Sometimes you just want to stand out from the crowd - but equally there are times when you need to make a personal style statement in a more subtle way.
Appearance codes in the workplace can mean that self-expression has to be carefully managed - subtle piercings, discreet tattoos and now hidden rainbow hair.
The latest hairstyle to go viral - vivid rainbow streaks concealed under a top layer of hair - seems as if it's clearly aimed at those who want to be just a little bit daring, those who are itching to express themselves while staying within the constraints of a corporate dress code.
The BBC spoke to two young women about what alternative style means to them.
Colours in her hair
Sophia Hilton, owner of the London salon which is credited with creating the hidden rainbow style, says her stylists are aware that their clients need a hairstyle to match the level of colour in their life.
Not Another Salon, situated in London's Brick Lane, is also famous for offering the brightest of bright dye jobs and Sophia says: "What's changed is the perception now.
"People used to see bright-coloured hair as an act of rebellion, but it's just about knowing who you are."
The 28-year-old says her clients are given a blank piece of paper and are asked to write down which job they do and the hairstyle they would want in an ideal world - something she calls a "no judgement policy".
"Fashion, media and design, they are quite open industries, whereas less creative and more academic or office jobs don't allow as much freedom," she says.
"We want to help people to have the confidence to challenge perceptions of what is acceptable in the workplace because of social and occupational restraints.
"So we think about things like could this lady still wear dark emerald green hair in the office if she wore more make-up or dressed smarter."
Sophia adds that while a lot of women who ask for unusual hair colour designs may seem confident, it's not that simple.
"The salon is positioned right next to the financial district and the banking areas, and we see a lot of professional women coming in asking for things like hidden rainbow hair, "because they want to be able to get rid of it at work".
"It's a case of trying to work out what's an acceptable balance between their job and who they are.
"We also have a lot of school teachers who come in the summer and want dyed hair, and then get it changed back before they go back to school."
A hidden gallery
For 22-year-old PR executive Laura Moore, expressing her personal style at a young age was important - but she was careful to get tattoos on specific parts of her body that would be easier to cover up when she needed to "go corporate"
"You can see I have my hair dyed black and have piercings, but I made a point of only tattooing my torso and my upper legs because I know some employers aren't up for visible tattoos," she said.
In total, Laura, from Edinburgh, has two nose piercings and 13 tattoos - including one of a tooth behind her ear.
"I have never been asked to cover them, but I usually do if I'm out seeing clients. We work with hotels and food companies, so it's not quite as open as, if say, I worked in music and fashion PR."
"Covering them up doesn't bother me", she says, "because even if I have got something covering them but my tattoos are still there, it makes me feel more confident".
"I think the artwork in tattoos is beautiful and having them makes feel more like myself, they make me more comfortable in my own skin. I feel like they make me more productive as I'm more relaxed with myself."
"The first tattoo I got was on my arms... and my mum said 'you're not going to get a job'," Laura adds.
"She doesn't want me to get any more because she thinks that people won't take me seriously.
"But sometimes I wear skirts or short dresses in the office and it's never been mentioned."
She thinks that piercings are seen to be more acceptable than tattoos, and explains: "I feel that piercings are accepted now, none of my clients have ever mentioned my nose piercings to me, but I don't have a lip piercing any more.
"Maybe if it was a different piercing (on my face) or I had a different face tattoo, it would be different."