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How to Dress for an Interview: Expert Advice on Interview Clothing
Congratulations! You got your foot in the door. Hours of poring over countless listings and rewrites of your resume and cover letter finally worked out in your favor. Now, it’s time to get ready for the interview. Remember: you want to make your first impression a positive lasting impression. You should dress for the position you want. Here are some tips to help you dress for the interview.
The interview suit:
Go with a traditional solid charcoal grey or navy suit. If you decide to wear a pattern suit, make sure the pattern is light and not loud or abrasive. A micro pattern or subtle pin stripe will work just fine. Two or three buttoned jackets are most common and a safe bet. Be sure the suit is neatly pressed and that your socks match your pants not your shoes. It’s a common oversight, but a noticeable one.
The dress shirt:
When choosing a dress shirt for an interview, a spread collar or point collar are the best choices (Button down shirts are to be worn with blazers or sportcoats, but not suits). If you wish to wear a Windsor knot in your tie, go with a spread collar. The most versatile dress shirt colors are white or blue, this would not be the time to show how fashion forward you are with a printed shirt. Also, your sleeve cuff should show from under your jacket sleeve about 1/2 an inch, so don't wear short sleeves!
Avoid bold ties which are louder than you: do not wear ties with logos, cartoon characters, or sports affiliations. You want your personality to be noticed, not your wild tie. Play it safe, and choose a necktie with a micro pattern in a muted color. For example, burgandy is a tasteful choice.
When you dress for your interview, remember to wear leather dress shoes, and polish out any scuff marks. Since you will be wearing a dark suit, black shoes will suit the attire best. Black shoes are perfectly acceptable to wear with a navy suit or dark gray suit. Brown shoes are more of a fashion statement and can be worn after you get the job. Your belt should match your shoes, so invest in a decent leather belt which will last.
While you focus on your interview clothes, don’t forget about the accessories. Forgo pocket squares, cufflinks and pocket watches. Take out the earrings, put away the headphones and don’t wear cologne. There is nothing more nauseating or distracting for the interviewer than a strong scent. Don’t forget the courtesy of deodorant and a breath mint, but don’t chew gum during your interview. The less distracting your accessories are, the more your interviewer will focus on you.
These interview clothing suggestions are the standards for almost any industry, but keep in mind that your interview dress code should be dictated by the job you are seeking. For example, traditional attire for a banker, lawyer or doctor wouldn’t make sense for a creative person interviewing for a job in the design or marketing field.
Make a strong first impression with your appearance, confidence and overall tone. We here at Jos. A. Bank wish you the best of luck with your future career and hope you will consider us for your future business casual and business dress apparel needs.