“Orange is the New Black” may be a popular Netflix show, but when it comes to interview outfits, orange definitely isn’t the new black – or blue.
According to a new CareerBuilder survey, employers most often recommend blue (23 percent) and black (15 percent) when advising job seekers on what to wear to an interview. Orange topped the list for the worst color (25 percent of employers) and was the color most likely to be connected with someone who is unprofessional.
The attributes associated with your outfit color
If you’re vying for a management position, you may want to consider wearing black. According to the survey, many employers associate black with the attribute of leadership. If you want to come across as a team player, wear blue; if you’re trying to convey a sense of power, don red.
Other key attributes employers pointed to:
- Gray — logical/analytical
- White — organized
- Brown — dependable
- Green, yellow, orange or purple — all four colors were associated with being creative
Dressing for success
While the color of your interview outfit may have some influence, you need to consider your overall look if you want to impress. Wearing baggy pants, a blinged-out blazer or beaten-up shoes won’t do you any favors.
CareerBuilder experts offer the following tips to dress for success when meeting with a potential employer:
- Dress for the environment, but don’t get too casual. If everyone is dressed in shorts and flip flops and you show up in a business suit, you may not come across as the right fit. Dress according to the environment, but always look polished. Wear a suit where appropriate or at the very least a nice pair of pants or skirt and collared shirt or blouse.
- Stick with neutrals. You can’t go wrong with navy, black, brown and gray. You can pair this with a classic white button-down shirt or incorporate a splash of a more vibrant color. For instance, wear a navy suit with a red necklace or a white shirt with a green tie.
- Tailor your outfit. Clothing that is too tight or revealing can leave an unfavorable impression. Clothing that is too loose can make you look like a kid wearing your dad’s suit. Make sure your interview apparel complements your shape.
- Don’t distract the interviewer. Wacky ties, loud patterns and oversized jewelry can cause the interviewer to spend more time wondering about your outfit than your skills. Solids or small patterns are your best bet for interview attire.
- Pay attention to details. Make sure shoes are polished, clothes are wrinkle-free and nails are manicured. Be mindful of your choice of belt, tie clip, hosiery, socks, etc.