Being a teenager is tough work. Not only have you got to balance hefty school work on top of a social life, but you may also have to contend with the prospect of getting your first real adult job. Quite frankly, it can be a terrifying process!
But if you’ve been invited to an in-person interview, you need to make sure your outfit is appropriate, professional, yet still representative of who you are as a person.
Since you’re reading this, we’re going to assume you’ve been sent into an anxiety-induced tizzy over what to wear. However, there’s no need to worry! We’re here to help you out.
In this article, we’ll share some of our top tips about how to dress to impress. We will also provide you with some outfit options that are relatively easy to throw together and will keep you feeling confident at all times.
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Why Is It Important To Dress Properly?
An interview is all about making an impression on your hiring manager, both personally and professionally. So you’ll definitely want to look your absolute best!
Not only will it show your potential employer that you’re committed and willing to make an effort, but it will also demonstrate how you’d fit into the working environment. Plus, dressing “appropriately” may also give you a boost of confidence to help you overcome your nerves.
Our Top Tips
These are some of our top tips when selecting an outfit for an interview as a teenager:
Be Detail Oriented
The smaller details of your outfit may have as much of an impact on your prospective employer as the clothes themselves.
You should aim to appear professional and neat in all aspects including hair, makeup, and nails. Though there’s nothing wrong with a smokey eye or purple hair in general, you should aim to look as natural as possible for your interview.
Try to make sure your outfit is rip-free, ironed, and clean as this will help you seem more prepared, even if you are feeling nervous. You may also want to cover tattoos or piercings, although this isn’t a requirement for all companies.
Select Moderate Choices
Though your comfort needs to be considered, you should opt for the more conservative side when dressing for an interview.
Neutral colors such as black, white, and navy are a great way to go if you aren’t sure where to begin looking. If you manage to secure a job and get to know your managers and colleagues,
you can add piercings or wear different clothing to express your individuality as time goes on. But professionalism is key for interviews!
Move With Confidence
Looking professional is a must, but so is feeling confident! We’d recommend trying your outfit on and moving about in it before heading into your interview to make sure it is comfortable, and to get yourself familiar with the way the clothes feel on your body.
What To Wear
You can choose from a variety of professional looking outfits for your first (or second) interview. Here are some of the best combinations for you to consider:
A Mid-Length Dress
A dress is another popular outfit choice. There are so many style options available that it can be slightly overwhelming, but we’re here to lend a helping hand.
For business attire, dresses should be mid-length, ending around the knee, and in plain or neutral colors. You may opt for a dress with a subtle pattern, but we would advise against this if possible.
Depending on the time of year, you may also want to pair a dress with black leggings, a blazer, or even a sweater to keep you feeling cozy and professional at the same time. You could accompany the dress with shoes, low-heeled wedges, flats, or loafers.
The button-down shirt and dark pants combination is a common outfit choice used in business settings. For your shirt, you may want to choose from several colors depending on your personal preferences and any specific company requirements.
If the company abides by a more formal dress code, neutral colors including black and white are probably your best bet. But you can also wear muted colors such as pale blue which adds color yet still remains professional.
For pants, you can wear plain dress slacks in a navy, gray, or a dark shade of black. You may have to wear this outfit in a work environment like an office, school, or a formal organization.
You could pair this look with boots or dress shoes, but we’d recommend picking shoes that you feel comfortable in – especially if you’re on your feet for hours at a time.
A Dress Shirt And Pants
You can also wear a smart blouse or dress shirt with pants or a skirt to attend your interview. In terms of the blouse or shirt, you should try to opt for softer colors and simple patterns, including stripes, rather than something more outlandish.
If you would like to pair a blouse with a skirt, look for a modest yet professional mid-length skirt that ends at or slightly above the knee. Khakis or slacks are a great choice for pants.
You can customize this look by adding simple accessories including jewelry or a belt, or you could add a blazer. Try to choose complimentary accessories in simple colors that pair well with the clothing. You can finish this look with a pair of dress shoes or plain flats.
Dress Shirt With Dark Jeans
Jeans aren’t typically a good choice for more formal interviews but, depending on the job you’re applying for, you may be able to wear a nice pair during the interview stages.
This is a common option for more casual industries such as landscaping companies or if you are applying for a non-business facing role.
If it is appropriate to wear jeans, we’d recommend selecting a dark pair without any rips or studs to help maintain a more professional overall appearance.
You could also wear a dress shirt, blouse, polo, or button-down to dress up the look. Feel free to tuck your shirt in if you want, but it isn’t necessary. You can match this look with boots or dress flats.
A Polo Shirt With Khakis Or Pants
A polo shirt paired with either khakis or dress pants is another excellent choice, especially if your interview is taking place during the summer or if you’re looking to get a role in a warmer area. Polo shirts come in many colors, but we’d advise opting for muted colors such as white and black, and simple patterns.
To look more professional, you should consider wearing a belt and tucking your shirt into your pants. This particular outfit pairs best with loafers or a pair of dress shoes.
Accessories are an easy way to enhance even the most plain outfit. They also help you to add an element of your own personal style while not being too over the top. Some of the most interview-appropriate outfit options include:
- A watch
- Simple earrings such as small hoops or studs
- Bracelets or necklaces in a single color (usually silver or gold)
You could also opt to wear a tie with a smart dress shirt, but it isn’t mandatory. It depends entirely on whether you’re comfortable wearing one, or if the company specifically request you to wear one in your interview.
You don’t have to overcomplicate your interview outfit. In fact, it’s best to stick to neutral colored clothing and simple accessories to maintain a professional yet age appropriate look. You should style your hair as naturally as possible and keep your jewelry looking casual, too.
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