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Dress for interview success

The essential business suit for a lasting first impression

In business, as in life, first impressions count for a lot. We have only seven quick seconds to make a good first impression, and we might not even get to say a word in that time. What you wear to an interview, or to a first important meeting, becomes an essential part of the language that you use to communicate who you are, to convey trust and confidence in our abilities.

The rest of the interview is usually spent trying to confirm that initial impression, and it can be very difficult to change it. That can feel like a lot of pressure, but it doesn’t have to be. We have put together some useful guidelines to help you make that first interview impression the best it can be.

What does your suit colour say about you?

You might think that the colour of your suit is secondary, something that won’t even be noticed. But you’d be wrong. Colour is up there with cut and fit in the importance chart. So we’re just going to come out and say it: navy is your power colour. If you want to build trust, look professional, credible, look no further than a navy suit.

We can go into what each suit colour evokes in people another time, but really, when it comes to interviews and making positive first impressions, navy blue is your colour.

Just in case you had doubts, definitely go for the matching suit rather than a mix and match option. It shows you are professional and are taking the interview process seriously.

Choose your fabric wisely

Wool is no doubt the first choice when it comes to business suits. The natural fibres mean that your suit won’t get stubborn crinkles. A wool suit regains its shape when stretched, so you don’t have to worry about it looking crumpled after a long drive. Secondly, it’s very important to feel as comfortable as possible. And wool is comfortable in every season – breathable and light in summer and insulating in winter. And of course, it looks great.

The best style for an essential business suit

Go with a classic design, rather than one with too many fashionable details. Most often that means a two-piece suit with two buttons, single breasted, with regular flap pockets, and a single or double back vent.

Accessorise carefully

 It’s true that the devil is in the detail – the accessories you choose can make or break your suit choice.

Cuffs – go with one or two-button cuffs rather than cufflinks. They lend a clean professional look, without any distractions.

Shirt collar – choose a collar that best frames your face. A spread collar works best for an elongated face, while a point collar is better for a round face. Make sure that the collar fits well and there is just enough room to wedge two fingers between it and your neck.

Ties – Whatever colour tie you choose (whether classic burgundy or blue, or even confident pink), make sure your tie compliments the rest of the suit and is of the best quality, preferably silk.

Shoes – Complete your interview look with a pair of round-toed Oxfords, with either closed or open lacing.

Don’t forget about the fit

It turns out no two men are built the same, which means finding a suit that fits you perfectly is almost impossible. Unless you have one made for you shape, that is. A bespoke suit is made entirely from scratch to fit your shape perfectly. If you must wear a store bought suit, then make sure you alter it to fit you perfectly.

In business image is everything. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when choosing a suit. Tell us what you want your suit to say about you, and we’ll guide you towards your best options for you, so you can look and feel the best you can.