What to Wear For Public Speaking

Do you have a public speaking engagement coming up? Lectures, graduation speeches, presentations, live tv interviews, the court for you lawyers or even doing a Facebook live video all are times where you want the attention to be on what you saying instead of what you are wearing. In Episode #55 of Friday Live with Sierra I gave an in-depth talk about the tips and tricks of what to wear for all types of public speaking. Personally, I enjoy wearing a camisole over my bra and under my blouse for ease of having the wires dropped in my clothes.

  • If standing: wear comfortable shoes
  • If seated in front of an audience: consider pants. Remember to unbutton blazers when you sit. If you opt for a skirt or dress, never forget to keep your knees closed!
  • If seated but will then be standing or mingling: be cautious of wrinkling materials.
  • If at a whiteboard or will be showing your back to the audience: consider how you’ll look from behind and make sure your skirt and/or jacket vents are snipped!
  • If appearing on live TV: no white, no black, no green. Avoid small patterns or stripes. Ask the producer if there will be a screen besides green being used, heavier make up than usual.
  • If you’re going to be mic’ed – have a waistband or pocket to hold the battery pack. Also, think about where they will clip the mic, lapels are great for this. If you have an earpiece and a mic, consider a hairstyle to hide the earpiece cord. Also that there will be two battery packs in this case and two wires on you. Make sure to test both mic and earpiece before going live and always check that it is off if you run to the restroom!
  • Ask about the backdrop color to avoid blending into it.
  • If there will be stage or studio lights, triple-check that your top does not become see-through with the lights on it. Nude bras will be no help if this happens, they will glow.
  • Avoid loud-sounding jewelry. Especially if mic’ed.
  • Check your outfit to make sure nothing in it is distracting and remember the rule of three!
  • Do not wear anything too tight or anything that makes you readjust or fidget.
  • A bold lip is always a great idea when speaking as it draws attention to the mouth.
  • If you’re prone to hair twirling, wear your hair up. No matter how you wear your hair, hair spray is your friend.
  • If your face and hands are projected on a large screen or live tv, make sure they are well-groomed.
  • Take a deep breath, be present and smile!

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