It’s that time of the year: holiday party season. Whether it’s your significant other’s office party, close friends that are having people over, or celebrating a successful year with colleagues, how should you show up? From what to wear, what to say, and how to say it, we’ve got you covered!
Dress Code – What type of events is it?
- Black tie/formal: For men, this means a tuxedo. Gentlemen should be clean-shaven. For women, this requires a gown.
- Cocktail/Dressy: Most events will fall into the casual spectrum. Men, you can wear slacks, a dress shirt, tie and jacket, or even dark wash tailored jeans. Ladies, length is key here. Keep skirts no shorter than 1″ above the knee. A good rule of thumb is to avoid sheer fabrics, tight dresses, or anything displaying cleavage.
Grooming – If you are going straight from office to occasion, a grooming strategy is a must.
- Men: Bring a shaving kit if necessary. If not clean shaven, bring appropriate grooming products to look tidy. A touch of hair gel can make hair look more elegant and put together.
- Ladies: Have a day to night makeup strategy. The difference in lighting can make a sophisticated day look appear washed out. Even adding some extra mascara and eyeliner can elevate a look from day to night. Depending on the outfit, eyes, and comfort level, this could be a great time for a bold lip. Shades of matte or satin holiday red, bordeaux, and fig would all be great for a holiday event.
Network and showcase your social skills
- Have 2-3 fun topics to discuss. Consider pop culture, favorite TV show, new restaurant, volunteer work, blog, or bake. Balance other’s perceptions of you.
Be beverage & food savvy.
- Drink responsibly. You will see these people again. Limit drinks to two. In between drinks, sip water or soda with lemon or lime. No one will know that it’s not a mixed drink.
- Eat before you arrive. Not only will this help to metabolize alcohol, but it will help manage your appetite, so you’re not desperately hovering near the buffet table. Plus, you’ll have time to meet more people.
Go as a team.
- Whether you’re bringing a guest, or you are a guest at a holiday party, make sure that you go with a common goal in mind.
- Run through important people and connections before you go, and find ways to support the person that you’re with. Go as a part of a team, not just as an obligation.