5 Biggest Mistakes Women Make When Dressing for a Presentation

This week we are discussing how women should dress for a successful presentation. Next week will be the men’s turn. Important note: With all of these recommendations, ultimately you do you. But I hope the five suggestions below will heighten your awareness of what people notice about how you look BEFORE you even open your mouth to speak.

1. The “Too Much” Tendency

Ladies, leave the distracting jewelry, jangling earrings, heavy makeup, loud perfume, and “big” hair at home.

2. The “Too Little” Tendency

Avoid the “too little” tendency: too little makeup, too little jewelry, too little skirt, too little clothing—seriously. Business presentations are not the ideal time to be bringing sexy back.

3. Open-Toed Shoes

Call me conservative, but stick with closed-toe shoes. No one wants to look at your toenails while you are talking.

4. Animal and Floral Print Clothing

You may not want to wear your favorite animal print blouse, bright floral jacket, and even pronounced hound’s tooth patterns. Those are distracting. They don’t look good from the stage, and they don’t look good on camera. That’s why you see news reporters wearing solid colors.

5. Skirt Length

Measure your skirt length. When up on a platform, you’ll want your skirt or dress length to fall anywhere between one inch below your knees to one inch above, depending on your body type.

Bonus Tip: Be careful not to walk into the presentation with your sunglasses atop your head.


To customize a keynote or professional development session that will have your audience laughing and learning, contact Mandi Stanley.

Certified Speaking Professional Mandi Stanley works with business leaders who want to boost their professional image by becoming better speakers and writers through interactive high-content keynotes, breakout sessions, workshops, technical writing seminars, and fun proofreading classes. 

You might also like:

“Own” the Room Before, During, and AFTER Your Presentation

How to Make Natural Eye Contact With Your Audience

4 Steps to Ace a Proper Speaker’s Stance

Photo by kevin laminto on Unsplash