Ask the Edit: Stockings for Interviews

Nov 8, 2018

Abra:

I (hopefully) have interviews coming up this winter. A suit is expected, but I’m struggling with legwear and shoes. Interviews last all day and could involve trudging between buildings in snow/rainy weather. I have a gray suit,but I’m wondering if I can wear black tights. Is that a huge faux pas?

And if I do, obviously I need black shoes, but what kind? I prefer some sort of heel since I’m only 5’0” and don’t want to feel like a kid with all the grownups!

– Megan

There are many schools of thought on this topic.  I always wear nylons to job interviews.  Plain, flesh-toned, old-school, nylons.  I like DKNY Beyond Nudes nylons.

I would not wear black tights to an interview if you’re in an uber-professional sector like government, law, finance, etc..  If you’re in a more casual industry, I’ll leave that decision up to you.

If you choose to wear tights, they should be as dark as you can get them.  The Spanx Blackout tights are my favorite.  For more information on tights (including affordable hosiery options), check out this post.

As for shoes, black high heels for sure with a gray suit.  I would choose something like these Corso Como heels — a round toe, mid-height heel, simple.

Good luck with your interviews!

**Someone asked for nylon suggestions for women of color.  Oversight on my part to not include one.  ASOS carries a brand called Nubian Skin.  They offer medium and dark nylon options.  Lingerie Addict has more brand suggestions if those won’t work for you.

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  1. M says:

    I wore black tights to my government agency interview – along with a dress/blazer – two years ago. Perfectly fine.

    • M2 says:

      My favorite interview suit is a charcoal gray skirt suit, and I’ve always worn it with black (opaque) tights and black pumps. Like your other reader, thankfully my outfit had no bearing on my successful job offers; however. I’m genuinely curious as to why it’s a faux pas. I thought it followed Abra’s 2/3 rule!

  2. Kathryn says:

    Wolford also makes some really great nudes that are heavy enough to wear in the winter. I bought my first pair after splitting a pitcher of sangria with my bf, which helped me get over the price tag. I’ve bought more – sans wine – because the quality is worth it. I hand wash, but they have shone no signs of wear after a season.

    Abra, the shoe link isn’t displaying.

  3. Charlotte says:

    Do the Spanx blackout tights last longer than the lower-end Spanx tights I purchased at Nordstrom Rack? I’ve worn them a handful of times and one came apart at the seems and the other almost fell off me (despite fitting at first wear). Yes, I’m using a laundry bag when I wash them.

  4. Angela says:

    Any nude nylon suggestions for those of us with darker skin tone? I don’t think any of those would work for me. 🙂

  5. Annie says:

    I gasped when I saw this post because I was thinking about this only a few hours ago! As always, thank you for all your help.

  6. L says:

    Is the suit light grey or charcoal? Black nylons or sheer tights would be totally fine with the darker grey suit. In either case, I vote for acquiring the matching pants (hopefully still available) to go with the suit and then wear sleek, heeled boots – Cole Haan has some great waterproof options.

  7. lola says:

    As a dark-skinned woman, I find a pair of sheer/semi-sheer black tights much less distracting/ busy than awkwardly hued “nudes”. Plus, they’re easier to find!

    I work in senior leadership in a conservative field.

    (I also wear black suits and black shoes on interviews, so YMMV)

    • Amelia says:

      Brilliant! Glad Abra had some recommendations and that there are some darker “nudes” available these days, but they are not always easy to find. In the past, I’ve had to do job interviews in awkward nudes or bare legs while cringing inside. I got the job… Along with some odd looks. Thank you for sharing this!

  8. Sandra says:

    I tend to wear pants to interviews to avoid this exact dilemma. I had a professor in college though that gave me a lower grade because I wore a pantsuit for a graded presentation. Still bitter about it almost 20 years later!

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