As someone who has worked from home for five years, I know a thing or two about waking up and changing out of my nighttime pajamas and putting on my daytime “pajamas.” I also know a few things about putting on athletic wear first thing in the morning as a nod to my future hopes of squeezing a midday run or workout. And putting on jeans and makeup, just to sit inside my house and look professional. In the past five years, I’ve run the gamut of figuring out what not to wear while trying to be productive, comfortable, and several degrees away from slobbish while working from home. But it was only recently that I was introduced to the psychology behind why clothes can impact how we feel and how we work.
While researching a story about productivity, I unearthed a study that explored the importance of “enclothed cognition”—aka the effect clothes have on a wearer’s psychological process—on performance. In the study, two groups of participants were each given a white lab coat to wear. The first group was told it was a doctor’s coat; the second group was told that it was a painter’s. According to the study results, the first group performed their tasks more sharply, more focused, and with higher attention levels–with the qualities that are typically associated with a doctor. In other words, what you wear (or what you perceive you’re wearing) may very well impact how you wok.
That’s why it might be time to swap your Nike running shorts and university sweatshirt for a few new work-from-home outfits. Here are our top picks–one for each day of the work week.
Lululemon x Robert Geller Take the Moment Pant and Long Sleeve Top
These two pieces are the kind that can be put on repeat, no matter the season. With the look of a dress pant but the comfort of a jogger, the Take The Moment pants feel just technical enough, with stretch and density that elevates them above sweatpants and chinos, hinting that they could take on something more adventure than sitting at one’s laptop. The Take the Moment long sleeve top is with a jacquard pattern and has a weight to it that makes it feel high end but not bulky. The shape of each of these pieces make them stand out from the rest of your closet. They’re unique, designed with sharp, smart, and flattering lines (thanks to German designer Richard Geller), while maintaining the comfort of all your favorite Lulu pieces. Little details like the snap-button closure on the pants and the soft swath of buttery fabric along the shirt’s neckline (to keep it from feeling itchy) make all the difference.
Take the Moment Pant, $109; Take the Moment Long Sleeve Top, $99
What looks like a cute, casual dress but feels like the perfect oversize tee that you love to sleep in? This little number right here. Made of a lightweight jersey knit fabric (with a little bit of stretch), this dress feels like buttery, bouncy, soft clouds that I can only imagine exist in wardrobe heaven. Seriously, this is an outfit that will never be in your closet because you’ll never want to take it off your body. And fortunately, sweet little design details–like the curved hem and subtle side slits–keep it looking put together and intentional, whether you pair it with sandals, sneakers, or slippers. Oh, and it has pockets.
$62, shop here
Camilla and Marc Blair Knit Pant and Zora Tee
On my most stir-crazy days, I like to believe that I live in an apartment overlooking the Adriatic, eat exotic fruits for breakfast, and glide around town wearing the Blair Knit Pant from the Australian women’s fashion label Camilla and Marc. These pants are as elegant as they come, but are just as perfect for lounging as they are for going out at night. They are made of a high-quality, super soft, and breathable knit fabric and feature a high-waisted elastic waist band. Very comfy. And paired with a classic fit black tee shirt, they are anything but pretentious.
Blair Knit Pant, $450; Zora Tee, $99
Frank and Oak Transit Grant Tapered Pull-on Pant and Short Sleeve Camp Collar Blouse
If you haven’t yet encountered the modern, eco-friendly, and ethically sourced clothing from Frank and Oak, this is the perfect introduction: the cool-kid tapered pull-on pant and the breezy camp collar button up. Each of these pieces are Swiss Army knives of any wardrobe: versatile and convenient. The Transit Grant Tapered Pull-on Pant is made of 52% recycled polyester, 43% wool, and 5% spandex for the perfect oomph of stretch. The pants feature an elastic waistband, a cropped cut with a sharp cuff, and universally flattering straight-leg silhouette. Truly, they are the sweatpants of the trouser world. And topping them off with the Short Sleeve Camp Collar Blouse is a treat. This breezy, astonishingly lightweight viscose top is everything you love about fancy summer sleepwear with its generously boxy cut, button-down design, and simple (and out-of-the-way) collar.
Transit Grant Tapered Pull-on Pant, $119; Short Sleeve Camp Collar Blouse, $69.50
Frame Le Muscle Maxi Dress and the Kaila dress from Reformation
Even in a time where none of us have Friday night dates (aside from those with our streaming platforms to watch more documentaries and FaceTime with a cocktail in hand for virtual happy hour), it still feels nice to dress like you have zesty plans to kick off the weekend. That’s where the Le Muscle maxi dress from L.A. brand Frame comes in. It cuts a statuesque figure with its length, cutoff sleeves, and crew neck–but feels like a soft hug from your favorite organic cotton sheets.
$195, shop here
Or if you prefer a dress that has summery goddess vibe, we recommend the flattering scoop neck, stretch-knit Kaila dress from Reformation. This chic number is like a tank dress mixed with a wraparound skirt, all in one. It’s comfortable enough to wear at your desk and nice enough to bring a festive vibe to your evening Zoom cocktail hour.
$98, shop here
Looking for more recommendations? Check out our other handpicked suggestions.
- Here’s how to boost your Wi-Fi while working from home
- Getting sick of your screen? Try these 11 family-friendly board games
- Do all-natural soaps and cleaners work against COVID-19?
- Need a natural light pick-me-up? Try these wellness light bulbs
- Feeling anxious? This weighted comforter might chill you out
- Kids stuck at home? Here are 5 perfect Chromebooks for homeschooling and play
- The quarantined reader: 10 brilliant nonfiction pandemic books
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