Skipping Breakfast: From dud to dandy: How to dress like a gentleman

Scout Hardin mug 2

Scout Hardin

So you want to dress well. Maybe you didn’t pay much attention to personal style before you went to college. Heck, maybe your mom bought — or still buys — all your clothes. Follow these simple steps, and before long you will be the best-dressed man on campus.

Rule #1: Give a damn

The most crucial step in your journey to good style is deciding you want to dress respectably. Unless you’re Rhett Butler, start caring. Do a little soul searching to figure out what you like. Don’t feel alone if you have zero sense of style. Many men struggle with the art of looking effortlessly stylish, but allow me to let you in on a little secret: looking fashionable isn’t effortless. It takes time, thought and dedication. Simply deciding to stop wearing hoodies and graphic tees every day puts you on the right track.

Rule #2: Fit comes first

What sets you apart from the blokes on the cover of GQ other than fame? Their clothes fit them well. Most men wear clothes at least one or two sizes too big for them. I’m not saying your button-downs should split at the seams; I’m saying your closet should contain clothes that don’t swallow you. Know your body type. You can’t help how tall or short you are, but paying closer attention to fit or even investing in a good tailor will transform how you appear in your clothes.

Rule #3: Invest in simple staples

You don’t need to add all sorts of bells and whistles to look suave. In fact, overdoing your look can take you from debonair to dud in a heartbeat. The look we’re going for is understated elegance. Invest in classic pieces. Buy your first proper suit, one that will be versatile enough to sport at weddings, interviews, work and any other occasion that might call for more formal wear.

Buy a good pair of jeans; they’ll be one of your most worn items. Try pairing them with your suit jacket, a dress shirt and a sweater to heighten your look. Dark indigo is slimming and always in style. 

For smaller details, treat yourself and purchase a go-anywhere-with-anything watch.

Rule #4: Keep your brogues bright

Polished shoes make any ensemble look fresh. Have a pair a trainers you’ve worn since high school? Time to break up and move on to something a bit more mature. Oxfords are a respectable choice for every man. There are lots of shoes out there, so stop wearing sneakers with everything.

Change comes from taking action. Don’t just read about how to look good; get out there and experiment! Style doesn’t come overnight, but it’s worth the extra effort. Give mom her notice; it’s time to put on your big boy pants. Start dressing like the dapper man you know you are.