Job interview attire and hair

<p>Thank you to those who helped me with S finding a suit. I haven't seen it yet but he did find a good sale at Macy's. I think the suit will work for some of his interviews but might be overdressed for others.
His field is Graphic Design. He has an interview coming up with a small design firm in our small laidback city. Not sure what he should wear. My gut feeling is the suit might not be the right outfit for this interview.
Hair- S's hair is long. Not down his back long but shoulder length or just above his shoulders. He thinks he needs a haircut but hasn't found time to get one. He wanted me to make him an appointment for Monday AM. Of course most hair salons are closed on Sundays and Mondays. Interview is Monday afternoon. My S thinks he might just wear it slicked back in a ponytail. Any thoughts? Down or back?
I would love to hear from some CC parents who work in artistic fields as to what you would like to see in a applicant.</p>

<p>mom60, I work in biotech where even top management usually wears casual clothes. Ponytail would not raise any eyebrows here, but loose hair might (my personal perception would be, “wow, if this guy wears his hair like this, will he do anything about it to follow the lab safety rues?”). I vote for a haircut or a ponytail.</p>

<p>Thanks. To visualize his present hair think of Rafael Nadel.
BunsenBurner- though dress in your field is casual would the appropriate interview outfit be a suit?</p>

<p>I am in engineering, not graphic design but think his hair is fine so long as it is groomed, can’t hurt to get a trim. I think a suit is always appropriate for a first interview, although I suspect mos tin graphic design dress more casually.
good luck to your s!</p>

<p>A candidate who shows up in a suit would definitely NOT raise any eyebrows. Khaki pants with a blue blazer and a nice shirt would be considered perfectly OK. However, if someone shows up in jeans and a sweater, that would get noticed. This is biotech, so I have no idea what graphics designers wear for interviews.</p>

<p>A funny story. Eons ago, DH needed shoes for a job interview. Of course, due to his allergies to shopping, I was sent to the mall to find something for him. The sales guy at the Bon asked me what I wanted and pointed me to a shelf full of very dressy shoes, some with tassels. I told him that DH hated tassels and liked something more comfortable. The sales guy then asked, “What kind of job is he interviewing for?” “A biotech position.” “What is “biotech”? Like banking or like Microsoft?” “More like Microsoft, I would say” “Aahhh, Okay, you should have said so! These are not the right shoes for him, indeed. Here are the shoes that people buy for interviewing at Microsoft!” And he led me to the display full of Eccos and Clarks shoes. :)</p>

<p>Better to be a little overdressed than the other way around. Err on the side of caution and at least wear a tie and maybe a blazer too.</p>

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<p>Isn’t Supercuts open every day?</p>

<p>Have your s go to the Asian, Hispanic, immigrant section of town, lots of hair cut places open on Sunday.</p>

<p>I just go to a barber - $7 (and I have a full head of hair). No appointment necessary - just show up and worst case, wait behind a person or two.</p>

<p>I’m in the software development and associated positions area and have interviewed a number of candidates.</p>

<ul>
<li><p>The work clothing at my office is ‘business casual’ with the emphasis on the casual side of it. For the person coming in for the interview they can show up on one of 3 categories - matching (wearing similar business casual), over (suit), or under (t-shirt, well used jeans, shorts, etc.). He can’t go wrong going ‘over’, would be fine with the ‘match’ but can be perceived as presumptuous or clueless if he’s ‘under’. I wouldn’t give any bonus points for coming in ‘over’ but I’d deduct a some for coming in ‘under’. If he doesn’t know the norms for the business he should err on the safe side.</p></li>
<li><p>On the hair - I just expect it to be neat. I’ve interviewed and hired guys with very long hair but they usually have it in a ponytail but I don’t even care about that as long as it’s clean. It’s fine with me even though I don’t know why any guy would actually like having a ponytail - it seems like a hassle of a tassel. I’ve also interviewed and hired a guy who’s hair I never saw - a Sikh who wore a turban. If he really likes having the long hair then he should just make sure it’s worn neatly whether in a ponytail or not. If his hair is long only because he’s too cheap and busy to get it cut, as I was in college, then now’s a good time to go ahead and cut it the way he wants.</p></li>
<li><p>If he has piercings stuck all over his face he might want to leave those out.</p></li>
<li><p>It seems that the more artistic the job the less stringent they’d be on the actual clothing/appearance requirements but it usually doesn’t hurt to be less presumptuous and err more on the side of showing respect.</p></li>
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<p>I am a graphic designer and have hired many artists over the years. When interviewing men, I am always more impressed when they show up in a jacket and tie…not necessarily a suit, which in our field is a bit formal. But a suit is ALWAYS better than just a sweater/shirt and no jacket at all. It says they care about first impressions, themselves and their chances for the job itself.</p>

<p>Agree with everyone about the hair: as long as it’s clean and neat, no problems with it being long. Prefer it to be pulled back as loose hair swinging around during an interview can be a bit distracting, but that is just my opinion. My son also needed a haircut PDQ on the Monday before his interview when everything was closed except the local mall salon, so you might try that.</p>

<p>When my son recently interviewed for a position in the media arts and was balking about the jacket and tie, we told him there are three times in your life when a jacket and tie are a must: weddings, funerals and interviews!! So at least you are over that hurdle! I’d also add that in this field he could easily wear a great pair of dark wash jeans with nice shoes, jacket and tie…perfectly acceptable and appropriate. Good luck and let us know how it goes!</p>

<p>Pet peeve for me–long hair that gets in the eyes and has to be continually brushed out of face. Very distracting…</p>

<p>ucsd-ucla Dad- For years my S wore his hair in a buzz cut. The long hair started out because he was lazy away at school. He soon found that the long hair was very popular with the opposite sex. He has since had it cut and styled a couple of times. I don’t know what he has in mind regarding the haircut. Don’t know if he is talking cleaning up what he has or something more drastic.
1done1togo- thanks for your feedback. I will advise the suit. He doesn’t own a sports coat. I think shopping trip is in order to get a nice pair of dark washed jeans.
BunsenBurner- I like the shoe story.</p>

<p>Mom60:</p>

<p>I agree with the other posters that dressing in a suit or jacket is not overdressed for any type of interview. Better that he should be a bit overdressed than underdressed. Or a sport jacket & khacki’s.</p>

<p>If he cannot get a haircut before his interview, just have him make sure he looks neat & presentable, including fingernails, shoes, no stains on clothes, etc. Attention to detail is what counts on appearance. It shows that he took the effort to look presentable!</p>

<p>Mom60:</p>

<p>Another thing…we found a sale at Men’s Wearhouse a little over a month ago where we bought 2 sportcoats for my S. I think it was either buy 1, get 1 free, or buy 2nd at half price…don’t remember. But the sportcoats were very soft fabric and a hip, modern style. We bought one in dark grey and one in tan. My S can wear them with any pant, dressy, kacki, or jeans. We bought them for him to take to college and they are very versatile for so many different occasions.</p>

<p>Can’t you go to a Great Clips or similar hair cut place? Those are open on Sundays.</p>

<p>For graphics (and associated) fields, I like the idea of the suit with a bright or dark shirt, maybe a with an interesting tie, maybe not (doesn’t seem to go with a ponytail.) He should make a statement with his clothing (but not “I don’t know what looks good on me…”) Get his most fashion-savvy friend on board for the dry run.</p>

<p>About two years ago, the company I worked for at the time hired a new graphic designer.</p>

<p>I saw several of the candidates arrive for their interviews. All were wearing outfits with jackets and many (of both genders) were wearing matched suits. I didn’t see any particular attention being paid to fashion. They looked like everybody else who interviews for jobs.</p>

<p>Regarding haircuts on Sunday. We don’t live in a particularly large city. I do see we have two Supercuts. Both get terrible reviews on Yelp. I am thinking clean long hair in a ponytail will work. I have long straight hair and I am very careful about who I let cut my hair.</p>

<p>Please, no hair that looks the least bit stringy!!! I would think that with graphic design, a fellow could and should look a bit more fashion forward and edgy than Brooks Bros.</p>

<p>mom60, do not let him go to the supercuts. If you go to yelp for your city and search barbers there are a few decent ones. One on the mesa but not sure if they are open on Sunday…I suspect not. I would vote for the ponytail and the suit. Even though it is a laid back sleepy town one can never over dress for an interview and under dressing looks cocky (in my opinion). Good luck to him and if he gets the job don’t forget there are cheap apartments in the area with two letters in its name (you know…) :)</p>