5 Tips on What to Wear for a Virtual Interview: Women’s Guide

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Flat design illustration of a confident, young woman in elegant professional attire, ready for a virtual interview, embodying style and grace, set in a neat and organized workspace, perfectly capturing the essence of what to wear for a virtual interview.

Time to read: 5 minutes

Is it necessary to wear a complete, head-to-toe outfit? Should I wear a bright colored blouse so it can be seen clearly via video call? Your outfit is a reflection of how you present yourself and convey professionalism in a digital setting.

TL;DR

  • Choose Wisely: Opting for classic, versatile attire that can be adapted to the company’s culture ensures a professional appearance in virtual interviews.
  • Color and Comfort Matter: Selecting flattering colors and comfortable, well-fitted clothes enhances on-screen presence and confidence.
  • Preparation Pays Off: Testing your outfit with your tech setup and choosing minimal, elegant accessories can prevent distractions and improve your overall presentation.

The Importance of Dressing Appropriately

When it comes to virtual interviews, the rules of attire aren’t one-size-fits-all. They vary significantly based on the industry and company culture. For instance, a tech startup may lean towards a more relaxed dress code, allowing for a bit of creative flair in your outfit. Conversely, a more formal company such as a law firm or financial institution might expect traditional business attire.

In order to best prepare, check the website, social media, or any available resources belonging to the company you’re interviewing with. If you’re still unsure, it’s generally safer to err on the side of formality. Even if you’re hired and are able to wear your favorite hoodie on the job, for first impressions, it’s important to present your best self!

Tip 1: Opt for Classic and Versatile Attire

Selecting the right outfit for your virtual interview starts with choosing classic and versatile pieces.

Inspiration board for women on what to wear for a virtual interview by GradSimple.
  • Tailored blazer
  • Button-up blouse
  • Button-up shirt
  • Solid color sweater
  • Sheath Dress

These are examples of fantastic options that you can adapt to fit most interview scenarios. It’s especially helpful to have articles of clothing that can be dressed up or down depending on the company you’re interviewing with.

Tip 2: Be Mindful of Colors and Patterns

The colors and patterns you choose for your virtual interview will have an impact on your on-screen appearance. Neutral and darker tones like navy, charcoal, and black are classic choices that tend to be the most universally flattering.

Quote on being mindful of colors for women on what to wear for a virtual interview by GradSimple.

Adding a touch of color can also work in your favor, but this is a slippery slope. A pastel or jewel-toned blouse, for instance, can brighten up your appearance, but overly bright or neon colors are distracting and often do not translate well on camera. The last thing you want is to have you green shirt keyed out by your Zoom background.

Patterns should be chosen with care as well. Subtle patterns, like a small check or a light stripe, can add dimension to your outfit without overwhelming the camera. It’s best to stay away from large, bold patterns or busy prints that might create a distracting visual effect on screen.

Tip 3: Prioritize Comfort and Proper Fit

Comfort and confidence always go hand-in-hand. It’s very important to opt for for clothing that suits your body shape and allow ease of movement. Clothes that are too tight may be uncomfortable during the interview and could be distracting on camera. Conversely, overly loose garments can look unprofessional and sloppy.

In terms of fabrics, go for materials that are breathable and maintain their shape. You want to avoid anything that wrinkles easily or requires frequent adjustment. Fabrics like cotton blends, soft wools, or crease-resistant synthetics can be excellent choices.

Tip 4: Test Your Outfit with Your Tech Setup

Before the day of your virtual interview, we suggest doing a tech run-through, not just for your equipment, but also for your outfit.

Start by checking your outfit under the lighting conditions you’ll have during the interview. Different lighting can alter how colors appear on screen, and you want to ensure that your outfit looks as intended. If you’re using natural light, be mindful of the time of your interview as the quality of light can change throughout the day.

If you wear glasses, pay attention to any glare that may be caused by your screen. You don’t want your eyes to be obscured, so adjust the angle of your lighting or computer accordingly! Alternatively, pop in a pair of contacts. No glare worries here.

Tip 5: Accessorize Minimally and Elegantly

The right accessories can enhance your outfit, but too many or overly bold pieces will definitely be distracting on camera – especially if they catch the light.

Quote on picking accessories for a virtual interview for women by GradSimple.

A delicate necklace, a pair of stud earrings, or a classic watch will complement your outfit without taking the focus away from your face and what you are saying. We recommend avoiding large, dangling earrings or necklaces that can create noise or cause a visual distraction.

Makeup choices should also be subtle. For any type of job interview (except maybe Sephora), refrain from bold eyeshadow and lipstick. Keeping your makeup relatively natural and mature is ideal for a good first impression. We don’t want you to think this is a suppression of your creativity, but especially for client facing roles, employers need people who are approachable and well-kempt.

What to Wear for a Virtual Interview: Final Thoughts

Deciding what to wear for a virtual interview can be a nuanced task, but with the right approach, you can select an outfit that will set you up for the best chance of success. A well-chosen ensemble not only enhances your appearance but also contributes to your comfort and confidence, allowing you to focus on delivering stellar interview responses.

For more tips on acing your career journey, don’t forget to subscribe to GradSimple’s mailing list. Join a community where your professional growth is our priority, and stay ahead with valuable insights right in your inbox. Subscribe now and take the next step in your career with confidence!

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Head Writer and Editor for GradSimple. She also translates all of Ricky's incoherent raccoon ramblings into readable content (newsletter subscribers know what's up).

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