Your style speaks about your personality and working habits. Even if your qualifications make you the perfect candidate, wearing the wrong interview clothes could seriously damage your credibility. So, keep on reading for the 6 interview outfit mistakes that could cost you the job so you’ll know how to dress your part.
- Your look doesn’t fit the company culture.
The appropriate job interview outfit will depend on the company’s culture whether it’s a conservative, creative, or casual environment. While a suit is a go-to for a traditional corporate position, wearing more modern prints and outfits will be more appropriate for creative offices. “The whole point of an interview is to check if you’re the right fit for each other,” says career advisor Jaclyn Westlake. However, dressier doesn’t necessarily mean more professional. “Social formal dress is different than business formal dress,” says Alison Green, author of How to Get a Job: Secrets of a Hiring Manager. As a rule of thumb, if you’d wear it to a cocktail party, don’t wear it to an interview.
- You go overboard with color or you wear a loud print.
While you don’t need to stick to black and white, limit yourself to just a pop of color, Green says. “A good rule is one element of the outfit is brighter while the rest is more neutral,” she says. Unless you’re applying for a fashion-forward field, an animal print, bold flowers, and graphic patterns could look out of place. If you wish to wear prints, stick to subtle ones. “No one will think your outfit is inappropriate because it’s too neutral,” she says. “If you’re unsure, it’s better to err on the side of playing it safe.”
- You’re tripping over your heels.
Unless you need to concentrate on walking without wobbling, heels can look polished and confident. “People run into trouble when they never wear heels and think they have to wear them for an interview,” says Green. If you aren’t used to an elevated shoe, stick with a nice pair of flats with a closed-toe for the most professional look.
- You show too much skin.
While you don’t need to stay totally covered up, make sure your outfit doesn’t reveal too much. “Some people can’t help the way they fill out clothes,” Westlake says. “It’s all about what you’re comfortable with and if you feel like your outfit is distracting.” Like fashion blogger Mary Orton, keep your outfit sleek and polished with a double breasted blazer that’s stylish without looking overly trendy.
- You wear your boldest necklace.
A statement necklace can pull your outfit together when you’re prepping for an interview. However, be careful as you don’t want it to be a distraction so your interviewer is staring at your necklace during the interview. Like fashion blogger Mary Orton, think of a classic pearl necklace that looks elegant and expensive, and save your jeweled bib necklaces for your girl’s night out.
- You wear an outfit you bought 10 years ago.
Interview clothes that look dated is a bad choice when you’re job seeking. Be honest when pulling out an old business suit or old interview outfit. Also, pay attention to fit and if it’s too tight, too long, or bunchy or bulging, it’s probably a sign it’s time to change it up. By taking these things into consideration, you’ll be able to ace your interview while keeping your style appropriate.