Do clothes really make the man? The answer to that question often depends on who you ask. But whether your wardrobe needs a serious makeover or you’re trying to figure out your true sartorial self, you might be unsure where to look for men’s fashion inspiration. Thankfully, with a few good starting points, you’ll be on your way to constructing your signature looks, whether it’s for on the job, date night or men’s streetwear fashion.
Start by Looking in the Mirror
“Know thyself,” so says the ancient Greek aphorism. And when you’re figuring out your personal fashion sense, that’s the best place to start. Consider your physical characteristics before you buy a single stitch of clothing. Honestly assess your height and weight and use them as guidelines for shopping — they’ll help you find your proper sizes and give you a good idea of what looks best on you. And regardless of your numbers, stay positive and remember that theydo not define your masculinity or your self-worth.
Begin with your hair, eye and skin color to find the shades that look best on you. There’s no hard and fast rule to this, but you may find that if you’re a blond man with pale skin such as singer-songwriter Beck, too much black could possibly overwhelm your frame. In contrast, darker-skinned men such as Aloe Blacc can get away with a palette of bolder and darker shades. However, your mileage may vary and breaking fashion rules could work in your favor. And don’t be afraid to try traditionally “feminine” tones, such as pink or purple. As culture changes with time, so do gender expectations — you may be surprised to know, for example, that in the early 1900s, the blue that’s now associated with boys was considered a girl’s hue.
The Right Clothes for the Right Occasions
Different venues call for different clothes. That seems to be a common-sense axiom, but with today’s culture the lines are easily blurred. For instance, a pair of dark skinny jeans, a sweater in a solid tone, a patterned casual button-up shirt and a nice pair of chukka boots could be appropriate work wear for a tech startup but not for a bank. This is where knowing your venue and research are important. Of course, you’ve got a lot more leeway when it comes to men’s streetwear fashion— whether you take your cues from hip-hop culture, the dapper aesthetic, old-school punk or something else that inspires you, the keys are purchasing good quality clothes, making fit a priority and wearing them with confidence.
Some Final Thoughts
No matter if you’re into men’s streetwear fashion, sophisticated slim fit suits, the DIY punk aesthetic or something else, knowing what looks good on your frame and with your skin, eye and hair colors is a necessary start. Research stores ahead of time if you’re shorter or heavier than the average guy. And since you don’t know what works unless you experiment, make sure you’re not hurried and you have plenty of time to browse when you go shopping. Try possible items on and make a truthful assessment when you look in the mirror. And most of all, whatever you wear, being yourself is the most vital thing of all.