The Little Things You Can Do to Always Look Professional

Our years of experience on fashion's front lines have taught us a lot of things, but one of the most important skills for girls who are constantly under a sartorial spotlight is to not let any unfavorably scruffy behaviour slip in. Yes, we're British, and we don't always make best friends with our hairbrushes or irons, but you never know when that all-important meeting could come up. No one likes to be caught short with a ketchup-stained blouse, skew-whiff pencil skirt or clickety-clackety stiletto that's lost its heel tip. There's also the psychology behind the matter—if you look untidy or lacking in attention to detail, could that translate into your work? In order to start this week off right, we've thought about all of those little details—virtually cost-free in most cases—that really ensure your closet remains at the top of the leaderboard.

Scroll down to see the tips that keep your outfits looking professional at all times, and then shop some key pieces for a reboot.


You know the little stitches that hold pockets together and are crisscrossed on the back flap of a blazer? Yup, those always need to be undone so the jacket sits correctly on your body!


(Image credit: Le 21ème)


It's a rookie error that can unfortunately make shoes look cheaper than they are. A warm damp cloth (and sometimes a dash of washing up liquid) will help budge the stickiest of labels.


(Image credit: Le 21ème)


It's important to have hems taken up or let down as required so that you can make the most of your trousers. For maximum wear—and so they don't look tired out—we'd suggest making sure they graze about 1cm above the ground. Another tip: Ensure you get these altered when you're wearing the shoes you'd probably pair the pants with in the future.


(Image credit: Style du Monde)


It's the hue that fades the fastest (that's why it's so difficult to find great black vintage clothes), so be sure to keep checking on your black items for visible wear caused by the washing machine. Or be extra careful, and set aside some of your most important pieces for dry cleaning.


(Image credit: Le 21ème)


A little handheld steamer does work miracles—the Fridja F10 Steamer (£100) is a favorite amongst fashion stylists. It takes up far less space, not to mention effort or time, than a full ironing board and iron. You're also less likely to damage your clothes as the process is generally softer on fabrics. It's a lifetime investment, so try not to baulk at the price.


(Image credit: Le 21ème)

Related: French Fashion: 10 Secrets to Dressing Like the World's Chicest Women


That clacking sound and the possibility that you'll skid across pavements should be enough to make sure you keep your heels in tip-top condition at all times!


(Image credit: Style Snooper Dan)


Don't forget that your look is a 360 experience. If you're all rumpled and ill-fitting at the back then the full effect will be lost. We're looking for smooth lines here (no VPLs, please!), and something that has interesting detailing on the back is always a welcome surprise.


(Image credit: Le 21ème)


Everyone enters the all-but-the-kitchen-sink zone now and then (it happens so quickly), but try to stay on top of clearing out your handbag so that a) you'll be able to tote—rather than lumberjack—it around, and b) you won't have that embarrassing moment when you're scrambling around for a pen and instead end up revealing an altogether more awkward item.


(Image credit: The Style Stalker)

Shop our favourite office-friendly pieces below.

Hannah Almassi
Editor in Chief

Hannah Almassi is the Editor in Chief of Who What Wear UK. Hannah has been part of the the Who What Wear brand since 2015, when she was headhunted to launch the UK sister site and social channels, implement a localised content strategy and build out the editorial team. She joined following a seven-year tenure at Grazia magazine, where she led front-of-book news, fashion features and shopping specials as fashion news and features editor. With experience in both print and digital across fashion and beauty, Hannah has over 16 years in the field as a journalist, editor, content strategist and brand consultant. Hannah has interviewed industry heavyweights such as designers including Marc Jacobs and Jonathan Anderson through to arbiters of taste including Katie Grand and Anna Dello Russo. A skilled moderator and lecturer specialising in the shift to digital media and e-commerce, Hannah’s opinion and work has been sought by the likes of CNBC, BBC, The Sunday Times Style, The Times, The Telegraph and, among many others. Hannah is often called upon for her take on trends, becoming known as a person with their finger of the pulse of what’s happening in the fashion space for stylish Brits. Hannah currently resides in Eastbourne with her photographer husband, incredibly busy son and highly Instagrammable cat.