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Let me start with the disclaimer that I work in the fashion industry so my appearance plays a rather large role in whether I get called back for a job. But image is a factor in every industry and people do judge candidates off first glance when conducting job interviews.

When I was job hunting, I even surprised by myself by how much I focused on image.

It wasn’t enough for my friends and I to print fresh copies of our resumes, learn all we could about the hiring company and rehearse answers to tough questions. We had to find sensible, designer pumps, buy an expensive-looking bag, wear our hair sleeked back off our face and give ourselves a fresh coat of nail polish.

I wondered if we were being a bit obsessive for going to great lengths to make sure we looked the part, in every facet possible. Turns out we were not.

A survey, conducted by Debenhams, shows that employers pay attention to beauty blunders and make assumptions about the job seeker based on them. The Daily Mail reports:

“They say it takes 30 seconds for interviewers to make their minds up about a candidate, but it could be down to a set of beauty blunders many people aren’t even aware of, that makes or breaks an interview. Chipped nails, split ends and smudged mascara top the list of cosmetic catastrophes that put interviewers off a candidate. Untidy chipped nail polish is a complete no-no, with interviewers rating it their worst beauty blunder, and the first thing they notice as they shake hands upon arrival.”

The report also names faux pauxs like a strong line of foundation or heavily penciled brows that can turn off employers, who interpret it as a lack of concentration or overconfidence, respectively.

Some employers find nail polish and pared-down makeup as essential as ironing your clothes. While interviews shouldn’t feel like a beauty pageant or a fashion show, it is important to make sure you look the part. But is this taking it too far? What are your thoughts, Clutchettes?

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