Make First Impressions Count!

Sally Smy, founder of Queen Bee Styling, shares her expert advice on how to dress for success so you can wow at interview and secure you dream job.

It's not often I start an article with a call to action but I would like you to count to ten......... Why ten? Well, this is roughly how few seconds it takes to make a first impression - not very long, I think you'll agree? In an interview situation this means that the interviewer will have made a judgement on you before you have even answered one question. The clothes we choose express our identity to people around us and this is obviously crucial to get right in an interview situation. It isn't just about our choice of outfit though, general grooming and body language also play an important role.

The good news is that is doesn't take a huge amount of effort and money to get this right. What is does take is something I call the three 'Ps'.

The first is to be Proactive, don't wait until you have an interview lined up. If you have taken the step of actively seeking work, be active about what you'll wear for an interview too.

The second is to get Practical, roll your sleeves up and take an honest look at what is in your wardrobe. If you haven't worked for a while the chances are your old work suits will be out of date and therefore make you look dated! Also, in the real world we can change shape after having children, be realistic about what shape you are and dress accordingly. You'll feel a lot better for it.

Finally, be Prepared, with the demands of a family, shopping and grooming time can be limited. Schedule time to organise your outfit and don't forget about hair, nails, and shoes; these are equally important. If you do this in advance of the interview it gives you plenty of time to focus on the all important research and question preparation for the actual job.

To help you do this I've put together an ideal interview outfit below and some tips on how to choose yours:-

What NOT to wear to an Interview

1. Ill fitting clothes

2. Over-the-top jewellery, leave the bling at home.

3. Over done make-up or underdone make-up and untidy hair.

4. Drab colours - avoid too much black and grey

5. Overpowering Perfume

What to Wear

1. A tailored jacket. Always looks professional and you can always remove it if the dress code is relaxed.

2. A flattering colour or print. This can be a top or even a scarf that you love. Not only will this give you confidence it will ensure you stand out.

3. Clothes that suit your body shape - I have chosen trousers for my outfit as they are smart yet comfortable. If skirts and dresses work better for you then choose them instead.

4. Invisible underwear - flesh coloured underwear works better under light coloured tops than white.

5. Accessories - a scarf or necklace add the finishing touches to any outfit

The ultimate aim is for you to feel confident in your image. Look in the mirror and be honest to yourself about how you feel when you have the outfit on, 'fine' is not good, you need to feel fabulous. If you follow the steps above to be proactive, practical and prepared I can guarantee you will reap the rewards.

If you would like some help to do this or to book in for a free 20 minute telephone consultation please drop me a line at or visit There is absolutely no obligation to book.

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