How to Dress for a Job Interview

The appearance of an interviewee is the first thing that is noticed by an interviewer. Attire may not be the most important aspect of a potential employee, but it is significant for making a good first impression. There are several guidelines to adhere to when dressing for a job interview.

Appropriate Attire

Wearing professional attire is a good starting point for both men and women. They should wear suits, conservative shoes, and dress shirts. There are additional details to keep in mind for each.

Men
• Navy or dark gray suit
• Tie with a conservative design that matches the suit
• Buttoned dress shirt with a solid color that matches a color in the tie
• Belt with little decorations or design on it
• Plain, dark-colored trouser socks
• Oxfords or slip-on business shoes that matches the suit

Women
• Black, navy, or gray suit jacket and matching skirt
• Conservative blouse that matches the suit
• Neutral nylons
• Pumps with a one-inch heal or less

Fit of Clothing

Men and women should wear suits that fit well. The suits should not be too small or too big, and should be appropriate in length. Shirts should be tucked into the suit pants or skirt.

Men
• The sleeve-length of the suit jacket reaches the wrists when hands are placed on a desk
• The suit jacket easily buttons, at least when standing
• The tie touches the top of the belt when standing
• The space between the buttons on the dress shirt does not part when sitting down
• The belt is not too tight or too long
• The trouser socks reach mid-calf and stay up
• The shoes are an appropriate fit

Women
• The suit jacket’s sleeve-length appropriately touches the wrists when hands are placed on a desk
• The suit jacket stays buttoned when sitting
• The blouse, if buttoned-style, does not part between the buttons when sitting
• The blouse’s neckline is 1-2 inches below the collarbone
• The skirt-length falls between knees and mid-calf when sitting
• The nylons fit correctly according to the person’s size and weight
• The pumps fit the feet correctly

Self-Care

Prior to the interview, the interviewee should properly and thoroughly wash up. That includes hair washing, teeth brushing, shaving, hair combing, adding a slight fragrance, using lotion, and applying natural-looking makeup (for women). Getting a haircut a day or two before is advisable, especially if it has been a while since the last time. Manicuring nails, hair removal, and flossing teeth are more ways for an interviewee to feel their best.

Additional Tips

A short, or at least, neat hairstyle is best for both men and women. Little jewelry – such as a ring and watch – or no jewelry, is best. Quality attire and accessories make a better impression than cheap fabrics and materials. It is advisable to make sure to prepare the attire for the interview the day before. Lastly, it is good to bring a portfolio or briefcase to the interview to show professionalism.

Looking professional and wearing appropriate attire is important when going to a job interview. It is the first thing the interviewer sees, so it is best to make sure they have a good judgment. Wearing attire that fits well, and using proper hygiene, will help anyone have a chance at being hired.

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