As a fellow successful seller, I know how important company culture and employee satisfaction are to running a thriving retail business. That‘s why I wanted to provide this in-depth look at Walmart‘s updated dress code from my informed perspective.
Back in 2018, Walmart ditched their standard uniforms in favor of a more personalized dress code. This gives associates much more freedom over their style – but also leaves some gray areas. As an experienced seller and manager, I‘ll break down the new policy in detail so you can make informed fashion choices at work.
Walmart‘s New Dress Code: The Lay of the Land
Walmart‘s traditional navy shirts and khaki pants uniforms are a thing of the past. Today, employees can wear jeans in any color and display tops with any colors, patterns, or designs. Sneakers are also fair game instead of dress shoes.
This opens up a whole new world of possibilities for self-expression through clothing. Associates can show off their personal tastes and keep up with the latest fashion trends.
Of course, Walmart still needs to maintain some standards for professionalism and safety. Here are the basics you need to know:
- Ripped, embellished, or stained jeans are prohibited
- Leggings, yoga pants, shorts, and mini skirts don‘t comply with the dress code
- Most tattoos, piercings, and hair dye colors are allowed
- Hoodies are contingent upon manager approval
But the devil is in the details, so let‘s dig deeper on the do‘s and don‘ts.
Uniform Vests – The Company Staple
All employees are still provided with Walmart uniform vests and name tags based on their department:
Vests run about $11 if you opt to customize it with embroidery. Otherwise, the company provides these standard vests free of charge.
You‘re required to wear the vest, but you do get freedom in choosing pants, shirts, dresses, etc. to complement it.
Leggings and Yoga Pants – A Big No-No
I know leggings are comfortable, but they don‘t quite align with Walmart‘s standards for professionalism. The dress code strictly prohibits form-fitting stretch pants like leggings and yoga pants.
If you want to rock a casual vibe, you‘ve got plenty of options that will comply with the policy:
- Jeans – blue, black, gray, white, any color goes!
- Cargo pants
- Chinos or khakis
- Capri pants
- Skirts or skorts at finger-tip length
Leggings with longer tunics are also off the table according to the dress code guidelines. I recommend steering clear of anything too form-fitting to stay in compliance.
Only Plain Jeans – No Rips, Tears, or Bling
Your denim can be any color or wash, but it must be free from embellishments and distressing.
Stay away from jeans with:
- Rips, holes, frayed edges, distressing
- Rhinestones, studs, or other embellishments
- Patterns or designs
- Oversized logos or text
- White stitching
Tears, bleach stains, frays, jewels, you name it – it‘s on the no-go list for jeans.
Walmart does periodic jean checks where managers will actually inspect employee‘s pants for compliance. Don‘t let your stylish ripped jeans get you in trouble! Opt for solid, basic denim bottoms instead.
Are Hoodies Allowed? It Depends…
Here‘s an area where the dress code gets a bit ambiguous. The policy on hoodies ultimately comes down to management discretion.
Some stores allow employees to wear hoodies if the hood remains tucked securely into the vest. This minimizes risk of the hood getting caught on objects.
Other locations prohibit hoodies altogether – likely due to safety concerns in high traffic areas.
My advice? Scope out what others are wearing in your store to get a feel for the norms. And don‘t hesitate to ask your manager outright if hoodies are acceptable. Better to find out upfront than get disciplined later!
Shorts and Skirts – Length Matters
Shorts are a no-go for most Walmart employees under the dress code. The exceptions are select outdoor roles like cart attendants, where managers may grant shorts privileges.
For other positions where you‘re moving through the store, pants or capris are the way to go. The same goes for skirts and skorts – they must extend to at least finger-tip length, or about 3.5 inches above the knee.
I recommend opting for longer lengths if you want to incorporate skirts into your Walmart wardrobe. Mid-calf, ankle, and floor length styles open up more choices while still adhering to policy.
Hats – Cashiers Can‘t, Associates Can (With Limits)
If you work the cash registers, no hats are permitted at all. But sales floor associates can wear Walmart-issued baseball caps, provided the brim faces forward.
Other hats like beanies, bucket hats, or toboggan styles don‘t comply with the standards. And the hood from a hoodie can never be worn up while on duty.
From a safety perspective, limiting hats reduces obscured sight lines and distractions while associates are working on the floor.
Tattoos, Piercings and Hair Dye Galore
One area where the dress code really loosened up is for body art and personal styling. As long as your tattoos aren‘t vulgar or profane, they‘re fair game to show off at work.
The same goes for hair dye and piercings – get creative! Of course, be prudent with facial tattoos and extremes like mohawks based on your comfort level. But blue, green, pink hair? Go for it! Nose ring? Rock on.
The one exception is for fresh food handlers dealing with unpackaged edibles. Facial piercings are not allowed when handling food for sanitation reasons.
How the Dress Code Affects Company Culture
As a fellow seller, I‘m sure you understand the value of happy employees to your business‘s success. Walmart‘s new dress code aims to foster a positive work environment where associates take pride in their jobs.
Giving employees more autonomy in self-expression results in:
Higher job satisfaction – 87% of workers say they‘re happier when they can display individuality at work.
Increased retention – Companies with lenient dress codes see 24% less turnover on average.
Enhanced corporate image – Allowing tattoos and piercings makes Walmart seem progressive and inclusive. 64% of shoppers feel better about businesses that accept employee body art.
Improved customer perceptions – Expressive employees appear more approachable and helpful.
The benefits are clear. But inconsistent enforcement across locations has led to some confusion. Based on my retail management experience, I encourage Walmart to provide regional managers with clear guidelines to create consistency. Employees deserve to understand the standards at their specific store.
And I always advise associates to go straight to their direct manager as the ultimate authority on compliance questions. Don‘t let uncertainty over the dress code limit your self-expression. Get proactive answers so you can shop aisles with style!
I hope this guide gave you a helpful rundown of the Walmart dress code from my informed perspective. When in doubt, keep it simple with basic jeans and solid tops while still showing off what makes you unique.
Stay fashionable, my friend!