How to Dress for a Successful Job Interview


Business Attire

For a Successful Job Interview
Good First impressions are so important!!

The job market at the moment is VERY competitive. I know…I am one of the competitors! Much of what goes into looking for a job is important. Your resume has to look good to get you in the door.  Most people are so excited when an interview comes around that often what to wear to the job interview becomes more of an issue than it used to be.  Believe it or not what you wear is a bigger part of a great first impression than you imagine. Good first impressions are so important!!


I was a Recruiter for the last 7 years and part of my job was to advise on what to wear. Now you would think that most people would know. But you’d be surprised at some of the nightmare stories I’ve experienced and heard from fellow recruiters and hiring managers over the years. Needless to say, it’s harder for us women! Men get to throw on a suit and call it a day (although sometimes shirt/tie choices are tough.  I say conservative tie with white or blue shirt).
For women the clothing choices are endless and often hard to choose. Pant Suit? Skirt Suit? Dress? Shoes? Stockings/Tights? Jewelry? Makeup? Perfume?  Here is a little advice from what I’ve learned over the years:

  • Pant Suit – easy to wear and you don’t have to wear stockings! Yay! Just make sure that the blouse or shirt you choose is appropriate (no see through or too much cleavage ladies!!)
  • Skirt Suit/Dresses – a little trickier. Bare Legs or Not? Here in San Francisco I think (like most things) it’s a little more acceptable, but in general I say NO bare legs. Skirts should be knee-length. If they’re too short, you may communicate the wrong impression.
  • Tights/Stockings – if you do decide to wear them, opaque stockings are best.  If you want to show your personality a little, make sure the pattern isn’t too distracting.
  • Shoes – again tricky! Most would say closed toe pump, conservative shoe.  I say if it’s a small peep toe…go ahead.
  • Jewelry, Makeup, and Perfume – should all be minimal. You don’t want to overwhelm or distract the interviewer with a strong scent, bright eye-shadow, loud lipstick or large pieces of jewelry.

Instead, overwhelm them by clearly communicating your experience and your knowledge of your field.


Heather McAndrew

Guest Writer

Scottish Born (Glasgow), USA bred (Brick NJ). Now living in San Francisco.