What Not to Wear to Your Next Interview – Essential Do’s and Don’ts

When you’ve landed an interview for that job you’ve been eyeing, nailing the first impression is crucial, and it starts with your clothes. Knowing what not to wear is as important as what to wear. So here’s a rundown of the key do’s and don’ts for your next big day.

First Impressions Last

The first thing to remember is that looking sharp matters. While companies may have relaxed dress codes, an interview isn’t the time to dress down. Your aim should be to look polished and professional. So, what’s off the table?

What NOT to Wear

  • Loud Colors and Flashy Prints: Keep it simple. Opting for neutral or darker colors shows seriousness. Wearing colors that are too bright or patterns that scream for attention can be distracting.
  • Casual Clothing: Jeans, T-shirts, or flip-flops are definite no-nos. They send a signal that you’re not taking the opportunity seriously.
  • Over-the-Top Accessories: While accessories can complement an outfit, too much bling or overly casual pieces, like a baseball cap, can undermine your professional image.
  • Strong Fragrances: Scents can be overpowering in close spaces. It’s best to skip strong perfumes or colognes. You want to be remembered for your interview answers, not your scent.
  • Revealing or Tight Clothing: Comfort is key, not just for you but also for the interviewer’s perception of you. Clothes that are too revealing or too tight can be unprofessional.

What to Wear Instead

  • Solid Colors: A white shirt or a blouse paired with dark slacks or a skirt is timeless and professional.
  • Suit Up: When in doubt, a business suit is a safe bet. It communicates that you’re serious about the job.
  • Minimal Jewelry: Keep it to one or two tasteful pieces. A watch or a simple necklace can be enough.
  • Clean Shoes: Polished, closed-toe shoes are the go-to. They should be comfortable and in good repair.
  • Groomed Appearance: Your clothes should be ironed and clean, your hair neat, and your nails tidy.

Gearing Up for Specific Roles

Different roles can sometimes mean different dress codes. Here’s a quick rundown:

  • Corporate Jobs: Traditional industries favor conservative attire. Stick to business suits.
  • Creative Roles: You can be a bit more flexible but still keep it professional. Think smart casual.
  • Tech or Startups: Often more casual, but don’t be too relaxed. Clean and smart is still the rule.

Final Touches

  • Portfolio or Briefcase: Something to carry resumes and work samples in neatly.
  • A Smile: Don’t forget that a warm, confident smile can be the best thing you “wear”.

“Clothes and manners do not make the man; but when he is made, they greatly improve his appearance.”

– Arthur Ashe


When preparing for an interview, play it safe with your clothing choices. It’s better to be a tad overdressed than too casual. Show that you mean business and let your skills do the talking, literally. Dress appropriately, and good luck out there!

Remember, the right outfit could very well be your ticket to that dream job. So take the time to iron out those details, quite literally, and walk into your interview with confidence!

Piotr Gacon