you can wear whatever makes you feel the best. If you want to wear sweatpants on Monday and a pantsuit on Tuesday, you can! When you’re at home, you may have days when you feel like getting dressed and days when you don’t. Long story short, you no longer have to force yourself to match the office’s dress code when you’d rather just wear pajamas. That wasn’t quite possible a year ago, but it’s the reality today.

The most important thing is to strike a balance and try to establish a regular routine. By getting changed before work and after the workday ends, you can create a mental boundary between work and home, even when there isn’t a physical one.

Woman working from home in bed

The post-Covid dress code

With the end of the Covid-19 pandemic in sight, more people are beginning the plan for life outside their homes. While it’s impossible to know how office life will be in a few months, there’s no doubt that our time working remotely will have an impact. While you may not be able to wear your favorite pajamas around the office, dress codes will likely continue their trend toward casualwear. On the other hand, you may start to see people dressing to the nines, excited to wear their favorite pieces after a long year of loungewear.

While there’s no way to tell what the future holds, the coronavirus pandemic undoubtedly changed the office dress code. When working from home, it’s up to you to decide what you’re comfortable wearing during the workday. You may want to keep it cozy and wear sweatpants all day, dress for success in your business casual pieces, or switch it up based on your mood. The most crucial thing to remember is to choose your work clothes based on what makes you feel like your most productive and comfortable self.

BlissMark provides information regarding health, wellness, and beauty. The information within this article is not intended to be medical advice. Before starting any diet or exercise routine, consult your physician. If you don’t have a primary care physician, the United States Health & Human Services department has a free online tool that can help you locate a clinic in your area. We are not medical professionals, have not verified or vetted any programs, and in no way intend our content to be anything more than informative and inspiring.

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Shannon Cooper
Freelance writer
Shannon Cooper has written about everything from pet care and travel to finance and plumbing in her seven years as a writer…
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