How to dress for a job interview - Men and Women

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Are you confused about how to dress for your upcoming job interview? What to wear to look impressive, smart and professional? Which attire can impress interviewers and bring a smile on their faces?  Although, during the interview, the first impression goes by the outfit you wear in the interview, doing complete research on “what to wear (the color combination of dresses & types of dress) during interview” become necessary.

Interview attire doesn’t mean that it should be expensive or brought it from some hyper shop. OR, it is not necessary to go through the fashion magazines/news paper to figure out what to buy for an interview. Only one thing you should keep in your mind is that, you should look professional and polished from top to bottom.

No matter, the interview is for which job position and what other candidates are going to wear, you should focus on the types of dress combination and color combination matching your personality that can help you in giving a neat, tidy, and well-dressed professional personality during job interview.

Here are some tips that can help you in knowing “what to wear and what not to wear at different types of job interview”. Also, these tips will provide you a proper understanding of how your attire can make good/bad impression in front of employers/interviewers/hiring mangers.

Professional Interview Attire

As we know, first impression is the best impression. The same logic works when first time you meet your employers for interviewing. Potential employers, in the initial stage of interview recognize how good you are professionally and whether you deserve this reputed job or not. Since, very rare companies offer a training program on professional attire, it is upon you to ”know the professional clothing style, or how much you are interested in knowing about professional attire through research work”.

Usually, men's fashion is comparatively uncomplicated and simpler than women. Using a few basic combinations and dressing sense, men can look stylish, professional, and gentile.

Professional interview attire for men

Suit: A two-piece matching suit is always the best option.

Shirts: White color, full-sleeved shirt (even in summer) is the best option for any professional job interview, but apart from white shirt, you can wear any other light color shirt that can give you a professional look. Also, you can go for classy light color striped shirt (specially, a shirt which carries blue strips). The most important thing, the shirt should be neatly pressed. Try to avoid dark color or stylish clothing for entirely professional/business job interview.

Pants: Neatly pressed khaki/cotton pant with a simple design with one single color of cloth (not stylish, with multi color cloth).

Ties: The tie is not mandatory for all interviews, but then too, you can wear a tie to look gentile. Notice, which color tie employees wear for a meeting and to meet business clients, choose accordingly a good quality silk tie that matches to your cloth. 

Socks: Dark color socks that match to the pant. Ware mid-calf length socks, so that, when you sit somewhere casually your leg won’t be visible.

Shoes: Ware either, lace-up or slip-on formal leather shoes of color black, oxblood, tan, cordovan, etc.…. that matches to your complete outfit. Make sure, your shoes should be polished properly and heels of the shoes should not be broken.

Belt: The best option is the black or cordovan leather belt.

Well-groomed hair: Although, hair style changes half of the look, well-groom your hair that can give a professional look.

Ornaments: You can wear a traditional watch, but avoid other ornaments like; earring, bracelet, etc.…. for the interview.

Professional interview attire for women

Suit: Wearing a two-piece suit is comparatively a better option than any other professional interview attire.

Tailored pant suit: Women’s tailored pant suit is appropriate for all kinds of industries, whether you are visiting a construction site, manufacturing plant/factory, or conservative industry. The tailored pant should be properly stitched and the crease lines should be appropriately pressed into the center front and back. Your pant should not be too tight or flowing to look stylish.

If your interview is closer and you are still confused about what to wear? Just visit to the employer’s info section, careers, fairs, events, etc.… to know more about how the women employees dressed-up.

Skirt: If you are wearing skirts for an interview, just take care of certain things. Your skirt should not be too short to display your thighs when you sit on the chair, it should be till the knee or longer than that. The most important things – your skirt should be narrow enough (not to be billowing) to make yourself comfortable when you sit on the chair or climb on the stairs.

If your skirt is deep and narrow, you may feel uncomfortable all the time during the interview and your nervousness may decrease your confidence level too. In a knee length skirt, a small center-back slit is appropriate, not high slits.

So, when you are purchasing a skirt for interview purpose – just check, how you are looking after wearing a skirt, is your skirt looking formal or casual, and how much you are comfortable with that?

Colors: The best colors to look professional are dark gray, navy blue, brown and black. You can also go for other colors that can give you a smarter, professional, and attractive look.

Shirt/top: Below your suit jacket, wear a nice fit (not too bulky, not too thin) shirt/top that augments well with your jacket. Maximum time, try to wear a light color’s plain shirt/top or shirt/top with small print. If you wear collared shirt / tops that will be more appropriate than not collared shirt/top.

Ornaments/makeup: No matter, your interview is for creative industry or conservative industry, and what other woman wears over there? Wearing a standard watch and a small earring with slight makeup is more than enough to maintain professionalism. Don’t apply makeup on your face and wear colorful jewelries as if you are going to the party.

Keep yourself simple and focused towards a career. Also, your nails should be of medium length and should be polished with light color nail-polished, especially, when you visit a conservative industry for the interview.

Purse/bag: A tote bag is best for business/professional use, of which, internal spacing can accommodate all items required for personal use and for the interview. If you are carrying a purse, keep a small and simple purse with you, not the stylish one you are using for parties.

Before giving an interview, make sure, your hair is well groomed, your hands & fingernails are clean, your clothes are clean, neatly pressed, and of nice fitting. If, you are wearing a new cloth, don’t forget to remove a tag/sticker from your cloth. You should not be sleepy. Don’t use strong smell deodorant, use the light smell deodorant that can impress people and attract people towards you.

Also, your mouth should not smell like that you had just smoked/drunk. Your nose should not be sneezing. Keep always a handkerchief/tissue paper, pen, and all necessary documents (documents that are helpful in reviewing your educational & professional detail) with you, these all things are very important when you are going for interview.

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