When it comes to fashion, summer is the "less is more" season. You can peel off all the thick coats, sweaters, jeans, and tights that have constrained your body all winter long; your skin can finally breathe. There is a tiny problem, though: For those who toil away at nine-to-five office jobs, the less is more look may not fly with HR. (If you work in an even stricter office environment that doesn't allow jeans and requires suits, getting dressed gets ever tricker.) To help you toe the line between work-and weather-appropriate and NSFW, I rounded up some conservative-enough outfit ideas, ahead. Plus, I tossed in a few styling tricks free of charge. Still not satisfied? Check out these affordable work pieces and trouser options that will earn you best-dressed marks at the office.
For more stories like this, including celebrity news, beauty and fashion advice, savvy political commentary, and fascinating features, sign up for the Marie Claire newsletter (subscribe here).
Give your co-workers something to talk about. This pink-on-pink suit will give them a talking point other than the weather. Pair it with a pair of sneakers to dress it down. (Can we see Hillary Clinton or Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in this? Definitely.)
Make your spaghetti-strap sundress work appropriate with a simple white T-shirt or cap-sleeve bodysuit.
Give your weekend denim a boho touch with a patchwork blouse and strappy sandals. This look also works perfectly for the office or happy hour.
A little edge never hurt anyone. Rock your vintage tee with a pair of office-friendly work pants to bring out your inner Avril Lavigne.
Take a walk on the wild side in the office with this tiger print shirt. It's okay to be a little more daring if you work in a creative environment, so have a little fun by matching your top with yellow trousers.
Take a preppy approach to your work attire, and don't be afraid of bright colors! Pair a bright polo with a contrasting skirt to bring a playfulness to your outfits.
Show off your own style and personality at the office by mixing prints, and be extra with the ruffles. Keep things light and fun (the way summer is supposed to be!) with this ruffled striped blouse and ruffle midi skirt.
If casual Friday isn't really your thing, take it one step at a time. A classic white T-shirt is never a bad idea; it'll lend a casualness to your embellished or intense pencil skirt.
Lace-up sandals are all the rage this summer. Throw on a floral boho sundress and your outfit is complete faster than you can say, "I need iced coffee."
Who wouldn't want to wear pajamas to work? Make this possible by wearing a silky slip dress and adding an oversized blazer on top, plus slip-on sandals.
Bring back the '90s! Grab this mini skirt suit out of your mom's closet and pair it with a pair of chunky sneakers. It's "vintage," and we love it.
Once you find the right pair of white jeans, you'll never want to take them off. It serves as the best base for your more colorful tops and accessories. And if you want to go white-on-white, I support that too.
You don't have to give up boots in the summer, especially if you can wear them with a dress. Should your outfit have brighter colors than this, pick a little white or brown bootie to match.
A photo to remind you to finally buy that boiler suit. This season there are so many options, though an off-white one like this is the perfect way to welcome summer. Skip the furry mules, though, and opt for nice open-toe sandals.
Swap your classic button-downs for a shirt with slightly voluminous sleeves that add character. A leather skirt and some rainbow accessories completes the look.
When everyone arrives to the office in florals, you'll stand out from the pack in this spotty leopard print dress. The hem length and three-quarter sleeve provide modest coverage, so no need to bring that blazer or jacket to work.
You can do so much with this formula for summer: a tee, a skirt, and sneakers. Go for a color-mixing palette like this street style star or take it easy with all-neutral tones.
Even if we can get away with wearing shorts to the office, we should maintain a level of decorum. Instead of rocking your denim kickoffs, opt for a longer tailored pair of shorts like this navy pair. It looks polished and smart while still keeping above the knees. You can be a little more daring with a fun ruffle or printed top.
A bright power suit like this will keep you on your A-game both in style and in meetings. The suit will cut your dressing time in half since you can bypass that whole mix-and-match situation. You have everything you need already!
Give your white button-down shirt a break. Select an alternative version, like one with stripes, to keep your look fresh and elevated.
If your dress shows too much skin, simply layer a tee underneath for a more modest look at the office.
Pick a mule with a heel if you want an extra boost in height around the office (taller = more confident = more powerful, right?). The shoes pair perfectly with skinny jeans and a graphic tee.
For the lucky ladies who work in creative environments, you can get away with wearing a dress that exposes your shoulders. Choose one in a neutral color, but still have fun by pairing it with the season's latest mule heel in a feisty print.
Shed your black and navy winter blazers for brightly-colored printed ones in the summer. This small change makes a dramatic statement with an otherwise neutral ensemble.
You've chosen your one-and-done work outfit: the jumpsuit. If it's a sleeveless option, don't risk freezing in the office. Bring a light denim or leather jacket to throw over your shoulders as you peck away at your keyboard.
Save your denim mini skirts for the weekend. When it comes to your nine-to-five job, opt for a longer version. Pair with a billowy blouse and glove pumps.
Don't be afraid to shine at work in a metallic skirt. This statement piece can be dressed down with a neutral top and jean jacket.
For days when you don't want to overthink your outfit (full disclosure, this is me every day), tuck a plain top into a pair of linen trousers. Add a pop of color through accessories.
The denim button-down is an old classic. Give it new life in the summer by wearing it with busy prints.
Heels and flats are office footwear staples, but if you can swing it...why not wear combat boots? It gives a otherwise proper outfit that unexpected touch of edginess.