University of Wisconsin-Green Bay
Career Services
SKILLS - Dress for Success

Professional Attire
You've done your homework. You've updated your resume. Now you aren't sure what you should wear to a job fair or an upcoming interview. Here are some guidelines to help you make a great first impression.

Attire

Career Spots Videos - Interview Attire
Below are short videos about appropriate attire for women and men, as well as tips about business casual attire. Click on a video to see the entire CareerSpots collection.


 


What Should I Wear?
First impressions are very important to employers, so the familiar saying, "You never get a second chance to make a first impression" couldn't ring more true. However, that doesn't mean that you should skip an interview or other networking event just because you don't have a suit. Here are a few tips and resources to help you dress appropriately:

MEN:

  • Wear nice dress pants that are clean and pressed with a buttoned up shirt and tie.
  • Choose a solid-color button down shirt that is wrinkle-proof.
  • If you can't afford a suit, purchase a single-breasted, black, two-button blazer that will go with several of your dress pants.
  • Flat-front style pants in a solid color are a safe bet.
  • Black leather laced shoes are another "must have" that can be worn with a variety of outfits.
  • Not sure how to properly tie a tie? This link on the Brooks Brothers website takes you step-by-step through the process!
WOMEN:
  • If you don't own a suit, you could wear a skirt (knee length or below) with a sweater set or nice blouse.
  • Avoid heels unless you need the height and are comfortable wearing (and walking!) in them. Remember - closed-toed shoes.
  • Be conscious of clothing that is sheer, too form fitting, or too low cut.
  • Ideally, blouses should not reveal any cleavage or undergarments (bra straps, etc.)
EVERYONE:
  • Skip the jeans -- these are not considered appropriate even for "business casual" events!
  • Make sure your attire fits well and is appropriate. "No crack - front or back!"
  • NO bare midriffs (i.e. no belly should be showing!)
  • Do not wear open-toed shoes, flip flops or slides/mules (open heeled).
  • In general, form fitting clothing is not professional.

If you are looking for ideas before purchasing your first suit, check out this article that appeared in the Green Bay Press Gazette, "Buying a suit for the 1st time? Pros explain the process" by Orlando R. Lorenzo from the Gannett News Service.

Here are some additional tips about overall appearance:
  • Dress professionally, feel good about the way you look; err on the side of being overdressed instead of underdressed; avoid soiled, wrinkled or worn clothing.
  • Use make-up moderately
  • No strong perfumes, colognes or aftershaves
  • Well trimmed hair, mustaches and beards
  • Don't overdo use of jewelry
  • Don't forget to shine shoes, clean fingernails, clean glasses


By taking a few simple attire tips, you can make certain you make a great first impression!
womens suitmen suit
In Need of Interview Attire?
Here are two Green Bay community resources that provide professional attire to those in need:

Green Bay Men's Closet
Free work clothing available for men in need.
1125 West Mason Street, Green Bay, 54304
Entrance to the Men's Closet is at 719 Redwood Drive
Phone: (920) 884-2950 - Call in Advance
Hours: Tuesday and Thursday 2-5 p.m., Saturday 9:30 a.m. - Noon

Green Bay Men's Closet is a partnership of the Rotary Club of Green Bay and the Salvation Army.

YWCA Women's Closet
YWCA Green Bay-De Pere
230 S. Madison St.
Green Bay, WI 54301
Phone: (920) 432-5581

The mission of the YWCA Women's Closet is to provide work appropriate clothing for women in need who are seeking employment or who currently have lower paying jobs. The Closet is stocked by donations from YWCA members, business and professional women and other community supporters. The Women's Closet is open Tuesdays from 1-4 pm, Wednesdays from 3-6 pm and Thursdays from 4-7 p.m.

Women ages 18 and older may visit the Closet four (4) times per year at their discretion and are allowed to select a large variety of clothing and other personal items for themselves only. This arrangement assures that all those in need have the opportunity to share in the resources of the Closet. They are required to show a picture ID and sign in each time they visit. If a woman does not have a picture ID she would need to have a referral on a form provided by the community service agency which is referring her to the Women’s Closet.

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