What Not to Wear to an Interview

What is the worst outfit ever worn to a job interview? According to a CareerBuilder.com survey of hiring managers, some contenders include candidates with dirty fingernails, micro-miniskirts, t-shirts with offensive slogans and even bare feet!

You shouldn’t need someone to tell you that wearing shoes to an interview is a good idea, but could you be guilty of one of these top fashion faux pas?

  1. Carrying a backpack or fannypack instead of a briefcase or portfolio: Some image consultants suggest women ditch their purse, too!
  2.  Sunglasses on top of your head or headphones around your neck: Be sure to remove all your “transit gear” and tuck it in your briefcase before entering the lobby.
  3. Too-short skirts: Forget what girls on TV are wearing. Your skirt should cover your thighs when you are seated.
  4. The wrong tie: Ties should be made of silk, no less than three and a quarter inches wide with a conservative pattern. Image consultants say the best colors are red or burgundy.
  5. Overly bright or large-patterned clothing: it’s best to stick with a navy, black or gray suit.
  6. Heavy makeup on women (or any makeup on a man)
  7. Earrings on men: In fact, men should avoid wearing any jewelry unless it is a wedding ring, class ring or metal watch.
  8. More than one set of earrings on women
  9. Facial piercings, tongue jewelry or visible tattoos
  10. Long fingernails, especially with bright or specialty polishes. Nails should look clean and be trimmed to a length that doesn’t leave an observer wondering how you keep from stabbing yourself.
  11. Unnatural hair colors or styles. Conservative is KEY! Don’t succumb to the latest “hot pink” streaks in your latest fashion magazine.
  12. Short-sleeved shirts, even worse when worn with a tie
  13. Fishnets, patterned hosiery or bare legs (no matter how tan you are). Women should stick with neutral color hosiery that complements their suit.
  14.  Men whose socks don’t match their shoes, or whose socks are too short and leave a gap of flesh when they are seated
  15. Scuffed or inappropriate footwear, including sneakers, stilettos and sandals
  16. Strong aftershaves, perfumes or colognes: Many people are allergic to certain scents. For a subtle fragrance, use a good quality bath soap.
  17. Belts and shoes that don’t match: Shoes and belts should be made of leather or leather-like materials and the best colors for men are black or cordovan.
  18. Telltale signs that you’re wearing a new suit. Remove all tags and extra buttons — and remember to cut off the zigzag thread that keeps pockets and slits closed!

Don’t be a wardrobe malfunction waiting to happen. Plan and lay out what you’re going to wear several days before the interview, so you’ll have time to shop or get garments pressed and cleaned.

BACK TO JOB SEEKERS >>