What Is Casual Clothing?

casual business chat 5 image by visi.stock from Fotolia.com

Casual clothing is a description for clothes that make a person look relaxed and at ease. Knowing what casual clothing means is important for employees. They should not give the wrong impression to their bosses by dressing in their house clothes or as though they are going out on the town.


Casual clothing is a type of style that many businesses have asked their employees to wear to work. According to The Business Research Lab article "Casual Dress Code," management can improve the workplace by implementing a casual dress code. Employees become happier because they do not have to wear stiff, dressy clothes. They can dress in cotton shirts and nicely fitted slacks, which make them comfortable.

Business Casual Specifics

Employees should make sure that the term casual does not fool them. They should dress respectfully by choosing classic looks. Things that are appropriate are khakis, slacks, sweaters, leather shoes and polo shirts. Things that are not appropriate are jeans, gym shorts, T-shirts, low-cut tops and running shoes. They should tone down fashionable statements because the key word is casual. The outfit should fit in with the work environment and correlate with what other employees wear. It should flatter the employees' body shapes without looking baggy or overly tight.

For Men

According to Career Services at Virginia Tech, men should veer toward overdressing by wearing upscale clothes. Although they can always take off a tie or unbutton a button to make their look more casual, they might not be able to camouflage the sloppiness of an overly casual outfit. They should consider wearing a tie, long-sleeved shirt, dark socks and leather shoes. They should also groom themselves well by keeping up their facial hair and making their hair look neat.

For Women

Women should make note that business casual is different from date or cocktail party attire. Clothes that are tight and revealing are inappropriate for the workplace and are not casual. They should choose conservative looks to be on the safe side. Skirts should be mid-length or long with a non-visible slip if necessary. Shoes should be in dark colors and should cover the toes. Makeup needs to fit the casual dress code, too. It should flatter the woman's appearance and not draw attention to itself.

Casual Fashion

According to Beauty Hill article "Casual Fashion Trend Spring 2010," many women prefer casual chic fashion because it is a comfortable style. Casual fashion is more unique than business casual because it follows the current trends. The purpose of casual fashion is to keep women looking fresh and stylish without sacrificing their comfort. Examples of casual fashion that were on the runway in 2010 include innovative khaki shorts, leather boots, fitted sweaters, leather sandals and mid-length black skirts.