You can effortlessly look professional when you are overweight with the right fashion advice. So many men and women ignore these helpful style tips and miss out on easy techniques to improve the way they dress at work.
Follow this ultimate fashion guide to look stylish and dress professionally without breaking the bank. These simple pointers will help you improve your office outfits in no time.
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1. Wear the right fit
If you want to dress professionally when you are overweight, wear clothes that fit you properly. If your clothes are too big or too small, let go of them. Don't put them on at all or your risk losing style and elegance.
Avoid large tops, wide tent dresses, and baggy pants that hide your shape and make your body appear larger than it is. Covering your body shape and trying to hide behind your clothes doesn't help your look at all.
On the contrary, it makes everyone aware of the fact that you aren't comfortable with your body and the way you look. Avoid clothes that are too tight as well, especially around your midsection, as they are uncomfortable and unaesthetic.
Instead, wear clothing with the perfect fit that skims your figure, emphasizes your waist, and makes you look stylish and professional. The right size of clothes for your body type makes your best features look proportionate and even stand out.
2. Pick neutral colors
Wearing the right colors can instantly improve your look at the office. If you choose the perfect combination of colors for your outfits, you'll easily dress like a professional regardless of your body shape.
Don't wear colors that are too bold but don't shy away from colors completely. Prefer neutral colors that you can mix and match easily, especially when you are overweight.
Neutral colors make pieces very versatile and timeless and they can work with any work outfit. Choose a few colorful pieces once you feel comfortable to add a twist to your wardrobe.
You can wear classic colors all year-round effortlessly. They improve your look by giving a particular nuance to your office outfits, whether they're on business casual wear or formal workwear.
While neutral colors make your work outfits chic and elegant, bright colors make you stand out and appear confident but might draw attention where you don't necessarily want to.
3. Follow the dress code
You need to know the proper dress code to follow at work to dress professionally when overweight. Take the time to figure out how you should dress in your office environment before crafting your next work outfit.
Experiment to find out what you like and what is appropriate for your job at the workplace. If you don't know what's the best dress code for your type of work, simply ask around.
Try out different clothing combinations until you find the perfect match for your body type and what is recommended at your office. Read my definitive list of different work dress codes to get a clear overview.
Knowing the right dress code for the job helps you decide what kind of clothes suit you best at the office. You'll easily look stylish and professional if you wear pieces that you like the most and are fitting for your office.
4. Wear dress pants
The bottom part of your outfit is crucial to dress well when you are overweight. Wear quality, well-fitting pants or trousers to accentuate your legs and make them appear longer.
Put on a classic pair of dress pants and make sure you wear them according to your shoe height, with the right fit and length. Tightly fitting pants emphasize your legs and make a fashionable addition to your wardrobe for the office.
Pick a well-fitting, chic, and sustainable pair of dress pants from an affordable and ethical plus-size clothing brand.
You should replace any baggy pants you have with a more fitting piece. One of the best ways to dress professionally when overweight is to wear clothes that accentuate your legs.
5. Try on a suit
You can also put on a suit to look professional in a work environment. Dressier attires for the office like suits are appropriate for business events with a high level of protocol and professional dress.
Suits are generally reserved for people that hold a high-level position. But they are also suitable for formal occasions, events, meetings, or interviews, even if you are overweight.
If you are a manager at your office or regularly meet with executives, wear dark-colored suits, skirt suits, dress shirts, dress shoes, ties, and pocket squares.
Check out our selection of the best sustainable suits for women and men.
6. Get stylish shoes
Get stylish dress shoes that match your skin tone and the work outfits you plan to wear. High-quality, comfortable, and chic footwear is crucial to dress professionally when overweight.
Make sure your shoes complement your colors and complete the rest of your outfit. A high-quality pair of dress shoes will help you look stylish and professional.
Buy dress shoes from footwear brands that follow high social and environmental standards. Ethically produced, quality footwear is one of the best investments you can make to improve the way you look at work.
7. Craft layered outfits
Don't opt for bulky clothes with heavy fabrics, especially when you are overweight. Instead, add layers to your outfits to dress stylishly and professionally.
Pick a handful of attractive layers that you can throw on to craft unique, original work outfits and look elegant in no time. Layers instantly make any casual outfit more stylish and chic.
A long, well-fitting trench coat or a classic jacket can improve your dressing style drastically. Overcoats, blazers, vests, and liners help you stand out at the office.
8. Add one luxury accessory
Add one luxury accessory to your outfits to dress professionally when overweight. You can choose high-end jewelry, a watch, scarf, belt, or handbag to look more professional, confident, elegant, mature, and refined.
But don't overdo it as one accessory is plenty enough. Dress well for the office when you are overweight by adding one beautiful, unique, luxury item to your work outfits.
You can find affordable bags, belts, and other accessories from Gucci, Hermès Birkin, Dolce & Gabbana, Louis Vuitton, Prada, Chanel, Christian Dior, Michael Kors, and more on designer resale sites.
9. Avoid casual outfits
It's not a good idea to dress ultra-casual at the office when you are overweight. A casual work outfit is only appropriate in a very relaxed work environment.
A highly informal style with leggings, sweatpants, hoodies, or sweaters is only suitable for offices where dress codes aren't too stringent.
If you work in a strict office where dress codes matter, don't put on clothes that are too casual. Avoid tank tops, flip flops, ripped jeans, punk-rock jackets, and any other clothing piece that doesn't show professionalism.
10. Wear modest clothes
Wear modest clothes at the office and make sure they aren't too revealing. Modest clothing is very classy, sophisticated, and specifically designed to show less skin.
Modest styles display effectiveness, simplicity, and quality through chic, timeless, and smart cuts, shapes, silhouettes. They compliment your features perfectly, blending professionalism with style even if you are overweight.
Don't wear revealing clothes at the office since it's not the best way to stand out in a work environment. Instead, highlight your most attractive traits by dressing professionally and staying classy.
11. Buy quality clothing
Make sure to check the quality of each clothing piece before buying. It's easy to look stylish and professional when overweight if you wear high-quality clothes.
Don't buy fast fashion or cheaply made clothing. Instead, choose more durable and high-quality pieces that not only look much more fabulous but also last longer.
Pay attention to details and garment construction the next time you go shopping. Simply follow my best tips to buy higher quality clothes, especially if you shop online.
Shop from the most transparent, accountable, and sustainable brands. Many eco-friendly fashion companies offer ethical, vegan, and affordable options.
The best sustainable fashion labels help you dress professionally and ethically. Buy from clothing brands that are inclusive and implement sustainable practices.
12. Put simplicity first
If you want to dress professionally when you are overweight, don't overcomplicate things. Keep your work outfits simple by picking the right combination of effortless clothes that go well together.
When buying new clothes and building your wardrobe, put simplicity first. Remove unneeded extras to enhance your overall style. You can easily improve the way you look by keeping a simple wardrobe.
Simple clothes and basic designs don't necessarily have to be boring. You can make every piece you own a winner by simply making the most out of your closet and choosing the right collection of clothes for the office.
13. Prefer timeless clothes
Prefer timeless clothes over trendy pieces to look professional when overweight. Highly creative cuts and patterns are difficult to style and combine into suitable outfits for the office.
To dress professionally, craft chic work outfits that are elegant and easy-going using classic and timeless clothing pieces. Classic Clothes don't easily go out of style and are very versatile.
The best office attires perfectly blend style and professionalism to look fashionable and laid-back in a work environment with long-lasting and sophisticated pieces.
You can wear classic and timeless pieces for longer. Clothes that stand the test of time save you money and improve the way you look at the office.
14. Take care of your clothes
Take good care of the garments you already own. If you do, you will be able to enjoy your favorite pieces for a long time. You'll also drastically improve the way you look, protect the environment, and save money.
You can wear the best pieces in your wardrobe for a longer time and keep them looking fresh and new by taking good care of them. This is especially important when you are overweight as great clothes are harder to come by.
Keep them in great shape by avoiding mistakes while washing your clothes. Follow my ultimate guide on how to do your laundry properly.
15. Get rid of the clutter
Get rid of the clothes you don't wear or need anymore to have an easier time crafting professional outfits. Just make sure to do it responsibly by donating, selling, or recycling them.
Keep only the best items in your closet to boost your confidence and drastically improve the way you look when overweight. The best clothing pieces are the ones you wear all the time, that look amazing on you and make you feel your best.
Clean up your wardrobe to save time, improve your fashion style, and make room for better items that will help you look professional. To help you declutter, here are my best tips to clean your closet in under 15 minutes.
16. Get inspiration from friends
If you want to dress professionally when you are overweight, surround yourself with people who already look professional. One of the best ways to improve your style is to ask your friends.
Get together with people who already dress well such as your friends and family. Spend more time with people you can learn from, those that have a good influence on you.
It's worth it to ask them for advice and draw inspiration from them. Surround yourself with those who give the best fashion tips and have the same style as you.
It's one of the fastest ways to look better when you are overweight. People with already great style can have a positive influence on you. You'll begin to notice a difference if you hang around them long enough.
To look and feel your best at work, try to stay positive, helpful, motivated, and improve over time. Get better at styling yourself by adopting a positive mindset.
Keep the right attitude to boost your attractiveness and charisma. Ask your acquaintances for tips to look and do better and make yourself valuable in return.
17. Spend your money carefully
Think carefully about how you spend money on clothes. Take a step back and invest in a smaller number of high-quality pieces, instead of many garments that you only wear just a few times.
Don't fall into the trap of thinking you cannot look great without spending tons of money on clothes. You can easily dress professionally for cheap when you are overweight.
There are many simple ways to afford beautiful fashion even if you don't want to spend too much. Think outside the box to easily craft fabulous work outfits that help you look professional without breaking the bank.
If you focus on buying and wearing quality clothing instead of having too many clothes, you will not only lower your ecological footprint but also improve your fashion style drastically.
18. Stay confident
Try to boost your self-confidence to look and feel your best. Stay positive and keep improving to get better at styling yourself. It's much easier to look professional if you adopt a positive mindset.
Start building your confidence up and grow into the best person you can be. Stay confident and avoid negative thinking at all costs. Love yourself as much as you can and let your body positivity shine towards others.
This mindset shift alone is sure to improve your look and make you more attractive in no time. Being overweight is hard at times but try to remain self-confident with a positive outlook about it.
19. Show your personality
Fashion is the ultimate form of self-expression. Don't hesitate to let your personality shine through your work outfits. Simply focus on what feels right for you, especially when you are overweight.
You can easily look professional if you avoid any clothing that makes you uncomfortable. Whether you like contemporary styles, easygoing, classic pieces, make every outfit you wear at the office your own.
You can take inspiration from others but craft each work outfit just for you according to your fashion style, your body type, your personality, and your preferences.
20. Enjoy yourself
Last but not least, make sure to enjoy yourself. Try to have as much fun as possible with your work outfits. Don't take dressing professionally too seriously.
You can improve the way you look while enjoying the process. Treat it like a hobby to enjoy every moment of the journey. Dressing well is a skill that you can improve with time. You just have to keep practicing.
Even if you are overweight, you can style yourself to positively transform all aspects of your life, making you more confident, social, attractive, unforgettable, and charismatic. Just focus on being happy while crushing it.
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About the Author: Alex Assoune
Alex Assoune (MS) is a global health and environmental advocate. He founded Panaprium to inspire others with conscious living, ethical, and sustainable fashion. Alex has worked in many countries to address social and environmental issues. He speaks three languages and holds two Master of Science degrees in Engineering from SIGMA and IFPEN schools.