It is a skill to dress well. You can improve your skills as with any skill.
At high school I was wearing sporting a horrible ponytail and glasses that were too small for my head. To complete the picture, I wore this daily outfit to high school:
- Plaid button-up shirts
- Baggy jeans with ripped edges because they were too long. I kept stepping on them.
- Clunky Rockabilly Shoes I Found at the Mall
It was only in college that I began to pay attention to my personal style. If that child could learn, so can I.
You actually have an advantage as our reader. It took me years of trial-and-error to discover what great style is. I didn’t have any real resources. Today, I share with you my essential style tips for men who want to look better.
These tips and concepts will help you look your best, no matter if you are a total beginner or an experienced stylist.
1. Realize that dressing well is a skill
Dressing well can be learned, just like cooking and shooting free throws. As a personal stylist, my job is not to just buy clothes for men and send them off. I help men choose the right clothes to enhance their appearance so that they can make it on their own. If dressing well was not something that you could learn, it would be impossible for me to find a job.
You get better at all skills the more you practice. Except if you live in a weirdo nudist colony, which I would like to apologize for, but you must dress every day. This means that you can practice and develop the skill of dressing well each day.
WHAT YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW: No one is born wearing a 3-piece suit or having a magical sense of how to dress. You can learn dressing well by practicing.
2. Develop your eye by identifying the style you like
Often, after men tell me they aren’t “naturally styled”, I follow up with: “I don’t have the eye to put together outfits or know what looks good.”
Here is what I say to them:
“Ok. You think, “I would like to wear that” even if it’s not something you can do. It could be a celebrity, musician, or athlete. It could even be a fictional character.” My clients mentioned Tony Stark or James Bond before.
He will then name a bunch of men that he considers cool for their dresses. Then I point out that he has just disproved his own belief that he doesn’t have an “eye”. He showed me that he can see great style and recognize it!
He might not yet know why, which is often why men tell me that they don’t see. It is possible to learn why.
It’s crucial to challenge the stories you tell yourself when you set out to achieve a goal. It could be that you have a poor eye for fashion, are too busy to exercise, or just shy. Stories we tell ourselves can often keep us from leaving our comfort zone.
WHAT YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW: Take five minutes. Choose 3 to 5 men who you think look great, and make sure they are in the same direction as you. List it even if it’s not something you are capable of doing. You could list someone you know, a celebrity or even a fictional character in a movie.
3. Get the RIGHT FIT to solve 90% of your style problems
After seeing Ryan Gosling’s picture, a client of mine said this to me. “How is it possible that he looks so cool in a t-shirt with jeans?”.
When it comes to great fashion, fit is everything. It is so important that I tell all my clients that “fitting properly will solve 90%” of their style problems.
If clothes don’t fit correctly, they can make your body look smaller. Excessive fabric can make clothes look larger than they actually are. Because it “feels more comfortable”, men have a tendency to wear larger clothes than they need.
A good fit can make someone, like Ryan Gosling, look effortless stylish in plain white jeans and a plain white shirt. However, someone can look awful in a nice suit that cost 20x as much.
This means that if you believe you need to wear a suit to be stylish, it is not true. You can look great in leather jackets and jeans if you are more like me. As long as your clothes fit properly.
4. Surround yourself with stylish people
The biggest obstacle to making any changes in your life, especially if it’s something physical like you, is the unexpected. There is a good chance that your changes will not be received positively by everyone around you, whether it’s your family members, friends, girlfriends, or coworkers.
You must agree to work one-on-one with me as a client if you wish to work one-on one with me. This means that your girlfriend or spouse is not permitted to join us for any of our sessions, or on shopping trips. After working with a client whose spouse insisted that she participate in styling sessions, I came up with this rule. She gave me feedback on all the advice I gave. She said that he didn’t like it and preferred to wear this, effectively negating any advice I might have given.
He was encouraging her bad taste.I quickly refunded him his money and made this rule after a few weeks.
People are uncomfortable with change. It forces them to face the fact that they are working hard to improve their lives and challenges what they do for themselves.
One of my all-time favorite quotes is “You are the average 5 people around your.” The people we surround ourselves with have a huge impact on how we act, behave, and think.
This is why successful businessmen are often friends. This is why Crossfitters who are fit and attractive are often surrounded by Crossfitters who are also fit and attractive. It’s also why obese parents are more likely have obese children.
If you are looking to improve your style, this is exactly what you need. It is important to surround yourself with people who share your goals.
WHAT YOU CAN DO NOW: Follow stylish people on Instagram. This is the simplest thing you can do. This will give you two benefits: You’ll be exposed to amazing style and get some inspiration. It’ll also help you create an environment where dressing well is normal.
5. Be strong in a classic style
People make the mistake of thinking that they have to be unique in order to improve their style. This is an example of “Extreme Thinking”. Do you want to save money on a vacation?
“I have to cancel my Netflix account and stop going out on weekends. I also need to defer my student loans. If I want to have fun, I will probably have to miss some credit card payment. It’s going to ruin my credit. I won’t be able to take a vacation now.”
Think of your style as a chef learning how to cook when you are trying to improve it. They don’t set out to create a new and innovative dish. They start with the basics of cooking and technique. They then add bits and pieces from their personalities and interests to give them a new spin. The exact same thing will happen with your style.
First, focus on classic styles and then add your personal touch later.
6. Buy classic styles first before jumping into trends
If this sounds familiar, please let me know: You open your closet. You find lots of clothes there. You start to look through the tangled hangers in your closet, and you realize that there is nothing you can wear. You go to the mall and purchase more clothes. And then, a month later, it happens again. There is nothing to wear.
You are not crazy.
This is what I refer to as “Panic mode Shopping”. You go through your closet, panic, and realize that some of the clothes are too old, difficult to combine, and there are so many options. You go to buy more clothes, adding to the problem.
It’s a vicious circle. Trendy clothes are the main reason for this problem.
Trendy is the current trend. This is what blogs and magazines talk about. It’s what you see in the shops. It’s also a little more exciting because it’s brand new and fresh.
The problem with every trend is that eventually it will die down.
Do you remember leather sweatpants being so popular just a few years ago? What about the double monk shoes that were popular before? Trucker hats are also an option if you’re older like me.
Trendy clothes are like a summer blockbuster you can’t miss. Every talk show has actors. Non-stop commercials are being shown. Posters are everywhere. We’ve made a leap forward since then.
The classics are just like classic movies. The Godfather. The Future is Now Taxi driver. They won’t go anywhere. This is the benefit of classic clothes. They are well-tested and look great. You can wear a leather jacket, dark blue jeans, or boots. This jacket was great in the 1950s and still looks great today.
WHAT YOU CAN DO NOW: Change your shopping habits and look for classic styles. What is the difference between classic and trendy? How can you mix trends and classics in your wardrobe? This post answers this question.
7. No graphics, logos and wild prints
Many of my readers are professionals over 30 and many ask me how I can look older/more mature/take things more seriously. Avoid logos, graphics and other wild prints on any type of clothing.
You can either appear like you’re in college or you’re on your path to the UFC. (Don’t get it wrong, I love MMA.) There is a style to it.
While I don’t mind logos and graphic T-shirts being part of a solid wardrobe collection, solid colors will make you appear 10x more mature and serious when you start out.
WHAT YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW: Wearing solid colors and avoiding logos and graphics makes you appear more mature and refined. This is an easy change. You can replace your graphic tees and clothes with more solid options, such as the ones shown above.
8. Stick to neutral colors
The wardrobe of every man should include neutral colors. What are neutral colours?
These colors aren’t too strong. They can be mixed together easily because they aren’t too strong. Neon green and orange are powerful colors. It’s not easy to work with.
You don’t have to be able to mix and match colors if your wardrobe is made up of neutral colors. You can make a neutral-colored wardrobe work for you!
Another thing is that you probably have been wearing mostly neutral colors for a while without realizing it. Neutral colors include white, black and navy.
Apart from being self-working, I love neutral colors because they are very masculine. You look sophisticated, serious, and well-dressed. It is the ideal backdrop for when you are looking to add more color to your closet.
WHAT YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW: I recommend a ratio between solid neutrals (non-neutral) and bright colors (e.g., 3 to 1). Spend 10 minutes going through your closet. Are there more solid neutrals than graphics, patterns and non-neutrals in your closet? It is worth noting that you should balance it to reach a ratio of 3:1.