When was the last time you had to look extremely formal and professional?
While we all love to look our best, that can mean many things depending on the situation. For example, looking your best for a night out with friends in Vegas may be entirely different than looking your best for a wedding or job interview.
Some events require us to look as professional as possible, and arguably the most demanding and important of these times is when you have to make an appearance in court. Whether you’re a juror, the defendant, or a lawyer, court is a situation where the dress code is always professional. Let’s explore some of the best ways to achieve that formal, all-business kind of look.
Understanding What It Means to Dress Professionally
You may have the perfect body and are used to showing it off in casual situations. But when it’s necessary to dress like a professional, it’s best to cover up cleavage, and conservative attire is the most appropriate option. If you’re used to fun, trendy make-up and hairstyles, you might want to tone it down for court or a job interview.
Ultimately, a court appearance or other formal event is not the time to let your freak flag fly, but rather, it’s the time to dress as if you’re the CEO of your own company so you convey that you mean business.
Find a Suit That Fits Well
Just because you need a suit doesn’t mean you have to break the bank getting one. Besides, it’s far more important that it fits well than that it’s made by Versace or some other luxury brand. Brands like Express and J. Crew offer stylish suits for less than opens in a new window$200 that will have you showing up looking your absolute best.
What Outfits Are Appropriate for Women in Court?
While any fitting suit will make men look like a million bucks, women have more options to consider. A dress suit or pants suit is a professional-looking option that women can wear, but dresses can be ok as well.
For formal events, it’s appropriate to wear dresses that have a solid color rather than eye-catching designs. Shoes should also be dressy and emphasize professionalism more than sex appeal.
Optimizing Your Smile
Depending on your role in court, you may have to speak in front of others. A mouth full of white, healthy teeth is more likely to make a great first impression.
The fact is, people judge each other pretty heavily by their teeth. One-third of Americans say that a person’s smile is the opens in a new windowfirst thing they notice, and a crooked or stained one can make you appear less intelligent or successful.
What Can You Do to Quickly Improve Your Smile?
While advanced procedures like porcelain veneers can vastly improve your smile, they also cost time and money you may not have before your big event. However, one treatment that can vastly enhance your smile in a short time is a professional teeth whitening from a dentist like opens in a new windowDr. Michelle Taylor. By simply checking the websites of dentists in your area, you can find one that specializes in cosmetic services to make sure your smile’s on point when you need it most.
Impeccable Grooming and Hair
If you’re someone who likes fun, wild hairstyles or has a hands-off policy when it comes to managing your beard, you’ll want to appear to be a bit more put together on your court date.
This means ensuring that short hair isn’t unkempt and sticking out everywhere and that long hair is worn in a neat way. Facial hair isn’t a dealbreaker, but should be well-groomed, with no hair on the neck. Consider beard oil to give your facial hair a soft appearance.
Other Crucial Tips for Success On Your Court Date
Having your hair, teeth, and attire on point is an excellent start for making a great first impression in court. Follow these other tips to further enhance your chances of success:
- If you’re shaking hands with lawyers or other personnel, ensure that your handshake is solid, but isn’t firm enough to hurt the other person.
- If you do happen to be the defendant, remember that it’s strongly recommended not to represent yourself, no matter how good you look. Instead, hiring a competent opens in a new windowattorney who knows the city will give you the best odds of success.
- Eye contact is a touchy topic. Generally, it’s good to make respectful eye contact with everyone, while knowing there’s a difference between looking someone in the eyes and staring them down.
- Your voice is another way opens in a new windowpeople judge you. It’s normal to be nervous in formal situations like job interviews or court dates, but the better you are at annunciating, the more intelligent and competent you’ll seem.
Look Professional for the Important Events in Your Life
While going out with friends and on dates is a perfect time to wear trendy clothes and look sexy, there are also times to reel it in and dress like you’re a serious person. There are many reasons why someone may end up in formal situations and even court, and knowing how to look as professional as possible will convey all the right things to the people you’ll meet there.
Nicholas Napier is a Navy Vet and MBA living in San Diego. He works as an SEO specialist and writer while hosting the Rogue Writers Podcast. His interests include philosophy, fitness, nutrition, and martial arts. For inquiries, email Nicholas.