Dressing to Impress on a Budget

We’ve all been told to dress to impress. The only problem is affording such a wardrobe on a tight budget can be hard. A professional wardrobe can be extremely costly and many people lack the funds to line their closets with new trending fashions. We’re here to help though because every college student needs to have at least one professional outfit for that important interview, be it for an internship, job, or graduate school. Check out our helpful tips on how to be high fashion without the high prices!

Be prepared. Don’t wait until you have an interview to buy clothes. If you start shopping for your interview clothes the week-of you are sure to spend more money than necessary on items you do not love or feel comfortable in because of the lack of time and pressure. Plan ahead and buy clothes during sale seasons. Around these times you can typically find clothes at 30% or even 75% off original prices. Also, the more time you have, the better your options are to find the perfect outfit because the more comfortable you are in your clothes, the better you will interview.

Look at your local thrift shop. There are tons of great finds in your local Goodwill or Salvation Army just waiting to be discovered. Thrift shops are the perfect stops for budget conscious people looking for gently used clothes on sale to make the perfect interview outfit while still maintaining a budget. For more tips on how you can “Thrift Shop like Macklemore” click the link! Besides thrift shops, bargain stores such as: Target, Marshall’s, TJ Max and Ross are great places to get professional clothing that’s in style at a reasonable price.

Buy “Seasonless” clothing. As you are going to have one, maybe two, professional outfits so you want to buy one that you can wear no matter the season. Do not buy a heavy wool jacket but do buy a lighter wool, or a combination fabric that will be appropriate in both winter and summer. When shopping lookout for clothes advertised as “seasonless.”

Invest in the classics. As we said before you may only have one or two professional outfits so you want to make sure you invest in a quality one. Items like shirts, blouses and shoes can be easily changed out and found for cheap at many stores. All these items can also be used for other events such as birthdays, holiday parties, or family events.

Must Have Items

For Men:
For Women:
Slacks (non-cotton)
Slacks or Skirt
Dress Shirts (Look for wrinkle free)
Dresses (At appropriate length)
Sports Coat
Jacket (universal, can go over blouse or dress)
Polished Shoes
Pumps (conservative)

We know interviewing for a job can be nerve racking but getting that perfect outfit can help. Even with a tight budget there is a way to get that “perfect outfit” because its always better to be overdressed than under dressed. No employer ever turned down an applicant simply because they were too dressed up, but the same cannot be said for those who came to their interviews too dressed down..

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