Career Advice

Dress Code for Interview | What Males & Females should Wear?5 min read

January 4, 2020 4 min read
Interview Dress Code


Dress Code for Interview | What Males & Females should Wear?5 min read

Read­ing Time: 4 min­utes

“All the world is a stage and we are mere­ly play­ers”- Shakespeare

It won’t be wrong to say when you’re look­ing for a job, an inter­view is your ‘stage’. You are all pre­pared with the resume, tele­phon­ic & face to face inter­view but now, it’s time for a pro­fes­sion­al appear­ance. Inter­view dress code is just as impor­tant as writ­ing a resume or cov­er let­ter. An inter­view look is all about the first impres­sion. You should con­vey a con­fi­dent, smart, respect­ful, pro­fes­sion­al and pre­pared job-seek­er look.


When going for a job inter­view, the com­pa­ny that is con­duct­ing it has numer­ous can­di­dates for a par­tic­u­lar vacan­cy. Dur­ing the inter­view, it is there­fore essen­tial to be at the most pre­sentable state. The inter­view dress code and body lan­guage should make one stand apart from oth­er competitors. 

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interview dress code

Choos­ing your inter­view attire is much like play­ing pok­er. Read­ing the cards, know­ing the play­ers and cul­ti­vat­ing a win­ning hand is all part of the process. 

In addi­tion to main­tain­ing the dress code, it’s very impor­tant that you are well pre­pared to tack­le the ques­tions from inter­view­ers. This arti­cle on how to pre­pare for an inter­view will guide you through every step.

Interview Dress Code For Males:

Formal Interview Dress Code: 

  • You should wear a suit; a match­ing coat and pants, shirt, tie, belt, coor­di­nate socks & shoes accord­ing­ly. A dark-col­ored suit with a light-col­ored shirt will be a great combination.
  • Your suit, shirt & shoes should be com­fort­able & fit you well so that you look more con­fi­dent. Shoes should be pol­ished & in good condition. 
  • Avoid sparkling ties & flashy col­ors for an inter­view dress code. 
  • Clothes should be neat & clean, prop­er­ly ironed clothes will make you look more powerful. 

If you dress pro­fes­sion­al­ly, it shows respect for your­self, the inter­view­er, and the com­pa­ny. A good rule of thumb is to car­ry your inter­view out­fits like your boss. There­fore, it is always wise to fol­low the inter­view dress code while appear­ing for an interview.

Informal Interview Dress Code: 

Let us have a look at the inter­view dress code for an infor­mal interview. 

  • Wear long-sleeve & but­ton-down shirts in a light col­or & sim­ple design that will give you an attrac­tive look. 
  • If you pre­fer to wear a sweater or blaz­er than wear a dark one that will give a decent look at a light col­or shirt. 
  • Dark cot­ton pants with a light-col­ored shirt will be a com­plete match. 
  • Socks & shoes should be well-coor­di­nat­ed with the trouser. 
  • Com­ple­ment your dress code with a leather belt & watch. 

Interview Dress Code Dos & Don’ts: 

  • Apart from cloth­ing, you should have fresh breath. Brush your teeth in the morn­ing, don’t smoke just before an interview. 
  • Take a prop­er bath/shower and be sure to shave or trim the morn­ing of the interview. 
  • Your hair should be sham­pooed neat & clean. There should not be vis­i­ble oil or dirt. 
  • Do wear a mild deodor­ant. Try avoid­ing cologne so that you don’t smell overpowering. 
  • Add a fin­ish­ing touch to your look with a classy watch. 
  • Car­ry a brief­case or port­fo­lio file for your documents. 
  • Main­tain neat­ly trimmed nails. 
  • Extra body pierc­ings & tat­toos can dis­tract the inter­view­er, try hid­ing it. 

Andrew Grant says, 

“You nev­er get a sec­ond chance to make the First Impression” 

so one should always try their best.

Every can­di­date gets the dread­ed “Tell me about your­self” ques­tion. So, here we have over­all infor­ma­tion on how to turn your “tell me about your­self” from blah to fan­tas­tic.

Interview Dress Code For Females:

Formal Interview Dress Code: 

Females have a list of options for both for­mal & infor­mal dress code. Some of the most com­mon­ly accept­ed inter­view dress codes are: 

Tra­di­tion­al Wear/Western Wear: 

  • Opt for a tra­di­tion­al Indi­an wear suit or a saree.
  • Or you can choose to wear for­mal dress, shirt/top with pen­cil knee-length skirt or trousers. 
  • Wear com­fort­able for­mal shoes. Make sure to col­or-coor­di­nat­ed shoes/socks that look impressive. 
  • You can take along a for­mal hand­bag of brown, black or pas­tel col­or to keep doc­u­ments. Or you can car­ry a port­fo­lio file as well. Make sure to inline your resume at the top position. 
  • For women, it is high­ly rec­om­mend­able to keep hair neat­ly styled. 
  • You can have min­i­mal make­up as well. Try to put kohl & a lip gloss so that you look refreshed. 
  • Com­pli­ment your inter­view dress code look with a brown or black for­mal belt. Do not for­get to wear a classy leather or met­al strap watch with your pro­fes­sion­al look. 

Informal Interview Dress Code: 

  • A casu­al cot­ton suit is good to go with, say no to tight fit­ted suits. 
  • Full or half-sleeve casu­al shirts will be a good choice for a casu­al inter­view. Pre­fer shirts with sim­ple or no design. You can also opt for casu­al tops, how­ev­er, make sure that the top has a com­fort­able fit.
  • For bot­tom wear, you can go with cot­ton trousers, palaz­zos, skirts as well. 
  • San­dals, flats, peep-toe shoes are permissible.
  • Do not for­get to wear min­i­mal make­up and a match­ing classy watch. 
  • Keep your hair in a neat style, you can go for a pony­tail, bun, or half tied hair look. 

Interview Dress Code Dos & Don’ts: 

  • Make sure your over­look is neat and tidy. Prop­er­ly tied hair & ironed clothes are a must. 
  • Avoid flashy clothes & shim­mery accessories. 
  • Wear a mild deodor­ant or per­fume. As well as, keep your breath fresh avoid smok­ing just before the interview.
  • The col­or of lip shade & nail paint should be a neu­tral color. 
  • Avoid wear­ing par­ty san­dals & stilettos. 

Bottom line: 

Note: It is impor­tant to remem­ber that the inter­view dress code for males and females vary great­ly depend­ing upon fac­tors like loca­tion, indus­try, and company.

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Anshi Agarwal is a Computer Science Engineer. She is specialized in Digital Marketing. She loves to do research & write content that is focused on Career, as well as, Job Search.