Dressing the part

Looking the part at interview is half the battle towards convincing the company you are the right person for the job, and making the effort to present a smart, professional-looking you shows the interviewer just how serious you are about applying for the position.

Looking the part at interview is half the battle towards convincing the company you are the right person for the job, and making the effort to present a smart, professional-looking you shows the interviewer just how serious you are about applying for the position. Deciding what you should and shouldn't wear doesn t have to be a major effort, and we have modelled how you can get it very right - and very wrong!

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Neat hair and simple understated make-up will help you look professional.

As a woman, you must be careful of showing too much cleavage. A shirt of fitted top with a respectable neckline will look smart under your suit.


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You may want to take a copy of your CV and the job description with you in case you need to refer to them during the interview.

It is worth investing in a smart, classic suit. Women can wear either trouser suits or skirt alternatives with knee-length hemlines. The high street has lot of styles and reasonably-priced options.

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Don't let your outfit down with scruffy shoes. A bit of polish and elbow grease the night before will help enhance your professional look. If you are wearing court shoes or stilettos, opt for a low to medium heel so you'll be comfortable all day and won't be at risk of an embarrassing fall.

Your suit doesn't have to be black, but it's advisable to stick with simple, classic alternatives like navy blue or grey pinstripe.

Don't forget to wear a watch! Arriving late at interview is inexcusable.

If you can't leave home without your handbag, take a small, discreet one to carry only the basics you need - and above all, make sure to switch off your mobile phone.

Keep jewellery simple and make sure your perfume or cologne isn't overpowering.

Clean your teeth before you leave the house. You'll feel fresher and be able to give the interviewer your brightest smile.

If you have facial piercings it's a good idea to take them out for the interview or wear very small studs if they are likely to leave unattractive holes.

Keep any bags you take with you to a minimum size. Large backpacks might be suitable for college but they are distracting in an interview.

Wearing a tie automatically makes men look smart. Make sure you tie it properly and don't choose anything in too loud a colour or design.

Never wear jeans! Even if the position you are applying for offers a casual dress code it's important to look smart at interview. If you aren't going the whole hog in a suit, wear smart trousers and a shirt and tie instead.

Try to make sure everything matches if you don't wear a suit. Choose a sensible combination of clothing and colours.

Boots are all very well for weekends, but they aren't the smartest of footwear. Invest in some smart shoes in a colour that will complement your trousers or suit.

Lots of people have tattoos, but if yours aren't somewhere discreet keep them hidden under long sleeve shirts or a jacket.

Young men should go for a plain or simple design shirt, tucked into trousers and finished off with a tie.

Make sure you are clean shaven - a bit of stumble says rough and ready rather than polished and professional.

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