Hair Twirlers

in All Posts

A little something NEW for breakfast:


Millet is an awesome oatmeal alternative, but I’ve never really prepared it in this way.  Plus, this breakfast cooks quickly and you don’t have to ‘watch’ it the whole time.  I don’t have time to slave over the stove on a Friday morning!


Millet and Creamy Banana Bowl




  • 1/4 cup millet
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 large banana
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • Toppings:  blueberries




  • In a small pot, mix millet and almond milk.  Turn heat to medium high.
  • After 3 minutes or so, add a thinly sliced banana, stirring occasionally in between feeding the dogs or brushing your teeth. 🙂
  • After 5 minutes, add oats and chia seed.
  • Stir, turn to medium low, and let stand under all the liquid evaporates away (another 5 minutes or so).  The banana should be creamy by now.
  • Plate and top with chia seeds.



The Short or Long Debate


Sometimes we have serious debates on Healthy Tipping Point (like The Unsettling Case of Michael Vick or The Ethical Eating Debate).  Sometimes we have silly debates on HTP (like The Sleeping Nekkid Debate or The Dog Poop Debate).  Here’s another fun little debate for everyone this morning!


When I was in college, I worked at Career Services for three years.  I really liked my job!  I was a Peer Career Advisor (ha) and would review other student’s resumes and give them interview tips.    One question I received a lot from girls was, “What should I do with my hair?”  especially if the girl had longer hair.  Our general response was, “As long as it isn’t in your face and you’re not twirling it, do whatever you want with it – wear it up or down,” but in hindsight, that wasn’t super helpful.


Sarah from The Strength of Faith e-mailed me to say, “I have a series of job interviews coming up and I am trying to think about how I want to present myself.  I’ve got the power suit and heels, but I’m torn on what to do with my hair.  Do women with long hair look more professional with their hair pulled back, down, or somewhere in the middle?  I am also in a unique position, because I am going into the ministry – so as a 20-something female, I already don’t really "look" the part (when people think "pastor" they think tall, middle-aged male).  For that reason, I’m trying to make myself look a little bit older as well.  I know it seems kind of vain to be so concerned about how I look, but I do try to present my outside to match what I know and am capable of on the inside as much.”

IMG_9528_2 IMG_9867

Side Note – When I was on The Today Show, I opted to wear my hair down because I feel more comfortable that way, but it was a CONSTANT battle not to twirl my hair out of nerves.  My mother warned me, “Don’t play with your hair in front of Meredith Vieira or no one will take you seriously!”  If you watch the segment, I only twirled once.  I was so proud!


Should Sarah the pastor-to-be wear her hair up or down for job interviews?  And are you a nervous hair-twirler like me?



  • jen @ taste life February 4, 2011, 9:39 am

    Sarah looks great both ways – a little more grown up and professional with the hair up, though!

  • Emily February 4, 2011, 9:40 am

    I have always worn my hair in a low ponytail for interviews. I have long blonde hair and I know for a fact that I look younger and less professional with it down. I did wear my hair pulled half back and clipped for an interview once and I felt more professional. I just know that I mess/flip my hair and that can be uber distracting.

  • Parita@myinnershakti February 4, 2011, 9:41 am

    Hi! So, I work in Human Resources and have been to a number of job interviews myself AND have long hair. SO, my advice to Sarah is to where it up in a bun or in a medium to low ponytail with a neutral hair tie. That way it looks clean and classy! Good luck!!!

  • Liz @ Tip Top Shape February 4, 2011, 9:41 am

    Hair up. I think it looks more professional.

    And I don’t know if I’m a hair twirler, actually. I’ll have to pay attention to that now and see if I do it!

  • Stacy @ Every Little Thing February 4, 2011, 9:45 am

    I tend to go with hair up for interviews. I think it’s a bit more professional, and makes people that look young (like me) look more “grown-up.” If you get the job, then you can wear your hair however you want!

  • Alison @ Around the VeggieTable February 4, 2011, 9:46 am

    She looks beautiful either way but my vote is to wear it up for the interview. And also to remember that your most important accessory is a smile 🙂

  • Aundra | Fit for Life February 4, 2011, 9:47 am

    Too funny — I worked in the career center as a student, too! We were called “Career Advocates.”

    We usually told girls with longer hair to pull it back — loosely. Don’t pull it too tight, you’ll be uncomfortable! A loose, nicely parted, low ponytail will do the trick!

  • Katie @ peacebeme February 4, 2011, 9:51 am

    Looks much more professional up. 🙂

  • Marie-JourneytoBodyZen February 4, 2011, 9:51 am

    I vote up! That way she doesn’t have to worry about twirling ;). I am a horrible twirler and don’t even realize I’m doing it half the time. I had to do a video of myself and a client for one of my therapy classes and I was playing with my hair the whole time ::cringe::!

  • Theodora February 4, 2011, 9:52 am

    Um, I realized I was twirling my hair as I read this.

    • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 10:06 am

      hahah so that’s a yes, you’re a twirler like me!

      • Theodora February 4, 2011, 10:07 am

        Definitely. But despite that, I would never wear my hair up for an interview because I HATE how it looks up, unless I’m running…

  • Sarah @ The Strength of Faith February 4, 2011, 9:52 am

    Thanks for all the tips everyone! Keep them coming!

    • Sarah @ The Strength of Faith February 4, 2011, 9:53 am

      p.s. My dad would totally opt for up because he says I’m a twirler, too. It’s his pet peeve about me! Nervous habit?

      • Cynthia (It All Changes) February 4, 2011, 3:44 pm

        It’s a very nervous habit. And there are so many ways to wear it up that you can find one that still says you but looks professional.

        It is distracting to me when we talk with people looking to work for us in the church if they are twirling their hair. I’m easily distracted.

  • Laura February 4, 2011, 9:52 am

    I always pull it half back with a clip, or a side part with a low ponytail using a hair elastic (a.k.a, “fubbie” for Caitlin)that is close to my hair color (i.e., leave colorful hair elastics at home!). Also, I think keeping jewelry simple is a way to look “older”… pearl studs (or other simple studs) and a simple necklace are always nice. My first boss gave me a tip to try and speak a little lower as a high-pitched voice can make you sound young.

    • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 10:07 am

      Yea for Fubbies!

    • Annie February 4, 2011, 7:54 pm

      I actually worked with Caitlin at Career Services. (Hi Caitlin!) 🙂 Now, I’m a speech language pathologist and I can’t resist the urge to chime in here. There is a whole body of research that shows that females that attempt to speak outside of their habitual pitch (aka speaking lower or higher than normal) can actually cause damage to their vocal chords. It is seen most often in the business world in situations where women feel that lowering their voices will make them more “authoritative” or well respected among the men. Just be yourself when it comes to your voice. 🙂 And I vote for the hair up!

      • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 9:47 pm

        Hi Annie!!! How are you???

  • Victoria February 4, 2011, 9:53 am

    Corporette has some great comments/advice/posts on this. There’s also a post on conveying a little more gravitas is you’re on the junior side and want to seem a bit more senior.

    I work in a field where I see a lot of people going through job interviews. I think up or down is ok. The most important part is to look POLISHED and PUT TOGETHER ie like you know what you’re doing. I have crazy curly hair that I hate to blow dry, but I know that I look more polished and professional with it blown and tamed a bit. I also tend to go with hair up because it’s easier to get in a tame state that way. Using a butterfly clip to get my hair in a nice french twist is my go to. I think it looks more professional than a pony tail (too casual IMHO).

    I know some would argue that you’re not showing your personality or whatever, but get the job first and worry about personality statements later.

    • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 10:09 am

      I agree 10000% with your last statement

  • Holly @ Couch Potato Athlete February 4, 2011, 9:53 am

    I think Sarah looks great either way — for me, I have short hair, so I have to wear it “down” — but if I had long hair I’d wear it up. I think wearing your hair up looks more professional?

    If it helps, my dad was a minister for many years and he wore his hair down 🙂

    • LindzGreerIndy February 4, 2011, 10:17 am

      Your statement about your dad cracked me up!! 🙂

    • Sarah @ The Strength of Faith February 4, 2011, 10:21 am

      Hahahaha, Holly your last sentence is epic. 🙂

  • Janene @ One Run at a Time February 4, 2011, 9:54 am

    I agree with Jen – she looks great in both, but I think the up-do is more professional and grown-up! Good luck, Jen – I’m right there with ya! 🙂

  • Janene @ One Run at a Time February 4, 2011, 9:54 am

    I agree with Jen – she looks great in both, but I think the up-do is more professional and grown-up! Good luck, Sarah – I’m right there with ya! 🙂

  • Carly D @ CarlyBananas February 4, 2011, 9:54 am

    I’ve always wondered if interviewers had a preference regarding hair. I tend to put it into a low ponytail just to avoid fidgeting.
    Sarah looks great in both pictures. Maybe she can do a dry run interview with a friend and test both hair styles to see if one is more comfortable.

  • Jen @ keepitsimplefoods February 4, 2011, 9:54 am

    As long as you are well groomed and look great, you’ll be fine. Play to your strengths and radiate confidence! Employers will notice your confidence more than your hair style.

  • Cait February 4, 2011, 9:55 am

    I agree I think she looks great either way- perhaps down to give her the softer feel. Great post girl!

  • Sarah @ See Sarah Eat February 4, 2011, 9:56 am

    I think either way would be great, but I usually go for the half-and-half look. Half pulled back and the rest down. So the hair is out of your face (and hopefully twirling temptations too–I’m also a nervous twirler) but it is still partially down too. Good luck Sarah!

  • Kara February 4, 2011, 9:56 am

    I like how it looks up. I always put mine up for interviews!

  • emily February 4, 2011, 9:56 am

    I’m a *terrible* twirler; my husband will come over and physically take my hands away from my face when he sees I’m nervous about something!

  • Anna @ History Running Girl February 4, 2011, 9:57 am

    I always wear it down because that is how I normally wear it! I’m uncomfortable with it up.

    I think either way looks great.

  • Emmanuelle February 4, 2011, 9:57 am

    Sarah looks great either way but for a job interview but I too think hair up looks more professional and grown-up. Good luck for the job interview!

  • kaity February 4, 2011, 10:00 am

    i find that i twirl my hair more when its up in a pony for some odd reason…easier to grab i guess? haha

  • Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen) February 4, 2011, 10:00 am

    I am an up girl for interviews. I don’t think it really matters, as long is you are dressed professionally and act appropriately. I just feel more grown up with my up.

  • Kristy @ February 4, 2011, 10:01 am

    Love the oats plus quinoa breakfast!

    I think she should wear her hair whichever way she’s more comfortable with and makes her feel like herself. 🙂

  • Eliz@The Sweet Life February 4, 2011, 10:01 am

    Your subject immediately reminded me that when I was little, I used to twirl my hair when I was tired! Sweet memory. I am definitely an up girl.

  • Natalie @ Will Jog For Food February 4, 2011, 10:02 am

    She looks great with hair up and down, but I think the hair up looks better for the interview. Good luck!!

  • SaraRM February 4, 2011, 10:02 am

    Oh I like this one. This is something I wonder ALL the time when I interview. My hair is super long and very blonde so im afraid ill be taken for the dumb blonde and not as serious as I should. Im not a twirler though.

    I think this is a situational type question. I agree as long as long hair is not in the face or distracting its ok to be down. But I think you have to be careful when its pulled up also. If its not a clean pontail or neatly up then you can look sloopy and like you didnt shower or have time to get ready.

    From looking at the pictures for Sarah’s case my vote is up but with different earrings (not dangly). Down doesnt look bad by anymeans, I think up with pearls or something classy would be a better fit. GOOD LUCK SARAH!

    • Sarah @ The Strength of Faith February 4, 2011, 10:23 am

      Funny you mention your blonde hair. I’ve been seriously thinking about going darker for a more professional look!

      • SaraRM February 4, 2011, 4:43 pm

        Im more than my hair color and decided a long time ago if im being judged by my hair I dont need to be there anyway. But I do always make sure to look “polished” so im not portrayed as that dumb blonde. (no offence to blondes obviously. I have had friends who died their hair from blonde when they became lawyers.

        • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 5:22 pm

          Sarah – I think you are beautiful as a blonde , don’t dye your hair!

  • Joyce @ Flowing to Fifty February 4, 2011, 10:02 am

    Not sure about the quinoa for breakfast……
    I think Sarah should leave her hair down or compromise and do a half-up style. It’s softer and warmer and she’s going into a “people” profession, not IBM.

  • Lisa February 4, 2011, 10:03 am

    I’m 27…. I’ve been a Pastor for 6 years!
    I just quit my position because my Huband got a much better job an wedont need the money so I’m going to stay home with our first Baby…. A BOY when he’s born in 19 weeks:)
    No, look fun, warm, inviting, friendly. It’s not about being professional. Rather, being an approachable person for people in that community!

  • Jen February 4, 2011, 10:03 am

    So glad to hear you were a peer advisor; I was too! AND I’m in graduate school for higher education administration and just gave an interview workshop yesterday afternoon. Perfect timing!

    Generally, I say the same thing you do: it’s more important to be comfortable and know your nervous ticks than anything else. For people who really want a decisive answer, I say that the deciding factor can often be the industry. More artistic and people-oriented professions might appreciate the softer look of hair down compared with a consulting firm where there is a hyper sense of professionalism. Overall, as long as your hair is groomed and you’re not fidgeting with it, there’s really no right or wrong way to wear it.

  • Danielle February 4, 2011, 10:03 am

    I always wear my hair up for interivews. I think it looks more sleak but I mainly do it to keep my hair out of my face. I think if you have long hair it’s best to pull it back for an interview.

  • Trish February 4, 2011, 10:04 am

    I think the up or down depends on how you personally look and what your hair style is. It might look better down.

    I also think it could depend on the job. A more corporate, business type job might mean up could be more polished. If you’re interviewing for a more creative field, then down might be best as it would seem to fit better.

    For interviews, I always do down. I just look better than way. My face looks better usually. And sometimes I just have a hard time doing an up-do and so why risk having it fall apart or look a mess is what I think.

  • Meryl February 4, 2011, 10:04 am

    I’m a classic hair twirler

  • Leah @ Why Deprive? February 4, 2011, 10:04 am

    I’ve always felt like up, or even half up looks more professional. Especially if you’re trying to give off an older vibe. I don’t know why, but to me hair up seems more grown up. Unless its in a cheerleader ponytail. I wouldn’t recommend that for an interview. 🙂

  • Samantha @ Health, Happiness & Skinny Jeans February 4, 2011, 10:05 am

    Personally I think hair up is better for an interview of this kind. It just seems more professional and does’t distract from your personality whic you want to shine through.

  • Callie @ Callieflower Kitchen February 4, 2011, 10:06 am

    For my co-op program at school I’m interviewing for a new job every 8 months, so I’ve had a lot of opportunities to try out different hairstyles 😉 I usually feel best wearing my hair in a low ponytail with my bangs and a few shorter wisps of hair loose at the front, which I feel isn’t too severe or unprofessional – it’s just right.

    I think a lot of it depends on the type of job you’re interviewing for, though. Because I’m applying for engineering jobs, looking very girly when most of the other interveiwees are guys isn’t usually a plus. I also think there are other aspects of your appearance that are more important – I’ve seen so many girls go to their interviews in skirts with really risque slits up the back or low-buttoned hot pink shirts , neither of which say “professional” to me!

  • Katie @ Healthy Heddleston February 4, 2011, 10:06 am

    I always wear my hair up for interviews but I’m also more comfortable with my hair up on a day to day basis.

  • Callie February 4, 2011, 10:07 am

    Part of my job is teaching attorneys how to litigate in the courtroom. We actually have pretty particular rules about their hair that would probably translate well to an interview. Their hair must be pulled back away from their face. That’s not saying it has to all be back or in a bun, but it at least needs to be clipped back so it is not swaying in front of their face. It can be very distracting to a jury, and there is too much temptation for the attorney to touch their hair or mess with it. Personally, I’m a fan of the half up/half down approach. I like my hair down better than all up, so just pulling back the front strands into a clip gives me the best of both worlds. Hope that helps! 🙂

  • kelli February 4, 2011, 10:08 am

    Isn’t that millet?! not quinoa, either way it looks delicious!

    • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 10:13 am

      Yes… it is. Correcting now.

      I need coffee.

  • Ashley February 4, 2011, 10:08 am

    I like her hair better down, but it’s really what shes comfortable with, and what she thinks will represent her the best. When I was younger I was a hair twirler but for the most part I leave it alone now.

  • Kat February 4, 2011, 10:09 am

    I vote hair up for interviews, especially if you are prone to twirling! Down can = sexy (unforunate but true with men), which is not what you want to convey on the interview

  • Nicole February 4, 2011, 10:09 am

    OMG–I’m the worst hair twirler. I did a presentation and one comment in the feedback was “stop playing with your hair”. Whatever–who decided hair twirling was a bad thing?? I need to make a drawing of myself hair twirling!

  • Molly February 4, 2011, 10:11 am

    Up looks polished! My coworker constantly twirls her hair and it drives me nuts! She seems like a smart girl but the constant twirling makes her seem like a ditz. Ugh.

  • Lizzy @ runbakerace February 4, 2011, 10:12 am

    I say she should wear it up! I have long hair too and wearing it up always looks professional. Good Luck to Sarah!

  • Kelly February 4, 2011, 10:13 am

    Whenever I went to interviews, I always wear it down, but I pull the top back with bobby pins to keep it out of my face and to keep from touching it.

  • Lily's Health Pad February 4, 2011, 10:13 am

    I am more of a nervous hand guessture-er. I feel like wearing your hair down is the best way to go on an interview.

  • Lauren @ vegerunner February 4, 2011, 10:14 am

    I’m in Human Resources & am a corporate recruiter so I’m constantly meeting with candidates – I think hair looks better up with a suit! I have long hair myself and always feel/look more professional when I wear it up when I’m in a suit.

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat February 4, 2011, 10:14 am

    Hair twirling is a chronic habit for me, and I do it ALLLL the time! Your breakfast looks great. I absolutely love quinoa and my Recipe of the Week this week was Apple Pie Breakfast Quinoa ( .. SO good! I think I need to try your recipe too Caitlin! Have a great Friday 🙂

  • Carolyn @ Lovin' Losing February 4, 2011, 10:19 am

    How about half up/half down. Pull some side/top bits back with some clips or barrettes. It will keep you from playing with it, but not look as severe as all up.

  • Katy @ RecipeCan February 4, 2011, 10:20 am

    I have VERY long hair and I always put it up in a bun or at least a pony tail for interviews. Not only does it stop me from playing with it, but I personally think it looks more professional.

  • Sarah February 4, 2011, 10:21 am

    I think she looks gorgeous with either style, but for an interview, I think she looks much more professional with her hair up.
    Sarah, would you want to do a fashion show of sorts with your hair arranged in different styles while wearing that power suit of yours?
    If not, I’d say stick with the hair up. Just my humble opinion.

  • skinnyrunner February 4, 2011, 10:24 am

    i say up looks more professional. but what do i know, the only job ive had was at starbucks… for about 3 weeks!

  • Michelle@crazyrunninglegs February 4, 2011, 10:24 am

    I also vote hair up! I don’t know if it’s more professional, but it does make her look older/more mature.

    I’m SUCH a hair twirler and sometimes I catch myself doing little braids in it too. I do it subconsciously. It’s so odd!

  • Charise February 4, 2011, 10:25 am

    I think she looks older with the updo, if that’s what she’s after. I personally think hair down can be fine for interviews too, just not really teased/sexy bedhead styling – go for clean, shiny, and simple.

  • Jen @ Canoe of Life February 4, 2011, 10:28 am

    I think she looks great both ways, but the pull back makes her look serious and a little older- but not old!

  • Kristin @ FoodFash February 4, 2011, 10:31 am

    I think she should follow in your footsteps and wear her hair in a way that makes her feel the most comfortable!

  • Laurie February 4, 2011, 10:33 am

    Sarah, I think your hair looks great either way! But I think for the interview, I would wear it up! Looks very professional! That way if you’re nervous, you won’t be twirling your hair! 🙂 Good luck!

  • rebecca lustig February 4, 2011, 10:36 am

    i always think an “up do” looks clean and professional… but i also think it depends on what the job is for. For my interview tow ork with kids and teens with developmental and/or mental health needs, I left my hair down to appear friendly and nurturing..

  • amanda February 4, 2011, 10:40 am

    I say down because she looks more approachable that way……but I would wear whatever is normal for her! (unless that’s a straight-out-of-bed pony tail!!)

  • Christina February 4, 2011, 10:40 am

    I think the picture with her hair up looks classic and elegant. With an updo it’s all about the earings, maybe pair it with pearls for an “older” look.

    On the flipside if you’re ultimately more comfortable with it being down then go for it! It’s bad enough you’ll be nervous because of the interview so you definitely want to be comfortable.

    The best way to rock an interview is through confidence! Believe in yourself because you know that YOU can do the best at that job!

  • Laurie February 4, 2011, 10:42 am

    I think Sarah is beautiful. I think the “up” hair is a little harsher, think lawyer or Wall Street.
    Having it down, or half down is softer and when I think of a Pastor I think warm, nurturing, soft. Then again, I am Jewish, so what the heck do I know from Pastor wear?

  • Nikki February 4, 2011, 10:43 am

    Definitely hair up. We recently went through a round of interviews looking for a new employee and all of the young women who came in with their hair up looked much more professional and put together than those who opted to wear their hair down.

  • Sara (Miles and Manhattan) February 4, 2011, 10:43 am

    I definitely twirl and I have worked hard to break the habit. That said, I think hair pulled back neatly in a chic way with a fresh, light face of makeup is professional!!

  • Kate (What Kate is Cooking) February 4, 2011, 10:46 am

    I don’t twirl my hair, but I do play with it. I haven’t mastered a good updo, so I still wear my hair down, but I make a concerted effort to not touch it at all!

  • Kim February 4, 2011, 10:47 am

    I think she looks great either way, but I would opt for the hair “up”.

  • Kt February 4, 2011, 10:50 am

    I know this is kind of silly – but when a bunch of my law school friends and I had job interviews with firms, we decided the girls with blonde hair looked best with their hair up, and the brunettes could do either and still look professional. Stereotyping, I guess? 🙂 Good luck with your interview Sarah!

  • Leanne (For Health's Sake) February 4, 2011, 10:54 am

    Whatever makes her feel most comfortable!

  • Alex @ Healing Beauty February 4, 2011, 11:00 am

    I’d say down but I believe it is more important for her to feel confident, so whichever gives her a spring in her step 🙂 I’ve been twirling my hair since I was very little and I do it out of nerves and especially when I’m tired.

  • Hallie February 4, 2011, 11:04 am

    I like the up look! I always wear my hair down, though, but I’m not a twirler (I don’t think?)

    Question about your recipe…why would you brush your teeth before eating breakfast? Wouldn’t you just have to do it again afterwards? 😛

    • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 11:08 am

      I love to brush my teeth!

      • SaraRM February 4, 2011, 4:45 pm

        I thought the same thing when I read it but I do the same thing so I totally get it.

  • Cassie (The Family Jewels) February 4, 2011, 11:09 am

    I think it’s important during an interview that the future employer be able to see your face. I think the hair pulled back is quite professional and confident looking. Perhaps, if she is not totally comfortable with her hair back she can do half-up and half-down. That’s what I generally do.

  • Sarah for Real February 4, 2011, 11:13 am

    I think her hair looks really great pulled back. As a young woman with long blond hair in a male dominated industry (architecture), I think I can really identify with Sarah. Heck, we even have the same name! I have found myself to be practically invisible when I wear my hair down to important meetings. Sad but true. Wear it up, that’s the safest choice!

    May I also suggest simpler earrings? I do love the ones in the photo but they’re probably a bit too trendy/feminine for the situation.

  • Rebecca February 4, 2011, 11:17 am

    I really like the up-do! But as somebody above mentioned, you could try practice interviews with somebody and see which way you feel more comfortable?

    I’m a twirler. I got called out on it at church one night–the youth pastor was talking about habits and said something like, “I see one happening right now–hair twirling!” and I put my hand down. Haha! It’s not just a nervous habit–I do it a lot! I catch myself twirling my hair when I’m taking notes, reading, writing emails, etc. It’s become a habit. If one of my hands is free, I’m probably twirling my hair. 😛

    Side-note about the pastoral/professional thing: Our former youth pastor (he left right after my junior year) is looking for jobs again (he’s going to seminary in Chicago; almost done) and one break when they came home, he had grown facial hair. He was trying out different styles (mustache, beard, etc) and trying to see which made him look more professional. He’s only thirty…seven, I think, but he looks pretty young. He was thinking about sending photos with different looks to different churches. It was kind of funny.
    Good luck with the interviews, and good for you for going into ministry! 🙂

  • Jaya February 4, 2011, 11:19 am

    If you are fantastic on paper and in person (which I am sure you are) then the last thing you need to do is submit to yet another tyrannical code of appearance. I do think that there is a lot you can do to shine (and sitting straight, dressing well, smiling and being genuine go a long way toward being “inside-out”) but I wholeheartedly believe that this kind of debate only serves to perpetuate a culture that struggles to put self above appearance. I can appreciate that it is fun to have these less serious debates, and I’m glad people enjoy participating, but I just had to throw in my 2 cents. 🙂

  • Maryea {Happy Healthy Mama} February 4, 2011, 11:21 am

    I think she should wear it up! She looks great both ways, but a bit more professional and polished with it up.

  • Sarah February 4, 2011, 11:22 am

    I just asked my youth pastor husband and he says he would rather hire the hair down version of Sarah. She “looked more friendly and open” with the hair. I work for a nonprofit and I would agree! 🙂

  • Kristina February 4, 2011, 11:22 am

    I wear my hair down otherwise I look like i’m going to the gym. I just bought millet puffs for protein cereal! Never had them as oats though!

  • Vicky @ eat live spin February 4, 2011, 11:27 am

    I think either way looks great… I would say wear your hair whichever way makes you feel most confident.

  • Sarah (Sarah Learns) February 4, 2011, 11:35 am

    i really like her hair both ways, but i think up looks more professional and polished!

  • Darcy @ She Sings at the Table February 4, 2011, 11:39 am

    I’m having this exact same quandary over an upcoming interview! My hair when it’s down is…big. It’s curly and I think it’s probably one of my more distinctive characteristics…but I don’t want it to be distracting. In the end, though, I feel more like myself with it down, and I think that’s always the way to go.

  • Rose February 4, 2011, 11:40 am

    I always thought short hair, or hair pulled back, was best for interviews or the working world. However, my last haircut makes me look like I’m about 18, which was not good when I went to the first work conference. 🙂

  • Cyclist Kate February 4, 2011, 11:40 am

    Just saw your tweet–haha, I was dying to comment “I think that’s millet” but I didn’t want to be a stinker :).

    I think hair back from the face is more appropriate for interviews, whether that means all the way up or just half up. I just think it’s wise to take the distraction of hair away so the interviewer can focus on your face.

  • Katy (The Singing Runner) February 4, 2011, 11:42 am

    I love both ways so I would say wear it however you feel more confident! Good luck with the interview! 😀

  • Sana February 4, 2011, 11:45 am

    For some reason hair up looks more professional! But for dates,or when I want to look cute I wear my hair down.

    Buttt wear what makes you feel awesome!

  • JillToday February 4, 2011, 11:45 am

    I am a corporate recruiter so I can tell you first hand, DO NOT play with your hair in an interview. To me it portrays that you are more concerned with your hair than playing attention to the interview at hand. I am not a hair twirler, but I am a bracelet fidgeter, so I know not to wear too much jewelry to an interview. You have to play to your strengths. But in general, wearing your hair down does not make a difference in my mind.

  • Julie (A Case of the Runs) February 4, 2011, 11:46 am

    Yes, a ponytail or bun should work. I’ve had long hair for years and never twirl it — I don’t know… I don’t like putting my hands near my face in any way.

  • Amanda February 4, 2011, 11:53 am

    I think she looks very professional and pretty with her hair up although I think that a pastor should also be inviting and an equal of sorts so with her hair down I think she also looks pretty and well I can’t think of a good word but inviting, not intimitading. I always feel like priests and pastors are these “high” up folks that I get nervous to talk with and well clearly its important to be able to walk right up and start talking with someone of the like. Her hair down makes her seem more like “one of us”. I hope I made some sort of point without sound like a dummy:) Either way she looks beautiful and I hope her interviews are awesome!!

    • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 12:21 pm

      You aren’t a dummy 🙂 I think this is a good point.

    • christin February 4, 2011, 2:16 pm

      This was my first thought – as a pastor it would be important to look approachable. Good point! She looks beautiful either way but the bun might seem kind of harsh. Or something. I think if she wears it back, a polished ponytail or half-up, half-down would be softer.

      Most of all remember why you are there and speak from your heart! 🙂

  • Hannah February 4, 2011, 11:54 am

    When we advise our high school students how to dress professionally for college entrance interviews/job interviews, we usually suggest the hair up. Wearing it up usually looks neater and it she is less likely to mess with it.

    Whenever I have to give a presentation in front of the faculty, I wear my hair up. It makes me feel more polished.

  • Lauren February 4, 2011, 11:55 am

    On interviews I do half pulled back, half down. I think all pulled back looks too harsh and this way my hair stays out of my face.

  • Allison @ Happy Tales February 4, 2011, 11:57 am

    In my opinion, I’d say pull it back. I’m not much of a hair twirler… in fact I don’t even really give much thought to it. Buuuut this might be because I have curly hair and over the years I have learned to just not mess with the beast that sits on my head… it’s best to just let it do it’s own thang!

  • Mia February 4, 2011, 11:57 am

    it’s funny how we have these stereotypes about hair-dos and professionality that we don’t even realize. I have very curly hair, and I always wear it down because: a. i get a lot of compliments on it (and I like it), and b. when I pull it back there are a lot of frizzies that come loose. Reading through these comments it doesn’t surprise me that a lot of people see sleek, drawn back hair as more professional. I remember one time I came to work with my hair straightened and the first thing everyone said to me was ‘wow, you look so professional today’. I was really shocked, but let it go. Then a few years later, I heard this great interview about how many minority women are encouraged to straighten their hair in professional settings because it is seen as more “serious” or “professional”. After hearing that interview I decided that I don’t care what anyone else thinks. I love my curly hair, and I know most people do too, and just because it isn’t deemed as “professional” I’m not going to put in the extra effort (and product) to straighten it.

  • mary (what's cookin' with mary) February 4, 2011, 11:58 am

    I think she should wear her hair however she feels most confident and comfortable. I remember a few years back when I was interviewing for admin jobs after graduation, I was having terrible luck.. I decided I should wear my glasses to the next one and guess what… not sure if its coincidence, but i got that job! Probably chance, but I def feel like they made my future boss take me more seriously for some reason…

    I can’t believe I haven’t tried millet yet!!! I need to get some. I love ‘interesting’ grains so I’m not always eating quinoa ;P

  • Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine February 4, 2011, 11:59 am

    I think up. I’ve always been told I look more professional with my hair in a bun, and I usually FEEL more business-like too. I don’t usually play with my hair, but I do pick at my cuticles when I’m nervous, which I should work on. No one wants to shake hands with bloody nails!

  • Ellen February 4, 2011, 12:01 pm

    i always always wear my hair up to interviews. i am just more comfortable with it like that and i feel more professional, but that’s just me.

    just curious, did the millet taste OK like that? or was it kind of crunchy? millet generally takes 25-30 minutes to cook, and it will look just like cous cous when it’s done. love millet, and it makes a great breakfast, i just always cook it before i add it to the pot (like you would with rice).

    • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 12:21 pm

      It was a little crunchy but still REALLY good!

  • Mary @ Bites and Bliss February 4, 2011, 12:06 pm

    I think wearing hair up is more professional..especially if it’s possible that you’ll spend the whole time twiling your hair. But wearing it down’s more welcoming, you know? So if you can contain yourself..I’d say down, otherwise wear it up.

  • Lindsey T. February 4, 2011, 12:11 pm

    I am definitely a hair twirler! I do think that wearing your hair up looks more professional, expecially if you’re trying to look a bit older. That being said, if it’s just going to be up in a plain pony tail I would go with wearing it down. Something about plain pony tails looks younger to me! Hopefully that makes sense 🙂

  • Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table February 4, 2011, 12:12 pm

    I worked in HR for a while, and it really doesn’t matter as long as it looks professional. My advice would be to NOT wear it down (avoid the nervous twirling/hair in the face). I would say go for the half-up or a LOW pony tail/bun/twist look.

  • Kiran February 4, 2011, 12:13 pm

    Low ponytail it is! She would look more professional, neat and everyone would take her seriously during the interview 🙂 Good luck!

  • Amber K February 4, 2011, 12:30 pm

    I always wear my hair half up/half down for interviews because I NEVER wear it all the way down (it drives me crazy) and I think the half up/half down looks more professional than a ponytail. Any place will soon learn than my hair will be in a bun or a ponytail 99% of the time anyway, lol.

  • Lu February 4, 2011, 12:34 pm

    For a pastor interview I would wear it up. That being said, I did recently hire the one woman that wore her hair down to an interview with me. There was a casual confidence in her ‘do that said, I’m the one.

  • Jazz February 4, 2011, 12:35 pm

    I like the hair down personally, especially if you are going into ministry where you are expected to be friendly and inviting..

  • Caitlin @ The Caitie Experiment February 4, 2011, 12:36 pm

    It’s funny; I think it usually looks more professional up, but I think I wore it down for my last interview. I wear it up most days at work (research administration), and I always feel so, I don’t know, unkept, because all of the other women my age wear it down. They all have mid-bicep length, smooth, shiny hair with perfect side bangs. If I tried that, I’d have frizz within 20 minutes and a sweat crinkle a quarter inch down my bangs!

    I agree with whomever said that keeping jewelry simple and elegant is the key to looking “grown-up” and professional. I work with a 75 year old woman who is the best dresser I’ve ever met; she always looks so put-together and classy, without a ton of baubles. I asked her about it once, and she told me when she was in secretary school back in the day, they were told to look in the mirror as they left the house, remove one piece of jewelry, and then they would be properly accessorized. I try to do the same thing now, and it totally makes a difference!

    • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 1:09 pm

      That is a great tip if you’re an over-accessorizer – I actually am an underaccessorizer so I try to ADD a piece before leaving. LOL

  • Natalia - a side of simple February 4, 2011, 12:37 pm

    A new breakfast grain! Yay 🙂 I’m always on the lookout for gluten-free grains but I’ve never tried millet. I may just have to buy some now and try them out. Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Jen February 4, 2011, 12:43 pm

    I always wear my hair down for interviews. But then again, I have shorter hair that doesn’t go back cleanly there’s always pieces falling out. If I had hair that frizzes easily, though, I’d probably wear it up.

    In Sarah’s case, it probably doesn’t matter as much because it seems to look good both ways!

  • Kelly February 4, 2011, 12:43 pm

    This is a tough one to make a call on because everyone looks different with up or down hair. “Looking professional” is about more than how you wear your hair. I think it’s really a matter of what makes the person COMFORTABLE. What they feel most CONFIDENT pulling off. We are, unfortunately, judged on our appearance, and during an interview the way you present yourself is everything, but if you feel self-conscious with your hair up or down, then that’s not going to make you feel good inside and that’s really what you’re trying to get across (we hope!).

  • Clare @ Fitting It All In February 4, 2011, 12:46 pm

    I think she looks more professional with it up, but it’s totally personal preference. I think I look better with my hair down, but I always mess with it!

  • Jen February 4, 2011, 12:46 pm

    she looks great with her hair up or down, but I would do the up version for interviews. Good luck!!!!

  • Devon February 4, 2011, 12:56 pm

    Sarah- you look great both ways! I would say go with up for the interview for a few reasons. You and I are both in male dominated fields. Having your hair back will give you the “more serious” vibe as well as detract from hair twirling (seen as a weakness by some). Also, it does make you look a little older- in a good way!

    I work in sports medicine, so my “go to” interview and meeting hairstyle is a sleek, low side/over the shoulder ponytail. It still makes me feel feminine and pretty, but I don’t come off as fussy or little girl.

  • Kacy February 4, 2011, 1:01 pm

    I look a mess with my hair up for some reason, so when I need to be professional I wear it down with minimal “styling” (Lauren Conrad style curls aren’t that serious of a hair look, in my opinion)and leave it alone when presenting or whatever I’m doing. I agree as long as you’re not playing with it, it can be perfectly fine to wear it down.

  • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 1:05 pm

    I always have this problem! I look like I am 12 years old and I am rarely taken seriously during job interviews. It is SO frustrating. I agree with others and would recommend pulling your hair half-back or back in a low, straight ponytail.

  • Cindy February 4, 2011, 1:11 pm

    I always wore my hair back in a low ponytail or clip when interviewing. I felt I looked more professional that way, especially since most interviews for teaching are in the summer and I’d be sweating as it was in my suit. Best to keep the hair back and neat and as frizzless as possible.

  • Brie @ Brie Fit February 4, 2011, 1:14 pm

    I have my hair in a short, cute, chin-length bob and I feel much more professional that when I had long hair.

  • Amanda February 4, 2011, 1:18 pm

    Up, definitely up. I have the same problem: if its down I look much younger than I am.

  • Kira February 4, 2011, 1:22 pm

    I am also a pastor-to-be, though my hair is shorter, about chin-length. I think Sarah should wear her hair up because it does look more professional. I usually wear my hair half-up to keep it off my face if I am preaching or teaching a class at church. Just keep it off your face! Also, I recommend PeaceBang’s Beauty Tips for Ministers blog for helpful style tips for ministers.

  • Allison February 4, 2011, 1:29 pm

    Up definitely has a more polished, stern feeling, while the down feels a bit more carefree. I like the down better personally, but if you’re prone to nervous habits like twirling, a low ponytail is probably best. I am not a huge fan of the tight bun because I feel it can look severe.

  • Carpensm @ A Life Without Ice Cream February 4, 2011, 1:30 pm

    I used to be an employment specialist who taught ed sessions on just these types of topics! So thanks for an opportunity to use a little bit of my employment history.

    I would say if you’re prone to the nervous hair twirl then put it back! Otherwise you’re pretty open. I would opt for a partial pull back with a clip. Will look very professional and leaves some room in case you’re having a bad hair day or its windy outside.

    Good luck with your interview!!

  • Kelly ( February 4, 2011, 1:35 pm

    I had this issue when I was 23 and working at a high school – I did NOT want to look like a 17 year old (hmmm…though, I WOULD like to now) and I wore my hair up alot.

    I agree that Sarah looks great both ways but perhaps a little more professional with her hair up. good luck to her!

  • Shari February 4, 2011, 1:39 pm

    My hair’s just below chin-length, so too short to pull back, but when it was longer I always used to wear it down for interviews and the like. Sarah – both ways look great, but I’d give the up style a slight edge 🙂

  • Amanda (Eating Up) February 4, 2011, 1:42 pm

    I think it definitely depends on what kind of job you’re interviewing for–I think she could wear it both ways. I echo everyone said whatever she’s comfortable with and whatever she think looks best!

  • Ashley @ Ashley's Adventures in Alaska February 4, 2011, 1:42 pm

    This is such a great conversation! I wear my hair down for interviews, because i’m most confident that way, but I pull my bangs and other pieces i would be tempted to touch away from my face and wear my glasses. I figure that it’s a good combination. 🙂

  • Jess February 4, 2011, 1:47 pm

    I wear my hair down when I want to look professional and pull it back when I’m too lazy to do anything with it.

    I think Sarah looks great either way, but my vote is for down because I think it makes her look more approachable (which is something a pastor definitely wants right?) Or maybe that’s just because she’s smiling and looks very laid back in that picture, which makes me view it as being more comfortable and approachable.

  • Michelle @ Living Learning Earning February 4, 2011, 1:56 pm

    I would say try pulling it half back- that way, it makes her look a little more mature (i.e., mature enough to make a great pastor!), but not in an older way, if that makes any sense at all. It will also help keep her hair from becoming a distraction, either for her or for her interviewer.

  • chelsey @ clean eating chelsey February 4, 2011, 2:41 pm

    I am a TOTAL hair twirler (well not twirler, but I play with my hair frequently) but I look elike a boy when it’s pulled back. For this reason, I keep it up!

  • Ann February 4, 2011, 2:44 pm

    I have a hard time not touching my hair all the time! I used to think hair down was the way to go for interviews, but now I think a low subtle bun or something similar is good. That way you don’t have to worry that it’s messy, you won’t feel compelled to touch it, and people can see your beautiful face!

    • Ellie@fitforthesoul February 4, 2011, 3:02 pm

      Ohhh good thinking~Yeah I guess a low bun with lose hair would be really nice!

  • Jennie @ Designed to be Fit February 4, 2011, 2:46 pm

    I like the idea of a low bun, but in a bit of a dressier way. Spin pins are amazing for this@

  • Cali February 4, 2011, 2:51 pm

    I think she looks interview ready with the up-do 🙂

  • Ellie@fitforthesoul February 4, 2011, 2:52 pm

    Even though up-do’s are supposed to be more “professional and neat” in the business world, I really think it comes down to the individual. Especially seeing that she’s going into ministry, as much as she would want to look authoritative (in a good way) she should just be herself and what’s comfortable to her so she’ll come off that way to others. Perhaps the long hair will show her “gentle” side more, which is what many people look for subconsciousl when they want to talk to someone with counsel. But as long as there’s confidence and a good balance of gentleness, I think she should go with what she likes! 😀 Thanks for posting this Caitlin–it’s quite interesting actually.

  • Liz February 4, 2011, 3:18 pm

    I’m def a nervous tucker. Even if my hair is already behind my ear I continue to tuck it. I do hair up in situations like that so I don’t tempt myself.

    PS — Where do you get your chia seeds? My hubby wants to try them but I can’t find them anywhere!

    • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 3:22 pm


  • Tracy February 4, 2011, 3:36 pm

    I think her hair looks a bit harsh in the updo (for a minister job interview), but I wouldn’t wear it down/loose either. I think a low-on-the-neck ponytail would be pretty.

  • Cynthia (It All Changes) February 4, 2011, 3:41 pm

    As a pastor I say wear it up. It is less distracting to you and the interviewer. But you look fabulous both ways so don’t feel the need to wear it up all the time.

  • Rachel February 4, 2011, 4:34 pm

    Women tend to look younger with long hair, and less professional with it worn down, so I’d say wear it up for the interview, or least back in some way.

  • Andrea February 4, 2011, 4:37 pm

    I have very long hair, and always wear it up in interviews or whenever I want to look professional. Put it up!!!

  • Maddie (Healthy Maddie) February 4, 2011, 4:41 pm

    Up do’s always look more professional 🙂

  • Tracy @ Commit To Fit February 4, 2011, 5:12 pm

    I think it can look professional up or down. As long as it is neat and styled, it is what ever one makes Sarah feel more comfortable.

  • Kelly February 4, 2011, 5:14 pm

    Wow I’m surprised by all the up votes. I always wear my hair down and I have a great job 🙂 Maybe its just cuz I only wear it up to the gym, but I feel like up= casual and not professional!

  • Megan February 4, 2011, 5:41 pm

    I am nervous hair twirler. Guilty. ha 😉

    I’ve been on a millet-for-breakfast kick. I cant get enough of it!

  • Vanessa February 4, 2011, 7:11 pm

    This is an interesting post…I am such a chronic hair twirler that I remember being asked by several highschoool teachers to sit in the back of the class because it was so distracting. I love my long, curly hair but was always told it wouldn’t be appropriate to wear it curly to a job interview. So I wear it in a neat bun or have it straightened if I wear it down.

  • Katie February 4, 2011, 7:43 pm

    My hair is really long and thick so I normally go for a half-up, “princess pony tail”. (Am I the only one who calls it that?) Because of my length and thickness, wearing my hair up gives me a headache so I rarely ever do, unless I’m working out. Since I’m most comfortable with my hair down that’s how I wear it for interviews. But I’m sure anything that puts you at ease so you can shine is perfect!

    • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 9:43 pm

      I call it a fountain!

  • Jenifer February 4, 2011, 8:35 pm

    Hmmmm… interesting topic. I had an interview this afternoon, and went with it down. I have mid back length hair,and always feel more polished when I’ve taken the time to straighten it, do a little crown tease and then smooth it.
    Not a twirler.. but a sniffer. I will pull a piece across my face and smell it. I dont know why, and I only do it when I get really stressed, but then I pull on my upper lip too. I guess I’m just a twisted lil corn cob.

    • Caitlin February 4, 2011, 9:48 pm

      Haahhah I am a sniffer too!

  • Kirsten @ Cooking in Japan February 4, 2011, 9:48 pm

    I think it depends on the specific congregation. If it is a more laid back place, hair down. If a rather conservative one, hair half or fully up.

    I think it also depends on how naturally smiley you are and your gestures/posture. I’m not smiley and have good posture so a conservative updo makes me look mean. I need something to soften my look. If you smile all of the time you could easily rock the updo.

  • Kathleen @ Kat's Health Corner February 4, 2011, 10:52 pm

    Hair up. 🙂

    Love your new breakfast! 🙂

  • Kathleen @ Kat's Health Corner February 4, 2011, 10:53 pm

    I am definitely a hair twirler. 😉

  • Alexia @ Dimple Snatcher February 4, 2011, 11:29 pm

    I don’t think it matters. I’ve seen capable women with either choice of styles. Oh, and Caitlin, you have her blog’s link wrong…

  • Ashley February 5, 2011, 4:41 am

    Well, I was going to say that research studies have shown that women actually get paid MORE when they are BRUNETTE relative to blonds in the same job……but since she’s going into the ministry the pay probably isn’t a huge concern….
    So I’d say “up.” The down pic looks playful & cute, but the up pic looks serious & grown-up!

  • Jolene ( February 5, 2011, 12:51 pm

    I think down looks more professional. I don’t think I twirl, but I am going to have to start paying more attention to see if I do!

  • Juani February 7, 2011, 5:33 am

    I definitely twirl my hair a lot – because of nerves,boredom or basically whatever feelings I have.

    I hardly ever wear my hair down,since it’s always so hot where I live,and and up do is much more practical.I also get less tangles in my hair,and my hair doesn’t get dirty so quickly.

Previous post:

Next post:

Healthy Tipping Point