It’s no surprise that first impressions are impacted by looks. For this reason, it’s extremely important to dress your best when interview time rolls around. For some, finding that perfect interview outfit is tricky. Others may not even know where to begin when getting dressed for an interview! Either way, don’t stress…We’re here to help!
The first step to finding that perfect interview outfit is to know the environment of the company. Of course, you’re going to wear something nice, but the type of company you’re interviewing with could mean the difference between formal attire such as suits, or business casual.
If you’re unsure about how employees dress on a day-to-day basis, it’s a good idea to be a little bit overdressed rather than under-dressed. No one is going to look at you funny for being in a suit at an interview. They may however look at you funny if you show up in jeans.
While specific clothing varies based on company, there are a few general guidelines for an appearance at ANY interview, no matter the attire.
- The most important thing you can wear is a SMILE!!! Bringing positive energy into an interview will set things off on the right foot.
- Make sure you are well-groomed. Have a neat, professional hairstyle.
- Skip out on that super strong perfume or cologne. Of course, you want to smell good but don’t overdo it.
- Always iron your interview outfit to be sure they are wrinkle-free.
- Don’t wear clothing that is ripped, damaged, or doesn’t fit right.
Dressing for a Corporate Interview (Formal):
Anything in the world of finance, banking, insurance, or another corporate industry typically means a suit for men and a pants suit/skirt with pantyhose and a blouse for women. There are also some other guidelines when dressing for an interview with a corporate company that should be kept in mind.
- Always Keep it conservative. Skirts shouldn’t be too short while both men’s and women’s blouses should be buttoned at an appropriate length.
- Don’t wear crazy colors. Sticking to basics like black, white, navy, or tan is a great idea for the first interview.
- Men should wear ties and belts when interviewing with corporate companies.
- Women should have little to no jewelry. Again, just keep it simple!
- Light make-up and nicely manicured nails are a great look on corporate interviews.
Dressing for a More Casual interview (Business Casual):
While interviewing at companies that require business casual dress, suits and skirts are not necessary. However, It’s still important to dress to impress and keep it classy. Here some pointers for when dressing business casual…
- Business casual has way more lee-way than formal attire. Slacks or dress pants with a blouse or sweater will suffice.
- Heels are not worn by everyone and dress shoes of any kind are typically okay.
- If the company does allow jeans occasionally, make sure they are appropriate and do not have rips.
- A good rule of thumb when dressing business casual is to wear nothing that would be more fitting at the gym or a club.
Other Key Things to Bring on an Interview:
While this doesn’t pertain directly to your interview outfit, don’t forget these things on your way out the door!
- Extra copies of resume
- Breath mints
- Directions to location
- Laptop/tablet to show portfolio
Always know the culture of a company before interviewing there. Corporate companies require formal attire while startup companies may be okay with jeans on occasion. Additionally, pay attention to your grooming and overall appearance. A little makeup, wrinkle-free clothes, and a smile can go a long way!!
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