Are Your Restaurant Staff Dressed For Success?

There’s no doubt about it, first impressions at your restaurant count.  As soon as your customers walk through your restaurant door they have formed their first opinion on your establishment.  The outside has welcomed them in…the inside should do exactly the same job and that stretches far beyond the décor, table settings and atmosphere, it starts with your front of house staff.  Let Alliance guide you as to what your staff should wear and why their appearance matters.

Greet Positively!

The maître d’ or person who greets them at the door should look absolutely immaculate.  This is not just in their uniform but their person too.  They should have good hair, good personal hygiene and freshly pressed clothing not to mention clean, polished shoes.  Don’t overdo it with an outfit, it shouldn’t be too brightly coloured and nor should it be inappropriate, your front of house staff must look professional and approachable at all times.  This doesn’t mean you have to stick to simple black and white, although traditional uniform will always be suitable in recent years there has been a definite shift and restaurant staff dress code has diversified.

Colour & Style

Depending on the type of restaurant you are running, there are plenty of options available. By all means use black and white as your staple uniform especially if your restaurant is fine dining or high-end but if you run a family friendly or a very fashionable restaurant you could introduce different colours and fabrics.

If you run a fashionable restaurant or a family friendly restaurant then you might want your staff to wear clean and smart jeans (no rips or slogans), plain white or plain coloured T-shirts with jeans and clean trainers look cool and refreshing – there’s no need for strict bow ties or ties in casual establishments.  If you run an ethnic style restaurant you might prefer your staff to dress in national costume.

Your staff should definitely be comfortable, after all they are on their feet all day and need to be able to stretch, reach and move around easily.  Fabrics must be hardwearing and practical but should also be breathable and kind to skin.  Some manmade fibres cause heat retention which can be incredibly uncomfortable for the wearer and they can also scratch so be rough to the touch. Comfortable staff makes all the difference to attitude and mood!  When choosing fabric and colour, you might want to blend your look with the theme of your restaurant, giving your staff a look which immediately lends itself to your brand is excellent in creating brand image. Of course, if you want your brand to really stand out, consider printing your logo on tops or aprons.

Behind The Scenes

Chefs_Clothing.jpgYour staff in the kitchen should also look the part too and while their job needs different clothing, they must still look clean, smart and be comfortable.  While most of the time staff in the kitchen remain unseen by customers seated at your tables, every now and then the chef might well make an appearance and looking scruffy will do you no favours!

Kitchen staff generally have different uniforms because their clothing is protective as well as functional.  Most of the time, their chef’s jacket and trousers will cover their own clothing so it needs to be of good quality.

There are also hygiene rules to adhere to in the kitchen, meaning hair must be covered and heads covered too so there are plenty of hats available which also act as a way to determine what job the wearer does.


Footwear plays a huge role in the kitchen; the kitchen can sometimes be a hazardous place especially if there are spillages so your kitchen staff should wear sturdy but lightweight lace-up footwear which has non-slip soles to avoid potential dangers.  Footwear does extend out to your front of house staff, waiters and waitresses.  While they don’t need to wear the same sturdy shoes as in the kitchen they should be comfortable on their feet all day.  Recommend a certain style that all your staff will wear so everyone looks the same.  Leather is the best material because it is comfortable and breathable, kinder to people who are on their feet all day but casual restaurants can definitely get away with good quality, clean trainers. Click here to view Alliances range of chefs footwear

Prepare A Handbook

There are other things to consider in the appearance of your staff.  You might want to construct a handbook or a guide with information on what is tolerated and what is not.  In the guide include instructions on colour codes, suitable footwear and hair and make-up.  For example, many fine dining establishments won’t allow visible tattoos, multiple piercings, colourful hairstyles etc.  Similarly, for ladies, make-up should be light and not over the top, perfume shouldn’t be allowed when food is handled and jewellery should be minimal.

Your staff are responsible for taking care of your customers, from the moment they walk in the door to when they are handed their coat following their meal – it’s important they look the part and reflect your brand.  A positive experience starts with your front of house; make sure they are well dressed with the pieces on the Alliance website.  You’ll find chef’s jackets, chef’s trousers, aprons, hats and other necessities to help you dress your staff for success.

To have a look at Alliance’s full range of chefs clothing, including Chefs Jackets, Front Of House. Aprons, Trousers Skull Caps, Footwear & Protective Clothing simply click here