The different roles of work clothing
Today, many areas of activity are affected by the wearing of work clothing — just over 8 million professionals wear one form or another!
Professional clothing is increasingly becoming more ergonomic, functional and comfortable. It is more and more adapted to changes in the working world as well as morphologies, both masculine and feminine. Certain models even incorporate innovative textiles that make it possible to offer work clothing that is increasingly technological, resistant and of excellent quality.
Professionals, whatever their domain (jobs in hospitality and restaurant industry, catering jobs, jobs in wellness and aesthetic, industry, construction and crafts), benefit from efficient work clothing that guarantees them protection and safety in the case of PPE (personal protective equipment). This PPE protective clothing complies with numerous standards within the context of French and European regulations in force.
Beyond its “primary” role, work clothing also fulfils increasingly complex roles, however. As a driver of brand image and means of communication, professional clothing faces multiple challenges. Here’s a little overview of the different roles of work clothing…
Protection of the user
The historical role of work clothing is to protect the professional from risks identified in their area of activity: dirt, splashes, microbes, adverse weather, heat, cold, etc. This initial use value also responds to requirements in terms of cleanliness and hygiene. Putting on work trousers, a white overall or even a kitchen jacket therefore isn’t to be trivialised! Professionals protect their personal clothing by wearing clean and healthy clothing that is adapted to their area of activity such as catering or healthcare.
When the professional clothing meets applicable dress codes and assumes the value of an actual device, it becomes “protective equipment”. It ensures the protection of the wearer against one or more risks that could threaten their health and/or safety and also “protects” the objects and products handled.
Well dressed and well equipped according to the demands of the area of activity, the professional works in good conditions, in complete serenity.
Clothing adapted to each job
Each area of activity and each job has its constraints. That’s why professional clothing doesn’t look the same from one domain to the other. It must meet different professional needs and user expectations.
The work trousers of a craftsperson won’t be designed in the same manner and using the same material as the trousers of a chef. The white overall of a beautician won’t have the same cut as the apron of a baker and the kitchen jacket doesn’t meet the same requirements as the jacket of a construction worker.
Manufacturers must know the exact needs of each professional sector in order to design specific clothing that is perfectly adapted. Certain criteria remain obligatory, however, whatever the area of activity: comfort, ergonomics, resistance, ease of maintenance… and the design whose role is proving to be increasingly important. All criteria that also meet the expectations and aspirations of the new generations of professionals.
Work clothing that unites and enhances teams
Wearing professional clothing in the colours of one’s company or a logo is a means of “being recognised”. Within a team, wearing work clothing creates a feeling of belonging and helps to create bonds between the individuals. Work clothing therefore raises a social issue by becoming the reflection of individual emotions and human relations, revealing gestures and personality. Adapting one’s work clothing is therefore important!
Work clothing also makes it easier to recognise different trades: thus it’s simpler to identify a baker, a butcher, a waiter or a chef thanks to their professional clothing… This collective dress identity also facilitates an efficient mobilisation of each person, and whole teams, towards common goals. This highlights the expertise of the professionals even more.
Work clothing that is increasingly in tune with the times
Worn often more than 8 hours a day, by men, but also many women, work clothing is becoming more and more “fashionable”! Faced with “rejuvenating” professionals and the entry to the labour market of new generations, work clothing is also undergoing a “revamp”. It’s increasingly inspired by ready-to-wear, the sportswear style and streetwear cuts — it makes people want to wear it…
More comfortable and more relaxed, work clothing is adhering more to the lifestyle of the user, to their tastes and desires. The wearer feels good in their work clothing and likes wearing it everyday for its design and aesthetic quality.
This clear move towards a personalisation of work clothing is also revealed in the phenomenon of “style finding”: embroidery, silkscreen printing, digital transfers, etc.
Increasingly able to follow fashion trends, all whilst meeting normative requirements, professional clothing is evolving with the times, to the great satisfaction of users.
Communication about the values of the company
Beyond just the wearing of work clothing, a story is written… A collective story, that of a company and/or a profession. A veritable means of communication and relay of company values, work clothing helps to cement the image that a company wishes to project of itself. It is therefore a direct expression of its marketing and communication strategy.
It makes the company identifiable, unique, and helps to promote both its identity and characteristics. That’s why the choice of work clothing or corporate branded clothing remains extremely strategic for any company, whether of medium size or international in scale.
Professional clothing that (also) appeals to the customer
When a professional feels good in their working clothing and likes wearing it, the customer takes note! Professional clothing is able to catch the attention of consumers, even before they know the company.
Consumers that are attracted by professional clothing identify with it. They discover a universe “that speaks to them” and values to which they subscribe. That’s why the aesthetic dimension of professional clothing, its cut and its design pose real challenges today and play an increasingly important role in this quest to appeal to the customer.
Professional clothing that is increasingly innovative and “intelligent”!
Materials that are super light, ultra-resistant, or even hydrating, therapeutic, communicative, etc. Many technical textiles are emerging thanks to digital, nanotechnological and biotechnological advances. They very naturally call for new uses.
Some of these textile innovations meet the requirements of the professional clothing and protective equipment industry, particularly in terms of maintenance conditions as well as household or industrial cleaning. Gradually, they are therefore finding their place in new fireproof, multi-risk, electromagnetic wave proof models or even models resistant to chemical products, mechanical shocks, adverse weather, etc.
Many promising innovations that provide a glimpse of future, revolutionary work clothing collections that are increasingly technical and surprising!