For young people entering the job market, one of the most daunting prospects can be undergoing an interview. Of course, there’s an exciting aspect to the interview process – you have an opportunity, after all, and you get to make your case for taking a job that you’ve applied for! However, there’s also a great deal of pressure in being the subject of an interview – and like it or not, a great deal of that pressure revolves around your appearance.

Of course, it’s not that you’ll be judged entirely on how you look – you likely got the interview through hard work, a sound résumé, and your own merits. However, showing up in polished, appropriate and professional attire helps you to make a strong personal impression. And perhaps more importantly, showing up underdressed or haphazard can be a devastating blow. With this in mind, here are 6 basic tips for how to dress and present yourself at a job interview!

  • Research The Company – Generally speaking, people tend to lean a bit toward formal for job interviews. However, it’s still a good idea to do all you can to find out about the company culture, and how employees dress. If a company’s regular attire is a bit more casual or a bit more formal, you can reflect it specifically with your attire.
  • Too Bold Is Bad – Some people get caught up with the idea of making a strong statement, or of showing off a formal personal side, and these ideas can result in attire that’s simply too bold. A bright red dress on a woman, or a three piece suit for a man are good examples of outfit choices that might look a bit pretentious.
  • Find The Right Shoes – This may seem like an afterthought, or a factor that shouldn’t be a top concern – but it’s very important to have shoes that match, meet the formality standard, and keep you comfortable and relaxed. We’d recommend taking a look at Marks and Spencer, where there’s even a “top 10 formal shoes” section for men, as well as comfortable and appropriate options for ladies.
  • Wear Accessories – Don’t go overboard, but the right accessories can help to complete your look, whereas an outfit without accessories can look a bit bare. For women, this might mean tasteful jewellery and a nice handbag; for men, you can’t go wrong with a nice watch, or tie clip.
  • Avoid Fragrance – This is a great tip we pulled from a Forbes article on the subject. Putting on perfume or cologne can create an overwhelming and pretentious presence, and distracts from the impression you make with your personality!
  • Tailor & Dry Clean – Finding the right outfit is fantastic, but it’s also important to maximize that outfit’s potential! Take the time to have your interview attire tailored to you, and dry cleaned in advance.