I actually used to work at Macy's as one of the counter managers, and giving these exact Interviews was part of my job, so I hope I can help.
The good news Is, they hire all types of people, (95% of the people I saw hired never had any makeup experience in the past)
Make sure your look is very clean. Stick with neutral eyeshadows, but apply them as flawlessly as you can. Also, glasses are not frowned upon.
I wouldn't go with the black skinny jeans, you always want to wear to your Interview something that correlates with their dress policy, and jeans aren't allowed. Do you have a simple black dress and heels or black pants?
As far as the questions they'll ask...It will be very typical Interview questions, mostly not even related to makeup. Most will be situational "what If" type questions like "what would you do in this situation"
The thing to understand about Macy’s-type department stores is that the people working there don't know dIddly-squat about makeup. They don't care about your skills; they just care about if you can sell. Another thing that Macy’s In particular pushes very hard is selling their credit card. They actually care more about that than meeting your sales goal. It's really sad. You get put on a probation period for a certain length of time and if you don't sell X amount of credit cards in that time they can fire you.
As far as using this as an avenue to lead you to your future career, I hate to say this but it doesn't help by much. It's a very common misconception that getting a job at any ol' counter will further your career and open other doors. The one and only thing it does for you is gives you something to put on your resume, and even still, having "Clinique" or "Estee Lauder" on a resume when I look to hire other artists for jobs means nothing to me. The reason Is because the companies give you next-to-no training, and the very little training they do give you consists of teaching you about their products and how to sell them, they don't teach how to actually apply the makeup. It leaves the store with a department full of girls who are applying makeup on women the way they see fit. Now, every once in a while, and this is incredibly rare, there will be a spot that opens up within the line you work for for a trainer or senior makeup artist type position. The senior makeup artist has a region and travels from store to store doing "events" that bring in revenue for that counter. It's a well respected and hard to land job because there's only one per region, and everyone wants it.
I'm not trying to sound like a DebbIe-downer, I just wanted to give you a very realistic scenario of how It really Is, because I went through the same thing hoping It would further my career and It didn’t. But I won’t lie, I loved my job, then again I love the challenge of selling. At the stores the girls are all friends at each of the counters and its overall a fun environment. You also get quite a bit of free products from whichever line you end up working for, so that's another plus.
I hope this helped..
Edited by LC - 8/19/13 at 8:15am