Men's Guide To Getting Dressed
|Now HE can dress|
Though getting dressed is a more complicated process for women, it is socially acceptable for them to spend hours doing so. Men, on the other hand, are not supposed to take a long time shopping or dressing, nor ask questions about how to groom. Yet they need to look appropriate and stylish just as much as women do. Fear not, men; this guide will be short, to the point, and helpful in getting you together and out the door looking and feeling good--all without you having to cave and ask your sister-in-law for help.
First off, you will not be able to properly dress yourself without these items:
- A suit. It's time to stop feeling cheap and inferior at your job interviews and formal parties and just buy one.
- Nice trousers. Wear these when the suit is too formal, but you can't wear jeans.
- Ties. None with piano keys. Get several in different colours to match the clothes you have.
- Black shoes and a black belt (not braided). It's a no brainer. Take care of them and you'll have them for years. Cross that off your list.
- A button down shirt. White is classic. Stripes are trendy. You can wear one with jeans or your suit. Get a few.
- A sweater. Like it when girls hug you? You need to own one of these.
- T-shirts. You're probably already wearing these, but get some that aren't three sizes too big and don't say something obnoxious.
Okay, once you've bought the clothes, there are two final steps: wear them (yay!), and then wash them. Then you can wear them again (yay!).
- Read your tags. Yeah, I know, but do it once and you'll probably remember which items of clothing are high maintenance.
- Do what the tags say. Again, hard, but bite the bullet if you like your clothes the size and colour you bought them in.
- Learn from your mistakes. Sweat stains on your white shirts? Start wearing undershirts, and invest in some bleach. Food smears on your trousers? Get a stain remover. Always a rumpled mess? They make incredible wrinkle-free fabric now, or you could just read the directions on your dryer--no, no, sorry, I know you won't do that.
If you read the list of clothing must-haves above and thought to yourself, "I have those things, and yet I still look like crap," fit is probably your problem. The next time you go shopping, check the following before you buy.
- Trousers come with two measurements: waist circumference and inseam length in inches. Run a flexible tape measure around your waist and up your inner leg to get your size. Then use that size to buy appropriately fitting trousers! More hints: if you're dusting the floor with your trousers, they're too long. If they dig or pinch anywhere, or you can see your socks while standing and wearing shoes, they're too small.
- Jackets are more about trial and error. Make sure that the shoulder seam is lined up with your actual shoulder and that you dig the lapels because tailors can't fix these things. If you like a jacket though and the sleeves are too long, you can always get them taken up.
- Dress shirts , like trousers, take two measurements to buy: neck size and sleeve length. I know it's a pain, but if you break out the tape measure and get these, you can buy shirts in a package without trying them on. You lucky dog you.
- Ties should just hit your belt. Your black one. That matches your black shoes. See how it all comes together?
- Don't wear the following colours together: Black and navy (everyone will assume you got dressed in the dark), khaki and grey (so... blah), or brown and black (there are exceptions to this rule, but if you're fashionably-challenged, don't try it at home).
- Blue button downs are a complete no-brainer and will match everything.
- Brown shoes and a brown belt are a great alternative to black when you wear tans. (Picture khaki trousers, a pale blue shirt, and a brown leather belt and shoes--hot.)
- Save bright colours for accents, like a bright red tie or pocket square.
- Prints of the same general "weight" should not be put together. That means you shouldn't wear a striped shirt with a striped suit unless the stripes on one or the other are much smaller or fainter (i.e. they have less "weight"). When mixing patterns, one should always obviously be the statement; the rest is background.
- Match your socks to your trousers .
- Belts should match your shoes (we covered this, remember?).
- Pocket squares should match your tie (or accent it with a complementary colour).
- Your shirt sleeves should poke out of your jacket sleeves a little bit.
- Belts and suspenders don't belong in the same outfit.
- Try for looking up-to-decade, if not up to date. That means no pleated, acid wash, or cargo trousers.
- Swim in the ocean, not your clothes. Adversely, if you can see body hair through your shirts, they're too tight.
You can't mess up the following, if they fit and they're not in god-awful colors:
- Jeans (non-acid wash) and a T shirt (non-"I'm With Stupid").
- Khakis (non-pleated) and a sweate r (non-Cosby).
- Birthday suit (non-Indecency-Law-Violating).
- A grey suit with black shoes and tie.
Good luck and happy dressing!