The #1 Thing HR Wants You To Stop Wearing | Of Mercer

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Career and Life

The #1 Thing HR Wants You To Stop Wearing

(and what to wear instead.)

We totally get it: there’s nothing better than rocking a pair of stretchy and flattering leggings. We’re all guilty of trying to dress up our favorite pair for the office, hoping our boss won’t notice that we just came straight from yoga class.

But while you may be gliding down the halls and humming “om,” HR is looking at you and saying “um...?” In fact, the uptick in ladies wearing athleisure (inappropriately) to work is the number one complaint we receive from HR departments when it comes to office dress codes. If you are currently rationalizing your own athleisure wearing in your head, we totally get it.  But at least hear us out.

What you wear at work is a testament to your resourcefulness in being able to find an appropriate solution (i.e., comfortable clothes) to a common problem (i.e., dressing for the office). Think about it: even in the chicest pair of leggings, you’re sending the message that you’re one to easily cut corners, or perhaps that you’re feeling a little too relaxed about your surroundings. There’s no need to downplay your seriousness about your work just because of a pair of pants. A good rule of thumb to follow is if they’re made for sweating in or sleeping in, you shouldn’t be working in them too.

There’s no need to go to extreme lengths just to feel comfortable at work, either. Luckily for you, there are many ways to get that wonderful yoga pants feeling and still look completely professional. In fact, we made our Essex Pants with fellow athleisure enthusiasts in mind. They’re high-waisted (read: comfy) skinny pants that have “real pant” features like belt loops and pockets, achieving a perfect balance between coziness and professionalism.

Of Mercer Elliot DressOf Mercer Reade Jardigan

Athleisure-style comfort at the office doesn’t stop at pants.  Stock up on dresses made with wrinkle-free fabric or a feminine drape for a vinyasa-style flowy feeling that still looks polished for your 9-to-5. Take our Elliot Dress. It’s flowy yet feminine with a modern print, making it perfect for both overtime and OOO time. Gone are the days of boxy, itchy blazers too. Our reversible Reade Jardigan is perfect for those days that call for the polish of a blazer and the comfort of a cardigan at the same time. (Jacket + Cardigan = Jardigan...)

Our advice? Save the leggings for the gym. It’s not as hard as you may think to stay comfy AND keep HR on your side. We promise that it’s easier than mastering a headstand.