Job Seeker Blog - Spark Hire

No Shave November and Job Interviews

As we celebrate (mourn?) the end of No Shave November, many may be trying to decide whether or not to keep their lovingly curated scruff. While the opinions of friends, families, and significant others likely carry some weight, it is also important to consider the opinions of other professionals. What kind of facial hair is appropriate for a job interview? What does facial hair say to employers? This intrepid Spark Hire writer has endeavored to find out…

Facial hair, No Shave November or otherwise, is just like any other aspect of personal grooming before an interview. Grooming is the key word, and the rules will vary by industry and by company. For most companies, facial hair should be no trouble if it is well-kept. Trim beards, moustaches, goatees, soul patches, mutton chops and all other forms of stubble evenly and carefully. Consider having a barber trim things up if you want to be extra suave (do people still go to the barber for a shave? Discuss below).

Do keep industry and company standards in mind, however, as you prepare for your job interview (especially after No Shave November). Think about the industry where you work, and what kind of facial hair seems appropriate. If you are stumped, consider the kind of dress code that is appropriate for your workplace. The more formal the dress code, the more conservative you should probably be in terms of facial hair. As for specific companies, the Houston Chronicle suggests looking on the company’s website for photos of employees in the work environment. Looking at how other people dress should give you a good idea of what is appropriate for your job interview with this company.

Are there circumstances where you should shave, no matter what? Some jobs will ban facial hair because of health or safety regulations. Food service jobs will likely require a beard net. And, it is possible that some very conservative companies may not allow their employees to have facial hair just as a company policy.

However, these employers should be few and far between. Additionally, as Alison Green points out, perhaps a workplace that doesn’t allow facial hair just isn’t the place for you. It is important to be honest about your personal appearance in the interview. If you shave for the job interview, and then find out on your first day that the company dress code doesn’t allow facial hair at all, will that be okay with you? Perhaps I’m making this too hairy an issue… but maybe not!

What do you do with your No Shave November aftermath? Is facial hair appropriate for job interviews? Leave a comment below, or send me a tweet: @ithinkther4iamb #NoShaveNovember

IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by AvedaCorp

Kristin Anderson

Kristin has a B.A. in English from the University of Iowa, with an emphasis in creative writing. In her free time she enjoys long walks, kitchen adventures, and making puns.

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