top of page

What Men Should Not Wear to a Job Interview

When you are interviewing for a job the first thing the employer sees about you, besides your resume and cover letter, is how you are dressed. It is important to look good and make a great first impression when you show up for a job interview. To make sure you do not wear something that would ruin your chances at your interview here is a guide on how to make it happen:

The Suit Color Matters

In the last decade or so, some dress codes have changed in certain career fields. Many have turned to more business casual looks or even casual dress. Do your research when applying for a job. Check out their facebook page, their website, or simply stop in and see how the employees dress. This gives insight to company culture and what they deem appropriate.

However, we are still firm believers in showing up for an interview in a suit. When in doubt, 99.9% of the time a grey or navy suit will never steer you wrong. While it might seem like a no brainer, a black suit is not actually a great choice to wear for an interview. The color black can seem flashy or indicate power, when trying to get hired, you might want to indicate you are a team player and trustworthy. Navy’s and grays tend to indicate tranquility and willingness to learn.

Poor-Fitting Suits

Regardless if you are interviewing for a traditional job with a historical conservative reputation such as a position at a law firm, a big financial institution, local bank or at a less conservative business like a software company or a social media company, you do not want to present yourself as a slob or slovenly in an ill-fitting suit. You will give the direct impression that you do not care and that you may be a slob. In 2020 a nice suit can be purchased and tailored to fit at most local independent menswear stores. When it comes to apparel dress and success at an interview the smart move is to pay attention to details, make sure it is clean and that it is pressed. Your goal is to impress the interviewer with quality responses not drag their attention toward your attire.


In most cases a necktie should be worn with a suit, especially to an interview A bow tie is either appropriate for a formal occasion or when you want to show off some personality. Save the fun bow ties for when you are comfortably settled in your workplace. When it comes to the interview, go with a tie that has minimal or conservative patterns and compliments your suit and shirt.

Dress Casual Sneakers/Running Shoes/Basketball Shoes

No matter how you slice it, casual sneakers, running shoes, tennis shoes, or basketball shoes are not appropriate for a job interview. Regardless if they are dark colored, match the suite color you are wearing or even if they cost $500 a pair, they are most likely going to deliver a negative impression about you before your interview has even started. Sneakers and tennis shoes or higher end casual/dress sneakers may even be mainstream footwear in the tech world today, but it still does take away the possibility that choosing sneakers for your footwear at your interview could end up sabotaging a job offer for you.

Light Colored Jeans

Jean color counts at a job interview. There are moments when wearing dark color jeans that are black, darker blue or even dark gray to an interview is more than okay. The tech employment sector is famous for its casual dress job setting and that goes the same for job interviews in this employment category. You may consider wearing black jeans, a matching sports coat, a nicely starched and ironed button up shirt with dress casual tennis shoes that are popular today. Before your interview be sure to stop by the business or look online at their website to see what the dress code is there. For your interview be sure to dress a notch above whatever the dress code appears to be at the business. You want to look sharp and professional, but still fit into the look worn at the company.

Logo Adorned T-shirts

T-shirts today are worn by billionaire tech CEOs on a regular basis. That being stated, wearing a t-shirt to an interview may work if the attire would fit in as traditional or commonly with the job being applied for at the company. But, showing up for your interview in a t-shirt with a phrase or popular business logo emblazoned on it is not a good look. It is too casual and certainly not professional. Go with a plain t-shirt that is clean and pressed free of wrinkles. You will be glad you went that route.

Head Wear

Do not wear head-wear inside the building or into the room of your job interview. Head wear is not needed and does not provide any discernible benefit during an interview. You want to be described after the interview by your name and your appearance as the well-appointed well-dressed smart job applicant and not the interviewee that wore the hat to their interview.

Jewelry and Accessories

These days jewelry is certainly more mainstream than ever before. However, during a job interview jewelry that is worn that may detract from the possibility of a positive interview should be left at home unworn. The key is to focus the job interviewer on your skill sets and interview answers and not your appearance due to the jewelry you are wearing to the appointment. Keep it basic. You will be glad you did.

Assorted Sundries

Men, as men know, are sometimes oblivious to their own self. Basic tenets of what to not wear at an interview deserve a list, so here it goes. Do not wear the following items to a job interview including any type of neon apparel, ripped articles of clothing, clothing that is wrinkled, clothing that is smelly or dirty, buttons, shorts, or psychedelic patterns.

245 views0 comments


bottom of page