Notes From the UBS Bank Dress Code: The Most Amusing Bits


Dress code? We haven’t had a dress code since we quit Brownies. But some people do. Some people have to wear, for instance, those leg-compressing torture chambers known as pantyhose, or businessperson skirt and jacket or pantsuits that never really smell fresh after the first wear, despite dry-cleaning. These people likely work at banks like UBS, which, via the Wall Street Journal, is sending a 43-page memo to its Swiss banking staff on how to dress to impress.

This is apparently part of a test to re-establish brand confidence and help with client relationships. Herewith, the best of the very thorough and somewhat personal instructions, with a certain amount of editorializing.

–Women should “wear their jackets buttoned” except when sitting, so as not to look totally uptight. They should also frequently touch up their roots if they color, as no one wants to see a female in decline. And no goth polish or “nail art” — seriously, nail art?

–Men should “schedule barber appointments every four weeks to maintain your haircut shape,” shave frequently, wear easily washable good-quality underwear (really!), and also, use a “large hanger with rounded shoulders” to keep their suits looking manly under the duress of all these emasculating rules.

Via the Journal,

Male employees are also warned about using hair dyes to mask their advancing age, since the “artificial color contrasts excessively with the actual age of your skin.”

For Everyone:
–NO garlic and onions, to avoid stank-breath.
–NO short socks that show your ankles — they demonstrate weakness.
–NO short sleeves (molester-y) or cuff links (trying too hard)
–DEFINITELY NO “allowing underwear to be seen” (even if it is good quality!) or choosing a tie knot that does not enhance your face or body shape.
–DO wear a watch. Obviously, you’re Swiss.

Really, this is just good advice for everybody. A tie knot that enhances an unfortunate body or face shape can be truly undermining.

If all goes well, the dress code may extend to all of the bank’s branches in Switzerland.