As an Image Professional I am asked all the time how to look younger. With Millennials comprising the largest workforce ever in the history of the world, many young professionals who are serving an older client base, or work for an older (and judging) supervisor or manager, are wanting to look and dress more mature.
If you have a flamboyant personal style, you may find you will be best served by allowing it to run free during private/off-duty hours, and a bit more under wraps during working hours.
Why should it matter? It shouldn’t – but unfortunately, it does. Your clients, your prospects, your boss (and their boss) are all making judgments about your experience, reliability, decision making, impulsiveness and ability to lead others based (in par) on your appearance.
Understanding potential “disconnects” allows you to be and decide the right path for you.
7 Common Style Choices I See that Age a Young Person Down:
- Personal statement disconnects- Wearing anything with an animal, cartoon, graphic, or statement/words (other than your company’s logo). This can also be displayed through visible tattoos and multiple piercings.
- Grooming disconnects- Wet hair, chipped nail polish, unnaturally colored hair, naturally colored hair with the roots growing out, extra-long hair (easily can be pulled into a chignon for a chic look!), and overly trendy hair on guys such as severe undercuts.
- Clothing maintenance disconnects– Stains, wrinkles, laundry tag showing, vent not cut in back of suit jacket, runs in hosiery, stickers on the bottom of shoes, scuffed down-on-the-heel shoes, and missing collar stays.
- Accessory disconnects– Misshapen poorly tied ties, a stack of leather or plastic bracelets, adorable hair bands (bows) clips, backpacks (rather than bags). Big one: having your phone as a permanent appendage to your hand.
- Skin, body and undergarment disconnects- For women this can be bra straps showing, skirts that are too short, over trouser belly rolls, gaping blouses and cleavage of any sort. For men this can include that one button that allows chest hair to curl out, trousers cut too snugly front and back, bare shins sticking out of too short trousers.
- Color and pattern disconnects- Anything neon and most anything pastel. Polka dots, anything prep school with sailboats or little animals such as Vineyard Vine, large and loud prints.
- Style disconnects- Overly trendy, distressed garments, camo, rompers and jumpers. Clothing with bows. Gingham, ruffles, distressed (ripped) jeans, tie dye, and dressing down for comfort – athletic (bordering on athleisure) hoodies, sweats, tees, yoga pants.
Now that I’ve covered some style choices that make you look younger, let’s go over some great tips to look more mature.
8 Tips to Look More Mature:
#1: Invest in high quality outerwear/topcoat, and a good handbag (for women) or non backpack bag or case (for men).
#2: Keep your colors neutral (navy, tan, grey, black, white) and your pattern scale solid, stripe or smaller
#3: Choose classic clothing styles that are just a little “overdressed” rather than under, and lean toward tailored (jackets before knits, cardigans before polos) lines and more structural garments.
#4: Choose a few elegant understated accessories such as a watch that is slim, gold or silver or a simple (not necessarily dainty) necklace and earrings.
#5: Wear glasses. Even if you don’t have to – seriously, it’s an amazing effect.
#6: Cover up any parts when in any doubt. Dressing conservatively can do wonders in making you look mature.
#7: Wear a bit of red- for women try a handbag or lip stick, for men try a pocket square or socks.
#8: Don’t wear clothing that is skintight- it can be super distracting.
Do you want to expand on these tips and work with me? I’d love to help you find your mature style! Keep in mind my tips above are only visuals. There is so much more in terms of body language, voice tone, etc. that I can help you with to achieve your goal of maximum respect and serious attention in your workplace.
Ann Lindsay is Style of Success
I work to make you look effortlessly confident.
Image Consulting — Personal Styling
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