Jeans Have Finally Entered The Business-Casual Conversation (& We Know How To Style Them)

The “business casual” dress code is famously confusing. After all, we want to look stylish but not overdressed, understated but not too casual, and professional — but not dull. It’s challenging to nail business casual dressing. Yet, the confusing dress code arguably isn’t as stressful in 2023. “Fashion is leaning more and more toward the casual end of the spectrum as each year goes by, especially in a post-2020 world where the old business-formal office requirements are out of date for many workers,” style consultant Soneca Guadara tells InStyle.

Things have changed in the working world, partially because of the pandemic and the increased use of technology. Many in-person meetings have been replaced with Zoom calls. People now opt for standing desks or bean bag chairs instead of traditional cubicles, and many bosses no longer require employees to wear suits and dresses to work every day. Of course, sweatpants and hoodies are typically never acceptable for business casual outfits, but now, jeans are making the cut — with successful styling.

Keep it simple and sleek

One of the most prominent mistakes people make when attempting to master the business casual dress code is overthinking it. As long as you focus on pairing your jeans with flattering, clean garments, you’ll look appropriate at work. Instead of wearing overwhelming patterns and silhouettes, find pieces that fit your body well and have a polished appearance for professional energy.

Stay within the same color range

When wearing blue jeans, it’s a good idea to wear a blue top and jacket with them to present a monochromatic, cohesive ensemble. The clothes don’t all have to be the same shade of blue, but by staying within the blue range, your outfit will look put together rather than sloppy. So take this as permission to buy some blue blouses and blazers to pair with your blue jeans.

Wear a stylish turtleneck

Turtlenecks are perfect for business casual ensembles because these cozy tops look cute with jeans and are modest yet chic. By wearing a turtleneck, you’ll never be showing too much skin, so you’ll exude professional energy in any work environment. Also, the turtleneck will keep you nice and warm if your office gets chilly.

Dress your jeans up with heels

The easiest way to dress up any outfit is to wear high heels. Classic pumps instantly make your jeans look dressier, so don’t be afraid to wear heels at work for a chic business casual look. Furthermore, you’ll always look taller in heels, which could help you feel more confident in various professional settings.

Think about your outerwear

A jacket or coat can make or break any outfit. The wrong outerwear can ruin even the most beautiful ensembles, but stylish pieces can instantly elevate any look in your wardrobe while keeping you warm. Blazers, dusters, or trench coats are chic outerwear options you can pair with jeans for a business casual outfit. Just make sure the piece fits you well and doesn’t clash with the rest of your ensemble.


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