This week I’m sharing with you what I call my go-to outfit when I want to look put together without raising much attention. Comfortable and versatile, this outfit is ideal for first impressions as it is neither too much nor too little!
Pictures by C.E.
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The first impressions I’m talking about here are mostly related to work. I love to dress up, but in a serious conversation about my work, I don’t want people to get distracted by my pink dress. I mean, my wish is that I could wear that pink dress and be taken seriously nevertheless, but let’s face it. I’m a young researcher, already subjected to bias simply because I’m a woman. Now try to get up there with your pink dress and your heels? Hum, I don’t feel comfortable. Not because it doesn’t suit my personal style, but because it stands out too much. Part of the reason may be that there are not many women around, and also I feel most of them underdress, on purpose. I feel part of it has to do with the fear that people won’t take you serious if you dress up. Because really, how can you be a serious researcher if you had time to do your hair and makeup in the morning? Right? (So much nonsense!!)
I may be wrong, some people may just like to dress more comfortable, some people also dress more elegant/formal and things are changing. Slowly but changing. But all this to say that, in fact, I wore this outfit to almost any conference/meeting I can remember – sometimes with a blazer instead of the biker jacket. Stylish, but low profile. But should it really be like this? Should I really care that much about the perception people will have of me simply based on my clothes? Is there a ‘dress code’ we should follow?
This is a whole topic on its own and I would be happy to get to know your thoughts on it. I know there are really different approaches and opinions on this topic. So it would be interesting to hear what you have to say :)
But the truth is that people generally feel more comfortable in first encounters when dressing black. Not standing out appears to be some sort of mechanism defense that we use without even thinking. I remember this clearly from my first class at the Fashion Design course. We were all sitting down and at some moment during the day the teacher pointed out that most of us were wearing black, and explained how the fact that it was the first class, and we didn’t know each other, had something to do with it. We looked around to realize she was right, laughed about it and dressed a bit more vividly the other days ;)
I hope you enjoyed this look and my very short discussion of a problem that I believe exists for women throughout their careers. I could go on, but we would stay here for ages. Let me know in the comments below what are your thoughts about it and perhaps we can discuss it further, or even dedicate a post to it at some point!
Later this week there will also be a post full of ideas for working looks, that sure will be stylish but will cause no controversy. Stay tuned!
P.s. Unfortunately, most of the items are not currently available but I’ve linked above very similar ones for an identical look!