Let me preface this by saying if dressing boring is your style (if you wear an oxford cotton button down with chinos, chukkas, or minimalist sneakers for example) and you’re okay with that there’s absolutely nothing with with that.
I’ve just found that for a lot of people that their sticking point (where they seem to be having a lot of trouble) is with developing a unique style for themselves and not just wearing what everybody else wears. Especially once they get the basics of fit and what not down.
I personally dress pretty boring. I already did all the fun stuff like streetwear and wearing legging underneath shorts and it turned out my personal style actually was dressing boring.
The biggest difference is accessories. Accessories are the easiest way to make your outfits less boring. The safest accessories a man can wear are a watch or a ring.
If you’re looking for a watch good starter brands are:
If you’re looking for rings you can find rings at:
Neiman Marcus Last Call
Etsy is especially great. You just want to make sure when you’re looking at the composition of your accessories you’re probably going to want to be buying stainless steel, sterling silver or gold. Things like nickel alloys are probably going to irritate your skin and could leave marks.
Sunglasses are great accessories as well. Especially unique sunglasses. I used to have a pair of Illesteva sunglasses that regularly got complimented. Retrosuperfuture is another great option. Just try and find unique pieces that you like.
My old Illesteva sunglasses.
You can also wear necklaces, bracelets, and earrings. Some people are against earrings and think it looks juvenile or feminine. I disagree completely.
2. Higher Quality Pieces
Buy high quality pieces. You should be doing this regardless whether you’re trying to look unique or not.
They just look better.
It’s hard to put in words and you can’t tell over picture but in person higher quality pieces, due to things such as fabric and construction, just look better. They add a certain je nais se quois to an outfit.
The biggest example of this is leather.
Cheap leather is hot garbage compared to nicer leather. The creases on nicer leather not only look better but good leather also develops a patina over time. If you take care of good leather it can last you north of a decade as well.
I can’t even tell you if it’s better quality control or the they patterns they use when sewing but higher quality pieces just fit better.
Another example of where higher quality pieces may look better than mid-range or low end pieces are oxford cotton button downs.
Nicer oxford cotton button downs have collar rolls.
This is an example of a collar roll.
An oxford cotton button down from a brand like Brooks Brothers will have a collar roll but other brands will cut down on the collar fabric to save money and lose the collar roll on their button downs. Even J. Crew and Banana Republic aren’t doing great here.
It’s just a little extra thing most people won’t even cognitively perceive that will make your outfit stand out.
Another example are lapel rolls on a suit. On cheaper suits the lapel lays completely flat but on a nicer suit you’re going to get the same extra dimension as a collar roll on the suit lapel.
This is an example of a lapel roll.
Nicer suits also have a canvas or a half canvas that form around your body over time. You don’t get that with fused suits or polyester suits… they just, y’know, wrinkle.
Take proper care of your clothing as well. Look at the garment care label on the back of your clothing, inside of it, on the collar, wherever the hell it is, and follow it religiously.
You don’t want your clothing to shrink or fade. Please do it for your own good. It makes your clothing look better over time and last longer.
Another thing you can do is to start buying clothes that have interesting details. It’s a great way to spice things up without doing too much.
A good example of this is selvedge jeans. On selvedge jeans if you roll the cuff it has a self edge. This self edge is generally stitched with a color that contrasts with the rest of the jean. This adds a little detail that most people don’t usually have on their jeans and makes them stand out.
The self edge on a pair of jeans I own.
The pocket of this chambray shirt is another example of the type of clothing details you can incorporate into your wardrobe.
You can also start playing with textures. Texture is another good way to make things more interesting with your outfits. For example, instead of going with smooth leathers with your shoes or loafers you could do something like pebbled leather.
Some Ferragamo deal sleds with pebbled leather.
You can do things like wearing marled clothing or ribbed jumpers.
Another good way to play with texture is to wear matte finished accessories instead of glossy accessories. You’d actually be surprised. I find that some matte accessories, especially Sunglasses, actually look more luxurious than their glossy finished counterparts.
5. Exclusive Pieces
If you play video games, MMORPGs, or anything of that nature, exclusive pieces are like the rare items of style.
I’m not saying to wait for the next Supreme or Yeezy drop and buy pieces that you don’t even like.
I’m saying that when brands you already like are doing collabs with other brands you’re going to want to strongly consider buying some of those pieces.
Another good way to go about this if by looking at a brand’s seasonal items.
Brands generally have two types of items:
Core items: Manufactured and sold every season.
Seasonal items: Manufactured and sold just for that years season.
Seasonal items typically end up being limited.
One of my most complimented coats is an Alpha Industries limited edition parka. It’s also lasted me three years so far.
My Alpha Industries coat.
6. Patterns and Prints
Many many men are deathly afraid of patterns and prints.
It’s with good reason.
Patterns are not only extremely difficult to match but can also be unflattering to your body.
Vertical lines are going to make you look taller
Horizontal lines are going to make you look wider and
All over prints are going to make you look wider as well
So if you decide to add patterns to your wardrobe please try and keep that in mind.
Matching patterns is beyond the scope of this article but if you’re interested in doing that you can check out the book Dressing the Man by Alan Fussar.
Honestly you should check out that book anyway because it is one of the best books on men’s style ever made.
If you don’t care about matching patterns and just want to incorporate them into your wardrobe a good way to wear them is by having no other patterns in the rest of your outfit and wearing just one patterned piece (that’s not unflattering.)
Another form of print that you wouldn’t normally think of as a print are items like graphic t-shirts.
A lot of people are completely against branding and some people are completely against graphic t-shirts as well.
I’m not that person.
I think they’re completely fine as long as they are tastefully done.
I’d say the best way to start wearing graphic t-shirts is to wear band t-shirts. Especially vintage ones and ones you’ve gotten yourself from a tour or the band’s website.
Do not buy band t-shirts from RedBubble or Amazon.
Even Forever21 or HM is a better choice than RedBubble or Amazon. This is because most people selling band shirts on RedBubble and Amazon are usually not only using the cheapest shirts they can print on, but usually they’re also using lower resolution images and terrible screen printing solutions.
Oh yeah, and they’re taking money of the pocket of an artist you supposedly support.
In my opinion branding is fine too as long as it is tasteful, or if you’re into streetwear, it is hype.
Hype brands would be brands like:
The list goes on.
The point is, unless you want to, don’t just wear plain clothing. You can do so much better.
I didn’t really want to talk about silhouette because I felt like it was beyond the scope of this article. It’s also super easy to mess up and can be counterproductive, especially if you’re trying to look as sexually attractive as possible.
But if you’re trying to add something new to your wardrobe or try new things you can play around with your silhouette instead of just wearing clothes that fit perfectly.
You can start incorporating pieces that have a looser silhouette or are drapier. You can also look at the weight of fabrics and work with that.
The easiest way to go about this is to keep the general silhouette of the pieces of any given out that you are wearing the same.
So if your shirt is slim then you wear slim pants.
If your trousers are loose then wear a loose shirt.
I’m not saying this is the best way incorporate different silhouettes into your wardrobe, but it is the EASIEST way.
When it comes to shoes, GENERALLY speaking, looser silhouettes call for chunkier shoes.
It’s more of an art than a science and these are just ideas that you can start with and work around as you proceed with your style journey.
Use colors other than navy.
Use colors other than navy or black.
Use colors other than black or navy.
So many men are completely afraid of colors when they don’t have to be. So what you’re going to want to do is look at the book Color For Men by Carole Jackson. This book will give you a color palette that is flattering to your skin undertone.
From that point, once you know which colors are flattering to your skin undertone, you can start to add color to your outfits by wearing one color pieced and keeping the rest of your outfit neutral.
When it comes to matching colors you’re going to want to get a color wheel and create schemes using it. Just experimenting and trying things can work too.
The easiest color scheme you can use to match colors is by using complimentary colors (colors directly across from eachother on a color wheel.)
So, for example, let’s say you’re wearing a yellow hat. The complimentary color for yellow is purple. You could for example wear a purple sweater with your yellow hat.
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