How to dress for a job interview?

How to dress for a job interview? 💼 Our complete guide!

Have you applied for a job and gotten a job interview? Congratulations! But are you wonderinghow to dress for the occasion? What outfit to wear to make a good impression on the recruiter and show your motivation? 

I'll help you. 

As a fashion enthusiast, I'm all about finding the right outfit for any situation. 

Today, I propose to discover how to dress for a job interview, depending on the type of job you are aiming for and the structure that welcomes you (prestigious or family company, start-up, community...). 

When you meet a recruiter, it is essential to show them from the very first moments that you are ready for the job they have to give you. For this, the choice of your outfit is essential: it reflects your knowledge of the company and your motivation. For an office job, choose a well-tailored suit or a suit/skirt if you are a woman. On the other hand, for a manual job, show that you understand the job you are applying for by wearing an outfit that underlines your dynamism (pants for men and women, shirt, flat shoes). Whatever the job, remember to wear well-tailored, clean clothes, pay attention to details (clean shoes, watch, clothes in good condition) and what the colors you will be wearing evoke. 

Want to learn more? Read on to find out:

  • How to determine what type of outfit to wear for the job you're applying for,
  • What color to wear for what type of interview,
  • Examples of suitable male and female attire for each type of job interview (office, manual, public contact job),
  • What clothing to focus on for a job interview at a start-up,
  • Tricks to appear dynamic, approachable and serious and convince the recruiter

First step: identify the type of job you are targeting to deduce a dress code!

In order to find the perfect outfit for your job interview, the first step is to understand what will be expected of you at that job. Each corporation has its own professional culture and its own requirements: for example, you won't be doing the same activities at all if you're a craftsman, an office worker or even a cashier. 

interview hiring

The purpose of an interview is to see if you are suitable for the job and if the company can trust you. By dressing appropriately, you show your potential future employer that you understand what posture you should have to take the job they are offering. 

So, I have chosen to offer you, in this guide, different outfits adapted to each type of profession, whether it be:

  • From an office job: in an open space, in a family business, etc. 
  • From a manual job: equipment operator, hairdresser, florist...
  • From a public contact occupation: cashier, nurse, tour guide, medical secretary, ...
  • From a job with authority status: police officer, university teacher, doctor...
  • From a position in a start-up

How to dress for a job interview for an office job? 

In this type of job, you will be required to operate on office hours, have responsibilities and possibly represent the company to business partners and potential clients. Therefore, it is necessary for you toshow your seriousness, and that is right from the job interview. Here are some outfit ideas that, impeccably worn, will give you poise and the aura needed to convince a recruiter. 

For a man

A suit without a stain and well-tailored will be essential to apply for this type of job. You don't have to wear a black suit: gray or navy blue often look more dynamic and open. 

suit man work

👔 Also wear a suit that is plain, or with understated patterns. To make a suitable tie knot, you can follow the method shown in this video. 

💼 Choose a attaché case bag in which you can carry interview-related documents (resume, past references...) and possibly your computer. 

👞 Finally, make sure you have well-waxed leather shoes, which can be black (if your suit is black or gray) or brown (if your suit is blue). 

For a woman

For this type of occupation, go for ultra-classic pieces and, as with the men's suit, very well tailored. 

For example, you can wear a pencil skirt, with a matching blazer and an understated blouse underneath. Instead, wear neutral colors, such as:

  • blue
  • white
  • gray
  • brown

In order to keep your underwear from being guessed, you can choose flesh-colored models, which will avoid a sheer effect that could be embarrassing. 

woman professional outfit

👠 When it comes to shoes, I recommend wearing heels, whether they're flat or stiletto. They will give you a confident and assured look, which can make an impact on the recruiter. 

👜 Also choose a discreet and professional handbag, in which your belongings are neatly arranged. When you hand a document to your recruiter, you shouldn't have to search for it for long minutes in your bag: it would make you look untidy. 

👉 This is also appropriate for prestigious professions, in which you will be required to be exemplary, such as doctor, teacher or even police officer. 

What to wear to a job interview for a manual job? 

For this type of job, wearing a flimsy suit or stilettos can do you a disservice. Indeed, the person in front of you expects someone who knows the conditions of the job and is willing to adapt to them! 

However, even if you're going to be practicing on a daily basis in overalls, safety gear, or even fairly casual attire, it's important to make a little effort for the interview to show your motivation

For a man

For this type of interview, you may want to wear a clean, new outfit, with, for example:

  • a clear shirt,
  • a pair of dark pants or jeans,
  • sneakers or other discreet, plain shoes,
  • a suit jacket, if it's cold.

male job interview

👉 Did you know? Rolling up your shirt sleeves at the elbows will make you look more dynamic. You can do this at the beginning of an interview, once you've met your interviewer. 

For a woman

Women are less represented in certain manual occupations: thus, the interview is the perfect time to prove to the recruiter that you will be a real asset to their company. 

I recommend wearing an outfit that you can move in easily and that evokes a motivated and efficient person

woman pro outfit

To create this type of impression, you can rely on : 

  • A dark pant,
  • A plain, comfortable blouse, shirt or shirt,
  • Flat shoes, plain sneaker type,
  • A blazer type jacket. 

What to wear to a job interview for a public-facing occupation? 

It really depends on the type of structure you will be working in. If it's a luxury store, for example, wear a trendy, stylish outfit instead. On the contrary, if it's a small family business, show that you're approachable, by wearing a suitable outfit closer to the one mentioned in the previous part.

The key is to show your future employer that you have researched the company or community you are applying to and that you know the type of audience you might be facing. Dressing accordingly will show that you are projecting yourself into that future job and will be seen very positively! 

For a man

Depending on whether or not you can dress casual, you may or may not be able to afford dark jeans. However, in any case, I would advise you to wear a shirt and suit jacket, or even a tie if the work environment is luxurious

man pro outfit

🎨 However, you can afford colors different from those offered for an office job. The burgundy red, sky blue or even beige will make you look open and energetic. 

Wearing a watch (quite discreet all the same) can be seen positively by the recruiter: indeed, for this type of job where punctuality and presentation are essential, it is quite suitable. Someone who has a watch is more likely to be punctual and not constantly pulling out their smartphone to look at the time 😉

For a woman

For this type of job, you can wear well-tailored pants with a blouse, and possibly a blazer jacket. You can also wear a colorful pencil skirt. 

women's professional clothing

👉 Looking for tops that would work for an occasion like this? Take a look at our selection of chic and trendy bohemian blouses, among which you're sure to find a perfectly suited garment for your upcoming interview. 

How to dress for a startup job interview? 

Working at a startup is often a step forward in a career: these dynamic companies are known for allowing their employees to express their potential, working in a field they are passionate about. 

men's trendy clothing

So, for a job interview at this type of company, I would advise you to weara dressy and neat outfit, but one that reveals a little bit about your character, tastes and beliefs. This can be seen through details that are not insignificant to the recruiter:

  • Wearing a natural color (khaki green, ecru, beige) and sustainable fabrics (linen, cotton) for a job with an environmentally conscious company,
  • A pair of original sneakers that show you have an interest in fashion,
  • For a man, a shirt with a colorful print (checks, stripes, etc.),
  • For a woman, a nice patterned blouse,
  • Dark jeans, which will make you look dynamic,
  • A t-shirt (which can have an original pattern, if you think it fits the company culture) with a suit jacket or blazer,
  • A vest over your shirt, for men,
  • Bohemian clothes, for a woman who would like to show that she has a fashion sensibility. 

➡ Check out inspirations now at our site dedicated to women's bohemian fashion

women's bohemian clothing

What should you avoid wearing to a job interview at all costs? 

While some companies such as start-ups sometimes allow for a more casual dress-code, there are, however, details that, regardless of the situation, can really work against you. To show your best self and make the person in front of you want to get to know you better, I would advise against this : 

  • Ripped jeans and tops,
  • Pins, t-shirts or other details that show your political stance,
  • Wearing jewelry that is too flashy,
  • The crop-top and sheer tops,
  • Oversized clothing...

job interview

Know the language of color to better sell yourself

Although it's often unconscious, the colors you wear help determine the person you are to those who meet you. To help you master this mysterious language, I suggest you discover the relative meaning of each color:

  • Neutral colors:
    • Blue: calm, self-confidence,
    • White: cleanliness, neatness and simplicity,
    • Gray: sophistication, neutrality,
    • Brown: calm, solidity, safety,
  • Powerful colors:
    • Black: power, authority,
    • Red: energy, passion,
    • Yellow: joy, intelligence, mental agility,
    • Green: serenity, well-being, hope,
    • Pink: friendliness, candor, sweetness.

I hope these tips have helped you prepare for your upcoming job interview by choosing an outfit that is perfectly suited for the company you've applied to. Want to discover more fashion tips? Check out our blog