2016 Trends: What WON’T You Wear to Work?

2016 trends to avoid wearing to workI’ve noticed a few trends that seem to be EVERYWHERE of late, and I thought we’d discuss, if only because so many of them seem inappropriate for officewear — I’d love to hear your thoughts.  What trends WON’T you wear to work? Every office is different, of course — know yours! — but it’s always fascinating to hear the reasoning behind them.  I was intrigued to see readers noting that any lace-up shoes (including flats) were inappropriate for their offices, if only because that feels like a trend that’s been around for several years, and while I can see the sex appeal of lace-up high heels, the flats struck me as almost ho-hum.  On the flip side, jumpsuits for work seem to be something that’s gaining ground, with tons of readers noting that they’ve worn jumpsuits to the office regularly.  As we’ve noted before regarding trends and a conservative office, we’re against any trend that’s body baring, illogical, or too “new.”

Pictured, clockwise: Huge exposed zipper / cape blazer / high slit / culottes / off the shoulder top

We haven’t talked about trends in a while, so let’s discuss… Some trends I’m seeing more and more of:

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Weekend Wednesday: Pajamas

pajamas for grown ups

Pictured: pink chemise / art deco pants / blue jogger pants / green PJ set 

All right, ladies, let’s talk about something near and dear to my heart: pajamas. Do you treat yourself and sleep in luxurious fabrics like silk — or pull our your old college t-shirts and boxers to sleep in? What brands are your favorite, and how have your pajama choices changed over the years?

If you’re curious about MY choices: I’ve alternated between mismatched PJ bottoms and fancier (but not va-va-voom) chemises over the years for regular sleepwear. In my college and law school years I usually wore a yoga top (with a shelf bra) with PJ bottoms from spots like Anthropologie, although I remember getting a ton of PJs from Chico’s because my mother had gotten a gift card and regifted it to me.

A few years ago I discovered the brand Midnight by Carole Hochman, and her chemises seemed to be the perfect mix of all worlds — not too sexy but not too frumpy, comfortable, and machine washable — and for a few years I exclusively wore chemises. (The gorgeous pink one pictured (from Natori) was about my speed — more pretty than sexy, and machine washable.) After my eldest son got to the toddler stage I felt a bit funny running around the apartment in a chemise on the weekend, so I started buying PJ pants again, and now I’m back to those, but worn with a proper t-shirt and sleep bra.

Here’s another question: do you buy t-shirts just to sleep in, or do you just wear old ones? I feel like Marie Kondo would slap my hand, but I can’t bring myself to pay money for a t-shirt to sleep in when I have so many old ones with holes or other fit problems. I have one matched PJ set for when we stay over at my in-laws, similar to the green one pictured above, but I feel odd wearing it, like I’m pretending to be someone else.

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Workhorses for Your Working Wardrobe

working wardrobe workhorsesLadies, what are the workhorses in your working wardrobe? Are there any surprises in there — things that you reach for a ton more than you thought you would when you bought them? On the flip side, which were the wardrobe disappointments — the things you thought you’d wear a ton but found aren’t that versatile? (Are there any suiting pieces in the mix on either side, either bought as separates or as a suit set?)

When we last discussed surprise basics for workwear, I called out my love of colorful purses, olive-colored pants, a good watch, and nice pearls as things that I was surprised to find myself wearing a ton. (I’ve had good luck with dark olive pants, like the ones pictured, as well as lighter olives with more brown in them. I’d wear the pictured pants with neutrals like black, white, navy, gray (as well as with cobalt); pastels like peach/pink, lavender, or French blue; dark eggplant, or even limited pops of red or orange.) I’ve also written of other things that are outside the usual “must have” lists, including very light gray pants instead of summer whites, velvet blazers for festive in-office holiday luncheshuggie earrings, light blue blazers, and purple pumps. It also came up a bit with our discussion of light blue suits, with lots of readers noting that they often wear a pair of colorful blue trousers or a colorful blue blazer (but not together).

(Pictured above: shoes / pants / earrings)

In our last discussion, some of the items the readers noted they loved included:

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The Best Beauty Advice You’ve Ever Heard

The Best Beauty Advice You've Ever HeardLadies — what’s the best beauty advice you’ve ever heard? What advice has changed your routine, and what tips do you always follow? For my $.02, here’s the beauty advice that I think of most often:

  • Put real sunscreen on your face, neck, clavicle/chest, and hands as often as possible. The skin there is far thinner than the skin elsewhere on your body. (By “real sunscreen” I mean like SPF 50 — not the “moisturizer-with-SPF-15-added” stuff I used for years!)
  • Visine gets the red out — whether your face is blotchy from crying at a inopportune time, or you’ve got a pimple that’s bumming you out.
  • Some products are best applied at night — from skin products to dry shampoo to deodorants, and more!
  • Don’t wash your hair too often. Maybe your hair only needs conditioner rather than shampoo. Maybe you only need to wash the front of your hair or your bangs. (This is also handy if you’re trying to fit in a lunch workout!)
  • If you always wear your hair curly, go all in and get a “curly cut” — this often means getting tons of short little layers so your curls can do what they want. (There are tons of posts on this around the web — here are a few.) The con that I learned the hard way: It’s often difficult to get a blowout if you have a curly cut, and possibly even to pull your hair back if you’re going for a run or something. So if you’re like me and you have curly hair but get blowouts for anything important, just stick with a “straight hair” cut. (Here’s our older post on how to make a blowout last for days.) (Just to be 100% clear, there’s nothing unprofessional about curly hair or anything wrong with it, and that goes for natural hair too; my own curl pattern is just really uneven, and there’s a straight bottom layer for some reason, so my personal preference is to wear my hair straight.)

Pictured: Pixabay

Best Beauty Advice for busy women

Fashion Startups To Know, Part Two: 25 Brands Making Bags and Shoes for Work

independent shoes and bags for workA while back we rounded up thirty workwear brands you probably hadn’t heard of, focusing on smaller, startup fashion companies serving up new, interesting clothes for working women. Shoes for work and bags for work (laptop totes and beyond) became such a huge portion of it we thought we’d save it for its own post — and here it is! Below: meet 25 companies on our radar catering to the market of working women. Ladies, do you prefer to buy from independent retailers, or do you just like to see what kind of products they’re imagining? Have you tried any of these brands? Do you know of any others that should be on our radar?

Independent Brands Making Shoes for Work

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The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale ends SUNDAY!

final 3 days of NAS saleDeal alert, ladies: it’s the final three days of the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale — after Sunday, all of the new fall merchandise currently marked down will go back up to full price. There’s still a ton of good stuff left , but even now it’s flying off the shelves. (WAAAH to the leatherish jacket I added to my cart last night at like 1 AM and was sold out in my size by 10 AM this morning.) We’ve already rounded up workwear in the sale, NAS shoes, and last week we took a deep dive at the highest rated items for work and play since customer reviews weren’t available in the early days. I thought I’d take a quick swing through the sale today to see what else is sticking out to me now — I’m still seeing new things.  Note that all of these have a TON of sizes left, and that reader favorite brands for workwear like Boss, Classiques Entier, Theory and Halogen have lots of stuff left, including full suits.

For the Office

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