Getting Ready for Work

Most of us would love to imagine that the way we get ready in the morning is à la Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s: Dewy skin, a perfect bouffant, and lashes that extend into eternity. And if we’re lucky, our very own George Peppard is watching us waltz around the room in a dress shirt turning our just-woke-up-like-this look into a cocktail-dress-clad vision of beauty as he finds us our favorite pair of alligator shoes.


I don’t know about you, but none of that is reminiscent of my get-ready routine. First off, I wake up in three layers of sweatshirts and fuzzy socks (It gets cold at night!), my hair looks like I was sleeping outside of a moving car window, and I usually always have at least one new zit (Wasn’t acne supposed to go away after I turned 20?). I can picture George Peppard slowly backing out of the room now. Don’t leave yet, George!

Not only is this my reality, but I have to transform this monstrosity into a professional maven in under an hour with no help. Suddenly, I’m a yogi doing back bends to get my zipper up. I’m doing Riverdance to shimmy my skinny pants over my legs. And my alligator shoes? They’re a sensible flat (my favorite professional comfort flats are Rothy’s ) that take me at least 10 minutes wandering around my apartment to find.


The pressure for women to look a certain way in the workplace is real. Studies have shown that women will get further professionally even just by wearing the right amount of makeup (not too much and not too little according to this study).  It’s like defusing a very delicate bomb every morning, and if we do it wrong, our career blows up.

Climbing the corporate ladder as a woman is tough, but I still took an actual monstress and made her into a polished powerhouse office-maven this morning. That’s a nice thing to remember when my boss shoots down my perfect sales pitch, and I have to come up with another one in 15 minutes. I am both the monstress and the maven, and I think I’m nailing this corporate thing. Eat your heart out, George.


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