What is appropriate business casual attire at a conference? What is appropriate garb depends on the industry’s standards and codes, as well as the time, location, and purpose of the conference. This guideline will give examples of what is generally appropriate to wear at a business conference.
Business Casual Attire
Business casual attire allows you some leeway in wardrobe choices. However, some limitations still apply. Some of the standard business casual dress code applies to both genders. For instance, all attire and accessories should be made from quality materials, and be upgradable for more formal occasions. All garb must be clean, pressed, well-fitting, and in excellent condition.
For Both Genders
Black, gray, navy blue, or khaki pants, with a long-sleeved, buttoned solid colored (usually white or light blue) shirt/blouse. Polo or golf shirts may be worn for more casual or outdoor events.
Shoes should be comfortable, clean, not worn, and well-polished. Athletic shoes are not appropriate.
Jewelry and accessories should be kept conservative and limited, other than modest earrings for women, no body piercings or tattoos should be showing.
Specifically for Men
For men, ties are optional by this dress code. Long-sleeved shirts are appropriate all year round, and are usually preferred over short-sleeved. Polo shirts, wore tucked in, are acceptable in more casual settings. The socks should be mid-calf length and match the shoes and ensemble.
Specifically for Women
Women may wear tailored skirts or creased pants, which should be made of crisp fabrics. Never fail colors include solid navy, black, gray, brown, or khaki. Skirts should come to just below the knee, and not more than two inches above the knee. Skirts may have slits in the back of the skirt, but should not reveal your legs. Slips and undergarments should not be showing. Additionally, women may wear knit sweaters.
Other Conference Tips
- Take at least one formal outfit with you.
- Avoid displaying any logos, slogans, obscene, controversial, or discriminatory messages and images.
- Avoid any clothing that is too tight, too baggy, or too revealing- undergarments, cleavage, and mid-riff should always remain covered when in public, even outside of conference events.
United Nations Association of the USA.
Dress for Success | Model UN Preparation Guide
Career Services | Virginia Tech
Business casual attire
SOM – State of Michigan
Examples of Dress Code Policies