Standard dress codes for retail stores

Written by leanne clute
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Standard dress codes for retail stores
Suits may be required if you work in a high-end retail store. (suit image by Kimberly Reinick from

When working in a retail job there are specific requirements for the uniform that are outlined by the company or store owner. Dress codes and uniforms help consumers identify those that are at the store to help them. The type of uniform or dress code that an employee is asked to follow varies greatly depending on the type of retail store where she works. The way an employee dresses shows direct representation of the company that she works for.

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Speciality Shop Dress Code

The most lax dress codes for retail jobs exist at speciality shops. These are those stores that offer memorabilia, antiques, artisan crafts or musician items as well as other things. The atmosphere is typically laid back and welcoming to patrons who share the same interest. Employees are able to dress in clothing that fits the theme of the store. For example, if the store sells music and guitars, employees may wear jeans, sneakers and a band T-shirt. A speciality shop can be considered any store that focuses on a specific interest for the consumer, which can also include adult items and smoking tools.

Semi-Casual Dress Code

A popular choice for retail stores is to give employees guidelines of what their uniform should be. Black trousers, name tag, belt and red shirt are an example of guidelines that employees follow. This allows the employer to have all of the staff dress similarly without being responsible for supplying them with specific items to wear as part of their "uniform." Employers may also give staff members a shirt that is customised for the business and then require them to buy trousers, shoes and accessories that meet the assigned dress code.

Formal Dress Code

Formal dress codes are implemented in high-end retail stores. If you visit a bridal store, high-end gift shop or suit store you will notice that the staff wears a specific style of suit to help keep the image of the store intact. Formal dress codes may also be implemented in other retail stores as well. Victoria's Secret sells lingerie, perfumes and other clothing; each of their employees is required to dress in a black suit. While this may not be considered a luxury or high-end store, the company aims to achieve a professional appearance. Stores that enforce a formal dress code may also require staff to wear professional grade attire, which includes a button-down shirt, pressed slacks and dress shoes.

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