How To Dress to Make a Great First Impression

Nancy Anderson
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You can spend hours researching the hiring organization, practicing your responses to common interview questions and perfecting your resume, but don't forget about the outfit you choose for your job interview. While the hiring manager should take all aspects of your interview into account, it's important that you make your first impression a positive one by choosing the right attire. Consider these tips when getting dressed for your next job interview.

1. Follow the Dress Code

Research the company's dress code before the interview. Do employees dress in full business attire, or is the work environment more casual? Make sure your job interview outfit adheres to the dress code to show that you're a good fit for the company culture. If you can't make a determination about the organization's dress code, choose a professional-looking dark suit.

2. Dress Conservatively

Stick with more muted tones for your job interview outfit. Save that hot pink blouse with the polka dots for date night, and forget about wearing your favorite Daffy Duck tie. Ladies should avoid wearing anything revealing, including short skirts and plunging necklines.

3. Choose Your Shoes Wisely

Open-toed shoes are never appropriate for a job interview. Men should wear leather dress shoes, and women should opt for low heels or fashionable flats. Make sure the footwear you choose matches your outfit and is clean and polished.

4. Consider Your Socks

Whether you're wearing socks or stockings, darker tones are preferable. Avoid loud prints and distracting patterns to maintain a professional appearance.

5. Keep Makeup to a Minimum

Make sure your makeup looks natural for job interviews. This isn't the time to try out that smoldering smoky eye or test a new shade of bubble gum pink lipstick. If you don't typically wear makeup, make sure you know how to apply it properly before getting ready for your interview. If you wear cologne, aftershave or perfume, make sure you apply it lightly.

6. Accessories Carefully

It's okay to dress up your job interview attire with jewelry, but choose your pieces carefully. Avoid wearing huge hoop earrings, dangling necklaces or cheap costume jewelry. Choose pieces that complement your outfit.

7. Pay Attention to Grooming

Make sure your nails are trimmed, facial hair is well-groomed and hair is cut neatly. Shower on the morning of your interview so you're feeling fresh and invigorated.

8. Prepare Your Outfit Early

Before the day of your interview, try on your outfit to make sure every piece fits properly. Ensure that all garments are clean and freshly pressed for the big day.

They say clothes don't make the man, but they do offer a pretty good first impression. You want to walk into a job interview with confidence, projecting a professional image. Follow these tips to ensure you choose the right job interview attire.

Photo courtesy of olovedog at


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