For some guys, casual Friday means going for comfort and letting down on standards for appearance. While the intention of this day of the week is to go for comfort and being a little more laid back, it doesn’t mean that professionalism goes out the window. There is still a need to look good and put your best foot forward. Believe it or not, you can dress down and still look great. Here’s what to do and what not to do on casual Fridays.

Ban on tasteless t-shirts

Unless you are wearing a company sponsored t shirt it’s generally a good idea to avoid going for your favorite old comfortable T. Go with a stylish top that is casual yet still classy. It doesn’t have to be fancy but it should present you in an attractive light. Avoid grunge as though it is the plague. In fact, avoid anything that looks sloppy, threadbare or is ill fitting. Instead choose a nice shirt that you feel very comfortable in that send the message that you are casually professional.

Pick the best pants

Casual Friday really doesn’t mean wear your sweats to work. If they’re not appropriate any other day of the week, they’re really not on casual friday either. If your company is relaxed you can probably get by with wearing a nice pair of dockers or even stylish jeans. So long as they are within acceptable boundaries, go for great fit, great looks and comfort. If your company is a suit and tie organization, the dockers or nice casual slacks may be your best option.

Don’t let down on shoes and socks

This is a good opportunity to dress down and wear comfortable shoes but they should still be in good repair, clean and suitable for the job you’ll be doing. Resist the urge to wear your well worn sneakers or a pair of flip flops for the simple reason that it can leave the impression that you’re a slob and you don’t care about your appearance. This can lead clients to think you don’t care about the business you’re conducting with them either so pay attention to the shoes that you choose. If you don’t have any suitable shoes that are comfortable it might be time to go out and buy a new pair for the occasion. There are many types of comfortable casual shoes out there and here’s your chance to wear them to work.

This isn’t the time to wear your comfortable old white sports socks. Try to make sure that your socks still match the pants that you are wearing if nothing more, for the sake of maintaining protocol. White socks stand out terribly when worn with dark pants or jeans and to be honest, this combination looks a little tacky.

Just a few simple observances can help you look forward to and enjoy casual Friday. Even if others come looking like they just left the gym, you can raise the bar for yourself and others. You don’t need to overdress or come across as an uptight nerd, but there’s no reason to let down your standards for appearance even when dressing casual. Bear in mind that casual business is a great mindset when it comes to dressing for casual Fridays.