, The Careerist

The Careerist: Too Sexy Looking for Your Own Good?


Are female lawyers dressed too sexily these days?

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  • Paralegal Graduate, Ontario

    To dress suitably for any occasion is paramount including in the courtroom and jazzing it up with a sexy twist is not uncommon but focusing on physical attributes instead of brain power can indicate misogynistic practices (if counsel or judges are male) and certainly does not allow for proper access to justice for clients by either the decision maker or the oversexed garment wearer. It can also scream incompetence in layers and becomes obvious that they are hiding their shortfalls by exposing their physical assets. They way a woman dresses in the courtroom should reflect professionalism, etiquette and individualism and not hard core sex appeal. Sure! Wear those stiletto heals if you are 5‘ nothing or actually know how to present yourself professionally in them but dress them down a bit; don‘t emphasize them. The best way to be able to scrutinize a look for the situation is another woman‘s opinion. That opinion should come from someone who supports you, and not one who wants to see you fail.

  • Karen Kaplowitz, www.newellis.com.

    You noted in a column two years ago that male partners feared sexual innuendo from women lawyers and that they withheld sponsorship and support as a result. Men and women both have a stake in women succeeding in law firms. Both also have options to consider to eliminate sexual innuendo getting in the way. Here is an article on the subject which responds to your 2012 column.

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