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You receive an invitation to a party or event and that knot tightens in your stomach upon seeing the words ‘smart casual dress code’.

We all know the fear of not knowing what to wear, trying to avoid appearing over dressed or under dressed. It doesn’t have to be as gut wrenching as you think though! Use our complete guide to dressing for the most popular dress codes, and you’ll be able to show up to your next event confident in your chosen outfit.


A casual dress code is the most informal dress code that there is. This should leave you feeling relaxed as you can be sure that almost anything will fit in perfectly. While jeans and a t-shirt might be the perfect choice for this dress code, make sure that your clothing is clean and doesn’t have any holes or tears, unless designed to.

Smart Casual

These are probably the words which encourage the most fear in event goers, smart casual is a tricky dress code. You need to wear clothing that would suit every day life, but that still looks smart and like you’ve made an effort. Pick out your best jeans or trousers and pair them with a buttoned up shirt or polo shirt. Check out Stand Out Clothing for the perfect items when facing a smart casual dress code.


If you’re heading to an event labelled ‘smart’ then you need to make sure that you’re looking your best. It’s wise to avoid jeans and opt for smart trousers with smart shoes. You should definitely be wearing a shirt for this event but no tie is needed. Try to accompany your outfit with a nice watch and maybe some cufflinks if you want to go the extra mile. Make sure to be well groomed and have everything crisply ironed.

Black Tie

A black tie event is one you should attend in a suit, with of course a black tie. While it isn’t 100% necessary to wear a waistcoat, if you want to impress, then we suggest that you do. This dress code is the second highest level so you need to ensure that you look very smart to fit in. Make sure that your shoes are polished and that whatever suit you are wearing is colour matched perfectly.

White Tie

This is the highest level of dress code, so you’re going to have to be ultra smart. At a white tie event, you’ll be expected to be wearing a bow tie and full suit, including waistcoat and possibly a coat with a tail. So make sure you’ve taken your best suit to the dry cleaners to ensure that it’s pristine for the event.

Once you know the basics of a dress code, you’ll be sure to dress perfectly for the event. So don’t panic when your next invitation arrives, just follow our easy guide and your outfit will fit in with the crowd.

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