What To Wear To A Job Interview: Best Tips & Ideas

7 min

The interview day is one of the most stressful moments of the job searching journey, so you naturally want to make everything go perfectly. The good news is that there is already an easy universal tool to boost your confidence — to create a flawless and comfortable outfit! However, balancing personal perception of beauty with what is commonly considered an appropriate interview attire might be pretty tricky. So, to avoid awkward situations and rock the outfit, follow our recommendations on what to wear to a job interview.

Why your outfit matters

One may rightly ask why on earth a hiring manager should care in which pants an average candidate with a competitive CV feels comfortable. Partially this question makes sense because what should matter in the first place is your competence, no doubt whatsoever. Nevertheless, there are some convincing reasons to take the choice of an interview outfit seriously.

First of all, a tasteful look will boost your confidence and make you feel more professional. What can be better than an additional source of calm during a decisive moment on your career path?

Second, the way you look tells a lot about your personality and thinking style and getting to know this is one of the primary objectives of any job interview. Even if the CV is impeccable, an odd messy outfit will most likely confuse an interviewer and create an obstacle for you to getting a job. You want to be predictable during interviews, don't you?

Third, a professional interview attire signs that the job position must matter to a candidate if they have put effort into even minor details of their appearance. Be sure that an experienced hiring manager will spot this from the very first minutes of the interview, so it's your chance to get a few more points.

5 tips to consider while selecting a job interview outfit

1. Put effort into research

Indeed, the most helpful recommendation on what to wear to an interview is to research the company culture, environment, and dress code to get an idea of the appropriate style. There are two ways how you can do this: 

a) browse the company's web page and social media;

b) contact the HR department if there is little information in public access.

2. Prepare in advance

The last thing you would want to experience on the interview day is running around the apartment 20 minutes before going outside, trying to find that one dress you wore a year ago. Please save your nerves! Planning your outfit a day before leaves you a chance to tidy up your clothes and make sure you feel good in the chosen outfit.

3. Play safe

Great job interview outfits should be tidy, practical, and attractive, so it would be more reasonable to go for a proven option instead of experimenting with style. Also, styling new or extraordinary accessories or patterns to make them go well with the look may be challenging. So, it's better to be less creative yet more confident with the choice in this case.

4. Choose comfort

To avoid more stress, make sure nothing will bother you during the interview. For instance, the shoes shouldn't be too tight; a zipper should work perfectly; every item of clothing should be your size, etc. During the interview, all you want to think about is how to answer questions, not how your feet hurt or how your dress won't let you breathe.

5. Check everything twice

Examine your clothes thoroughly to be sure there are no spots, stains, loose threads, or other undesirable details. It's always better to notice such things at home with enough time to fix them than while approaching the office entrance or after the interview. 

Having discussed the general recommendations, let's move on to ideas on how to dress for an interview for men and women.

Interview attire for men: ideas

Depending on the company's dress code, there are three main styles for men to wear for an interview.

The most strict one is a classic business style typical for big or conservative companies. Such an outfit may look like this:

  • a two-piece suit, both pieces made of the same fabric (navy or grey);
  • a white or light long-sleeved shirt;
  • a classic tie (solid color or soft pattern);
  • leather shoes and a belt matching them;
  • a wristwatch and a pocket square.

A business casual interview outfit is less formal and allows to wear:

  • a shirt with long sleeves (dark ones are acceptable as well);
  • either no blazer or a blazer of casual colors (beige, light gray, light navy, etc.);
  • classic pants (dark ones are preferable);
  • leather shoes and a matching belt;
  • a wristwatch.

Casual interview outfits provide more freedom of choice and include such options as:

  • a solid color T-shirt or a casual shirt;
  • either no blazer or a casual blazer;
  • plain color pants or jeans;
  • a belt;
  • dark or white shoes (for this style, casual sneakers are acceptable).

Interview outfits for women: ideas

An interview dress for women usually includes some space for experimenting, so you can consider different options.

For a classy business look, try wearing:

  • a two-piece suit with either a pencil skirt or classic pants;
  • a light shirt;
  • a matching belt;
  • 1.5-2 inch heels;
  • elegant minimalistic jewelry.

To dress in business casual style, you are free to pick:

  • a midi or knee-length dress of noble colors;
  • a blazer (if matching);
  • beige leather heels.

A casual outfit may include:

  • a solid color T-shirt;
  • a casual blazer;
  • jeans;
  • white sneakers.

What you should never wear to an interview

Even if personal tastes are diverse, we recommend avoiding some types of clothes that are generally considered inappropriate for interviews.

  • Festive or extravagant dresses.
  • Street, athletic or home style.
  • Revealing clothes.
  • Brand tags or quotes.
  • Neon or too bright colors.
  • Typical clothes for certain subcultures or merch.
  • Vintage clothing.

Are you ready to rock the interview? Then, check out Hirin.co — an excellent job searching site where all salaries, vacancies' range, and candidate expectations are shown to everyone.

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