How confident are you with your body?
When we think of body shame and physical insecurities, most people think of women. However, a 2016 Chapman University study found only 28% of men are very or extremely satisfied with their appearance and weight.
Is it any surprise though when we turn on our TVs or go to the theater and see men like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Chris Hemsworth? Believe it or not, their physique is not the average male body!
Dissatisfaction and insecurity lead to men trying to compensate with their clothes or presentation. Unwittingly, they commit one of these seven style mistakes.
I'm going to lay out exactly how men fall into these traps and explain how you can dodge them like Neo in The Matrix.
Let's kick things off with the top mistake I see men making!
Style Mistakes Men Make #1: Not Leveraging The Full Power Of Fragrances
The first style mistake men make? Gents, it's not having a strategy when applying a fragrance.
Yes, colognes are a great way to associate yourself with a pleasant, fresh aroma. But, too many men apply them incorrectly.
The two biggest mistakes men make are:
- Spraying cologne into the air and walking into the ‘cloud', missing most of it and ensuring it doesn't last long.
- Over-correcting and spraying too much in one area, making the scent overwhelming.
For the best way to apply cologne, check out my comprehensive guide here: How to apply cologne the right way
Style Mistakes Men Make #2: Buttoning the Bottom Button
Logic would tell you that if there are two buttons on a suit jacket, five buttons on a waistcoat and four buttons on a cardigan that you should button them all.
This is not the case in menswear as the bottom button in all of those instances is meant to remain undone.
Why? It dates back to King Edward VII, a man with a ‘robust' figure who couldn't fit into his waistcoat or suit jacket. Because they didn't fit well, he left the bottom button undone. As a king, he was a leading influencer of the time and others followed suit, starting a trend that remains a menswear custom today.
Here's a handy checklist for the buttons on suits, starting with the topmost button on whatever jacket style you are wearing. Remember:
3 buttons? Sometimes, Always, Never
2 buttons? Always, Never
1 button? Always
Style Mistakes Men Make #3: Being Scared Of Dark Colors
While there are plenty of times when it is completely acceptable to lighten the room with lighter-colored suits, jackets or shirts, there are many occasions where dark colors are more appropriate. Black tie events and more formal occasions typically call for more conservative dress, meaning a black tuxedo or a dark jacket.
Some men will avoid these events and dark colors at all costs if they have dandruff because of how obvious their struggle becomes as the night goes on and the flakes fall. You cannot go your whole life avoiding the slimming effects of dark colors though!
Instead of avoiding the issue, you need to face it head-on and treat it. Keeping your hair and scalp hydrated and using a product that doesn't include harmful chemicals is the best and quickest way to get you wearing dark colors again.
Get rid of dandruff with tried and trusted products: Best Dry Scalp Moisturizer for Men | Dry, Itchy Scalp Treatment | VITAMAN USA
Style Mistakes Men Make #4: Not Finding The Perfect Fit For You
It doesn't matter if you are overweight and trying to hide your problem areas or skinny and attempting to conceal it underneath a pile of clothes. The truth is, trying to hide reality under ill-fitting clothes only serves to draw attention to the issue.
When an overweight man wears baggy clothes, it only adds extra bulk to his frame, making him look bigger than he really is. When a skinny man wears overly large clothing to hide his frame, he only succeeds in making it seem as though he cannot fill out his clothing – effectively looking like a boy in men's clothes.
No matter if you feel you are overweight or underweight, wearing clothes that are proportional and fit your frame is the best way to accentuate your best qualities instead of hiding what you feel are your worst.
I show you here how to dress for muscular, skinny and large men's body shapes.
Style Mistakes Men Make #5: Buying “Goal” Clothing
You have set your weight loss goal, picked out your workout plan, and bought all the groceries for the meal plan, you are doing everything right…until you go shopping for new clothing.
A lot of men will buy “goal jeans”: a pair of denim that is too tight at the time that they buy them, but they think will fit perfectly once they reach their goal weight.
Unfortunately, this sets men up for failure. They may not make their goal weight and body shapes can change in unpredictable ways as they shed the pounds.
When you are buying new clothing, always buy what fits you perfectly in the moment. If you have to buy more later because you lose weight, that will be money you are excited to spend as a reward for your hard work. If you guy “goal jeans” but never reach the goal, that pair of denim just serves as a reminder of what didn't work for you.
Style Mistakes Men Make #6: Copying The Wrong Style For You
When a man is trying to find his look or is unsure where to begin finding his own sense of style, where do they look? It is only natural that they turn to movie stars, style icons and influencers. Men start out by emulating the looks of celebrities with a similar body shape, hair and look that resonates with them. A natural progression begins to take place where a man learns what works for him and what doesn't.
On occasion though, a guy can start to love a look even if it isn't his. Nothing can tank a man's style more than trying to emulate the look of someone who doesn't look like him and has a totally different sense of style. Instead of a personal style perfect for him and his personality which can be worn with confidence, the man ends up wearing a costume.
Embrace trial and error. No guy will nail their style the first time, it's a process of constant experimentation and refinement. Even with years of experience, I am still trying new things and exploring new aspects of men's style.
Style Mistakes Men Make #7: Hiding Your Face
There are plenty of ways that men have attempted to cover up insecurities they have with their face. Tricks include growing a beard to cover acne and wearing glasses to hide heavy bags under his eyes.
The truth is, skin problems will transfer to the hair growing out of it. Oily skin which causes flakiness and acne can cause a beard to also be oily and flaky.
There is only one way to fix a problem like this and that is to treat it, face it head-on. A solid skincare routine involving cleanser, exfoliating and moisturizer is imperative to keeping your face healthy.
Keep your skin looking its best with this skincare kit: VITAMAN's Essential Skincare Kit.
There are countless insecurities that men face every day, and so many guides to men's style and health that it can be difficult to remember everything when you are starting out. Whether you are buying clothing or getting ready in the morning, ask yourself this one question:
“Am I trying to hide a flaw, or am I trying to accentuate my best attributes?”
The former will often lead to making one of the above style mistakes. The latter will keep you stylish and fresh throughout the day.
David A. Frederick, Gaganjyot Sandhu, Patrick J. Morse, Viren Swami. 2016. “Correlates of appearance and weight satisfaction in a U.S. National Sample: Personality, attachment style, television viewing, self-esteem, and life satisfaction” Body Image. Volume 17, Pages 191-203. Link