Getting Ahead

What to Wear to a Job Interview: Tips for Young Indian Women

Western Interview Outfits

Image courtesy of Jeanna

When you go for an interview, wearing the right outfit can make all the difference. It is not just your qualifications or how you perform during the interview that are under scrutiny; the way you dress and carry yourself are equally important when it comes to making an impression. So here are six tips to dress elegantly, confidently and appropriately, to help you breeze through any interview.

1. Indian formals or Western wear?

What to wear to a job interview

Most young Indian women are confused between choosing an Indian formal wear or a western outfit, but that should not be much of a problem, because most companies allow both. But it is advisable to do a little bit of research about the company’s culture before choosing either, so that you do not end up feeling out of place in the new environment.

2. Choosing the right Indian attire

what to wear to a job interview

Women have so much to choose from, when deciding to go with an Indian attire for an interview. You can go for a salwar-kameez or a saree, provided that they are appropriate for your work environment. Keep in mind the following pointers when choosing the right Indian outfit for an interview.

  • Avoid flashy or chintzy colors because they are not appropriate for a corporate set-up. Stick to cotton clothes if you can, preferably in light pastel shades or somber colors such as grey or navy.
  • Avoid clothes with ghungroos or tassels that make noises every time you move. Also, stay away from shimmery or heavily embroidered outfits.
  • Avoid duppattas that tend to keep falling off. It is going to be a huge distraction for the interviewer if you keep fumbling with your outfit and they might see it as a sign of nervousness. Also, avoid wiping your face with your dupatta – use a handkerchief or a facial tissue for that purpose

3. Choosing the right western attire

how to dress for an interview

Image courtesy of Jeanna

Young women who opt for western formals can wear a light-colored formal shirt or blouse with formal trousers or skirts, preferably in darker shades. Again, keep away from flamboyant colors.

4. Choosing the right jewelry

women's interview jewelry

Image courtesy of Jeanna

Go for jewelry that is simple, yet tasteful. Avoid going for glitzy, chunky pieces of gold, such as long, dangling earrings or too many bangles that are going to jingle and rattle every time you move. Also, anklets with tiny bells that go chim-chim when you walk should be left behind at home. Also, a smart wristwatch on one hand will allow you the luxury of leaving your other arm bare.

5. Choosing the right footwear

office footwear

Leather is always the safest bet, because it is classy and timeless. Avoid high heels. Stick to low heels or flats, whichever you are more comfortable wearing. Also, keep in mind to avoid shoes or sandals that make squeaky, loud noises as you walk.

6. Choosing the right makeup

office makeup

Image courtesy of Philippe Put

Nobody insists that women should wear makeup to an interview or to the workplace, but sometimes, so as not to look shabby, one needs some amount of makeup. However, err on the side of minimalism and save your experiments with smokey, winged eyes or bold shades of lip colors for your evening soirees.

It would be a great idea to get a mani-pedi done before an interview. It would give the impression that you care about good grooming. But beware, do not make the mistake of going overboard by getting fancy nail art done or getting stick-on nails that stand the risk of falling off, leaving you to look like a joke.

Above all, remember to apply a liberal coat of self-confidence before you enter the interview room, much like Will Smith did in The Pursuit of Happyness!

 

Editor’s note:

Want more tips?  Here are some general grooming and personal hygiene tips for young women.

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