As if you didn’t have enough to worry about while deciding between striped ties or plain, pant suits or skirts, hair up or hair down, etc., one more critical element of proper interview attire is thrown into the mix. Did you know that the actual color of your suit can be just as revealing of a personality indicator as your demeanor during the interview? Your choice in color for your interview apparel says a lot about you as a person, your professionalism, your personality, etc. Of course, wearing one color or another may not be the definitive indicator of your personality; the color explanations below might be the furthest thing from your true personality. Regardless, humans tend to have automatic assumptions or emotions associated with certain colors, and might have preconceived notions about you based on your outfit choice without even being aware of the distinctions they are making. Before reaching for your favorite red blazer or lucky pink socks, read the Info Barrel article below on the best colors to wear to an interview!
Do you put a lot of thought into what color clothing you wear to an interview? You should!
As someone who formerly facilitated hirings, I was subject to a strange phenomenon: sometimes a very qualified, capable candidate rubbed me the wrong way.
What you wear affects how you’re perceived in an interview, and even a sharp outfit can be undone by the mysterious psychological effects of color. Choose the right interview colors before you show up!
Red is an intense interview color, and that’s what it says about the wearer. Red says you want to be noticed. It’s the color of passion, energy, and strength, but also danger and war.
In terms of an employee, red interview clothing might tell me that a candidate is very energetic and confident, that they possess leadership qualities and courage. It also tells me this candidate might be a little hot-headed or quick to anger.
Red is a wild card. Personally, I’d avoid large quantities of red in an interview, since it’s such a powerful impression.
Blue is an interview color that denotes intelligence, wisdom and depth, sincerity and perception. Blue also has a calming influence, with measurable effects on the human mind and metabolism.
A candidate wearing blue will give the effect of capability and calm. They might not be high energy, but they are level-headed and capable. It also might put me more at ease in the interview setting.
Green has a youthful energy and lightness, and it’s common to associate green with growth and life. Green conveys a sense of safety, peace and healing. The flip side is that green can say inexperienced.
A candidate wearing green interview clothing might seem youthful and safe. In most work settings a calming, peaceful impression would be a good choice. To avoid the impression of lack of experience, try a slightly darker green.
Yellow is obviously a very cheerful interview color, giving a sense of lightness, intelligence and happiness. Like red, yellow says you don’t mind attention, giving it some leadership attributes.
A nice, yellow shirt tells me a candidate is light-hearted, open and honest. It says leadership potential, with a warm, cheerful style. That said, a lot of yellow would probably be overwhelming. Yellow works best as a pop of color: tie, bag, etc.
Yes I know, white is a shade, but I’m trying to cover the most common choices in formal attire.
White is associated with cleanliness and perfection, as well as innocence and purity. Anything white has the impression of being new.
A white shirt is always one of the best interview colors, just make sure it’s really white! That impression of perfection and safety will be nullified by an off-white or dirty looking article.
White also has the bonus of pairing nicely with any other interview color you have chosen.
Black is common in business attire. It says strength, elegance and formality. It’s also associated with death, mystery and the unknown.
In an interview setting, black is a good choice, just don’t wear too much of it. Like white, black pairs nicely with most other interview colors. Black says you respect the formality of the interview and the authority of the hiring company.
Avoid matching black with brown, charcoal, or dark grey. You don’t want to make your outfit look mismatched, and the human eye picks up on even subtle shade differences.