What Is Business Casual Anymore? This Capsule Wardrobe Explains It All

In all the time spent working from home, I forgot “business casual” even existed. After all, what is it even anymore? In my honest opinion, I feel like everyone was still a little confused on the guidelines of the dress code before this year, and now, it’s even a little bit more confusing. If you’re wondering the same things, don’t worry. You’re not alone. The term itself is an oxymoron since business and casual are totally conflicting styles. Plus, everyone’s version of the dress code this past year has been a Zoom-ready shirt on top, comfy pants on the bottom.

If you’re heading back into the office and need a refresher on what to wear, we’ve put together a capsule wardrobe that’ll make it much easier for you. Below, you’ll find the exact pieces you need to make the perfect modern-day business casual ensemble.

Relaxed Trousers

Not only are relaxed rousers on-trend, but they’re also easy to style. Wear skinny pants if that’s your preference, but these are a perfect way to look forward but still feel comfortable.

Mango Side Slit Linen-Blend Trouserss ($70)

Vice Pleated Twill Tapered Pants ($325)

H&M Created Pants ($30)

Strappy Sandals

Strappy sandals are a must-have staple, but especially in the office. They immediately elevate any look, even if your outfit is just a plain white blouse and trousers.

Alias ​​Mae Ellery Strappy Sandals ($160)

Senso Monica Sandals ($149)

Zara Strappy Heeled Leather Sandals ($80)

Structured Flats

Whether they’re loafers or mules, structured flats will help you be comfortable on your feet but still help pull your look together.

Mansur Gavriel Square Ballerina Flats ($395)

Mango Leather Loafers With Chain ($70)

Open Edit Ednash Mule ($60)

Easy Dresses

Sometimes, you have no idea what you want to wear to work. This is where easy dresses come into play. Just throw one on and pair it with minimal accessories, and you’re good to go.

Staud Guilia Dress ($325)

Eloquii Cross Front Flutter Sleeve Dress ($100)

Theory Mini Shirt Dress ($262)

Practical Carryalls

I remember the good ol’ office days when I schlepped around multiple bags. For the future, I’m going to invest in a quality carryall that can, at least, fit most of my stuff.

Who What Wear Kory Faux Leather Tote ($100)

Marc Jacobs Mini Traveler Tote ($225)

Staud Shirley Bag ($295)


Do I even have to explain this one? Pair with trousers, a skirt, and—if your office allows it—jeans.

H&M Oversized Shirt ($25)

Reformation Parker Relaxed Button-Up Shirt ($78)

Quality Tees

It is business casual, right? Quality T-shirts are perfect for layering underneath blazers.

Zara Oversized T-Shirt ($13)

Madewell Roo Tee ($45)

Midi Skirts

In my opinion, midi skirts are top-tier over maxi and mini. They hit the perfect length and can easily be styled for the office and dressed up for an after-work gathering.

Open Edit Side Ruched Skirt ($45)

Nanushka Amas Vegan Leather Wrap Skirt ($465)

Zara Linen Blend Midi Skirt ($50)

Oversize Blazers

Gone are the days of the fitted blazer you saw on office TV shows. The updated version is a slouchier and more relaxed fit.

Open Edit Blazer ($75)

The Frankie Shop Isla Crepe Blazer ($300)

Zara Straight Cut Linen Blazer ($119)

Lightweight Tops

Find lightweight, interesting blouses that can be worn easily without layering.

& Other Stories Fitted Smocked Ruffle Top ($89)

Who What Wear Balloon 3/4 Sleeve Top ($30)

Song of Style Raylan Top ($178)

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This article originally appeared on Who What Wear

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