Throughout history, fashion has always changed in response to political, economic, or cultural developments taking place around it. This continues to be true today, when adapting to the “new normal” brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic has become a big concern for most. For instance, many people now work remotely and see fit to leave their houses only for essential engagements or errands. As a result, they’re much more likely to prioritize functional and comfortable clothing over dressing to the nines.
Are you a former fashionista who’s had to hang up their heels due to the pandemic? Have you made a career of getting all suited up, only to find yourself a little adrift now you’re working from home? If you’ve generally been feeling lost over how to refocus your wardrobe in light of the new normal, there’s no need to worry. The tips below will provide some helpful starting points for dressing both sensibly and stylishly.
If you’d like to stay especially sanitary on days you have to be out and about, investing in some antimicrobial clothing may be a wise move. Antimicrobial fabrics inhibit the growth of viruses and bacteria, so you can go about your business without worrying that your clothes are a breeding ground for pathogens. Many antimicrobial clothing items also come with other useful features like odor control technology and hypoallergenic properties. Hence, they’re likely to be comfortable even for those with very sensitive skin. To start with, consider buying an antimicrobial face mask online or investing in a few pairs of antimicrobial socks to wear on your regular runs.
Leverage Your Loungewear
You may have fewer places to go and fewer people to impress, but that’s no reason to spend your days in ratty t-shirts and old gym shorts. Treat yourself to some much nicer loungewear and you’re sure to feel light, fresh, and comfortable all day long. As a bonus, you’ll find that many good loungewear pieces are also surprisingly versatile. A pair of quality sweatpants, for example, will be comfortable enough to wear through your daily workout even if you’ve already been lounging in them all day. And if you need to duck out for a quick bank run or trip to the store? Throw a light jacket over those same sweatpants and you’ll be more than good to go.
Rock Some Headwear
Have health and safety restrictions in your area made it impractical to go for your usual cut and color? Or maybe it’s just hard to find the time or energy to get your hair done like you used to? Whatever your reasons, there’s no shame in having let your hair grow long or go untreated over the pandemic. Anytime you’d like to draw attention away from less-than-perfect locks, think of it as an opportunity to flaunt some styling headwear. Your favorite hats, headbands, or even scarves will all do the job of keeping your mane in place as you go about your day. Who knows—you could even hit upon all sorts of ideas for fresh new looks in the process.
Bring a Bag
If you were once the type to leave home with only your phone, keys, and wallet in hand, chances are the new normal will have you reconsidering your habits. These days, it’s safer to keep your essential items in a bag where they won’t be exposed to the air—and by extension to any nasty microbes floating around. Consider in particular a shoulder bag or a sling bag, which will offer you easy access to your things while still allowing you to keep both hands free. For a fully fuss-free experience, look for durable, water-resistant fabrics that will be easy to clean and disinfect later.
Indulge in a Little Flair
When you’re working from home, it can be tempting to spend the whole day in your PJ’s. On some days, however, you might have to look a bit more done up—say, for an important videoconference or a meeting with your boss. And even on regular days when you have nothing special planned, it might still be worthwhile to dress up a bit. Making the effort to look put-together while still remaining comfortable can do wonders for your mood and motivation, after all.
For a relaxed but polished look, search your wardrobe for comfortable but professional pieces you can pull on when it’s time to face the camera. A cardigan, perhaps, or a soft-button down shirt should serve you well here. And don’t be afraid to reach for your makeup and accessories if you’re really feeling yourself; there’s no need at all to pile it all on. Just a few swipes of your favorite mascara or a pretty pair of earrings will take you a long way toward looking and feeling picture-perfect.
Under the new normal, it’s become common practice to dress for utility rather than fashion. At the end of the day, though, there’s no reason you can’t have both if you so choose. It’s entirely possible to dress yourself comfortably and practically while still looking your best, as the tips above have shown. With a little effort and a lot of imagination, your unique sense of style will surely shine through—even from behind a mask.