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AIBU to be completely incapable of looking professional?

(24 Posts)
ThreePointOneFourOneFiveNine Mon 04-Mar-19 14:33:29

I haven't worked since before I had kids, eldest is now 8, and when I did work I was in an academic environment so jeans and trainers was fine. I've just started as a tutor and have been given my first assignment. I'm now panicking I have nothing suitable to wear. Has anyone ever employed a private tutor? Would you be horrified if I showed up in jeans? I'm in my forties, I should be more grown up by now blush

Darkstar4855 Mon 04-Mar-19 14:59:11

If they were smartish jeans with a nice top then no. If they were scruffy/ripped jeans then yes, I might raise an eyebrow, although ultimately I’d be more concerned about whether or not you were a good tutor.

A nice scarf/bag/piece of jewellery can help smarten things up.

CoolJule43 Mon 04-Mar-19 15:08:19

Jeans are a definite no if you want to look professional. You can't go wrong with a black pair of trousers though.

Schoeny Mon 04-Mar-19 15:11:01

I would not have been bothered at all if my sons' tutor had worn jeans. In fact sometimes she probably did, and I didn't even notice.

As long as you look neat and tidy then I'm sure you will be fine.

Believability Mon 04-Mar-19 15:12:55

My kids tutors wear jeans, no issue at all. They are there to teach and that’s all I care about

BrokenWing Mon 04-Mar-19 15:14:44

Jeans are appropriate in a home environment. Maybe with shoes/boots rather than trainers until you feel more comfortable. As long as you look tidy it will be fine.

seastargirl Mon 04-Mar-19 15:15:00

My kids tutors have always been in jeans etc, if you turn up as promised and on time, I'd be happy as finding a reliable tutor isn't easy!

Marylou2 Mon 04-Mar-19 15:17:32

It wouldn’t bother me at all so long a you are clean and tidy. I’d be much more interested in your tutoring skills and academic qualifications.

SandAndSea Mon 04-Mar-19 15:21:22

I would have no problem with smart jeans. Casualwear is increasingly becoming the norm in many professional settings.

Holidayshopping Mon 04-Mar-19 15:22:45

I probably wouldn't wear jeans, no.

What setting are you tutoring in and what sort of age are the pupils?

OneStepSideways Mon 04-Mar-19 15:22:46

I think jeans look a bit too casual and lacking effort, unless they're very smart well fitting jeans in a dark indigo/black. No stonewashed or blue denim.

Do you have a pair of stretchy trousers or chinos? Wear with Chelsea boots or smart shoes. Definitely not trainers or Converse if you want to look professional!
A well fitting jumper/cardigan/jacket. Neat tidy hair, maybe a nice floaty scarf or necklace to pick out the colours of your outfit?

Stickerrocks Mon 04-Mar-19 15:23:47

I'm a chartered accountant. I've just worn smart jeans to a client meeting. Nobody batted an eyelid.

Ceci03 Mon 04-Mar-19 15:32:54

depends what state the jeans are in! smart jeans with a blazer, or with a nice top and cardigan or jumper. you can smarten up with a nice haircut, do your eyebrows, bit of lippy, scarf? it's just about making an effort. nice shoes or boots help -= dont have to be expensive, just ones that dont look like they're ancient and scruffy lol

ThreePointOneFourOneFiveNine Mon 04-Mar-19 16:08:48

Thanks everyone. I think I've got some smart black jeans somewhere, I'll see what they look like on before I rush out shopping. I don't think I own any smart tops so I'm going to have to make a trip to M&S I think.

Would people be potentially more tolerant if trainers if someone's visibly disabled? Smart shoes make it considerably harder for me to walk. I have newish looking black trainers. They're not new, I just don't walk enough to make them look worn. Maybe I can find something else that's just as good but looks better.

Ceci03 I've never done my eyebrows in my life, definitely won't try it for the first time just before my first tutoring session, I can see that backfiring quite badly! I can probably stretch to some lip gloss though, and I do have a couple of nice scarves I've never worn, maybe now is the time to start.

I'm starting to think this could be good for me. I'm a career scruff bag, but I would quite like to be a bit smarter now that I'm getting older.

SandAndSea Mon 04-Mar-19 16:53:55

I find a nice scarf can do wonders.

reallybadidea Mon 04-Mar-19 17:02:00

I would go a bit smarter for the first session to create a good first impression and then a bit more casual after that.

MumofTinies Mon 04-Mar-19 17:06:53

DS tutor always wears jeans, I think it would look odd and possibly intimidating for DS if she was suited and booted in a home setting.
I had a tutor as a child and she was also casually dressed.

MereDintofPandiculation Mon 04-Mar-19 17:52:03

Would people be potentially more tolerant if trainers if someone's visibly disabled? Smart shoes make it considerably harder for me to walk. You'd probably be better if you could find some comfortable lace-ups. Black trainers would do at a push. Unless you have narrow feet, somewhere like Hotter or Cosyfeet do comfortable shoes that don't always look like they belong to your grandmother.

I wouldn't worry about make-up and eyebrows, as long as you look clean and tidy. I think the academic look is quite appropriate for a tutor. Jewellery can help you look as if you've made an effort as long as it's not too out of kilter with the rest of the outfit.

NanooCov Mon 04-Mar-19 17:53:16

If you're tutoring in people's homes then I think casual is fine. Ecco does a nice line in shoes that aren't trainers but just as comfy. Clarks also often have similar that would fit the bill. I have navy and brown ones. Navy are particular favourites.

buzzzzzzz Mon 04-Mar-19 18:06:46

Regarding the shoes - find a flat, soft style with memory foam on the inside sole. You really won’t look back and will find them comfier than trainers. Super easy to walk in as well. You can get ones that look like suede type lace ups, I used them doing 12 hour care home shifts and they were brilliant for ensuring your feet didn’t kill at the end of the day / night.

MuseumDad Mon 04-Mar-19 18:14:06

I am (allegedly) a professional in an academic sort of way. Currently I am wearing:
blue walking boots (I always wear walking boots or shoes for comfort) my footwear is almost always blue and nobody has ever commented (at least not negatively)
Black denim trousers (I wouldn't quite call them jeans, but some might)
Random t-shirt double checks it has the the Electric Mayhem on (the band from the Muppet Show)
Grey woollen jumper

I suppose it all depends on what the parents expect a tutor to look like. I'd be more than happy for you to wear (non-torn) jeans and trainers if you were tutoring my DS.

ShabbyAbby Mon 04-Mar-19 18:21:38

Depends. Smartish jeans and trainers dressed well can be as appropriate as black trousers and shoes in this kind of setting
You want to look comfortable, not like the Job Centre have clothed you.

Ariela Mon 04-Mar-19 18:28:11

A contrasting or coordinating scarf is your friend, hides a multiple of sins eg egg / baby sick on tshirt, and smartens up an outfit no end.

ThreePointOneFourOneFiveNine Mon 04-Mar-19 21:34:34

Thank you everyone, you've been really helpful. I will try to buy some better shoes, I have ridiculously narrow feet but I can usually manage to get lace ups to work.

I shall learn to accessorise!

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