How to Wear Makeup for a Job Interview

How to Wear Makeup for a Job Interview


You have only seconds to make a first impression. Wearing too much makeup might leave the hiring manager with an unfavorable impression. With interview makeup, it’s important to remember that more is less. You want your face to appear fresh and natural rather than painted and made-up. This way, the hiring manager will be listening to your qualifications, rather than distracted by your appearance.

Apply a concealer for dark under-eye circles and skin impurities to even out your skin tone. Finish with a loose power. Apply a light foundation if you can’t create a smooth skin texture with loose power and concealer alone. Avoid heavy foundations or foundations that cake.

Apply lipstick rather than lip-gloss, which is shiny and not formal enough for an interview. Pick a lipstick with a matte finish that is natural looking. You don’t want your hiring manager focusing on your lip color, rather than on what you say.

Apply a natural looking eye shadow. Select an eye shadow color that doesn’t have much shine. Colors such as brown, cream and other natural tones are a good choice.

Apply mascara and pencil eyeliner, if you normally use eyeliner. Avoid liquid liners, which usually create harsh lines that aren’t good for a job interview. Apply mascara with brown or black eyeliner to give your eyes a natural appearance. Avoid eyeliners with color, such as hues of blue or purple. These might appear unprofessional to the hiring manager.

Tweeze any stray eyebrow hairs that appear outside of your normal brow line. This will give your face a clean appearance. Avoid over tweezing and using a pencil to color in the brows.

Look at your makeup in natural light. Go outside and look at your jaw line. Blend your makeup carefully to avoid having a noticeable foundation line on the sides of your face.

Tips & Warnings

Pay careful attention to the rest of your appearance. Women and men should wear suits. Stick to dark colors, such as navy blue, brown or black.
Avoid heavy colognes or perfumes. Interview rooms are usually very small and a little fragrance goes a long way. Some employers have fragrance free environments due to employee allergies. If possible, avoid fragrance altogether.


Colorado State University; Tips for a Successful Interview; K. Wolfe, et al; June 2010
Lewis University: Interviewing Tips
Kent University: Application and Interviews
BellaSugar; How-To: Job Interview Hair and Makeup

Lehigh University: Interview Skills
Monmouth University: Interview Skills

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