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Are You Dressing Age Appropriate?

What to Wear in Your 20s, 30s…..

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Have you ever wondered if you were dressing too old or too young for your age? If the question has crossed your mind before or if anyone has made a comment of the likes, you may want to consider a wardrobe assessment. Becoming more attuned to how people in your age range are dressing can also provide some indication. Additionally, here are a few general characterizations of how women should be dressing at various ages:

  • 20s – Va-va-voom! This is the age to have fun with fashion trends and take risks. It’s ok to show skin, wear form-fitting clothes, and wear flashy colors and prints for play; rules are different at work. If you are dressing frumpy and old-fashion, hurry and get with the program
  • 30s – You can still have a lively wardrobe but it’s time to invest in some quality classic pieces to mix with your trendy items. It’s still okay to dress a bit edgy but make sure your overall look is more sophisticated than your 20s
  • 40s – Seriously….say goodbye to hoochie mamma outfits you wore in your 20s and maybe even into your 30s; even if you have the body to wear skin tight clothes, mini skirts, and show goo-gobs of cleavage. I’m not saying wear “Mom Jeans,” and this doesn’t mean you can’t look sexy by flaunting “the girls” and showing some leg,  but it should be tasteful and classy; for example, go for an exact fit rather than ill fitting. Maintain a youthful look with great skin, hair, and incorporating stylish items into your wardrobe
  • 50s – With age comes wisdom. And, unless your name is Madonna, chic and sophisticated is what you should be going for in your look. Dressing tasteful is key to being respected. In other words, ripped up, booty tight jeans aren’t cute. It doesn’t mean you can’t be stylish and that you need to be covered from head to toe; instead think classy. You can still have fun with color, prints, and trends 
  • 60s – I say 60 is the new 50! (smile) So, just follow the same guidelines for dressing in your 50s

Speak With Savvy: Without Saying a Word

iStock_000005449211XSmallIn business and professional environments, for example during an interview, at a networking event, or during a meeting, presentation or speech; what you don’t say can be more powerful and influential than what you do say.  Non-verbal communications should not be discounted in terms of the image you convey and your ability to make a good first impression.

A proper handshake could mean the difference between sealing a deal or not.  Eye contact or lack there of can convey a sense of trust and credibility or on the other hand, communicate a lack of certainty. Posture can send messages about charisma, character, and confidence. These are just a few examples of non-verbal communications.

Savvy executives, politicians, lawyers, and other professionals understand the implications of non-verbal communications and spend as much time honing in on these skills as they do on the words they use to convey their messages. Click here to learn the interesting dynamics behind the handshake ritual of Obama and Putin at the 2013 G20 summit.

Ditch the Cell While Dining-Or Risk Being Seen as Rude

cellphone-tableWe are all so attached to our cell phones, that often proper etiquette goes out the window. Using your cell while dinning – a quick text or even worse talking – is a definite no-no.

Whether you are at a business dinner or lunch, or in a social setting, using your phone during a meal with others is often perceived as having bad manners. It in essence says, “I’m not that interested in being here or hearing what you have to say,” even if this is not your intended message. In a professional setting it tells your more savvy clients, colleges, or superiors that you haven’t been “schooled” in business etiquette, which speaks volumes about your business acumen and professionalism. You certainly don’t want this to be the reason to miss out on a potential business opportunity or that a client decides they no longer want to do business with you.

The easiest thing to do is turn the phone off to avoid the temptation to be responsive. If you must leave it on because you are expecting an important text or call, as a courtesy give other guest a heads up that you may have to take an important call, be sure the phone is on vibrate mode, and if the call comes step outside the dinning area, and be brief. Taking this approach will help keep you in good standing with your business associates.