Should You Wear Lipstick to an Interview? [and What Color to Choose]

Trying to decide how to do your makeup for a job interview can be stressful – after all, you want to make a great first impression. You’ll be doing a lot of talking to let the interviewers know why you’d be an amazing addition to their team. So, should you wear lipstick to an interview? We've checked with the experts to bring you the answer.

You should wear lipstick to an interview, but only if you are comfortable with it. If you normally wear lipstick, it is fine to wear it to an interview. If you do not normally wear lipstick, you may want to skip it since it could make you feel uncomfortable or self-conscious. But if you do decide to wear lipstick to an interview, a safe bet is a flattering neutral lipstick color such as:

  • Nude
  • Pink
  • Brown

If you still have more questions about what makeup you should wear to an interview, don't fret. In this guide, we'll discuss what lipstick colors are best for an interview, whether or not lipstick is appropriate for the workplace, if red lipstick is unprofessional, and more. Just keep reading!

Women's lipstick on a pink background, Should You Wear Lipstick to an Interview? [and What Color to Choose]

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Choosing A Lipstick Color For an Interview

A good rule of thumb is to choose a lipstick shade that is close to your own natural lip color. That doesn’t mean that bolder shades such as plum or red are out of the question. It’s important to consider the job you are interviewing for as well as the work environment. A more conservative lip color would be appropriate for an office position at a corporation, whereas a daring color could be a good choice for a design job in a boutique firm.

If you are used to wearing bold lipstick and you need to tone it down for your interview, it’s best to look for a new lipstick a few days beforehand and try it out in different shades. The day of the interview is not the best time to try out a new lip color for the first time as it could turn out to be unflattering. The same could be said if you are going from a neutral lipstick to a bolder color.

Let's take a closer look at 3 of the best neutral lipstick colors to wear to an interview:

Nude Lipstick

Nude lipstick provides your lips with subtle color. If you don't like wearing too much color, then this is the perfect shade for you.

This lipstick from L’Oreal in dazzling doe is an example of a nude lipstick that can help you get a polished look for an interview. This color is hydrating and full of long-lasting shine.

Click here to see it on Amazon.

Pink Lipstick

Pink lipstick comes in a plethora of shades. A muted or otherwise toned-down pink is best for an interview. It gives your lips a little pop of color without looking distracting.

This pink lipstick from Maybelline in honey pink will give your lips a pretty yet subtle color. The lipstick formula is hydrating, guaranteeing long-lasting color. This color has a matte finish.

Click here to see it on Amazon.

Brown Lipstick

Brown is a universally flattering neutral color. The earthy tone can help anyone's complexion glow.

This lipstick from Mented in soft brown will provide a neutral color to enhance your lips. It has a warm undertone and a shiny finish.

Click here to see it on Amazon.

Is It Okay To Wear Makeup To An Interview?

Yes, it is okay to wear makeup to an interview! In fact, makeup can help you present a polished look to the interview panel and give you a confidence boost.

As stated above, when choosing a makeup look for your interview, you’ll want to consider the type of work environment you are applying to. Some industries welcome bold creativity, and if the company you are trying to land a job with fits that description, you can be braver in your choice of makeup. For more conservative environments, it is best to have an understated look. That means a lighter touch with the eyeliner, blush, and eyeshadow is recommended along with a more natural shade of lipstick.

If you need help choosing makeup for your interview, you may want to consider visiting a cosmetic counter in a department store or a store that specializes in cosmetics. The sales associates can assist you in choosing colors that will look flattering and help you get the look you’re after. In addition, they can also give tips for applying makeup. Some places will do an entire makeup consultation for free, applying products and offering advice along the way.

That does not mean you have to wear makeup to an interview. If you are a person who doesn't normally wear makeup, you shouldn’t feel like you are required to for an interview. It is a personal choice, and there are many women who do not wear makeup that have successful careers.

Make sure you're aware of the 23 Types Of Makeup Items You Should Know.

Should You Wear Lip Gloss To An Interview?

An Asian business agent wearing tux formally while putting on lipstick

Some people prefer lip gloss over lipstick as they find it more moisturizing than lipstick. It also provides a sheer tint to the lips instead of the saturated color of lipstick. If you prefer lip gloss to lipstick, you can certainly wear it to an interview. As with lipstick, you can’t go wrong with choosing a flattering neutral shade of lip gloss for your interview. You’ll want to make sure that your lip gloss is applied smoothly and evenly so that it stays in place while you are talking.

Also, since lip gloss is shinier than lipstick, you may also want to choose a lip gloss with a matte formula. This may be even more of an important consideration if you choose a bold lip gloss color as the combination of a bold color and shine could be distracting to the interviewers.

Click here to see this matte liquid lipstick on Amazon.

Is Red Lipstick Unprofessional?

The answer to this seems pretty divided. Some people think red lipstick is better left for nights out on the town, while others think a classic red lipstick in the workplace is fine. The work environment may be a consideration when deciding on red lips or something less attention-grabbing.

If you decide to wear red lipstick in a more conservative work environment, it is best to make sure your outfit is professional and in more subdued shades such as black, navy, gray, or tan. In addition, the rest of your makeup should be understated – smoky eyeshadow, winged eyeliner, and scarlet lipstick could be overwhelming for an 8 to 5 daytime job.

If you are uncertain about walking into the office wearing red lipstick, you could start off with a red lip stain and work your way up to lipstick. Also, keep in mind that red lipstick tends to feather and smudge more noticeably than other shades. Using a lip liner will help ensure your red lipstick stays on your lips and maintain that professional look.

Click here to see this neutral lip liner on Amazon.

Is Lipstick Appropriate For Work?

If you aced your interview and are hired for the position, you can definitely wear lipstick or lip gloss to work. If you are uncertain what is appropriate when entering a new workplace, you could wear a neutral shade at first and observe what colors other employees are wearing on their lips.

Your work environment may be a consideration when choosing what color to wear. Sometimes what you’ll be doing on a given day and who you will be interacting with may affect your lip color choices. If meeting with a client that you know is on the conventional side, you may want to choose a nude lip color. Red lipstick may boost your confidence when you have an important presentation to give.

Go Get That Job!

You want to make sure your appearance is professional and put together for your interview. We hope this article answered your questions and provided you with some helpful advice on choosing makeup for your interview. Remember, the most important thing is that you feel confident and comfortable with your look, whether you wear a full face of makeup, some makeup, or no makeup at all. Best of luck with your interview!

For other great style tips before you head into your interview, check out these posts:

Should You Bring A Handbag To An Interview?

Can You Wear A Dress To An Interview?

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