Is It Ok To Wear A Beanie To Work?

Whether it’s a bit chilly outside or you’re having a rough hair day, tossing on a beanie is a solid go-to; but, what about for work? These days, business casual can lean as far on the casual side as possible. Plenty of up-and-coming companies opt for a chill culture, and that includes dress codes. Still, the following question has yet to be blatantly answered: is it ok to wear a beanie to work?

No, it’s not typically appropriate to wear a beanie to work, especially if you work in a professional environment. In fact, if you want to create the most professional appearance, it’s best to avoid wearing a hat of any kind to work. You can always check with your employer, but when in doubt, you should leave your beanie at home.

So, what makes beanies a no-go for work?

And what other items should you avoid wearing to your 9 to 5?

Well, for the rest of this guide, we’re going to cover just about everything you need to know.

Beginner’s Guide To Basic Hat Etiquette

It’s 2021. Who even cares about etiquette in the modern world?

Well, believe it or not, many workplaces are still relatively old school when it comes to dress codes. Not to mention, there is basic hat etiquette that everyone should make note of in any setting, not only for work.

For years, the hat etiquette between men and women has been a bit blurry.

When it comes to manners, wearing a hat indoors for men has generally always been frowned upon.

Things are a bit different for women; as long as the headwear is a necessary fashion piece to their ensemble, it’s usually acceptable.

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Why Beanies In The Office Is A No-Go

Although office dress codes are becoming more and more lenient every day, there are still some rules concerning attire that each employer has a right to put in place.

Regardless of required apparel at your office, hats lie smack-dab at the forefront of most corporate dress codes. And beanies—a commonly-known type of hat—are particularly unnecessary.

With the leisure energy that a beanie typically reflects, it’s best to keep things on the professional side at work and lose it.

Working in an office entails plenty of impromptu meetings with your superiors and various businesslike tasks that are likely to pop up throughout your workday. That said, beanies are generally too casual of an accessory choice, plain and simple. And while they could be dressed up (not without some hardcore effort), their dressy abilities are generally not enough to exude “executive” vibes.

So, to play the career game safely and promote the right kind of image, you might be better off just taking some extra time to maintain nicely combed hair when you’re heading into work.

Are There Any Exceptions?

Although beanies aren’t appropriate workplace attire for offices and corporate companies, there may be some outlier circumstances when a beanie would be considered a fine choice of accessory.

Say, for example, you work in construction in the dead of winter. Wearing a beanie below your hard hat seems perfectly acceptable in such a scenario.

Another potentially safe situation might depend on your company culture.

If your office holds a casual dress code or doesn’t require one at all, a beanie might totally work well for you in terms of fitting in.

But, of course, don’t put all of your eggs in my basket when it comes to hats-in-the-office exceptions.

Be sure to check with your boss about whether or not a beanie would be against the dress code to dodge any hot water at work.

Other Clothing You Should Avoid In The Workplace

So, we’ve covered the concept of beanies being unprofessional and too lax for the office. But, in other news, beanies aren’t the only things you should avoid wearing to work.

Whether your company opts for a business-professional or smart-casual dress code, there are plenty of accessories and apparel—aside from the obvious ringleaders like revealing clothing—that most organizations can agree are inappropriate for work.

And being in the dark about the shared culprits can lead to some serious workplace clothing blunders.

To help you continue to follow your office dress codes and stay in good standing, let’s jump into a few other frequently-frowned-upon attire options that you’d be better off saving for your weekend barbecues with your neighborhood buds.


It’s not quite a sandal, and it honestly should barely be considered a true shoe. Yeah, sure; maybe you’ve got a long, walking commute, and your feet like to breathe.

But, take it from us. No toe is considered beautiful enough to be flaunted around the office—not even if it belongs to a foot model.

Not to mention, the smacking of flip-flops should be enough to get anyone fired. Save yourself (and everyone else) from any hardship and leave them at home.

Muscle Tees

Everyone loves a good bicep. But, in all reality, you’re not lifting weights at work.

If you can’t take the time to throw on a shirt with some sleeves, maybe you should look into getting a job at your closest gym.

I think I speak for everyone wearing a regular shirt to work when I tell you that your colleagues don’t want to see your armpits all day.

In fact, this pretty much goes for all gym attire—save it for your after-work workouts. The office is no place for basketball shorts or sweaty socks.

Although everyone should be glad to see that you’re being healthy and exercising, it’s nothing that needs to be brought to work with you.

If you’d like the cute new head of HR to know you work out, just humblebrag about it during lunch while you’re wearing something office-appropriate.

Overly-Embellished Jeans

If your job allows jeans, please do yourself a favor and avoid the Rock Revivals. Overly-embellished denim is far too obnoxious for the workplace.

I’m sure everyone wants to keep the attention on the work you put out there instead of being blinded by your loud jeans.

Even in the most casual dress codes, opt for some clean, dark-wash jeans with little-to-no garnishes to keep things on the professional side of the spectrum.

Strong-Smelling Cologne Or Perfume

Now, don’t get the wrong idea here. A fresh scent isn’t entirely bad. It’s those who over-wear it that make it that way.

So, as long as you’re consistently showering and keeping yourself clean, cologne or perfume isn’t necessary for work. I mean, who are you trying to impress?

Likely, you’re not legally allowed to date your co-workers, so save the cologne for your after-work specials. Not to mention, it’s borderline unprofessional to wear a strong scent to work.

Allergies are real, and you could trigger some serious issues for your cubemate.

Bottom Line

If you’re hoping to keep a professional image at the office, beanies aren’t the best avenue. Even if you’re attempting to hide a botched haircut, or it’s a little below freezing outside, save the beanie for the slopes.

While each office has a dress code of its own, there are specific guidelines that are shared by various corporations, especially in corporate offices that require employees to maintain business-professional ensembles.

Regardless, taking the time to lose the hat and style your hair will save you–and everyone else–from any unnecessary distractions, and, more importantly, it’ll ensure you keep your job.

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