Fashion and Style

How To Dress For An Interview (Applicable To Men & Women)

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WHAT IS AN INTERVIEW?

An interview is a conversation where questions are asked and answers are given. The word “interview” refers to a one-on-one conversation between an interviewer and an interviewee. Interviews usually take place face-to-face and in person, although modern communications technologies such as the Internet have enabled conversations to happen in which parties are separated geographically, such as with video conferencing software, and telephone interviews can happen without visual contact. Interviews almost always involve a spoken conversation between two or more parties.

DRESSING FOR INTERVIEW

A job interview is your opportunity to make a great first impression on your potential employer. Dressing for success is a big part of the interview process.

Dressing for an interview
Two bankers (Photo Credit: – @oiza_1)

HERE ARE SOME GUIDELINES ON HOW TO DRESS TO AN INTERVIEW:

FOR WOMEN:

  • Avoid revealing clothing and anything that doesn’t fit properly
  • You should wear a suit with a skirt or pants.  When in doubt, be more conservative. Your suit should be comfortable and fit you well; if your waistband is cutting you in half or your jacket is too tight, you won’t look or act your best. Some stores offer free alterations when you purchase a suit, or you may want to find a tailor to adjust a suit you already own.
  • Interview suits should be simple and dark in colour. Anything tight, bright, short, or sheer should absolutely be avoided. (Interviewers have been known to complain about the length of interviewees’ skirts; if you have any doubts, it’s probably too short.) Knee-length skirts are suggested. Very long skirts, while modest, are also considered too trendy for an interview.
  • Wear a conservative blouse with your suit. Do not wear bright colours, animal prints, or anything lacy, sheer, or low-cut.
  • Make-up and nail polish should be understated and flattering; shades that are neutral to your skin tone are generally advisable.
  • Avoid bright or unusual colors or very long nails.
  • Keep your jewelry and hair accessories to a minimum, and stick to those that are not flashy, distracting, or shiny. One ring per hand is best.
  • Shoes should be conservative and fairly low-heeled. They should be in reasonably good condition, not scuffed or run-down at the heels. Don’t wear shoes with an open toe or back; any shoes you would wear on a date or to a club are probably inappropriate. A basic pump is flattering, versatile, and will stay in style forever (once you own pumps, you can spend the rest of your money on fun shoes). The salesperson in the shoe store can steer you in the right direction.
  • Your hose should be neutral (matched to your skin tone). Make sure the heels are not dyed black from your shoes and that there are no snags or runs. Only use the nail polish trick in an emergency; you may want to carry an extra pair of hose with you instead.
  • Dress in a manner that is professionally appropriate to the position for which you are applying. In almost all cases, this means wearing a suit. It is rarely appropriate to “dress down” for an interview, regardless of company dress code policy. When in doubt, go conservative.
  • No purses, small or large. carry a briefcase/messenger bag or portfolio instead.
  • Your clothing should always be neat, clean, and pressed. If you don’t have an iron, either buy one or be prepared to visit the dry-cleaners often.
  • Shower or bathe the morning of the interview. Wear deodorant. Don’t wear perfume: you don’t want to smell overpowering or worse, cause an allergic reaction.
  • Make sure you have fresh breath. Brush your teeth before you leave for the interview, and don’t eat or smoke before the interview.
  • Your hair should be neat, clean, and conservatively styled. Banana clips, brightly-coloured scrunchies or elastics, and cheerleader-type ponytails look out of place with a suit. You may want to wear your hair in an updo, pull it back into a low ponytail, or wear a barrette (this suggestion does not include the tiny little barrettes that only hold the front of your bangs back). The idea is to look polished and professional, not to advertise what a creative genius your hairdresser is.

FOR MEN:

How to dress for an Interview men and women
Two bankers
Photo credit: @oiza_1 on Instagram
  • Dress in a manner that is professionally appropriate to the position for which you are applying. In almost all cases, this means wearing a suit. It is rarely appropriate to “dress down” for an interview, regardless of company dress code policy. When in doubt, go conservative.
  • You should wear a suit to interviews. “Suit” means the works: a matching jacket and pants, dress shirt, tie, coordinating socks and dress shoes. A dark-coloured suit with a light-coloured shirt is your best option.
  • Dark shoe[black lace-up are best] and dark socks [black is best].
  • Your suit should be comfortable and fit you well so that you look and act your best. There is a difference between not yet feeling at ease in a suit and trying to fit into the same suit you wore to your sister’s wedding when you were 15. (In the latter case, it’s time to invest in a new suit!)
  • Neckties should be silk with a conservative pattern. Avoid loud colors and flashy ties.
  • Clothing should be neat, clean, and pressed. If you don’t have an iron, either buy one or be prepared to visit the dry-cleaner’s often. Shower or bathe the morning of the interview. Wear deodorant. Don’t wear cologne or aftershave. You don’t want to smell overpowering or worse, cause an allergic reaction.
  • Make sure you have fresh breath. Brush your teeth before you leave for the interview, and don’t eat before the interview. Don’t smoke right before an interview.
  • Get a haircut; Short hair always fare best in interviews. Your hair should be neat, clean, and conservative.
  • Fresh shave; moustaches are a possible negative, but if you must, make sure it is neat and trimmed.
  • No ring other than a wedding ring
  • No earrings [if you normally wear them, take them out].

 

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