We know that one of the biggest worries for a PNM is what to wear during recruitment. While recruitment style is different all over the country–what is considered absolutely necessary in the South might seem ridiculous in the Northeast–there are some hard and fast rules to live by when dressing for recruitment.
DO wear shoes you can walk in. We know everyone wants to look and feel her best and nothing makes a girl feel better than a hot pair of heels. However, if you can’t walk normally in them for long periods of time, you may want to re-think those stilettos–stumbling around like a baby giraffe with weak ankles isn’t a good look on anyone. Also, keep in mind that you will most likely be walking outside to get from house to house, so if you go with heels for the day, it may not be a bad idea to throw a pair of flats or flip flops in your purse just in case.
DON’T wear anything too outrageous. It’s totally fine to wear something that makes you stand out, but it shouldn’t be over the top or distract from who you are. You want to be known as “the girl in that really cute red top,” not “Holy shit, did you see that girl in the red top?”
DO make sure your fingers and toes are properly manicured. There is nothing that says “I don’t care about my appearance” like chipped nail polish and jacked-up toes, so be sure that your fingers and toes are nicely filed and polished. If you tend to favor wild colors and designs, you may want to tone it down; conversely, if you aren’t the kind of girl who gets a mani/pedi on the regular, you may want to consider it for the occasion. Either way, just be sure that your nails are clean and presentable.
DO accessorize. This is the time to trot out your nicest pieces, particularly if you have one bold piece of jewelry that makes a cool statement. Not only are accessories an interesting way to express your personality, but they can be a fun conversation piece when the “where are you from, what’s your major” conversation is over, too. However…
DON’T go overboard. Too many bracelets, scarves, necklaces, and rings can be distracting. Plus, you don’t want to be the girl who jingles when it’s quiet during the skit or video, do you?
DO carry a purse. We know it’s tempting to carry around a little wristlet and avoid lugging a larger handbag, but there are definitely essentials that you need to have with you, and a wristlet just isn’t going to cut it. At the very minimum, you should have the aforementioned flip flops, a pen, mints, a hairbrush, bobby pins, makeup, a mirror, and deodorant. Recruitment, particularly in the early rounds, is an all-day affair, and you need to pack like it. It goes without mentioning that this bag should be cute–not your beat up old backpack.
DON’T forget to dress properly for the weather. This is one we see all the time: it’s raining and PNMs show up drenched because they didn’t want to bring a raincoat or an umbrella, because it may look uncool or it didn’t go with their outfit. Because looking like a drowned rat is a better option? Be sure to check the weather forecast and plan accordingly. No one is going to look down on you because your raincoat isn’t as cute as your outfit or because you’re carrying your dad’s big golf umbrella.
DO plan ahead. Lay out your outfits, including accessories, for the entirety of the recruitment period ahead of time to make sure you have everything you need. Give yourself plenty of time to head to the mall if there is something you forgot, too. If you want to go one step further, snap a selfie in your various outfits and text them to a friend who has been through the process for some feedback. Just be sure not to ask an active sorority member on your campus, because at most schools, it’s a recruitment violation for active members to talk to a PNM.
DON’T try to look like anyone but yourself. While all of the above tips are useful, make no mistake–we aren’t telling you to look like anyone but yourself. We’re just advising that you look like your BEST self, and that requires some advanced preparation for all of us. As long as you plan ahead and present the best version of yourself, we’re sure that you’ll wind up exactly where you are supposed to be.