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What to wear to kill an interview

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Adults are not afraid of almost anything, but the monster of interviews scare teenagers, grownups and even veterans. 

It might seem that you can’t have the control when you are being interviewed, however, there are some measures you can take to empower yourself and be prepared for everything. The most important thing is that you don’t forget that your clothes can influence your chances for landing a job so choosing your attire is critical to presenting yourself as the right candidate to hire.

Even though there is not a manual to follow, there are some basic Interview Outfits for Women and Men that you can take a look to. 

But if you have a limited budget or you are from the ones who think that they can "get by" with what is already in their closet, here is a brief standard list of what you should wear and how you should look, at least approximately, in an interview.

Women's Professional Interview Attire

  • Solid color, conservative suit
  • Coordinated blouse
  • Moderate shoes
  • Limited jewelry
  • Neat, professional hairstyle
  • Tan or light hosiery
  • Sparse makeup and perfume
  • Manicured nails
  • Portfolio or briefcase

Men's Professional Interview Attire

  • Solid color, conservative suit
  • White long sleeve shirt
  • Conservative tie
  • Dark socks, professional shoes
  • Very limited jewelry
  • Neat, professional hairstyle
  • Go easy on the aftershave
  • Neatly trimmed nails
  • Portfolio or briefcase

Related: Most Common Interview Mistakes to Avoid

As you might already know, how you should look varies depending on your industry and the job you're interviewing for. Of course, if you are applying for a government job you should look quite different than if you are interviewing for an auto repair job. 

Carole Martin, a former Monster contributor and author of Boost Your Interview IQ, brings you a general interview attire expectations for eight career areas:  

If you're applying for a technical position, you won't need a suit.

If you're interviewing for a finance job, remember that nothing is more precise and exact than managing money.

At an interview for a government job, don't be flashy, this is a time to show you're responsible, trustworthy and honest.

If you're interviewing for an HR job, you must look professional and authoritative.

Typically, a suit is the uniform for a sales interview.

If you're interviewing for a for an auto repair job, you still want to look as neat as possible, but a suit is probably not necessary.

Image is particularly critical in the hospitality industry. A suit is appropriate for some positions but not always a must.

For a trades job: business casual.

Maybe you should spend some time at the Internet searching for information about the company you’re interviewing for, so that you can have a bigger picture of what they may expect from you.

As a final advice, we recommend you to be very careful with the shoes you choose, make sure they are conservative, clean, and polished, because that could be the very first thing some interviewers pay attention to since those who pay attention to details like shoes are also likely to be diligent in their work life. 

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