Interview attire advice often focuses on suit colors and cuts for men and whether to wear a skirt or slacks for women of color either. Other articles of interview attire are even more important. A case in point is the shoe. For both men and women, wearing the right style and type of shoes can often serve as an important and most prominent issues in the interview attire.
men are four types of shoes that are acceptable for interviews. There are from most to least formal: black Oxford shoes, black Brogue shoes, black tassel loafer and finally the black dress penny loafer. Each of these shoes has a distinct style and message. Regardless of the style of shoe is worn, they should be well maintained – meaning not scuffed or worn at the heel and highly polished
black leather Oxford shoes .. This is a classic tie shoe. It has either plain or not perforated cap toe. This is dressier shoes of men and are popular with investment bankers, government officials and other’s who will describe the formalities and consistency.
The black leather Brogue shoes. Often described as the wing tip, this is slightly less formal than the oxford. It may be completed toed or have the wing shaped toe decoration both of which are perforated. Acceptable suit, which Brogue has been a favorite of businessmen for decades, but it fell out of favor on “casual Friday” dress down era 1990.
The black leather tassel loafer. The tassel loafer has been around for decades. Once classified as Ivey League or Preppy, it is now a business staple. It is a loafer with stitching around the toe and a pair of leather tassels. The shoe is not as formal as either the oxford or Brogue but is acceptable with business suits in all but the most formal and tradition bound professions.
The black leather penny loafer. This is not a casual loafer with the big “beef roll” and the rough hand stitching around the toe. Penny loafer for dress is more refined in cut and sew. It looks as dress shoes. The least formal of the business shoe styles, it is sleek and clean and works with suits for all but the most formal occasions.
What kind of men shoes to avoid for interviews? First, the heavy soled and big toed lace and slip-on shoes popular with younger men should be avoided. Even if they say they are dress shoes, they say all the wrong one. Secondly, avoid casual shoes such as weekend loafers or other very casual shoes with leather, rubber or plastic soles. Finally, avoid trendy shoes. If attracted to a pair of shoes that would look good on the dance floor at a club or at a wild party, keep them for those events. Do not wear them to an interview. Trendy is not an interview look unless you are a fashion designer or in the arts.
right kind of shoes are available in stores and online. The most popular traditional interview shoes are sold by: Shoes Church (Enska design, very traditional), Alden (American and very traditional), Allen-Edmonds, Cole-Haan and Johnson & Murphy. Stores that carry the right kind of shoes for interviews include: Brooks Brothers, Joseph A. Bank and Nordstrom
While there are infinitely more styles of shoes available than men women. styles that are appropriate for interviews are still limited. The rules on state shoes for women are the same as for men. Shoes must be in top condition and well maintained if not new. While all the colors for men with black and black, there are more possibilities fro women. While black and navy are safe bets 95% of the time. Other colors are OK but must complement the suit or outfit and should match the purse or handbag too. Avoid light colored shoes for interview and never wear white shoes to an interview unless it is for a nursing position. If Brown, dark sunglasses best. Avoid suede and never wear shoes that have metallic sparkle, glitter or sequins interview (or for business ever)
style of shoes that are appropriate for women to wear for interviews fall into four categories :. Classic leather pumps with a heel, leather sling back style with a heel, classic leather Mary Jane style shoes with a heel, flat or ballet style shoe in leather. All should be leather. All should be well maintained and worn with neutral colored stockings or pantyhose regardless of the season or temperature (or knee high if work with slacks).
leather pump. Heel height and form different. This is the traditional shoe for women in business. Solid color.
The leather strap styles with heel. Again heel heights and shapes very. This shoe while very traditional has an adjustable strap rather than closed again. The shoe is classic and in good taste but with more style and is considered a bit more dressy than the plain leather pump.
classic leather Mary Jane shoes. This is not the flat soled cloth model or even the funky thick soled model worn by teenagers. It is basically a leather pump in style and cut with a thin strap ending in an adjustable buckle across the grid. Better with skirts than with slacks.
flat or ballet style shoe in leather. This type of shoe if made of fine leather and in a traditional cut is classic, flattering and is worn by women at all levels. But it is favored by very tall and strangely enough, very short women. It may be plain or decorated with a discrete bit of gold metal or grosgrain bow on the toe. The casual ballet slipper style in fabric, needle or less dressy leather to save to be with jeans or khakis.
What shoes are not appropriate for women to be in the interviews? Frankly, everything else unless the interview is not for business, non-profit or a resignation. Anything in unnatural colors or with sparkles or anything novel just will not do. Flip are not always. Which are the shoes. Big, clunky shoes are for teenagers or weekends. Loafers are for khakis and weekends. Tie your shoes are not appropriate for women in business unless running an art gallery or church organization. Finally, strappy, very high heeled shoes should be left for weekends and never work. Forget what they say in “Sex and the City”.
Women’s interview shoes are available in stores for many women, shoe stores and department stores. The list is really too long to do justice here. Some of the more traditional sources are: Cole Haan, Talbots, Nordstrom, Lord and Taylor and Brooks Brothers plus some of the designers who offer quality shoes in more classic style
Shoes speak volumes about a person .. This is never truer than in an interview environment. Make sure the shoes you wear say all the right things. While they will not guarantee a job, will not be an obstacle if the points above are carried out.