After two years of tricks like throwing a business jacket over a T-shirt and sweatpants while meeting on Zoom or returning to only partially occupied offices, our tolerance for conformity –and discomfort – has changed. The business dress code is evolving, says Allison Shapira for Harvard Business Review.

Here are a few steps to try if you’re considering changing up your work attire:

Observe others

If it feels risky to independently make a wardrobe change, look at others in your office and observe how they dress. You don’t have to follow what others are doing, but seeing others take those first steps may embolden you to make changes yourself.

Observe the boundaries as well. Look for the nuances in how and when people dress down.

Experiment and evaluate 

What if your colleagues aren’t noticeably changing their attire, but you feel strongly that you should? Take the lead: Try out one particular change and evaluate the response to it.

Look for the advantages 

Lest you fear that dressing down might make you appear less successful to your peers or boss, fascinating research conducted by Silvia Bellezza, Francesca Gino and Anat Keinan points in the opposite direction. They found that, “nonconforming behaviors, as costly and visible signals, can act as a particular form of conspicuous consumption and lead to positive inferences of status and competence in the eyes of others.”

However, the authors stress that this effect only happens when it’s obvious that the behavior is intentional – as opposed to simply misjudging the dress code.

Let your light shine

Now, it’s time for you to set your own dress code. Authenticity sends a powerful message, and what we are seeing post-pandemic is that comfort does as well.