Think back to the time you had an interview for a job you really wanted. If you are like most people, you racked your brain with ways to make yourself stand out as the best candidate. One of the most important things you were probably thinking was, “What should I wear?!” Professional interview attire is one of the most challenging things to figure out.
Dress for the Job You Want
Dress for your dream job. There is a common misconception that you can dress more casual when you are interviewing for a job that might not seem “significant”. That is completely wrong! First impressions are everything. Think about the first time you have met someone, and how you automatically made a judgment based on their appearance. Don’t fret, we all do this! It cannot be stressed enough to always dress your best when going in for an interview or even having a video interview. An interviewer can decide if you are qualified based on your appearance in the first five minutes of an interview.
Everyone is Replaceable
Listen, you’re great. You really are. But very rarely are interviewers so desperate for a hire that they’ll disregard glaring appearance issues. Usually, there’s a long line of people waiting to be interviewed for the very same job. That’s why a good appearance is so crucial. When someone goes above-and-beyond, the manager can tell that they’re serious about making a good impression.
So What Should I Wear?
If you are ever unsure about what to wear, just ask! There is no harm in doing that. It also looks great that you actually care about what is acceptable and expected of you. For men, a suit is not always necessary. A nice button-down collared shirt, dress pants, and a tie is great! And fellas, please tuck in your shirt with a belt. There is nothing worse than gentlemen going for an interview with their shirt wrinkled and untucked.
Ladies, you have it easy! The easiest thing for you to wear is a nice modest dress with low heels for shoes. Try and stay away from crazy colors, and keep it simple with jewelry and makeup. Less is more! If you are not comfortable in a dress or skirt nice dress pants with a blouse is great to wear. A pants suit is not always necessary depending on the job you are going for. Another option is to pair a dress or skirt ensemble with a jacket. Things to stay away from are low-cut tops or tank tops, short dresses or skirts, and very high heels.
Another thing to remember for men and women is to take out some of the piercings you may have. Any large tattoos should often be covered to an extent. Some may say that they want to be themselves in their interview, so why cover certain things about them up? The truth is, you want to be taken seriously and you want people to see you as professional. This goes back to “less is more”. Think about when you go on a first date. You do not reveal *every* single thing about yourself, especially the topics that could be controversial. A few things here and there is not going to ruin your chances, but you certainly shouldn’t go overboard. If you do not want to cover these things up then also be prepared with the possibility of not getting a job. Right or wrong, that is how the human brain works. There are some people who will simply not hire you based on how you look.
As long as you put effort into making yourself look professional and presentable, you don’t have anything to worry about. Just remember that it’s better to be over-dressed than under-dressed, and when in doubt, simply ask. Once you nail the look, you’ll be on your way to nailing the interview!
How do you dress professionally for a video or in-person interview? Comment below!
Article Contributions By: Megan Merritt