When you’re looking for a job, there’s a lot that goes into the process of getting hired. You have to really make sure all your ducks are in a row, and in a lot more ways than just one. To start you’ve got to have your resume in order, get your references in line, and make sure your cover letter is the most charming piece of writing you can possibly come up with. Once all this is said and done, though, you’ve got to make sure you look nice. Anyone who reads your resume and likes what they see is going to want to meet you in person, and unless you’re looking to work on the Internet, you’re going to want to make sure that your physical appearance — the very first thing about you that people will notice when they meet you in person — is nice and in shape. We’ll talk about some of the best ways your appearance might cost you. Of course, your ability to work isn’t always reflected by the way you look, but this doesn’t mean that your potential employers feel the same way. Appearance can be important, and we’ll five classic mistakes you can avoid making when you hit the job trail.
1. The Right Hairstyle. How you style your hair, much like the way that you choose to dress, essentially winds up acting as an extension of your personality. A different hairstyle communicates a different vibe, and by picking the right hairstyle before an interview, you can say the right things about yourself. Make sure you take care to at least do something with your hair, as arriving unkempt is almost guaranteed to make you look as ill-prepared as you might actually be. It’s likely that you’ve found something that works for you in the past, and you should stick with it. If you want to try something new, don’t make any permanent changes right before your interview.
2. Ill-Fitting Clothes. The clothes you pick are important, and the way they fit you is equally as vital to what kind of impact your outfit makes. If you clothes don’t fit you well, they’re not going to look good no matter how much they cost or where they came from. When you’re going in for an interview, you should make sure your clothes fit you appropriately — steer clear of anything that could be described as “tight,” but make sure you don’t wear baggy clothes that look too big or too loose on you. The proper fit sends a good message in terms of how much you value your appearance.
3. The Wrong Clothes. Even if your clothes fit you perfectly, the wrong clothes are going to be the wrong clothes. You should figure out exactly what kind of dress code is in place at the office where you’ll be interviewing, and make sure you adhere to it so you don’t miss the memo and come dressed in a way that you shouldn’t be. While it’s an honest mistake to come in a suit and tie for an interview at an office where business casual is the norm — nobody would fault you for this — it can cost you major points if you were to show up underdressed.
4. Obvious Poor Health. Looking like you’re out of shape and not really taking such great care of yourself doesn’t win you any points when you’re trying to convince a potential employer that you’re reliable, hardworking, and responsible. These habits are easily reflected by the state in which you keep yourself, and there aren’t too many ways you can hide this when you’re sitting in a room with someone. Whether you need to pay for personal training courses or just maybe eat a little better, taking an interest in your health goes a long way towards helping your appearance.
5. Your Face. Groom your face. That’s all there is to it. If you’re a man, shave. If you’re a woman, wear your makeup sensibly. Don’t overdo it, and make sure you look nice. Wash your face, do your best to take care of any blemishes, and make sure you’ve brushed your teeth thoroughly. Pluck your eyebrows if you have to. Your face is among the first things that are going to be noticed about you, so if anything stands out you want to make sure you neutralize it as much as you can so that your own face doesn’t go pulling the rug out from under you. It’s not hard to make sure you look proper and are ready to ace your next job interview with the right strategies in mind.