We know choosing what to wear to a career fair can be tricky; especially when you’re going to meet so many different employers from a range of industries. Here are a couple of lists to help you navigate the waters of career fair presentation.
Ten top tips for ladies
- A conservative business dress may be worn in lieu of a suit.
- Necklines should be no lower than your collarbone.
- Conservative doesn’t have to be boring, look for something with an asymmetrical neckline, interesting belt or a light scarf.
- Skirt hems should be no shorter than two inches above your knee (even with tights or leggings).
- Keep your heel heights under 4 inches.
- If you can’t walk in heels, opt for a solid colored flat instead.
- Makeup should be minimal. If you wear it, wear enough to enhance your features but not so much it becomes distracting. Perfume should be minimal as well.
- Keep your hair off your face. You don’t want to have to keep messing with it while you’re talking to a potential employer.
- Make sure your nail polish isn’t chipped or too bright in color. You’re going to be shaking hands and handing out your resume a lot.
- Bring a clean, structured tote bag or purse that will hold your portfolio rather than your backpack.
Ten top tips for guys
- A two-piece matched suit is always preferable.
- The tag stitched on the outside of your sleeve is not meant to stay there. Cut it off.
- Use your tie or bow tie to show your style, but it shouldn’t clash with your shirt or be too distracting.
- Your belt should match the color of your shoes.
- Dress shoes are preferred when you’re making a first impression across many different companies; keep the tennis shoes at home.
- Make sure you are clean-shaven. If you have facial hair, keep it groomed.
- Dress socks are another way you can show a little personality. For a pop of color, match them to your shirt or tie.
- If you wear a navy blue suit, don’t wear the blue suede shoes. But your brown, cordovan or black dress shoes with a matching belt will work fine here.
- Carry a portfolio with extra copies of your resume inside rather than carrying them loose or in a backpack.
- If you need a little style inspiration, check out Southern Gents’ blog (A UH and Bauer alumni company).
By Carolyn Shaffer