Dress for Success – Interview Attire

Research had shown that the first impression takes only 15 seconds to form. Once that first impression is formed, it is unlikely to be erased away any time soon. Hence be dress appropriately and that will help you gain an advantage even before you speak. Do not assume about the dress code unless you have worked there before or have access to first hand information on it. You may check with the liaison officer on it. If the reply given is not clear, ask politely again. The rule of thumb is always better to be overdressed than underdressed.


Ensure your hair is neat and tidy. Avoid loud colour.


A touch of natural make-up, nothing too dramatic should be fine. Eyebrows should be shaped and lipstick or lip gloss is a must.


Choose dark colours like black, dark brown or navy blue would be a safe bet.

Shirt & Cuff Pin

Stick to profession cut and design like one shade of colour or strips or even texture. And nothing too distractive.

Tie & Tie Pin

Play it safe but choosing simple and professional design. Avoid cartoon characters and suggestive motif.


Use a well-designed briefcase in good condition and with no odour.


Shoes should match what you wear. Do ensure you leather shoes are shined and cleaned before the interview.


Keep accessories e.g. hair pin, scarf, watch, earrings down to the minimum. Always bear in mind that accessories are to enhance your overall image not to distract the interviewers or give them doubt about your ability to work for them. A nice set of pearl necklace and earrings would be fine and go well with most suit outfit.

You must present yourself positively throughout the interview process. Whether you finally received an offer and eventually accepted it is another matter.

Always image yourself as a strong and reputable brand in the market place and would only allow action that builds that brand to be shown/displayed.

Perfume / Body Odour

Choose acceptable fragrance or none at all. Anti- perspirant roll out or spray on.

Just ensure that you don’t smell like you need a bath.

Mouth Hygiene

If you have smoked or taken something strong before the interview, brush your teeth, rinse or take a mint. No one enjoy talking to someone who has poor oral hygiene at length. Remember don’t blow your chance away.


Make sure whatever you wear, like shirt, blouse, pants, skirt are all well ironed. Do not think that no one is ever going to notice that tear at the side pocket or the tiny hole on your jacket. Interviewers are sharp as it is their task to scrutinize you in every aspect and hire the best fit candidate for their company. Put together your power wear from your existing collection, borrow or buy if you need to. Get at least 2 other persons from your family or among your circle of friends to assess whether your interview attire is appropriate. You might be surprise at the feedback given. Alter your interview attire if need be to achieve the desired result and be all really to impress the interviewers on the actual day.