Dressing in formal office attire is appropriate and encouraged when interviewing as a law office assistant. Legal employers want to see professionalism and maturity in the way you present yourself through clothing, jewelry, makeup and fragrance. To make the most of your interview, dress conservatively to appeal to a law firm's typically formal corporate culture.
Because law offices tend to have formal corporate cultures, suits are appropriate for interviewing. Women should wear skirt suits of neutral color, including black, grey or tan. Muted tones of ivory, plum, brown, burgundy or teal are also acceptable. Avoid wearing colors or patterns that are too loud and distracting. A collared shirt in a solid color looks sharp underneath a suit and is encouraged. Avoid low-cut clothing.
Shoes should be closed-toe and of medium height. Typically, a “pump” is a classic and formal choice that looks great with a skirt suit. Don’t forgo the pantyhose, either. Once you’ve landed the job, you can observe other women in the office and if they are without hose, you can probably go without them at that time.
Wear a few accent pieces when it comes to accessorizing your outfit. Pearl or diamond earrings are good choices because law offices tend to have formal, conservative office environments. Avoid dangly earrings or bracelets and stick to traditional pieces of jewelry. Since some women tend to over-accessorize, remember that when it comes to jewelry, less is more.
Fragrance, Makeup and Face
Limit the amount of perfume or cologne you wear when attending a law office interview. As a general rule of thumb, your fragrance should never be detected when someone is two feet or more away from you. Keep scents light and airy or just wear a fragranced body lotion. Makeup is encouraged and should be worn to convey maturity and professionalism. Law firms tend to prefer a professional image and makeup can be just the ticket to achieve the look. However, avoid heavy applications and dark colors. Visit a makeup counter if you need help picking the most flattering shades. Hair should be styled conservatively and professionally and pulled off the face. However, avoid pulling hair into a high ponytail as it can viewed as a sign of immaturity. A low bun is an excellent choice if you choose to pull hair back.
Ruth Altman writes on business, lifestyle and careers. She holds a Master of Arts degree from Pepperdine University in addition to a bachelor's degree from Harvard University.