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(Image: https://www.pexels.com/photo/person-writing-on-notebook-4145190/)

The COVID-19 pandemic changed how we work (and, for what it’s worth, socialize) in many ways. For instance, it’s becoming increasingly common to hold meetings using video conferencing programs like Zoom.

This may not be a temporary situation, either. Numerous major companies have reported they plan to continue to allow employees to work from home even after the pandemic is over. Thus, it’s important that we all know what we can do to look professional during video calls. The following tips will help. 

Choose the Right Clothing

It’s easy to assume you can ditch the office dress code when working from home. However, you need to remember that your attire still tells employers and coworkers a lot about your degree of professionalism. It’s best to continue wearing clothes that are appropriate for work. Luckily, there are many loungewear styles that strike the ideal balance between being comfortable and being work-friendly.

Remember to Use Makeup

Applying makeup is another part of your morning routine that you may feel tempted to skip when working remotely. You probably shouldn’t give into that urge. Like your clothing, makeup affects the way your colleagues perceive you.

It’s also worth noting that research shows our attire and overall style impacts our performance at work. If you dress professionally and wear the type of makeup you would typically wear to the office, you’re genuinely more likely to be productive.

Consider Your Lighting

What you wear isn’t the only factor contributing to how professional you do (or don’t) look during video calls. Your lighting is another important factor.

Ideally, you should try to rely on natural lighting if that’s an option. It’s also a good idea to avoid overhead lighting or backlighting. This type of lighting will ironically make you look darker and less visible to other video call participants.

It’s best to check your lighting before actually starting video calls. You don’t want to start a meeting, find out your lighting is insufficient, and make everyone wait while you scramble to address the problem.

Use Color

This may sound like a simple tip, but it’s an important one that’s nevertheless easy to overlook. Strong colors that “pop” have been shown to have a positive impact on your mood. They can also boost your coworkers’ moods, which may be helpful if they’ve been slogging through long days of video calls.

Just keep in mind that these tips will potentially remain valuable for months or even years to come. Organizations throughout the world have found that remote work setups offer a range of benefits. That means the video call may be here to stay.

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