I had an interview when I was 23, for a role that was similar to what I already had and after the interview, the recruiter called me and said that I hadn’t got the feedback because apparently I didn’t look “tidy enough for a corporate role”…I sat in my car on my way home from the interview and wondered what that even meant. I had worn smart, navy trousers from H&M with a tiny polka dot print all over, and a blue, button down shirt with some patent black loafers. I quickly began to realise, the way I had dressed showed too much of my personality for a corporate environment.
Over the nearly 6 years I spent within the City bubble, I realised that my personal style had changed. I had always been a jeans, tee and a blazer kinda gal and once I got there, I found myself questioning my style and wardrobe, a collection of clothing I had curated over a number of years. I swapped my jeans for simple black trousers so as not to commit a similar faux pas as I did in my early twenties; and began to tie back my thick, curly hair or straighten it, in a bid to conform to the more conservative and therefore acceptable, style of dress. At the time, I didn’t realise how much I was curtailing myself by wearing clothing that just wasn’t me. I bought simple black pumps and added pencil skirts and white, collared shirts into my wardrobe, with the mindset that I wore my work clothing 80% of the time and my “me” clothes the remaining 20% so wanted to have more of that.