Is Dressy-Casual The Same As Casual Attire?

When it comes to dress codes, one of the most confusing to decipher is dressy casual attire.  It’s really perplexing to people because this dress code isn’t very defined and determined (like a strict formal dress code, for example) where you can immediately think of a black tie event with long gowns, suits, and tuxedos.

The “vague” definition of dressy casual leaves people wondering what to wear or what not to wear to functions and events that call for this specific dress code.

I always hear a lot of questions regarding this dress code, and one of these questions is whether or not it is just the same as elegant casual attire or if the two are completely different.

Actually, they are just the same.  The two terms are actually used interchangeably.  Both elegant casual and dressy casual refer to the same type of dress code.

With this type of dress code, you’ve to think of both casual and formal wear and find the median between the two, for elegant casual or dressy casual is in reality just between casual and formal attire.

Dressy Casual Attire Do’s and Don’ts for Women

It’s neither too casual nor too formal but just in the middle of the two.  It’s a look that pertains to a dressed-up or chic version of your smart casual wear.

This may be an outfit that can bewilder a lot of people, but knowing How to have the Perfect Dressy Casual Attire is not as impossible and isn’t as difficult as you might think.

In order to glam up your casual wear and make it a bit dressier, you can opt for fitted and slim slacks or a skirt rather than your normal everyday jeans.

You can pair it with a silk shirt, a dressy top, a cashmere shell, or a sweater shirt to make it look more formal.  You can also opt for a dressy pants outfit or a knee-length dress for your elegant casual or dressy casual attire.

You can actually play mix and match and experiment with your separate pieces as long as they complement each other well and as long as the overall outfit looks well-coordinated.

However, do away with shorts, short skirts, jeans, denim, t-shirts, and clothes that show a lot of skin.

Are Jeans Casual Wear? [Decoding Dress Codes]

Aside from the usual do’s and don’ts, you must also consider the time, place, venue, the type of event (for example: Is the event more social and less formal or is it like a business type of event?), and also the weather when choosing your overall outfit.

Don’t be confused and bewildered with dressy casual and elegant casual because there’s nothing to be confused about in the first place as the two are just one and the same: both refer to a dressed-up version of your casual wear.

Dressy Casual: The Difference Between Smart Casual and Business Casual


This Article is part of the Dressy Casual Attire series. Read On:

Decoding Dress Codes: What is Dressy Casual Attire?

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Amy Taylor on Email
Amy Taylor
Hi, I'm Amy, the Beauty section editor for Independent Femme! I've worked at a cosmetics distribution company for a number of years and learned my way through beauty tricks by making a ton of mistakes along the way. I'm here to ensure you don't make the wrong choices some of my former clients and I made!

You'll find me at all the trade shows and I'll be listing my appearances and speaking dates soon!

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