We’ve all heard the phrase “dress for the job you want,” and most of us are pretty well-versed in the usual do’s and don’t’s of interview wear: don’t be too casual, avoid gaudy colors and accessories, and be clean and well-groomed.
When you’ve got an interview scheduled and are preparing for the big day, you may be wondering if color makes a difference in the interview room.
The psychology of color is a topic studied by designers, advertisers, and psychologists alike. Certain colors convey certain messages – meaning that there are certain ones you should opt for, and certain ones you should avoid.
Here are some of the most immediate and positive emotions evoked by certain colors (see sources at the end of this post):
Keep in mind that this wheel just encompasses traditional “colors.” Neutrals should be a cornerstone of your interview wardrobe. Black indicates power, gray = intelligence, brown = earthiness, and white = cleanliness.
So which colors should you try for an interview?
Try sticking to colors that denote trust – shades of blue are always a safe bet – and sprinkle in colors that denote power. For example, try wearing a navy blue suit with a white shirt and subtle gold accessories, or a gray suit with red accents.
- Douglas, Jay. “Color Psychology in Web Design and Why You Should Use It.” Reseller Club. 14 November 2017.
- Lischer, Brian. “The Psychology of Color in Branding.” Ignyte. 2 February 2017.
- Zee, Mandy. “The Best (and Worst) Colors to Wear to an Interview.” Who What Wear. 25 April 2018.