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Guys’ Office Style for Every Dress Code

We’re just going to come out and say it: too often, guys view their office dress code as an excuse to dress, well…boring. (Full disclosure: us ladies can be guilty of this, too…but, hey, this isn’t about us!).

But you can look as cool and stylish at work as you do on the weekends with just a little bit of effort! In this office style guide, we’ll show you how.

How office dress codes for men have changed

If you’re back in an office full-time in 2024, or even in a hybrid situation, you may find your workplace’s post-pandemic dress code confusing.

Maybe some coworkers look more relaxed. Sport coats have given way to overshirts. Chinos have been replaced by jeans all day, every day. Others might be in the same light blue button-ups and grey trousers they’ve always worn. What’s a modern, stylish man to do?!

Why dressing well at work matters

Sure, you could throw your hands up and say, “Well, I guess I’ll just dress like everyone else in the office.” But that’s totally sort of blah and lazy, and you are not a blah and lazy guy!

Besides, you’ll feel more confident in your professional duties if you’re dressed in men’s workwear that makes you feel amazing!

You can shine in day-to-day office style, no matter the office dress code.

Your guide to office style for every dress code:

Of course, there’s plenty of variation in degrees when it comes to office dress codes. Especially for workplaces where there’s technically no dress code, which we’d argue is even more confusing.

If you ascribe to the idea of dressing for the job you want, it’s worthwhile to stock your closet with men’s work clothes that will leave you at the upper end of any office’s baseline style.

First up? The casual—or non-existent!—office dress code…

1) Casual Office Dress Code

Office style for guys in a casual workplace

SG Says: The casual dress code is the least dress code-y of any workplace.

Casual attire basically means, “Don’t show up in cutoff jean shorts, but otherwise, honestly we really don’t care.” This kind of non-dress code is prevalent in tech and start up culture.

Which is great for your wallet, since you won’t have to invest in both a work and weekend wardrobe, and for comfort. However, don’t use a casual office dress code as an excuse to show up to the office looking sloppy.

Pro tip: Well-fitting items like slim- or straight-fit dark jeans, un-rumpled sport shirts, and leather sneakers are all good casual dress code staples. Even a t-shirt in a heavier fabric and cargo pants can work in a casual office if they’re worn with style and confience.

Casual dress code building blocks:

Good stores to shop for casual dress codes:

Shop men’s casual workplace style essentials:

2) Business Casual Dress code

Office style for guys in a business casual workplace

SG Says: A business casual dress code is a step up in terms of formality from casual office style. You can probably still wear your jeans. But instead of a t-shirt, reach for a button-down shirt or other long-sleeve style.

Performance workwear will be your friend, like performance dress shirts and pants with stretch.

On your feet, you can still get away with a nice pair of sneakers, but be sure to add a variety of styles to your casual shoes rotation. Think: loafers, chukka boots, and Chelsea boots.

Pro tip: When it gets chilly, layer with a sport coat or overshirt (aka shacket) — not a company-branded fleece over your casual outfits. Please.

Business casual dress code building blocks:

Good stores to shop for business casual dress codes:

Shop men’s business casual style essentials:

3) Business Professional Dress code

Office style for guys in a “business professional” workplace

SG says: A “business professional” dress code is just a few style zhushes away from the most formal dress code, which is (you guessed it) “business formal.”

You’re wearing a suit…but maybe without a tie. Or you’re wearing a sport coat with dress pants or a pair of chinos, instead of jeans.

Pro tip: When you have a big client meeting, or are speaking in front of a large group, dress one level above your usual dress code.

So, if you’re in a casual office, dress in a “business casual” outfit on the big day. If you work in a business casual-dress code office, dress in “business professional” for that do-or-die client meeting.

Business professional dress code building blocks:

Good stores to shop for business professional dress codes:

Shop men’s business professional style essentials:

4) Business Formal Dress Code

Office style for guys in a “business formal” workplace

SG Says: The most formal of office dress codes, you definitely will know if you’re getting yourself into a “business formal” environment before your first day. This dress code is mostly reserved for more traditional professions like banking.

Pro tip: Don’t let the need to wear a suit every day dim your unique personal style! You can show your personal style with touches like interesting combinations of shirts and ties, socks in bold colors and interesting patterns, and unexpected accessories.

Business formal wardrobe building blocks:

Good brands to shop for business formal dress codes:

Shop men’s business formal style essentials:

5) WFH Wardrobe

“Office” style for guys working from home

SG Says: Of course, plenty of guys don’t work in an office. Especially in 2024, more people than ever work from home.

For those living the WFH life, invest in comfortable, durable basics that help you look and feel your best *and* that can withstand a vigorous walk around the neighborhood at lunchtime. Think: athleisure, upgraded.

Since you’ll still be on Zoom calls, make sure to take extra card with your professional appearance up top. Wash and style your hair. Wear eyewear newer than whatever you’ve been wearing since college. Casual looks don’t have to be sloppy, even if you’re working only a few feet from your (unmade) bed.

Pro tip: This is the time to spend more than you’re used to on laid-back wardrobe staples like t-shirts, henleys, and jogger pants. The price tag will feel worth it when you slip into comfortable clothes that you don’t feel like a slob wearing.

WFH or start-up wardrobe building blocks:

Good stores to shop for WFH style:

Shop men’s WFH style essentials:

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Want some help sorting out your office style? Turn to Team SG! Sign up for the #SGapproved monthly Wardrobe Report. Want more style support? Get a personalized shopping plan created just for you.

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