Job interview clothes

What to wear to a job interview

Job interviews can be pretty stressful – they are an opportunity for you to meet your prospective employer and make a great impression, but that creates so much pressure! First impressions certainly count, and looking your best has never been so important.

Recruitment Consultants Robert Walters explain:

“Many hiring managers will form an opinion instantly from your appearance and how you carry yourself. How you appear to your interviewer is how you’ll be viewed by their clients too, so making sure you are dressed smart and professionally is the first step towards making your first impression count and winning your interviewer around. “

But before you pull your very best suit out the wardrobe, take a moment to think about what kind of company you’re applying to. Have a look on their website and see if they have photos of existing staff. If so, look at what they are wearing. See if you can find a dress code online – quite a lot of large companies do make them public. Look on sites like Glassdoor which often have hints as to what the ‘uniform’ is. This gives you a very strong indication of what the employer is expecting. Naturally if the company has an actual uniform, you won’t be expected to show up in that! However, you can certainly match the style.

It’s also worth thinking about the company’s culture. Are they relaxed and informal, like CEX? Or are they more formal and tailored, like Hugo Boss? Employers will judge you on how well you will fit in with their culture and values; and clothes go a long way to communicate that. Try to match their culture.

Generally there are a few rules to follow. They won’t apply to every business, but they will see you through most interviews.

If you choose a suit, go for a conventional colour – nothing too wacky or different (according to Smart Recruiters, black is the safest colour). Make sure it fits you well and is freshly cleaned and pressed. Similarly, choose a shirt or blouse in a neutral colour and ensure everything is ironed and presented well. Hugo Boss have a great guide to dressing for corporate job interviews here.

Shoes say a lot about a person – they should be a conventional design and colour, clean and free from damage.

Jewellery can add a nice finishing touch to an outfit but it should be worn in moderation. Keep to a single ear piercing in each ear and choose earrings that are simple and understated, such as these plain threaders from

Overall ensure that there is nothing about your outfit or presentation which distracts the interviewer. You want them to concentrate on you, not your appearance – which means conforming to job interview expectations at least for today!

Hygiene is just as important – make sure you’re washed and smell fresh having cleaned your teeth and applied plenty of effective deodorant. Interviews can get pretty sweaty! Don’t overdo aftershave or perfume – again this can be a huge distraction. Smell can also be immensely off putting – what smells great to one person won’t necessarily go down well with the next. It’s best therefore to avoid strong smelling perfumes.

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