Remember the cliché “First impressions last”? A pandemic doesn’t change it. Looking good still matters if you’re trying to win an interview—yes, even if it is through Zoom.
However, whether you like it or not, men can still appear different up close and personal and virtually. How do you make sure then that you’re presentable at a web conference?
Here’s a vital guide to men’s styling at Zoom:
1. Pay Attention to the Hair
Have you adopted the long-hair, don’t-care attitude during this pandemic? You might want to ease that a bit now that you want to look pleasing to the camera.
While man bun is cute, your hair should not get in the way of your face. All your features need to be visible, especially your eyes, which can show excellent expression or emotion.
The best male hairstyle for a virtual interview will always be something that keeps your face neat. Think about the classic crew cut or the drop skin fade.
However, if you want to maintain much of your hair, you may need to consider visiting a men’s grooming studio. Styling it can be tricky, but when done right, it can make you stand out.
Some excellent options include the classic quiff or the side part. If you like to keep the man bun, you can cut it to medium-length or tie it in a ponytail. Finish the look with a pomade or a gel to prevent those loose hair strands and baby hairs from getting in the way.
2. Trim and Clean the Beard
A beard demands proper maintenance. Else, you better let it go. An unkempt one will only leave you with weird looks and even a bad impression from your interviewer. It could mean you’re not particular about your hygiene, or you are not as self-disciplined as you display yourself to be.
Hairs that overcrowd the mouth are a no-no during the virtual interview. You want them to see your lips when you’re talking.
But you can always opt for a trim. A male grooming studio can do that for you. It may even work to your advantage as these professionals can style your beard according to the shape of your face and the quality of the hair.
Then, at least a week or a few days before your interview, be more religious in its grooming:
Include a beard shampoo into your shower routine.
A regular hair shampoo won’t cut it since it can strip the beard and the skin underneath its sebum or oil.
Use a beard oil.
Oil works as a moisturizer, softening the bristles, so they’re easier to style and less likely to break due to dryness. As a bonus, it adds moisture to the skin that can help prevent redness, itchiness, and flakiness (a.k.a. dandruff).
Finish with a beard balm.
This product works like a pomade that makes beard styling more convenient. It can also lock in the skin’s moisture, which makes it an excellent finish to your routine, right after applying the beard oil.
3. Dress to Impress
You’ve seen it on magazines, blogs, and even news broadcasts: dozens of Zoom fails, featuring a lot of men caught wearing boxers or shorts—and, gulp, sometimes nothing—right on camera. That’s definitely not the lasting impression you want to leave on your future bosses.
The adage “Dress to impress” still applies in this virtual-interview era. But what should you exactly wear?
Dress according to the position or company culture.
If you’re applying for a higher position, such as a manager or a CEO, a two-piece suit with a tie is a must. It doesn’t matter whether the company is a startup or a Fortune 500. For lower positions, you can think more about the organization’s culture. If it’s more relaxed, then a plain-colored polo shirt is already a great choice.
Don’t forget your pants.
A virtual interview gives you an excuse to leave a pair of pants behind, but since you want to avoid “mishaps,” wear it nonetheless. Suits and long sleeves are better off with gray, black, or brown formal pants.
Use cuff links.
If you’re wearing a dress shirt with a suit, consider using a pair of cuff links. These accessories are classy and elegant, which can enhance your overall look. Moreover, they can keep your sleeves in place, especially if you love to gesture with your hands.
In the end, your experience, knowledge, and soft skills will win you a place in the business. However, a well-made-up look can help get both your feet through the door, impress the “jury,” and allow yourself to stand out against competitors.