How to Do Your Hair for an Interview

A simple, elegant style will help you project confidence in an interview.

A simple, elegant style will help you project confidence in an interview.

You've got the perfect interview outfit pressed and hanging in your closet, your nails are done and you know exactly how to get to the interview location on the subway. You're good to go, right? Not so fast -- don't forget about your hair. Unless you're one of those rare people blessed with hair that always looks perfect, spend a little time on your hair before going to a job interview, but don't go overboard with an exotic look. You want them to remember you after the interview for your brilliant answers and unmatched skills, not as "the girl with the hair."

Wash and dry your hair the night before the interview so you're not scrambling to get it done in the morning. Use a little conditioner to keep frizzies at bay. Don't try a new perm, hair color or complex style the day of an interview. You'll be miserable if it doesn't work out and distracted from the substance of the interview by worrying about the impression your hair disaster is making.

Select a style that is classy but simple. Avoid fancy up-dos or elaborate curls. It's all right to stick to your own style, but remember you're trying to convey a sense of competence and professionalism. Control fly-away locks with a bit of styling gel. Stick to "normal" hair colors for job interviews in all but the most artsy career fields -- save the purple streak or pink extensions for a night out with friends.

Keep your hair under control. Pull long hair back so it's not in your face. Put it up in a simple twist if you're afraid you'll toy with it if you get nervous during the interview. Use discreet clips or a thin headband to avoid constantly pushing your hair back behind your ears. Your hair should be a complement to your overall look, not something that distracts from the interview.

Leave the large clips, flashy barrettes and dangly feathers at home. If you need to use hair accessories, keep them simple, modest and no larger than is necessary to keep your professional hairstyle in place.

 

About the Author

As a national security analyst for the U.S. government, Molly Thompson wrote extensively for classified USG publications. Thompson established and runs a strategic analysis company, is a professional genealogist and participates in numerous community organizations.Thompson holds degrees from Wellesley and Georgetown in psychology, political science and international relations.

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