7 Things Men Should Avoid Wearing To an Interview

The day you’ve been waiting for has finally arrived. You applied for the job post a few weeks ago doubtingly. But now you’ve landed an interview. It’s your one shot, and you can’t afford to miss it. You have to impress from the word go.

How do you do this? What should you wear? Do you go in a suit or a trench coat? Do you wear a tie or bow tie? What shoes should you put on?

I’ve been in interview rooms for a long time, on both sides of the desk. As an employer, certain things turn us off. And regardless of how good your resume is, I won’t hesitate to turn you down once you make these mistakes.

Men, I’m talking to you. If you want to begin scoring right from when you enter that doorstep, here are 7 things you should avoid wearing to an interview (and what you should wear too).

1. Brightly Colored and Ill-Fitting Suits

Brightly Colored and Ill-Fitting Suits

You want to be comfortable when going for an interview. Therefore, your clothes should be well-fitting that enhance your appearance while at the same time setting a professional look.

Avoid brightly colored clothes that shift everyone’s concentration to how you look rather than what you’re saying.

The same applies to shoes. Your shoes should fit well and also complement your outfit. They shouldn’t be awkward or difficult to walk in; otherwise, you’ll be uncomfortable during the interview. Invest in quality footwear that will make you look good.

I don’t need to talk about wrinkled and stained clothing. They are not only embarrassing but distracting too. They make you appear sloppy.

2. Ties

Avoid novelty ties

If you’re going for a charity event, bow ties are perfect. But for a job interview, leave them at home. Traditional ties make the best impression.

Avoid novelty ties that you would normally wear to make a statement. Instead, stick to a more traditional pattern.

Patterns with conservative colors would be perfect for the occasion – something like tasteful paisley or subdued stripes. Don’t be the funny guy.

3. Jeans

I know how good you look in your jeans. How comfortable they are and how confident they make you feel.


But if you want to get your dream job, then you should avoid wearing jeans for your interview. In an interview room, if the interview comments something about your jeans, then chances are that you’ll not crack the interview.

Wear formal pants to interviews. And if you’re looking for a smart-casual look, khakis are perfect. 

Jeans to interviews are not a problem, but it depends on the nature of the job and the company’s dress code.

If you’re interviewing for an outgoing office or casual position, then you can definitely wear jeans. You may, however, want to flaunt in denim jeans. Not the ripped, heavy-washed, or patched jeans you meet everywhere.

4. Sandals

Sandals and flip-flops may make you relaxed and comfortable but reserve them indoors. They don’t portray a professional look. They are too casual, just like sweatpants and T-shirts. 

5. Heavy Print T-Shirts

Heavy Print T-Shirts

Heavy print T-shirts with bizarre writings on them are a huge turn-off. Don’t do this. You look like you’re headed to a concert more than an interview. Wearing heavy print T-Shirts may come off to some interviewers as too flashy.

Moreover, it shows a lack of effort for the job. Of course, one wears a t-shirt together with jeans. The assumption here is that you woke up and picked the attire nearest to you.

If you decide on wearing a t-shirt to an interview (which I highly discourage) then go for plain t-shirts. Also, wear a blazer on top to cover it. It gives you a smart casual look.

You might like: 20 Men’s Fashion Mistakes You Know Nothing About

6. Jewelry and Flashy Clothes

Jewelry and Flashy Clothes man

Avoid clothes that show too much skin or undergarments. Keep off low-cut necklines and bare midriffs at all costs.

Check with the company on their policies of tattoos and piercings. Some people view body arts as distracting. In this case, you may choose to cover them.

Be as conservative as you can with piercings. The organization may prohibit nose and facial piercings.

When it comes to jewelry and interviews the simpler and less of it, the better. Stay away from distracting jewelry such as large earrings and ornate necklaces.

Instead, wear small earrings and keep your necklaces as simple as possible. Have only one bracelet and keep off noisy bangles that could be distracting.

7. Heavy Perfume And Excess Makeup

Excess Makeup man

Smelling well on your job interview is important. However, heavy colognes and perfumes can be distracting. They can even awake people’s allergies.

You don’t want your overwhelming perfume to be the only thing the interviewer remembers of you. Therefore, go easy on perfumes. It will even be better if you don’t use them at all.

When done perfectly, makeup enhances a person’s facial features. On the other hand, heavy makeup with bold colors could take away the positivity from your looks and become distracting. If possible, look for a professional to assist you with the task.

Tips for Dressing Appropriately to an Interview

Here are a few tips to consider when dressing for an interview.

Stay Comfortable

Comfort should be your priority before leaving the house. An interviewer can easily spot someone nervous and uncomfortable. When you’re uncomfortable, even answering questions becomes a problem.

Pick clothes that will help you get hired. You don’t have to go for brand new clothes. Go for something you’ve worn before as they’re likely to be more comfortable. Break in your shoes a couple of days before the D-Day.

If you decide to go with new clothes, remember to remove the tag.

Dress the Part

Your attire should complement your performance. When dressing for an interview, keep in mind that you are incorporating your attire into your position. An interviewer decides whether they’ll hire you or not in 10 seconds.

It becomes even more difficult for them to eliminate you if you look exceptionally well and your presentation is flawless. When going for an interview,

  • Stay away from patterns and stick to neutral colors.
  • Consider your comfort and the area’s climate.
  • Stay up-to-date with the current trends.

Be Cautious on Casual Wear

Figuring out what to wear to an interview can be tough, I know. You have to consider the position, the job’s location, and even the weather.

You don’t want to be all suited up during the summer. But even warm temperatures don’t imply that you have to deal away with the professionalism and wear shorts.

Summer interviews can pose a challenge. You don’t want to overdress and be uncomfortable while at the same time, you still want to maintain a professional look.

The answer is with business casual attire. Consider wearing a nice button-down or polo shirt, tailored khakis, and sensible shoes. 

Research the Company’s Dress Code

You need to do a little bit of homework on the company’s dress code. Visit their website or even call them to enquire about their policy on interview attire.

At the company’s website, take a look at what the employees are wearing to work.

Get The Shoes Right

Most people don’t realize that their outfits include their shoes too. Your outfit won’t have the desired impact if you put on a pair of dirty and tattered shoes. Invest in quality shoes that will match and complement your outfit.

Dress shoes and loafers are perfect for interviews; although you can also go with sneakers and open-shoes as long as they are presentable and match with your outfit.

But above all, ensure that you are comfortable in the shoes you pick.


Don’t forget to carry along accessories that complement your look and which will be useful to your interview. I’m talking about belts, business cards, phones and bags.

The belt you wear should preferably be made of leather and match the quality and color of your shoes. The buckle should be simple without any ornament.

Business cards are essential, although not compulsory. A business card furnishes your image. It makes you appear more professional. Besides, you exchange them for networking and keeping in contact.

When you carry your mobile phone (which is highly the case), ensure to turn it to silent mode. The last thing you want is for your interview to be interrupted by the ringing of your phone.

Final Thoughts

Dressing for an interview isn’t difficult. A little bit of research on the company’s dress code and you’re good to go. But also consider the position, industry, and climate. 

In short, whatever you decide to wear to an interview, ensure that it’s not too casual, too ill-fitting, too uncomfortable, too scented, too distracting, or too revealing. Your attire should portray you as a serious person who’s ready to begin work immediately.

You can always send your attire pics to your inner circle for approval beforehand. Four eyes are better than two. They may have ideas to improve your look.

But what to wear is only the first package. Don’t forget to carry along your documents and revise on how to answer the questions.

What are you wearing to your interview? Let us know by leaving the message below.

About Austin Green

Austin Green is the co-founder of Men Glow Up. This guy is obsessed with Men's Grooming and Fashion. I mostly publish tutorials, advice, and buying guides on Beard Care Products. Follow me on my channel Twitter. (No Spam, please :))

Leave a Comment