How to Style an Outfit for a Job Interview

Employers aren’t just looking for people with good resumes when they’re hiring. They also want people who look well-groomed, confident and professional. One of the best ways to impress employers during a job interview is to dress well, but knowing exactly how to style your outfit for a job interview can be challenging. Here are some tips for making a great outfit to wear during any job interview.

Changing Your Style Based on the Job

Just as you can be underdressed for a job interview, you can also be overdressed depending on the job at hand. It may give off a vibe like you’re trying too hard or seem like you’re overqualified for the job. To get a good idea of what to wear, visit the business a day before the interview during business hours and get an idea of the normal business attire. You can also research the business or field of work or even contact the company directly about their dress code. Once you have a good idea of what is commonly worn at the company, try to dress one step above that normal dress code.

Comfort Is Key

Contrary to popular belief, dressing up doesn’t have to mean being uncomfortable. If you end up buying clothes or shoes that are uncomfortable, it can make for a miserable interview. The worst part is, the fact that you’re uncomfortable and possibly aggravated from the discomfort can have significant impact during the interview. You can come off as awkward, curt, irritable and even rude. Try on any clothes that you buy. Sit, walk and even try running in the clothes that you pick to ensure as much comfort as possible.

Color Options

The rule of thumb with colors is that black is always a good bet. It goes with nearly everything, doesn’t stain easily and is easy on the eyes. Black becomes a bit of an issue in the hot days of summer, so it’s a good idea to wear light and soft colors like beige during those months. White should only be used for a blouse or dress shirt, but be wary of staining. Some other safe color options are navy blue, light brown and dark gray. If you choose other colors, ensure that they’re somewhat muted. Bright and saturated colors can be harsh on the eyes and very distracting.

For a splash of color, you can add a scarf to your outfit, but avoid colors that seem overly bright and complicated patterns.

Shoes should always be black or brown. Black shoes go best with black and gray clothes while brown shoes are better suited for brown and blue clothes. Ensure that the color of your socks don’t stand out in contrast with your shoes.

Accessories

You should keep the amount of jewelry that you wear to a minimum. Too much jewelry, even small items like rings, can be very distracting. Ensure that the jewelry is not too large or flashy to avoid further distraction.

Watches are always a fine accessory. They look nice with most outfits and they give people the impression that you’re a very prompt and organized individual. Keep the design of the watch simple and try to avoid wearing one that is very sparkly or gives off a particularly strong glare.

Shoes

Both for the sake of comfort and professionalism, keep heeled shoes at a reasonable height. Remember, flats can always be just as appealing of an option as high heels. Try to avoid shoes that make a lot of noise on hard surfaces. Some people may believe that the noise of heels on tile seems intimidating and gives off a confident vibe, but for many others it can be an irritating sound.
It’s usually better to go for a closed toe shoe, but if the company seems fairly laid back in their dress code and the weather is warm then open toe can be a viable option.

Remember that shoes are an investment. They should last for years without showing a lot of wear and tear. Pay extra for the quality of the materials not for the brand name.

Material

Cotton is always a good option for dress clothes. They’re cooler to wear on hot days, they tend to be cheaper, and they’re harder to wrinkle than many other materials. The only real downsides are the fact that they also have a harder time maintaining a crease, and they can shrink in the dryer.

Avoid material that seems shiny or flimsy. Shiny material can seem fairly gaudy, and it makes for more distractions. Like your shoes, professional dress clothes are an investment and should last for years with proper maintenance.


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