The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Dressing appropriately for an interview

Courtesy of MCT

When going to an interview, making a good impression is very important. Not only by how you present yourself, but how you look and play the part. Needless to say, clothing plays a big role in the interview process. So get ready to play dress up.

What you wear depends on what kind of interview it is and what it’s for. Keep in mind that it’s always better to be overdressed than under dressed. If you are confused as to what to wear, don’t hesitate to ask. Call the person who scheduled you for the interview, or human resources to ask.

How you dress for an interview does make a difference. First impressions matter and dressing up shows that you actually put some effort. The first judgment potential employers will make, is based on how you look and what you are wearing. This is why it’s important to dress professionally for a job interview even when the work environment is a casual one.

Keep in mind that the candidate dressed in a suit and tie is going to make a much better impression than the candidate dressed in scruffy jeans and a T-shirt.

Always remember to be confident and walk in with a positive and welcoming attitude. Confidence is the best accessory for any outfit.


Wear a conservative solid colored suit or a long sleeve collared shirt with an appropriate tie, that means no tacky cartoon ties. Keep it professional and simple. Wear clean polished dress shoes. It’s best to wear dark socks, because when sitting down, your pants rise up, and white socks are sometimes too bright, distracting from the whole outfit.

You don’t want your pants falling down in the middle of the interview so remember to wear a belt, and make sure it matches. Tuck in your shirt and don’t forget to iron it. Wrinkled shirts are not only unprofessional, but they show you didn’t take the time to put any effort into looking your best.

Other than watches, men should avoid wearing jewelry. If you have any piercings take them out and cover your tattoos. Your hairstyle should be neat and professional, don’t overdo it with the gel. Same goes for the aftershave, go easy on it. It’s better to keep it simple and neat.

Have your nails neatly trimmed. Interviewers will notice if there is dirt under your nails.

Start preparing for an interview in advance. Make sure you have appropriate interview attire, and that everything fits comfortably. Leaving everything until the day of, could possibly make you late or add unnecessary stress. Polish your shoes, iron your clothes, and pop in a mint before going in.


It’s best to go with a solid color and conservative suit. Match it with a coordinated blouse and moderate shoes. If you wear a skirt suit and decide to wear panty hose have them be a neutral color.

If you skip the panty hose, make sure the skirt is an appropriate length. If you sit down and the skirt rises up, then it’s probably too short. Wear a skirt you can move around in and is comfortable.

Put a limit on the amount of jewelry you wear. Accessories always accentuate an outfit, but when going on an interview, less is better. That means no dangling earrings, or arms full of bracelets.

Your nails should be cleaned and neatly manicured. Nail polish should be a neutral color. Don’t overdo it with a bright neon color.

Hair should be neat and professional. Pulled back is the best way to go. Don’t have your hair covering your face. Side-swept bangs will keep the hair off your face, but the rest should be pulled back into a bun, a side ponytail or a half up ponytail.

Make-up should be light and look natural. A fresh face always looks nice. If you decide to wear eye shadow, keep it to a minimum. Don’t wear the same make-up you would wear on a night out with the girls.

If you’re taking a bag, it’s best to stick with a briefcase because it looks the most professional. If you don’t own a briefcase and don’t want to go out and buy one,  a solid black bag, or one that matches your outfit is best.

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