10 Things Nannies Should Never Wear to Work
Working as a childcare provider is rewarding and exciting work, but it also comes with its share of challenges. One of them is figuring out how to dress appropriately, especially if you’re new to the career field. While some employers may have a set dress code in place, uniforms are relatively rare in the nanny industry, which means that you will be responsible for choosing appropriate clothing on your own. While you’re sorting through your wardrobe or shopping for work clothes, these are 10 of the things you should put on your “what not to wear” list.
- Revealing Tops – Kids tend to tug on shirts for attention, and carrying a baby pulls low necklines down even lower. For the sake of both modesty and professionalism, it’s important to keep in mind that revealing shirts have no place in your work wardrobe. For a decent rule of thumb, put four fingers at the top of your clavicle. The neckline of your shirt shouldn’t be below your fingers. It’s also wise to bend over in front of a mirror to check for gaping necklines. You’ll be bending and moving a lot, and you don’t want your charges or your employers to see down your shirt.
- High Hems – If your employers don’t mind you wearing shorts in the summer months, they should be modest and hit at least at mid-thigh. If you’re wearing a skirt for a special function, it should fall to the top of your knees.
- Low-Slung Waistbands – Put on a pair of pants that you’d like to wear to work, then sit down in them. Crouch, bend and squat. If any of these actions cause the waistband of the pants to come down so that your undergarments are showing, they’re too low-slung for work.
- Binding Garments – Some things you’ll want to chuck for the sake of modesty, while others are modest enough but not practical. You’ll need to be able to move quickly and easily to keep up with active, rambunctious kids. Binding, restrictive or uncomfortable clothing will inhibit your ability to move around, thus impeding your ability to keep up with the children you’re charged with caring for.
- Spaghetti Straps – Sleeveless tops with spaghetti straps are fine for a night out on the town or an off-hours jaunt, but they’re not recommended for work attire. Thin straps can slide down your arms, pulling the neckline of your shirt along with them. Also, they tend to be a bit more casual than is appropriate for work.
- Formal Dresses – Unless you’re attending a special function in a work capacity and will need to dress up a bit, skirts and dresses typically aren’t a good idea for nannies. You’ll need to be able to move freely without any worry of flashing your underwear, and a skirt or dress just leaves too many opportunities for an immodest show while you’re on the job.
- Impractical Shoes – Nannies need to be able to run and move quickly, something that isn’t easy when you’re in heels or flimsy sandals. Solid, dependable and comfortable shoes are the way to go while you’re on the job, even if they’re not likely to land you on a high-fashion editorial spread.
- Your Favorite Outfit – Kids spill things, tear things, become sick and have accidents, none of which tend to be particularly easy on your clothing. It’s just not wise to wear anything to work that you would be sad to retire after a stubborn stain or irreparable tear renders it unwearable.
- Delicate or Dangling Jewelry – Earrings are a great way to express your personal style and lend a bit of flair to an ensemble, but they’re also attractive to small, grasping hands. Unless you want to have an earring pulled through your earlobe or a delicate necklace to be snapped in half, it’s best to save your jewelry for a non-work outing.
- Casual Wear That’s Too Casual – Casual, comfortable and modest clothing are the name of the game for nannies, but it’s important to make sure that you’re not going too casual. Scrubs, sweats and pajamas might be comfortable and covering, but they’re also just not professional. Make sure that you don’t lean too far towards the “ultra-casual” end of the spectrum when you’re dressing for a day at work.
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