We’ve done our fair share of discussing the perfect outfit for an interview (even down to the intricacies of what kind of hairdo one should adopt), and while we feel like we’ve provided some helpful advice along the way, it’s also fair to say there’s no rulebook for this kind of thing. Now, you might be wondering why we’re talking about this right now, but it turns out
one in five people start hunting for a new job at the start of a new year, so we have a feeling this will come in handy.
Inspired by street style’s coolest women—and armed with some excellent industry advice—we have laid out four different outfits to demonstrate dress code perfection for different types of interviews, from formal to chill. Basically, anything that could end up in a dream job offer will be benefitted by a confidence-boosting, personality-showcasing ensemble. No rush jobs or last-minute sweat-patch nightmares here.
To undergird these pitch-perfect interview outfit ideas, we included some exclusive tips from big names like Nina Garcia and Who What Wear’s own co-founders—Katherine Power and Hillary Kerr—to find out what you should (and should definitely
not) wear to an interview. Scroll down for your guide.
Tank Magazine’s Caroline Issa always looks pulled-together. To undergird these pitch-perfect interview outfit ideas, we included some exclusive tips from big names like Marie Claire U.S. Creative Director Nina Garcia and Who What Wear’s own co-founders, Katherine Power and Hillary Kerr, to find out what you should and should definitely not wear to an interview. Scroll down for your guide on what to wear to an interview now…
“I’m super impressed by talent who obviously know what looks good on them and exhibit how that can work so powerfully in their favour. When something really suits you—whether it’s a beautifully tailored blazer, high-waisted trousers or a flattering midi dress—it shows that you know who you are, and that confidence permeates how you conduct yourself in so many capacities.”
Style Notes: It’s all well and good having the correct outfit on underneath, but what if you’re meeting outside or in a freezing air-con hub? Best to make sure that your coat game is strong. Start with our edit of the best winter coats.
“I’d say something relatively polished that still shows your personality. I think jewellery is a great way to personalise an outfit, especially if the pieces you’re wearing are vintage or have some sort of sentimental value. I also suggest wearing either a shirt or blouse with sleeves or a blazer; there’s something a little odd about seeing someone’s bare arms in an interview.”
Style Notes: Don’t feel like you have to swear off trouser suits just because of the connotations that come with them—try to find one that feels true to your personal style. Even an artfully dishevelled bun can help make a sombre suit look cool.
French Connection Sundae Blazer (£140) and Sundae Trousers (£80)
Style Notes: For casual offices, do stick to the relaxed side of smart if you’re wearing tailored trousers. The addition of a skinny scarf and a raglan jersey top will strike the perfect balance between on-duty professional and youthful media world. Expert Tips: Nina Garcia, Marie Claire U.S. Candidates should wear “something that demonstrates a knowledge of what is happening in the fashion world but that highlights their own personal style at the same time.”
Style Notes: You never know how far you’ll have to trek across an office in front of an entire team, or the traffic and public transport disasters that may await you. Pick awesome shoes, of course, but pick shoes that you really can go the distance in. Shiny black flats will often win out.
Style Notes: Don’t ever sacrifice professionalism. Chic tailored separates are always a good bet, especially paired with stylish kitten heels or flats. Expert Tips: Katherine Power, Who What Wear. “What you wear to an interview is far more important than people think. What you’re wearing communicates who you are before you even open your mouth. It’s just as important to look polished as it is to be articulate, in my opinion. The biggest mistake that most young girls make when interviewing for a style-related job is that they often try to be so trendy they end up sacrificing professionalism.”
Style Notes: Don’t feel restricted to dresses or trouser suits only; well-chosen, super-slick, perfectly fitted separates can really look the business.
Style Notes: A clear closet and a clear idea of what you’re wearing (and that it’s fully steamed and ready to rock) will give you a clearer mind on the big day. Go one step further and allocate the right underwear for the pieces you are also wearing—this will save you time and any potential fidgeting…
Good luck—and while you’re here, find out the secrets to smart, chic style. Opening Image: The Street Pie