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How to Dress for Success

07 March 2011

It's all about Investment Dressing

Whether you want to impress a potential employer, take control of the boardroom or seal that important deal, it's essential to maintain the right image.

In today's current uncertain market, now more than ever, your corporate image speaks volumes about who you are and what you stand for. It's all about investment dressing. The key is to invest in yourself and the way you dress!

Success comes from dressing to influence, and that means presenting yourself professionally, taking pride in your appearance and dressing appropriately for the occasion.

Here are 10 style points guaranteed to open doors.

Personal Image

o Dress professionally but don't be afraid to turn it up a notch. Stick to the classics but with a twist, something that makes a statement about who you are. Follow what's in fashion and adapt those trends to suit your individual style.

o Many professional environments have a silent but precise dress code so ensure your dress suits your role and your industry. It's not just your clothing that matters but your whole image.

o Minimise your liabilities and show off your assets, bouncy hair, and a twinkle in your eye, a smile, a sparkling personality and perfect poise.


o Colour can impact your appearance by making you look healthy, youthful and full of energy while the wrong colours can leave you looking tired, older or ill.

o Wearing black can make you look paler; more lined and dark circles can appear under your eyes. Instead choose your neutral palette from chocolate, taupe, navy, charcoal, burgundy or khaki.

o Wearing splashes of universal colours like purple or emerald turquoise can instantly make you look more alive.


o Wear classic lines that are right for your body shape.

o Quality is the key to good taste, superb fabric, expert tailoring and classic silhouettes. You can't beat well cut pants and skirts and classic shirts. A good quality jacket is an investment and will last season after season and is much better than several badly made ones.

o Accept the fact that clothes may need to be altered to look great. No-one has the perfect body and altering your clothes changes you from looking mediocre to looking smart.

o Avoid pants that are too short and skirts that are too long as these can make you look dowdy.


o Accessories can create the perception that you are successful and confident.

o Mix modern accessories with classic and contemporary pieces.

o Only wear one statement piece of jewellery.


o Have impeccable grooming from top to toe. Ensure your clothes, shoes, accessories and hair is clean and in good condition.

o Wear trans-seasonal fabrics that travel well and won't make you look rumpled.


o Change your hairstyle every few years to look current and make sure the style flatters your face shape.

o Suit your hair colour to your own personal colouring.


o Always wear makeup but remember less is more.

o Use a foundation with warmth, dab on some blush, and wear a natural brow colour and a lipstick that flatters your colouring.

o Avoid very frosted or lolly shade lipsticks, shiny eye shadows, and black mascara or eyeliner.


o Update your glasses every two years to look current and more modern.


o Shoes can make or break your outfit, so choose quality leather and ensure they are clean and not scuffed.


o Walk with pace and purpose to appear vital and enthusiastic.

o Walk tall and be proud to be you, it's all about your attitude and how you look and feel.


Robin Powis is the Principal of Defining Style a personal image consultancy that provides professional styling advice to individuals and corporations. Robin's aim is to make you look and feel great while saving you valuable time and money. Robin can be contacted at or 0419 468272.

If you would like to receive a free e-book with great styling advice and tips go to



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