Act Like A Lady: 5 Etiquette Rules That Still Apply Today



”Being a woman, doesn’t automatically make you a lady’. Etiquette rules seem long gone in most parts of our society, but some of them still apply today. When most people hear the word ‘lady’ they think of a boring old-fashioned, female, who forgot how to have fun and is not successful or ambitious. Especially with role models like Kim Kardashian, being a lady is not something that most young females aspire to be.

Although knowing and practising the etiquette rules doesn’t automatically make you a lady, they certainly are a big part of it. Being a lady, what we believe, simply means having etiquette, self-respect, class and appreciation (so maybe more people aspire to be a lady although they don’t know the full meaning of it). You know how to act in all situations and enjoy the different aspects of life.

CGD gives you 5 etiquette rules that still apply today. And you really don’t have to be born with the silver spoon in your mouth to be able to practice these.


1. Watch your language

Of course, most people have their own little swear words and some even have a really foul mouth, but that doesn’t mean everybody appreciates it. Know your audience and know what language you can use when, this is something a lady needs to be aware of. It is not really appropriate or lady-like to swear when you are in certain settings (can’t really think of any situation where it actually is appropriate), so be mindful of your language and adapt to the situation.

2. Keep your promises

We all know a person who never keeps her promises, and we all know how annoying that is. Don’t be that person and practise what you preach. People should know that your word is your bond and be able to trust you.

3. First impressions

Often the foundation of somebody else’s perception of you. There’s only one chance at making a good first impression, so make sure you do your best to be remembered as the woman with the award-winning smile and not the girl who loves guacamole a little  too much, (a story given away by the crumbs and stains on that top you decided to “just chuck on to pop out in quickly”) once the damage is done, you could be facing an uphill battle to win over your new-found peer. Be approachable and have a positive attitude towards people, there’s always a chance you don’t really know who you’re entertaining.

4. Phone on silent and in your bag

Although I know it is really rude to always have your phone in your hand, I am so guilty of this one. When you have company, your phone should be in your bag on silent. When you expect a call, you inform your company before hand that you might receive an important call, other than that, phone gone!


5. Dress to impress

Look the part and dress to impress, this can be a serious make or break situation. Dressing well and dressing appropriately are two completely different things, so as much as you love that brand new maxi dress you got yourself for summer, wearing it along to an interview hardly seems like the right time or place to show it off. On the other hand, if you are unsure of specific dress requirements its always best to, in my opinion, go overdressed instead of the other way around, after all, is there REALLY such a thing as being dressed too well? Presentation says a lot about a person, so always make sure your clothes are freshly cleaned (we all know about those “foundation on blouse” occasions) and looking crisp, ironed to perfection.


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  • Carlye Ignatenko

    These rules apply to both genders and are great suggestions. Perhaps the article could be titled “Act Classy” instead of telling women to act like a lady. I realize that your target audience is female only, but the title might imply that women should be held to a higher standard than men. We shouldn’t, we deserve to be held to an equal standard.

    • Lois

      I totally agree, that was the basis on what we started Career Girl! The title was chosen because our target audience is Career Girls so we make the titles sometimes a bit more girl related. But of course, these rules apply to both men and women.

  • All great tips, although I’d like to second the gender issue in the last comment and add a #6: Keep your cool. Having just truly entered the workplace after law school, one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned is the importance of never letting yourself get flustered, at least not visibly. Whether it’s a complicated assignment or an inappropriate comment, your credibility is threatened by any meltdowns or awkwardness; even if a horrible incident isn’t your fault, your behavior will still reflect on you and stick with you as time goes on. Gotta tap into those hidden reserves of confidence! – a clean eating bento blog

  • JLu

    Lovely words! I agree that it’s not very often, unfortunately, to find well mannered people these days. People seem to be so focused on themselves and trying to be part of the cool crowd that they just forget what’s acceptable and what is not. More articles like this and we are on the good track!

  • Great post. I’m really working at swearing less and expanding my vocabulary.

  • I disagree with dress to impress. Rather dress to depress. It’s so classy/ so good, people get depressed looking at you. Lol

    xo Angelus,

  • Couldn’t agree more with all the points! The 5 basic rules that everyone should follow

  • It was the Breakfast at Tiffany’s picture that caught my eye and I’m so glad I stumbled across this post! Couldn’t agree more with keeping our manners in tact, especially dressing appropriately to different events. I hate leaving the house without making an effort! xo

  • Dormilona

    I am not a fan of Kim Kardashian, but I don’t think there is anything “ladylike” about putting her down. I believe that etiquette begins and ends with kindness and consideration for those around you and anyone whose well-being make be affected by your words or actions.

    • Lois

      I like the Kardashians and do love to watch their show. Personally I don’t see this as putting her down but putting it in perspective. The previous sentence explains the overall, kind of negative, feeling around the word ‘lady’ and then I continue by saying that role models like Kim Kardashian bring different aspirations (you can fill in what this personally means to you, positive or negative). I do realize that I should have used a different sentence structure and I totally agree with you on the kindness part, but this was meant anything but negative or hateful :)


  • What a great post. The picture caught my attention as I love this bag! Your message was even better than the bag. Thanks for the positive reinforcement!

  • Agree with every single one of them. Especially the phone one – hate it when people are glued to their phones

  • carissa lucas

    Great post! I agree with it all!

  • a resister

    Great article…simple and straightforward. As an aside…LOVE the photo of a gorgeous young Brooke Shields.