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Sources say that up to 55% of another person's perception of you is based on how you look, so make the right impression at your interview. Although dressing and grooming appropriately may not get you the job, it will give you a competitive edge and help to make a positive first impression.

Throughout the entire job-seeking process employers use short-cuts to save time. With cover letters, it is reading the opening paragraph. With résumés, it is a quick scan of your accomplishments. With the job interview, it's how you are dressed. Here are some guidelines and tips to help you make a good first impression and set the right tone.

Professional Men

Always dress professionally for an interview.

•Neat, professional hairstyle.
•Clean & trimmed nails.
•Portfolio or briefcase.
•Clean and pressed clothing.

•Solid color, conservative suit.
•White or light blue long-sleeved shirt.
•Silk necktie with a conservative pattern. Learn how to tie a Windsor knot.
•Dark non-bulky socks.
•Dark shoes, cleaned and polished.
•Belt should match shoes.
•No aftershave or cologne.
•No earrings. No rings other than wedding or college ring.

Business Casual

Business casual attire is less formal than professional and is generally not appropriate for interviews. Many organizations have relaxed internal dress codes and permit business casual attire for daily business operations. However, professional dress is generally preferred for client meetings and other important events. Unless otherwise stated, business casual dress is not appropriate for interviews.

•Dark-colored slacks with a solid or bold line dress shirt. Coats or ties are optional.
•Khaki pants if they are pressed and neat.

Things to Avoid
•Loud colors (clothes/shoes, jewelry, hair).
•Casual wear (jeans, sweat suits, t-shirts).
•Floral, plaid, or other "busy" designs.
•Mismatched clothing (fabrics, colors, patterns).
•Wrinkled, untucked, pilled or linty clothing.
•Tattered, faded, stained or dirty clothing.
•Plastic or crafty jewelry, including earrings.
•Excessive jewelry.
•Chest hair.
•Strong odors (perfumes, colognes, smoke, garlic).
•Visible body art (tattoos, bodmod).
•Open-toed footwear and athletic shoes.


If you like to wear black as much as I do, listen up. I have become quite aware of the way different fabrics hold black dye as well as which fabrics and textures look good together. With this in mind, I live by these six rules. 

Why I Love Wool and So Should You 
 Wools are always a deeper black than cottons (wool holds dye better) which is why when I'm buying black trousers, sweaters and of course suits, I stick to wool. And what's even better is wool doesn't fade like cotton does over time. 

Matching Your Blacks 
 No matter what the fabric, shades of black differ so be careful when putting an all black outfit together. For example, when pairing a black shirt with black trousers, the black shirt might have a purple cast while your black trousers have a brown cast. These differences are subtle, but important. 

Mix Textures and Fabrics 
 There is a right and wrong way to wear black clothes. As with any ensemble, it's important to mix different fabrics and textures. For example, a heavily textured sweater with a smooth pant looks dashing as does a plain merino wool sweater with a tonal stripe pant. Doing this will make you look less like you are wearing a uniform more like you put a little effort into your outfit. 

Cotton - Proceed with Caution 
 When it comes to cottons, they fade rather quickly which is why I like to buy black cotton shirts that have a touch of Lycra in them. The synthetic fiber helps cotton hold the dye better. I also like to buy mercerized cotton shirts since the blacks are deeper and richer than other cottons. 

Caring for Your Black Clothes 
 If it is black (or dark), dry clean it. Even if you launder your shirts, dry clean the black (or dark) ones. It will keep the color from fading as quickly. When it comes to washing black (or dark) cotton items at home, use a cup of vinegar the first time you wash a new article. The vinegar helps set the dye. If that sounds unappealing, you can use WOOLITE Dark Laundry Fabric Wash which is specially formulated to minimize the fading of colors and maintain color intensity. Also, always use cold water with your dark items. 

Know When to Say Goodbye 
 Retire clothes when they start to fade. Faded blacks just make you look tattered and we don't want that now do we? 


A man who knows how to wear color well can really turn some heads. According to Kim Johnson Gross, co-founder of Chic Simple Ltd, men shouldn't be afraid of color but should embrace it. They should experiment even if it's just with shirt colors. Kim and I discussed this topic and we came up with several tips men need to know about wearing color. 

1.Especially wear color in summer 
Summer is such a festive time of year. Light and bright colors are de rigeur. So I advise you to choose a color that is your signature color for the season and one that enhances your natural skin and hair tone. 

2.Stay away from beige colored shirts 
Beige is a bad color for shirts or any article that is around the face. It is rarely a good color for someone. I don't know why designers continue to push this color on us. Just don't secumb to the pressure. 

3.French blue is always a good choice 
French blue, which is a rich medium blue, is a flattering color for most skin tones. It makes a great dress shirt, which is mainly where you will find this sumptuous hue. 

4.Stay away from bright, solid-colored socks 
Colorful socks are okay if they have a design like stripes or argyle. But bright, solid-colored socks are simply not a good idea. Donny Osmond is suddenly coming to mind. 

5.Keep color around the face 
Again, it is important to keep flattering colors that enhance skin and eye color around the face. You don't want to look like you just got out of the hospital, do you? 

6.Stay away from loud patterns 
They are distracting and ultimately not a good thing. If it was ever in, it was the eighties, but we've thankfully moved on. 

7.Take a look around you 
If you are baffled about how to incorporate more color into your wardrobe, take a look around you. Look at ads and store displays. For example, Ralph Lauren really uses a lot of color in his collections. He styles his clothes well—gives classics a twist by using color. Also, Brooks Brothers has more recently had great options with color. If you are traveling abroad, see how the locals use color. Italians are probably the best at wearing color--you would be hard pressed to see people there wearing dark, drab colors.