Hiring Managers Explain Which Outfit Mishaps Cost A Prospective Employee The Job
Eric Prouzet on Unsplash

Most of the time, dress codes are implemented for a reason.

Sure, there are unfair instances of "no exposed shoulders in school" or "no open-toed sandals at the office."

However, there are certain types of clothing that are appropriate for office wear. And even at an office that doesn't have an official dress code, you have to dress appropriately for the first interview, so you can leave a good impression.

When people don't follow this rule of thumb, they often end up disqualifying themselves for the job.


Curious about this situation, Redditor Rusty-Unicorn asked:

Hirers of Reddit, what did a candidate wear to an interview that cost them the job?

Not off to a good start.

"His beat headphones over his neck. I don't know if it counts though because there were many other reasons also including 3 f bombs to start the interview."

– Qmnip0tent

"Ha I actually interviewed a girl about a year ago who didn't even take her earbuds out of her ears. She came in with a group of 3 or 4 friends. I sent her on her way after talking to her for about 45 seconds."

– AlphaSarcastic

Wow.

"Once had a guy come to interview at the software company I worked at wearing a "Female Body Inspector" shirt... that ended quickly."

– dimdog

"Trying to milk the unemployment for as long as possible?"

– andersberndog

Giphy

Hire him for the costume department.

"I was working for a concessionaire for a MLB team where we do a mass hiring event before the season starts. This man came into the waiting room in street clothes, asked to go to the restroom, and changed into a Halloween-style pimp suit. This included a hat and a cane."

– lindsayviers

Thanks for the mental image.

"A T-shirt of Mickey mounting Minnie from behind. It was disturbing on so many levels, not the least of which was how well done it was. This was for a minimum wage position, but still."

– ChristinaSaidSo_

Email addresses can make or break an interview.

"Not what they wore but their email address on their resume was a description of their breast size preference."

– chef_in_va

"I had a guy use an email with a domain that was REALLY strange-sounding, so we went and looked it up. It was his own personal cult website about how he believes he's the next coming of Christ and that the world is ending really soon."

"... we decided to pass."

– Woolbrick

Giphy

That doesn't seem fair.

"I used to be the physician lead for my group's NP program; as such, I was involved with the interviews/hirings. Our business manager refused to consider a qualified candidate because she wore baby-doll socks with her outfit. I never understood that one..."

– mike1762

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An unexpected prodigy.

"I sometimes do campus recruiting and interviews, but don't make final hiring decisions. With that said, at a campus event, my partner and I were going through a line of over 300 people. We scan their resume, ask a bunch of questions to get them in our system, and add some quick comments/suggestions."

"Had a person wait in line for several hours. When she got to me, she had no resume, and still had on pajamas. Now I never try to judge a book by it's cover, but I have to get through a person in under 4 minutes on average, and have about 20 questions to ask to put info for HR into our system."

"I was ready to power through this as fast as possible, to get to a candidate that was an actual potential hire. However, this girl was graduating with a 4.0 BS Computer Science...at the age of 17. She spoke 7 languages fluently (I could not verify this). She said she had started working on PHD research when she was 14, but didn't want to continue with school. I had to convince her to go make a resume, as I could not complete her in our system without it, and wanted to make sure she was visible to the right people."

"Honestly I was surprised she even wanted to work at our fortune 500 company. It's a great start for most people, but I would think prodigies would have other options than a 70k salary in Texas. She did go make a resume...and waited in line again. I made sure HR found her profile, but I have no idea if she signed on with us."

– MaynardJ222

Bad call.

"Not an interview, but...I worked for a video webcast company and we hired freelancers to operate our cameras sometimes when we were short staffed. The rule is that you wear all black so you blend into the background. Freelancer showed up in a tie dye sweatshirt and cargo shorts."

"He ended up operating a camera right next to the head of the bioethics committee that reports directly to the President. Not only did we not ever hire him again, the client asked us to never bring him back."

– Artrovert

Giphy

A dress code for Furries, maybe.

"Interviewing for our Food Service department within a well known hospital in St. Louis. Young girl, lower 20's, comes in wearing bright yellow uggs and a Davey Crockett hat. As if that wasn't enough she also had one of those tails. Not the butt plug type just attached to her pants."

– sully19871023

Nothing like an ice-cold Sprite.

"Probably very late to this party..."

"I used to do interviews for a retail store, due to the frequency of applicants we'd have group interviews. Anyway, this one time two dudes came to the interview, obviously friends and obviously stoned. The first kid was decently dressed (jeans and a t shirt) but, the second kid was dressed in Green Cookie Monster pajamas and an oversized T down to about his knees."

"The worst part was one of them opened a can of sprite in the middle of the interview. They wound up going sip for sip sharing the 12oz can."

– SafeSecks

The Green Guy.

"He wore all green. Green rimmed glasses, green sweater, green shirt, green jeans, green socks and shoes. Even have a green bag with a button with his face on it labelled green guy."

– ellie-fun

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What was his thought process?

"I've interviewed a few job candidates, I've never come across anything objectionable. But I've heard stories."

"In university I heard a story from someone giving a presentation about being prepared for job interviews. She said she once passed on a female candidate wearing a belt buckle that said "Shaved" on it."

"I also recall going to a networking event in university with a bunch of students from the Ivey School of Business, most of us wore dress shirts or suits, and one guy showed up in jeans, a beater top, and a sideways ball cap. I don't know what that guy was thinking."

– yyz_guy

Gross.

"I was interviewing for a teaching position at a local school. The principal was conducting the interview and eating lunch at the same time. He wore a towel (with a hole cut in the middle) over his head like a bib."

"This towel/bib looked like it had seen 1000 lunches already and never been washed. He was literally interviewing me with a mouth full of mashed potatoes and wiping his face on the bib as he went. I never broke eye contact because I knew if I looked at that bib I was going to start giggling. Got the job!"

– Midnight_Laundry

Oh my God....

"I used to hire for a retailer that had been sued for a lack of diversity. As a result, the interview included the series of questions, "What is diversity and inclusion? Is this important in the work place? Why or why not?""

"I had someone basically define segregation then tell me that it was important because not everyone gets along. The best part was that this was a group interview with young adults. The sheer horror on one of the guy's faces I will never forget. He had the look on his face that I was feeling. When I asked him, his response he emphatically said, "The exact opposite of what she said!""

– lesigh314

Giphy

Potty mouth.

"Every single question was answered with some version of 'Well... like... you know ... " Or "F*** does that really happen here?" When asked why they wanted the position they said 'McDonald's fired me and you guys pay better, so what the F*** right?" Yeah... No."

– EternalSmartAss

Written On The Clothes

"The leading contender has always been a guy with a Nazi Swastika with the words Seig Hell written on it. You can't interview for an embassy job with the literal emblem of a country we defeated in a war."

"Then there was the guy who came in with the Homosexual marriage = Terrorism. It would probably not have been a great idea to tell him I'm gay."

"But basically, every single one is because of what was written on their clothes instead of the material/design/cost/brand of the clothes they wore. Although we do have dress guidelines, I've never had anyone come to an interview in swim shorts or a bikini."

– eachine_m

I Just Woke Up

"Pyjamas. Seriously pyjamas. We were doing a Skype interview and he thought it totally acceptable to literally roll out of bed and do his Skype interview"

– Oilfreeeggs

"She wore pajamas, a dirty denim jacket, and greasy a** green hair. Her face was very obviously unwashed and it looked like she just rolled up out of bed."

"This was for a Jr level tech job working at a fortune 500 company."

"What. The. F*ck. Lady."

"She didn't get the job."

– Deleted User

"Pajama pants."

"They arrived in pajama pants."

"You ain't even dressed to go outside but you decided that is what you wanted to wear to an interview."

– intashu

Keep Hygiene In Mind

"More so what he didn’t wear: deodorant. This guy came in wearing a suit and smelled of BO and expired food. It was fall, he drove to the interview, and he seemed otherwise very professional."

– shaylaa30

More Than Words

"It wasn't so much what he wore as the fact he had an upside down cross carved into his forehead."

– Boredzilla

Right In Your Face

"A MAGA hat. Don't carry your politics like that. Idiot!"

– Gang36927

"Recently a man came I wearing a MAGA hat. It's not so much I disagree with his political beliefs but that anyone who comes to an interview wearing something so politically avert is going to create problems with coworkers."

"I'm sure I failed his test, too."

– AALen

Not The Right Fit

"I worked at a major retailer as a Team Lead. Guy walked into the interview wearing a shirt that said "F*ck you: smoke weed.""

"Sorry, buddy. This job ain't for you."

– WhyKnotTakeAlook

Remember To Smile

"A frown"

– CaptainKangaroo3000

The Force Was With Him

"Worked for a couple temp agencies so I’ve seen alot, best one is my boss interviewed a guy that showed up in a Jedi costume complete with lightsaber. We weren’t the most professional temp agency so my boss obviously asks him wtf he was thinking and the dude doubles down and says it’s his religion."

– darksquidlightskin

He Dodged A Bullet

"My one and only civilian job interview was for an EMT-B job 20 years ago. The supervisor and I are sitting on across from each other at his desk, and he grabs some paperwork that his coffee mug is sitting on, spilling his coffee onto my pants."

"I got up, cleaned off as best I could in the bathroom, and came back in to finish the interview. He told me that it wasn't a good look not to have a spare set of interview clothes in my car "just in case something happened.""

"I did not get the job.""

– Deleted User

Clean Up, Please

"Not me but my mom had someone come in drunk with a blazer over a crop top that had vomit on it and sweats."

– Gabby_005

Not all outfits are up to snuff.

A little extra effort can go a long way.

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