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Wondering what to wear to a job interview? There are certain interview outfits based on the job. Find out more interview clothing tips for men and women here.

So you have a job interview and have no idea what to wear? Don’t worry, you’re not alone in this thought process! So many people fear that they’re going to wear the wrong thing that it’s quite a common question. If you’re wondering what to wear to your interview, these simple interview tips can help!

What You Should Wear To An Interview (Based On The Job)

job interview outfit

What should you not wear to a job interview?

Most importantly, let’s start by understanding the things that you shouldn’t wear to a job interview. It’s important to be professional and to remember that you’re interviewing to showcase your talents and skills while also being someone who looks the part as well.

Here is a quick list of items that you shouldn’t wear to your upcoming job interview:

  • Stained and ripped clothing
  • Jeans
  • Shirts with words on them
  • T-shirts
  • Flip Flops or Sandals
  • Hats
  • Too short of shorts or skirts
  • Tennis Shoes
  • Wrinkled clothing
  • Revealing clothing
  • Neon- colored clothing
  • Ill-fitting clothing ie too tight, too long, too baggy, etc.
  • Tuxedos
  • Evening gowns
  • Anything that has a controversial or inflammatory image or phrase
  • And those are just a few. Basically, if you’re in doubt about it, don’t wear it. It’s really as simple as that.

job interview outfit tips

What is the best color to wear to an interview?

This is another situation where you’ll want to use your best judgment. However, you should know that typically neutral colors are what is best for making the room a more professional setting.

However, if you wanted to add a little bit of color in, do so. You should showcase yourself in some way and as long as it’s not something that would be considered distracting, you can easily add in some fun coloring with jewelry, socks, or other fun ideas!

Can you be overdressed for an interview?

Even though it sounds kind of odd….yes, you can actually overdress for the interview. There’s a difference in dressing for the job and it is appropriate for what you’re applying for rather than just dressing for the interview and being totally over the top.

A nice shirt and pants are great for most interviews but if you choose to wear a suit, there is a chance that you might be overdressed. The same can go for females and dresses, etc. Wearing a professional but casual outfit to your interview might just be the middle ground that you’re looking for.

what to wear to an interview

Is it OK to wear nail polish for an interview?

Yes, having nail polish on your nails should be fine just be certain that you’re aware of the color choice that you have. While bright colors are fine you might consider toning it down a bit to give your nails a more professional look. This is totally up to you though and you have to make the best judgment call for yourself.

It’s also a good idea to make certain that your nails are either painted nicely or not. Having chipped nails can look a bit messy and while it’s not a huge detail in the overall job interview process, it’s something that the interviewer may or may not notice.

What should I wear to my interview?

When it comes to dressing for your interview, you should always listen to your gut and instincts as well. If you’re doubtful about wearing something, there’s a reason and it’s one that you should listen to.

You can easily put together an outfit that is interview worthy with these simple tips.

interview clothing tips

Interview Outfit Tips

1. Talk to your family and friends about what they think is appropriate

While you don’t have to use their responses, it’s always good to have an outside perspective on what they consider acceptable to wear. Talk to individuals that are experienced or have careers related to the job you’re applying to.

2. Look up online suggestions and make your interview outfit based upon that

We live in a world where we can get access to basically anything that we’d like. Simply look up some interview outfit choices online and see if any of them speak to you in a way that makes them think that they’re perfect.

3. Research the company

Check the company’s social media pages if they have any behind-the-scenes pictures of staff. That way you can get a feel for the culture and dress code.

Look into their Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, pages. etc. If they have an HR contact, see if you can contact them to get an idea of the dress code.

4. Do a dry run

Put on your outfit several days ahead of your interview so you have time to get something else if need be. Stand up, sit down, cross your legs.

Waiting until the last minute will have you in full-blown panic mode so don’t do that to yourself. If you want to be certain that you’re comfortable with your choice, put it on and give your brain time to process.

5. Rule Of Thumb

If you’re unsure of the dress code or have no idea what to wear, the old saying is dress for the job you want. One rule of thumb is to go one level higher (unless it’s already a business formal job).

This means means if it is a casual workplace, dress business casual with a polo shirt, collared shirt, nice blouse etc. If it is a business casual workplace, then dress in a business formal outfit with a suit or office dress and blazer.

job interview clothes ideas

Outfit Ideas Based On The Job

Business Formal Workplace

Careers like finance, law, medicine, business, are generally formal places of work.

For men:

  • Dark colored suit
  • Comfortable long-sleeve collared shirt
  • Simple Neutral Tie
  • Dress shoes that coordinate with the suit
  • Dark socks that match the suit
  • Coordinating Belt

For women:

  • dress suit or pant suit
  • professional blouse or long sleeved collared shirt
  • Closed toed shoes
  • Stockings or panty hose if you are wearing a dress or skirt

interview tips

Business Casual Workplace

Careers like marketing, media, smaller insurance, web agencies are generally business casual places of work.

For men:

  • Slacks, khakis, or dress pants
  • Comfortable long-sleeve collared button down shirt
  • Half Sleeved collared button down shirt
  • Dress shoes that coordinate with the pants or shirt
  • Socks that match the suit
  • Coordinating Belt
  • Polo shirt
  • (have a tie in the car or in your desk just in case you need to get fancier quick)

For women:

  • dress pants or dress skirt
  • Button down shirt
  • Professional blouse
  • Cardigan, blazer, or jacket
  • Closed toed flats or heels

job interview advice

Casual Workplace

Careers like education, small offices, retail are generally casual places of work.

For men:

  • Jeans (no holes or rips)
  • Khakis
  • Polo shirt
  • Closed toed shoes
  • Appropriate T-shirts

For women:

  • Jeans (no holes or rips)
  • Khakis
  • Jeans
  • Knee length dresses or skirts
  • Closed toed shoes
  • Appropriate T-shirts

As long as you’re comfortable and feel good about your choice, that’s a huge part of deciding what to wear. Just keep it clean and professional and you shouldn’t have to worry about any issues with that!


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