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Job Interview Attire - Do's and Don'ts

Updated: Feb 10, 2020

We have to admit, how you look during an interview is just as important as what you say and how you act. As if job interviews weren’t stressful enough, right? You’ve probably already heard the saying, “Dress for the job you want” but you haven’t heard “Dress for the company you want to work for.” A suit might not be necessary for your job interview so learn how to decode interview dress codes. If you have doubts as to what to wear we, at El Paso Professional Resumes, can help you with your attire! Meanwhile, here are some tips for you: 

Less is More

When it comes to accessories for your job interview, keep them to a minimum. For both men and women, if you are at a loss, no jewelry is better than jewelry that will draw attention away from your face. Examples of this can be big earrings, gold chains, too many bracelets or rings, and hats. Wearing your engagement ring is perfectly fine but avoid wearing other rings in case they are too flashy or distracting. The same applies to watches. You don’t want to “bling” out or come off as conceited to the interviewer so choose a modest watch to wear. In a nutshell, wear small and reserved pieces. 

Don’t Look Too Casual at a Job Interview

A 2017 report by Jobvite showed that “75% of recruiters say job candidates dress too casually.” The dress code guideline “business casual” can sometimes cause some confusion among job seekers. It has different meanings depending on the type of company and city where you are interviewing. For example, if you’re interviewing in a law firm you want to wear a suit. If you’re interviewing for an ad agency a suit may be too formal and if you wear one you might give the impression that you are “antiquated.” If you have no clue as to what to wear, it’s always better to be overdressed (leaning on the conservative, formal version of business casual) than under-dressed. A good idea is to mix formal pieces with casual ones. If it is possible, visit the location and take note of what employees are wearing. Then dress similar, still avoiding the following list. 

What Not to Wear 

Never forget the “business” part of business casual. Leave your comfortable or favorite clothing at home. The one word definition of a good-looking interview outfit is “polished.” Here is a list of certain items you should definitely avoid wearing: 

  • Ripped jeans, or jeans overall 

  • Visible undergarments (such as boxers or bra straps)

  • Visible body jewelry (with the exception of ears)

  • Shorts or skirts that are too short

  • Any type of tight clothes

  • Ill-fitting clothing (ie. too small or too large /untailored suits)

The list goes on but an absolute no-no, under any circumstances, are flip-flops. You will automatically find yourself in the job coffin without even knowing it. Shoes definitely matter. If you’re not sure as to what kind of outfit applies to the job, research the company beforehand or talk to a resume writing service where they can advise you on your interview outfit. You can also get great advice by using interview coaching services. A trained professional will actually help build a strategy for landing the job.

The Right Job Interview Attire Will Boost Your Confidence

In brief, your job interview is your first shot at the job and your first strong impression, which is why having the perfect interview outfit and accessories is the key to landing a job.The smartest thing to do is have at least one classic outfit that you can use to all interviews just in case you can’t come up with another. Have a dress rehearsal at your house days before your interview so you can avoid running late or having malfunctions with your attire. Pay attention to the details in your clothing and always err on the side of overdressing. Ask a friend or a professional for their opinion on your clothing. Not only will this help you with the first impression you will give but will boost your confidence as well. 

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