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Avoid winter fashion blunders at job interviews

Job seekers should remain conservative when interviewing no matter what the weather conditions maybe. Job candidates are judged on three things: employment history, verbal communication and exterior personal image.

Here are a few do’s and don’ts to help you cope with the snow and look professional at your next interview:

Check Your Coat

• Don’t wear your coat into the interview. Leave your coat in the office closet or designated lobby area. Arrive early enough to ask the receptionist about the coat check area. Never ask the recruiter, “Where can I leave my coat?” This might convey that you lack problem solving skills.

This Is Not a Ski Lodge

• During the winter you may want to snuggle into your favorite sweater, crew neck or turtleneck to combat the freezing temperatures. But leave your ski gear in the closet., A job interview is not the correct place for a turtleneck or sweater. Men, a tie is preferable; ladies, wear a collared shirt.

Chilly Leg Blues

• Ladies, I enjoy wearing skirts all year during the winter I struggle to keep my legs warm. Remember to remove your leg warmers before the job interview. Try microfiber tights or support nylons for a little extra warmth with no strips or design pattern. Stick to black, brown, gray or navy. Avoid winter white, this color is not professional and definitely a fashion don’t.

Two for One

• Dress shoes are not made for ice skating therefore wear boots to your next interview, but carry your professional shoes in your briefcase or tote bag. Arrive early so you can dry your boots with a paper towel and carry a grocery bag to wrap your boots in before storing in your tote bag. Avoid carrying a student backpack this not a professional look.

Wet Under the Collar

• Nothing can ruin a first impression more than water. Wrap a scarf around your neck, so that snow doesn’t pile up, causing you to arrive to the interview with a wet suit or shirt collar. Ladies, pin your hair in a professional bun to avoid wet hair from resting on your clothing; men, consider using a styling pomade this product will allow snow to dry in place and not ruin your style.

Tuck Your Pants In

• I truly love a nice dress slack with a firm crease and formal cuff and I refuse to allow snow and ice to ruin my outfit. Do fold and tuck your slacks into your boots during the commute to avoid snow and salt damage. Carry a clean rag to rid yourself of stray salt.

Bibs Aren’t Just for Babies

• Do arrive 20 minutes early to the job interview to allow proper time for last minute grooming, use a reusable child bib to avoid hair and makeup from settling on your clothing. Do carry a comb and brush. Ladies should use waterproof mascara to avoid makeup issues and apply lipstick upon arrival to avoid smudges on clothes.

CJ Eason is The Job Doctor. She is a recruiter, resume repair expert and director of community outreach for JobFairGiant.com. Email jobdoctor@jobfairgiant.com.

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