1. Hair product can tend to make your forehead shiny, so wash your face after application to avoid that lacquered look.
2. If the weather is foul, and the party you’re going to isn’t dressy, try wearing a dark wash, slimmer cut pair of jeans with rugged boots. You can even roll your jeans up neatly as seen here:
3. Be prepared for the occasional host who asks guests to remove shoes at the door by wearing dress socks that are in good repair – you could even try a pair of red or green ones (not both!) for subtly festive flavor. I like these which are on sale from J. Crew.
4. Do keep your facial hair trimmed for holiday festivities. The only people allowed to have big furry beards are Santa and Randy Moss. When your facial hair brings to mind a certain fake beard from Jackass: Number Two…that’s a party fail.
5. Make sure your hair isn’t greasy on the day of the party. You should be looking slick…your hair, not so much. If you’re unsure if it looks dirty or not, ask a female friend whom you trust to be straight with you.
6. If you wear cologne, spritz once (or twice max) on your neck, then put the bottle down. While it’s true that in the wild animals are attracted to each other based on smell, less is more when it comes to people.
7. No matter how festive you’re feeling, don’t wear any decorative ties, sweaters, etc. with things like reindeer or Santa on them. See #2 for how to add a dash of holiday spirit. If you absolutely cannot do without novelty clothing items, put them on a patient friend, like Robert.
8. If you tend to have an everyday uniform like jeans and a t-shirt with a button-down thrown over it, try thinking outside the box for casual party wear. Pair one of your cool graphic t-shirts (no sports team tees please!) with a military cardigan and a nicely fitted pair of dark jeans.
9. If you’re going to a party that calls for “black-tie optional”, and you don’t own a tux, instead of renting one that surely won’t fit right, another “option” would be to wear a black, navy or dark grey suit with a white shirt and a dark either plain or patterned tie.
10. If you wear glasses, make sure the lenses are clean. Ladies want to see your handsome eyes, not the smudges on your glasses.
Many of my recent conversations with guys about menswear have turned to what to wear on your feet in sloppy winter weather. If you have nice shoes but are worried the slush/salt/rogue gifts from the neighborhood dogs lurking in the snow are going to ruin your gear, consider a pair of overshoes. Companies like Sierra Trading Post and Neos make boots that go over any kind of footwear you’re wearing without having to pull and stretch on rubber like those creepy galoshes from back in the day. They’re waterproof, warm and have high traction on the soles so you stay upright at all times. My favorites are the Explorers
from Neos and the New England All-Season Overboots from Sierra Trading Post.
If you’re looking for something a little more streamlined, check out the Men’s Executive Overshoe from Tingley.
They aren’t insulated, but they’ll keep you dry and standing on your feet instead of your bottom. You gotta love the names companies give for men’s shoes…”Uptowner” and “Executive” — how subtle!
And if you’re just looking for rainwear that’s not obnoxiously ugly, I am very into Tretorn’s rain boots. I like both the green for a downtown look and the charcoal for something more conservative, or “uptown,” if you will.
So there you have it, my first post. Welcome, and please come back soon for more musings on men’s styling!