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Dress for Success How Men Should Dress on Their Next Job Interview

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Today's job market is more competitive than ever before. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate continued to hover around 9 percent through the early months of 2011.

That unemployment rate translates to more than 10 million unemployed Americans, all of whom are fighting for jobs in a market flooded with applicants. With that in mind, applicants know they must go above and beyond normal efforts to land a job and make themselves stand out among a slew of prospective candidates.

Standing out among applicants can be difficult, but candidates who have earned an interview need to dress the part. A strong first impression, which includes choosing the right attire, can go a long way toward landing applicants a job. Men should consider the following wardrobe tips when they go on their next interviews.

Suit
Men should always wear a conservative suit when interviewing for a job. A dark navy or gray two-piece business suit is the standard for men. Though a conservative business suit is almost always appropriate, men might want to look into the company before going on an interview. If the company has a reputation for being informal, it might be acceptable to wear a sports coat with dress slacks and a necktie.

Necktie
The necktie a man wears on a job interview should always be conservative tie. It's best to choose an understated silk tie that should also match the colors in your suit.

Dress Shirt
The dress shirt should always be white and long-sleeved. Even if men don't expect to remove their suit coat or sport jacket during the interview, it's best to wear a long-sleeved shirt just in case. A long-sleeved shirt looks more professional and a white shirt matches any suit color or style.

Shoes
Dress shoes should always be worn when interviewing for a job. Never wear sneakers or other footwear that doesn't look right with a suit. Doing so will almost certainly create the impression you don't care about the job. Dress shoes should be nicely polished.

Belt
A man's belt should always match the color of his shoes, whether he is wearing a conservative business suit or a less formal sport jacket and dress slacks.

Facial Hair
Always keep facial hair neatly trimmed when going on a job interview. Unruly facial hair will create a bad first impression, indicating to the interviewer that you may not really care about getting the job. Facial hair used to be taboo on a job interview, but nowadays facial hair is acceptable as long it is neatly trimmed.

Jewelry & Piercings
It's best to avoid wearing jewelry and remove any visible piercings before going on a job interview. A necklace underneath a dress shirt and a wristwatch are acceptable, but remove any rings (exception: wedding ring) and piercings.

Cologne
Cologne is not necessary for a job interview. Cologne can be worn, just be sure not to apply too much.
Thanks to an overcrowded pool of applicants, job interviews have become especially difficult to come by. Men lucky enough to secure an interview should dress the part to put themselves in the best position to land a job.