5 Ways to Level Up Your Work-From-Home Wardrobe (And Why You Should)

Those of us who work from home know that the commute is short, the coffee is always perfect, and the dress code is…well, a little complicated.

One of the perks of working from home is there’s no pressure to don the same formal attire that employers expect in traditional workplaces. But just because the only coworkers we see in the flesh are cats, dogs, or well-placed cactus plants, it doesn’t mean we should roll up to our desks in our PJs.

Believe it or not, studies show that dressing the part can seriously boost your motivation and mental sharpness. There’s even a fancy scientific term for it: enclothed cognition, which describes the impact that clothing has on our psychological performance.

The logic is that if we wear a lab coat (associated with hyper-intelligent scientists), we’ll feel smarter. Or, if we wear a tuxedo, we might feel like a movie star at the Oscars.

If what we wear makes us better at what we do, looking good for the camera is only a secondary benefit. The main advantage is that we feel confident and focused (and maybe even impress our furry coworkers).

…or furry boss if your cat is a bit more demanding.

Here are five tips to ditch the faded old band tee and torn jeans in favor of a brain-boosting outfit that keeps you ready for anything.

Tip #1: Avoid the Zoom Mullet

When the pandemic was in full swing, many home workers opted to blend business tops with casual bottoms (or no bottoms, in some cases).

Dubbed the “Zoom Mullet”, this mixed clothing approach could actually be detrimental to your job. And yep, there’s yet another scientific term for this: enclothed dissonance.

To avoid this, always look to create a balanced outfit with well-fitting pieces of clothing, a matching style from top to bottom, breathable, soft fabrics that move with you, and smart layers like a blazer and tee to adjust for temperature and comfort while maintaining a polished look.

Tip #2: Master Webcam-Ready Grooming

Neglecting personal grooming can quickly torpedo your professional image. The camera can be unforgiving, accentuating unkempt hair, sleepy eyes, or a day’s worth of stubble.

Ensure your hair is neat and your face is freshly washed or shaved. Add a touch of neutral makeup to prevent you from looking washed out on screen. And groom that beard or stubble to bring out your jawline, adding to your on-camera presence.

Attention to these details matters and can convey professionalism and confidence, leading to a positive impression on colleagues and customers alike.

Tip #3: Accessorize to Impress-orize!

Accessories can complement your outfit and enhance your on-screen presence with minimal effort—some stylish glasses, elegant earrings, or a statement necklace can add a touch of sophistication and show that you’ve put effort into your appearance.


Still, try not to overdo it.

Accessories can also start conversations, bridging the gap between you and your remote colleagues. A unique brooch or an interesting tie can spark small talk, making video calls more engaging and personal. Sometimes, the small details can have the most impact.

Tip #4: Add a Touch of Color

Color is a powerful tool that can influence your mood, energy levels, and even productivity.

Choosing the color of your outfit should feel natural and related to how you feel. If the day starts difficult, splash on a bright yellow blouse or orange pants to inject some energy. If you need to focus, blues and greens are your go-to, helping you stay in a zen-like state when the deadlines keep coming.

And yes, even if it’s just you (or your bossy cat) seeing it, dressing in colors that make you feel good can lead to a surprising uptick in your work output and creativity.

Tip #5: Curate a Dedicated WFH Wardrobe

If you want to make your mornings simpler and reduce decision fatigue, pick out a few key pieces that you love and keep them in an exclusive area of your wardrobe.

This preemptive strategy will ensure you always have a professional, cohesive, and comfortable look ready to go, with quick access to something suitable for whatever video meeting is coming up next.

Bonus Tip: Snazzy Socks are Underrated

Adding a few pairs of ridiculous socks to your wardrobe is a surefire way to brighten up your day (and those who are lucky enough to interact with you).

Putting something different on your feet can signal that you’re a creative, independent, and powerful person. And even if others can’t see them, you’ll still feel like a million bucks.

Come on, don’t say you wouldn’t feel powerful wearing these.

Remember, what you wear at work is more important than you might think, even when working from home, and a little bit of effort and creativity goes a long way toward your success.

Start leveling up your work-from-home wardrobe today! Apply these tips and share your results with us on social media using the hashtag #WFHWardrobeUpgrade.