What’s worse than having nothing to wear? Not having the money to buy professional clothing for your next interview. Often times your first impression is your only impression, so having a cohesive outfit is an easy way to start off on the right foot. The following stores are cheaper alternatives that will make you dressed for success.  


Forever 21 

Forever 21 is known for being the forefront of fast fashion with sometimes crazy trendy clothes, but if you look long enough you can find some business casual clothes. These clothes will typically be more ‘fashionable’ than standard work clothes. Make sure that the quality is to your standard, that the clothes are not transparent in bright light, and the clothes would make you fit in an office environment.   



Amazon really does have everything from A to Z, including business clothes. You can definitely find some affordable options for shoes, suit separates, tops, or anything else your heart desires and your credit card allows. Take the time to look at reviews and the pictures to better visualize how the garment will look on you. P.S. Students get a discount for Amazon Prime membership. 



If you want a professional matching suit, H&M is the place to go. I bought my first suit from there and it has seen many job interviews throughout my college career. They have many different styles of pants, blazers, and tops that will suit anyone’s style. They can be a little more on the expensive side, but the quality is great and you’ll get a lot of wear out of these business basics.  


Family and friends 

What’s more affordable than free? Ask your family and friends for hand-me-downs. You might be surprised by what you may find. A lot of pieces can be timeless, but if you find yourself with a pile of outdated clothes, see if you can do some updating to make the pieces look more modern. You can also mix modern and more vintage clothes to create a unique look. 


Thrift Stores  

If you’re willing to put in the time, the pay-off for thrifting can be substantial. You can find name brands such as Calvin Klien, Banana Republic, Polo Ralph Lauren, among other high-quality brands for very cheap. Be sure to look for stains and holes before purchase. It may be hard to find matching sets that were made after the 80’s, but I have found 3 pairs of Banana Republic pants for less than $8.00 total. Also, when you thrift you are helping the environment by giving the clothes a new home instead of the trash. 



If you don’t feel like going to a physical thrift store, ThredUp can be for you. ThredUp is an online thrift store that allows you to filter by brands, size, color, style etc. ThredUp is more expensive than typical thrift stores, but they provide more curated options.  


Buying professional clothes doesn’t have to be such an expensive purchase. Weigh your options, and buy what is best for you and your wallet. Always make sure the clothes you purchase fit well and makes you feel confident for your next interview! 


The National Society of Collegiate Scholars (NSCS) is an honors organization, boasting 320 plus chapter nationwide, that recognizes high-achieving first-and second-year students.  With its three pillars of scholarship, leadership, and service, NSCS is proud to provide career and graduate school connections, leadership and service experiences, practical and skills-based content, access to discounts and savings, and over a million dollars in scholarships, chapter funds and awards annually.

To learn more about joining the NSCS honors society, visit us at http://www.nscs.org/join.

NSCS has 330 plus chapters nation-wide, is a 501c3 registered nonprofit, certified member of the ACHS, and is FERPA certified by AACRAO.