In case you’ve been living under a rock for the past two days, Emma Watson just proved exactly why we love her. The former Harry Potter star spoke in front of the U.N. on Saturday as an ambassador for HeForShe, a campaign that encourages men to fight against domestic violence. Watson discussed how the “man hating” image of feminism is completely false and needs to be put to rest. Ten points for Gryffindor.
What else did she prove? That women can be chic and dominate the workforce. Watson wore a silver collared dress with a black belt and pair of heels. What was once a corporate world dominated by baggy pants suits is long gone. Women should — if they want to, of course — bring their personal style to work. Rock that presentation and a new J.Crew dress: Elle Woods style.
Meet the power dress. No matter what your office’s dress code is, you can still look chic and presentable. An added bonus? Dresses are so much for comfortable than pants. Adios, black trousers! Check out these nine dresses to rock in the workplace, no matter if you’re working for a casual startup or as the CEO of the Fortune 500 company.
Grey Striped Chambray Dress, $65, LOFT | Grey Dress, $30, Old Navy | Monki Mini T-Shirt Dress, $38, ASOS
No dress code? Psh, lucky you! It might be hard to dress up a bit when everyone else in the office is wearing jeans. The trick? Pick out something comfortable. Seriously — make cotton your best friend!
These tee shirt dresses from Lou & Grey by LOFT and ASOS are the perfect options for staying comfy while still looking chic. Now that it’s getting colder, try this long-sleeved knit dress from Old Navy. It’s like you never have to change out of your P.J’s.
To top it off, polish your dress with a statement necklace. As for shoes? Stick to something casual, like a cute pair of sneakers or flats, depending on your office. Even though you’re working at a casual office, make sure your outfit’s appropriate. Nothing too short, tight, or revealing!
Matinee Dress, $138, Madewell | Short Sleeve Lace Dress, $108, LOFT | Quarter Sleeve Dress, $70, GAP
This is the perfect balance between dressing a lil bit fancy while still showing off your personal style. Depending on your specific office, business casual workplaces are the perfect place to play around with a trend you’ve been dying to try out.
Perfect for fall? Jeweled toned dresses! Try out this green dress from Gap or this dark blue piece from Madewell. Want something a bit more adventurous? Go for this red lace dress from The LOFT. No matter what your style, make sure to stick to something that covers your shoulders.
As for accessories, try something a bit more polished. Pearl studs or a statement watch are good ways to add a finishing touch. Once again, decide if flats or heels work best based on your office environment.
Grey Belted Dress, $130, Banana Republic | Scalloped Shift Dress, $90, J. Crew Factory | Petal Sleeve Dress, $198, J. Crew
Picking out an outfit in a formal office can be tricky. In order for it to work, you have to find the perfect balance between chic and professional. But if Olivia Pope can do it, you can too. The key here? A fitted dress that’s not too tight or loose. Time to put your tailor on speed dial.
Your best bet is to stick to a neutral color palette. These gray dresses from Banana Republic and J. Crew can be worn instead of a boring suit. For an office that’s a bit more relaxed, try the J. Crew Factory scallop dress.
Keep your accessories simple. As Watson proved to all of us, a slim belt and clutch can make a huge statement. As for heels? Rock them!
Image: Getty Images; Courtesy Brands