What ‘Smart Casual’ Dress Code Means

What ‘Smart Casual’ Dress Code Means

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The office dress rules nowadays have managed to confuse the newbies about how to dress up to the office, and they seem not to know what to do about it. The trending rules for dress codes in office have evolved from either being formal or casual to various amalgamations of the two like business casual, smart casual, business (informal), semi-formal, etc. These variations make dressing up for the first day of work way more stressful. While they are always anxious to dress well for a great first impression, they don’t know the difference between casual dress code and smart casual or any others. In their confusion, they may blunder their first day of work due to being underdressed.

The term “Smart Casual” was a commonly used phrase in the 20th century and was made a business term in the 1950s, where both the terms smart casual and business casual were used interchangeably. It was supposed to be street wear with a dapper look. However, the modern interpretation goes deeper into technicalities. Now, it is defined as a neat and conventional dressing style that looks informal but at the same time gives off the feeling that it conforms to a particular dress code. This ambivalent definition would be soon clarified by our list of items that could be worn in such situations.

A Blazer

To give off the casual yet dapper look, just throw on a blazer of sports jacket over a pair of new jeans and casual shirts. This look is the safest option in the casual dressing world. This look can make even the most uncouth man look like a suave dresser. Also, this style works for both men and women.

A Tailored Sweater

A tailored sweater over a great pair of great denim, chinos or trousers goes a long way in making you look sharp. They are also way more comfortable than jackets and blazers. Feel free to experiment with colors.


Loafers are the ‘it’ factor of smart casual dressing. They go well with all sorts of bottoms, be it shorts, denim jeans; chinos etc. and always look amazing. They can make any look seem casual and effortless yet stylish.

A Dressy Top

For women, there are a lot of choices, when it comes to casual dressing. The most favored is a collared or a dressy top along with a good pair of jeans or trousers and heels or ballerinas. These tops could also be matched with skirts or slacks.

These are some of the options that could be considered while dressing up for work. However, every office has a different environment and therefore it would be prudent to dress according to that. The one thing to keep in mind is to look sharp and neat in whatever you wear; your effort should show.

The bottom line is, don’t go looking like you just woke up, in that old wrinkled online t shirts and tattered jeans. Just don’t, even if you are allowed to wear casuals.

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