How to Dress for a Job Interview as a Male or Female

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This article contains information on how to dress for a job interview as a male or a female.

Dress for a Job Interview

Getting a job seems to be one of the hardest things in existence and I’m not exaggerating. If so, why would you want to ruin a rare opportunity as a result of lack of information? Hell no. This is not me blaming you.

A lot of individuals have always wished to get called up for at least an interview, knowing it is a step away from getting employed but what they have no idea of is the fact that  an interview can be messed up by just one thing, “appearance“. Appearance may comprise a lot of things but the major thing is your dressing. Before you say a single word to the interviewer, you have already made an impression based on how you’re dressed.

After all, how we dress plays a vital role in people’s perception of us and our professionalism. You are addressed the way you dress, remember?

Dressing for a job interview isn’t so difficult. So, don’t over think it. However, there have been radical changes in “professional looks” across many industries, leaving one to wonder how a professional should really look.

All social workplace have norms on dressing. If the workplace is conservative and you show up dressed casually, you are most likely to come across as sloppy to the recruiter and lose credibility and chance of getting hired.

On the other hand, if you’re dressed appropriately, chances that the interview will start off right is high because you will definitely match the standard they have formed of you in their mind from your impressive resume.

Hence, in the bid to see that you don’t miss a beautiful opportunity to land a beautiful job due to lack of information, I have decided to put this together for your consumption.

The information given here is commonly accepted as an appropriate dress sense for interviews.

ACCEPTED WAYS ON HOW TO DRESS FOR INTERVIEWS AS A MALE

Men are less complicated in nature and so apply to their dressings. Regardless, dressing in a manner that is appropriate and suits the position for which you are applying.

1. Wear the right Cloths

In most cases, this means wearing a suit. You should wear a suit to interviews. This comprises a matching jacket and pants, shirt, tie, socks and shoes. A dark-colored suit with a light colored shirt is always the best option. Avoid loud colors and flashy ties.

Your suit should be comfortable and fit you well so that you look and act your best, not feeling uneasy. Clothing should be neat, clean, well-ironed and perfectly tucked in.

2. Wear the right Shoes

Shoes should be well-polished and in good condition, not scuffed with cracks at the heels. I understand you must have searched for jobs for numerous years with the same pairs of shoes, but then, that is not an excuse to attend an interview with tacky pairs of shoes. No employer wants to employ a hungry looking person.

Still on this, your shoes should also match your belt but where this might be a problem, always stick to black belts. Ask the salesperson at the shoe store for help on quality but affordable pairs.

3. Maintain the right Body hygiene

Dressing goes beyond clothes and shoes. Your body scent makes up for your general appearance. A neat cloth is nothing if worn by a person with body odour. Therefore, take a cool bath the morning of the interview and wear deodorant. It might shock you to know that in the bid to meet up time, some people don’t bath to attend interviews. Gross right?

Mind you, it is natural to want to apply a full bottle of perfume just to make heads turn the moment you step into the room. That’s not really a good idea. You might end up shooting yourself in the leg by doing that. From experience and research, this is a no no for an interview.

Don’t wear cologne or aftershave. You don’t want to smell so strongly and cause an allergic reaction to someone.

Just ensure you have fresh breath. Brush your teeth before you leave for the interview. To be on a safer side, avoid eating anything that will ruin your breath, possibly food.  Be sure to shave the morning of the interview or a day to the interview. If you have a full beard or moustache it should be neatly trimmed.

One of my friends was once advised by the receptionists at an interview venue to go to a nearby saloon to trim his beards if he desires to be given an audience by the interviewers. We’re in an era where men with full beards are tagged fraudsters and miscreants. I hope you understand the importance of having a near perfect look.

This may sound like a lot of rules, but these are the generally acceptable guidelines you should follow when deciding what to wear to an interview.

Dressing professionally shows respect for you, the interviewer, and the company. You may not have to dress like this every day, but you are more likely to be taken seriously when you present yourself in a professional manner. It’s much better to be too dressed up than too casual. A good rule of thumb is to dress like your boss in the interview.

ACCEPTED WAYS ON HOW TO DRESS FOR INTERVIEWS AS A FEMALE

Women are seen as very complicated humans in all aspects. Because a female naturally is particular about her looks, it is normal to get very confused and worried about what to wear to an interview, ranging from clothes, hair style, shoes, bags and even down to nails and makeup.

Now you see why the case of women will always be different.

The very first time and last time I ever attended an interview; I used a whole week to search for a “perfect outfit“. This is a very exhausting task. So my dear lady, I have got you covered. It’s not as complicated as it seems.

1. Wear the right Cloths

Generally, it is believed you should wear a suit with a skirt or pants. Your suit should be comfortable and fit you. Avoid looking seductive by going for tightly fitted options.

It is not mandatory to appear in suits, especially if you’re in my league of suit haters. A dress is also suitable, but it needs to look very professional, not some dinner date dresses. When in doubt, it’s safer to wear a jacket with a skirt or a blazer over a dress.

For a casual business workplace, business casual is the way to go. This implies you need to dress like a professional without being too formal. Dark jeans are also okay, or a knee-length skirt worn

Suits should be simple and dark in color. 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, avoid any sleeveless top. Anything tight, bright, short, should be avoided. Do not wear bright colors, animal prints, or anything lacy, 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

2. Wear the right Shoes

Shoes should be conservative with either flats or low-heels. Avoid putting on open-toe shoes and always make sure that your shoes are nice. They should be in good condition. Shoes you would wear on a date or to a club are unacceptable. A basic pump is flattering, versatile, and will stay in style without going out of fashion.

3. Put on moderate Jewelry

As a lady who doesn’t have as little as one piercing on the ear, I may not fully understand this, but having friends who are so “addicted” to Jewelries, I know many ladies love it loud, three earrings with three piercings on one ear, a nose ring, five rings on one hand and bling Bangles to compliment. Some even love anklets.

If this is you, 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. No anklets and numerous earrings.

4. Keep neat and well-styled Hair

Whether it is a wig or your natural hair, your hair should be neat, clean, and well styled. Brightly-colored scrunchies, clips or elastics may not really look nice. The idea is to look polished and professional, not to advertise what a creative genius your hairstylist is.

As for your hand bags, avoid shiny party looking bags. Always go for bags that compliment your cloths. U

CONCLUSION

A job interview is quite different from a dinner party with friends. Bearing this in mind, how you’re dressed for these two events differ.

Being a job interview, whether male or female, from your well-penned resume, your interviewers should likely have an idea of the person you’re and as such you must endeavour to uphold such a standard. Don’t disappoint them.

Therefore, let how you dress portray the person you projected in your resume. Consistency should run from your resume copy to your clothes and conversation. Whatever you choose to wear, make sure you feel comfortable. This always helps in your level of confidence.

As a job seeker keep your attire very simple, in order not to send a wrong message across. You should be careful about wearing luxury brands. It can convey; wealth, power, and high social standing. In essence, you may not actually be any of that at the moment but the employer likes to understand it differently. One way is believing they can’t afford you.

Another one shown from research is the ideology that wearing luxury brands rates people lower on trustworthiness. Whatever that means, I would rather advise you to tune your appearance down and secure the job first.

Lastly, “this is who I am” shouldn’t be the reason you show up for an interview looking unkempt.

While self-expression is encouraged, what matters most here is that you express yourself as the most suitable candidate for the job. So don’t dress tacky with the excuse that you’re being real or being yourself. What you wear should also match the role that you’re applying for.

Remember; avoid perfumes or colognes because, in small rooms, smells can be distracting. Also, some cologne can be very irritating to others. If you must wear colognes that are not strong and in moderation too, it must be light enough not to be perceived but yet give you a nice smell.

In all, the best colors to wear to an interview are neutral. White, black, gray, navy, and cream are all excellent colours.

Is dressing for an interview still as difficult as you imagined? I guess not.

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Leonel Schuster

Kathryn has been Teacher at Alliant International University since 2013. He began to write about admission details at Course Discovery.