POTW: The Perfect Blue Chambray Shirt

I was doing a pull for a client when I randomly stumbled on this indigo blue chambray shirt and I had to share it with you. It’s not often that a simple shirt like this blows me away, but this one was something special. It was the perfect shade of indigo blue, the buttons where a similar color to the shirt, so they blended in nicely. And the fit was really darn good. If you don’t already have one (or a few) of these in your closet, get one – or many!

Chambray Shirt Ashley Weston$45 – Topman Navy Wash Twill Casual Shirt 

This shirt will definitely not be available for too long so be sure to order yours if you’ve been wanting a chambray shirt for awhile now because it’s so tough to find one this good.

Best Ways to Wear

Chambray shirts look great year round. You can wear it dressed up with a sportcoat, dress it down with a bomber jacket, or wear it on its own with the sleeves rolled up and paired with some chinos or grey or black jeans.

IMG_0682

$149 – H&M Wool Blazer
$45 – Topman Navy Wash Twill Casual Shirt 
$198 – J. Brand Tyler Taper Fit in Seriously Black
$75 – Adidas Stan Smith Sneakers

Bomber Jacket with Chambray Shirt - Ashley Weston

$250 – Life After Denim Flight Jacket
$45 – Topman Navy Wash Twill Casual Shirt
$75 – Adidas Stan Smith Sneakers

Chambray Shirt - Ashley Weston

$70 – Levi’s 511 Slim Fit Jeans (in black stretch, nightshine, or beluga grey)
$75 – Adidas Stan Smith Sneakers
IWC Portugieser Automatic Watch

How To Clean Dirty Sneakers Tutorial

I’ve been getting a lot of emails and requests to do a video and article about how to clean your dirty sneakers so here it is. This method is for your canvas, leather, and knit/woven sneakers (like your Ultraboosts or Flyknits).

Tools Needed

Shoe Cleaning Tutorial Items Ashley WEston

$8 – Oral-B Toothbrush – Medium (2 ct.)
$6 – Mr. Clean Magic Eraser Cleaning Pads (8 ct.)
$10 – Jason Markk Premium Shoe Cleaning Brush – you’ll need this softer hog bristle brush if you’re cleaning premium leather or knit/woven surfaces (ex. Flyknits or Ultraboosts)
$7 – Sinland Microfiber Cleaning Cloth (6 ct.)
$16 – Jason Markk Essential Shoe Cleaning Kit (includes cleaning liquid and standard brush) – I personally love using JM’s cleaning solution and brush. I find it work’s perfectl and all his ingredients are specifically targeted to gently remove dirt from sneakers.
$9 – Seventh Generation Free & Clear Dish Liquid (2 ct.)
Instead of the cleaning liquid, you can use dish soap. Make sure its all-natural, which means it’s free from any dyes, fragrances and toxins so it won’t cause any possible yellowing.

Cleaning Just The Midsoles

If it’s just the midsoles that need to be cleaned:

  1. Dip a Magic Eraser sponge in water and then start rubbing the midsoles.

  2. For stubborn or textured areas where the dirt won’t budget – use a toothbrush and some Jason Markk cleaning solution or all-natural dish soap and scrub the area. The toothbrush’s tiny bristles should be able to remove most, if not all, of the dirt stuck in the porous areas.

  3. Wipe them down with the microfiber towel.

Cleaning the whole sneaker

1. Gather Supplies

You’re going to need a brush and some cleaning solution. If you’re cleaning premium leather or knit/mesh sneakers, then make sure to use a softer brush, usually made from hog bristles, like Jason Markk’s Premium Shoe Cleaning Brush. It’s important to be gentler on these delicate materials so they don’t get ruined.

2. Wipe Them Down

Give your sneakers a wipe down with a cotton or microfiber towel to remove any loose dirt on the surface. Paper towels also work, but they’re wasteful – hopefully you agree :).

3. Remove & Clean Laces

Remove the shoelaces if they’re dirty and/or the tongue needs to be cleaned. Be sure to wash your white shoelaces with a load of your whites (if you use bleach or not) on the hottest water setting and let them air dry.  For colored laces, you can add them to your colors while washing, preferably in cold water.

4. Scrub The Sneaks (duh)

Dip your brush in water, squirt some cleaning liquid on it, dip back in the water again, and then shake off any excess water. Start scrubbing the sneaker all over – midsole, upper and tongue (if necessary). You really want to work up a lather. You can always use a toothbrush for those hard to reach areas like on the tongue in the video above.

5. Wipe Them Down

Using your cotton or microfiber towel, wipe your sneaker to remove the foam/dirt. If you’re cleaning your Flyknits or Ultraboosts, you’ll want to use a dab and twist motion on the woven/knitted surface to soak up any moisture like I highlighted in the video above. That’ll ensure you don’t fray the material.

6. Let Them Dry

Now let the shoes air dry for a few hours, re-lace them and you’re good to go!

AskAW 19: Live From The Farm

New Live AskAW episodes every Sunday at 4pm PST! Have questions you’d like me to answer?

In order to be more organized and community-driven, please post your question in the comments of my latest #AskAW video and upvote the questions you’d like to see answered in the next video.
Link to the latest video here.

Top 4 Sneakers For 2017

I want to talk about the Top 4 sneakers for 2017. These are 4 sneakers I highly recommend if you’re looking to put together an intentional sneaker collection that’ll cover you for some of the different aspects of your life. For example, working out, traveling, or just needing an everyday, lifestyle sneaker.

4. Nike Flyknit Racer

This is a great athletic sneaker because it weighs practically nothing and the woven upper makes it very breathable. Also, these are a great lifestyle sneaker that you can wear with your casual clothes because the design is so minimal and it has a very sleek silhouette.

Flyknit Racer Ashley Weston

$150 – Nike Flyknit Racer (in Black/White or Black/Anthracite/Black)

3. Converse All Star & Jack Purcell

These are classics and super easy to wear year-round. Leather or canvas options are great – and always default to low-tops because they’re easier to wear than high-tops.

Converse All Star and Jack Purcell Ashley Weston

$80 – Converse Jack Purcell Tumbled Leather Low Top (in white and black)
$65 – Converse Jack Purcell Canvas Low Top (in white, navy, and black)
$65 – Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Leather Low Top (in white and black)
$50 – Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Low Top (in white, navy, and black)

2. Adidas UltraBoost

I love the minimal design of the UltraBoost. The knit upper makes it very breathable too. You can treat these as your everyday sneakers or make them your running/workout shoes because they’re super comfortable.

Adidas Ultra Boost Ashley Weston

$180 – Adidas UltraBoost

1. Adidas Stan Smith

This one will be on my list every year until something better can replace it.

These are a great lifestyle, everyday tennis shoe. Also, they’re not expensive and relatively easy to keep clean if you give them a wipe down every week or two and don’t go hiking in them. Remember, women look at your shoes for an indication of what type of man you are. Clean white shoes = this dude’s got his shit together.

Adidas Stan Smiths Ashley Weston

$75 – Adidas Stan Smith Shoes (with either the green or navy logo)

 

Notably absent in my list are basketball sneakers because those are for a very specific group of men out there who either play basketball or are crazy sneakerheads. Some guys can pull them off really well, while others end up looking immature and silly in them.

6 Tips To Be Better Looking

There’s a lot of misconceptions and confusion out there about what women find attractive in a man and how they define a “good looking” gentlemen.

Right off the bat, I want you to understand that none of these tips have anything to do with money or being physically attractive. So for all of you poor saps out there who like to use that as an excuse, it’s complete bullsh*t and really isn’t that high on the list for any quality woman.

6. Smile more and often

People are attracted to friendliness – it instantly makes you more approachable and likable.

Smile More 1 Ashley Weston

5. Stand up Straight

It opens your body up and makes you look confident, inviting, and your shoulders and chest look wider which women love because it signifies strength. Poor posture projects a message of lack of self esteem, which isn’t attractive to most women.

Good Posture Ashley Weston

4. Workout or be physically active

Keeping yourself healthy physically also keeps you in better mental shape. People will notice your demeanor and you keeping in decent shape. So get out and be active for at lest 30 minutes a day.

Work Out Ashley Weston

3. Have a proper grooming routine

Want to be more attractive? Smell and look clean. You just beat out 30% of other men right off the top. Check out my article about the top grooming mistakes men make.

Grooming Routine Ashley Weston

2. Choosing the right haircut & facial hair

I can’t tell you what a difference this can make on a man. The most important thing to consider in a haircut is your hair type and facial shape. Also, consider your facial hair. Some men look more masculine and mature with a beard or some scruff.

Hairstyle and Facial Hair Ashley Weston

1. Get your clothes fitted

Never underestimate the impact properly fitting clothing can have on your appearance. Your suits should be tailored, jeans hemmed, and you’re buying appropriate fitting shirts. Don’t give me that BS about trying to hide your gut or skinny frame with loose fitting clothing because trying to hide it makes it look worse.

Fitted Clothing Ashley Weston

POTW: Spring Ties, Pocket Squares and Tie Bars

Happy Spring! This week I wanted to show you some of my favorite Spring ties and pocket squares you can easily (and cheaply!) pick up to add some new life and personality into your current wardrobe. Accessories are a great way to add an element of fun and can help make your year round navy and charcoal suits and sportcoats more seasonally appropriate. 

Look 1

I love playing with color for Spring so I chose this pink polka dot tie which would look fantastic paired with your navy or charcoal suit.

POTW Spring Ties & Pocket Squares - The Tie Bar Ashley Weston

$55 – The Tie Bar Chambray Shirt
$19 – The Tie Bar ‘Nirvana Tie’ in Wild Pink
$15 – The Tie Bar Colored Tie Bar in Cornflower Blue
$10 – The Tie Bar Outpost Paisley Pocket Square in Royal Blue
$8 – The Tie Bar Wheel and Anchor Sock in Navy

Look 2

This lavender tie and floral pocket square combination instantly injects some fun into your year round suits. Pair with a light blue dress shirt (which you should already have!) and now you have a sharp, Spring outfit.

POTW Spring Ties & Pocket Squares - The Tie Bar Ashley Weston 1

$55 – The Tie Bar Pinpoint Solid Shirt in Light Blue
$19 – The Tie Bar Half Moon Floral Tie in Lilac
$10 – The Tie Bar Peninsula Floral Pocket Square in Lilac
$15 – The Tie Bar Brushed Silver Tie Bar

Look 3

If the other two options were too adventurous in terms of color, here are more subtle tie and pocket square combinations that will not only work for your suits, but also for your more casual outfits that involve a sportcoat or brown leather jacket. Complete with a white dress shirt, some dark wash jeans, and a pair of penny loafers.

POTW Spring Ties & Pocket Squares - The Tie Bar Ashley Weston 3

$55 – The Tie Bar Herringbone Non-Iron Shirt in White
$19 – The Tie Bar South Padre Geos Tie in Navy
$25 – The Tie Bar Scramble Silk Knit Tie in Light Blue
$19 – The Tie Bar Calico Chambray Tie in Soft Blue
$15 – The Tie Bar Colored Tie Bar in Peach
$15 – The Tie Bar Brushed Silver Tie Bar
$10 – The Tie Bar Solid Pocket Square with Border in Silver
$10 – The Tie Bar Chambray Pocket Square with Border in Light Blue

Top 10 Style Mistakes Men Make

Over the years, I’ve been witnessing men make the same style mistakes over and over again so I put together a list of the top mistakes I consistently see. I also have a free ebook about the 10 Most Overlooked Men’s Style Mistakes that are completely different from this list and that I’ve never seen discussed before.

10. Skinny jeans or ripped jeans.

Quickest way to look like you’re trying to dress like a teenager.

Ripped Skinny Jeans Ashley Weston

9. Wearing dress shirts untucked.

Dress shirts are designed with long tails so that they stay tucked into your pants. You should never wear them untucked. By all means wear casual collared shirts untucked, like an Oxford button down, but never with a suit or sport coat and only if the tails of the shirt hit mid crotch/mid butt.

Untucked Dress Shirts Ashley Weston

8. Too much jewelry.

When it comes to bracelets, earrings (never!), necklaces, rings – keep it simple. Don’t wear more than 2 items, although I prefer only one item, not including your wedding band if you’re married. Thumb and index rings especially make me shudder the most.

Too Much Jewelry Ashley Weston

7. Too many patterns or statement pieces in an outfit.

A lot of men associate being stylish with wearing a statement outfit or wearing a ton of patterns. This is far from true and ends up making you looking ridiculous. A good rule of thumb is to choose only one item in your outfit that is a statement piece or has a pattern to ensure you look stylish and put together at all times.

Patterns Ashley Weston

6. Wearing old, worn out belts.

If you have quality belts, they might need to be replaced every decade or two. If you’re wearing a belt to constantly hold up your pants, you need to get the waist of your pants taken in. Belts are a stopgap solution to the problem of your pants just not fitting properly.

Old Worn Out Belt Ashley Weston

5. Wearing square toed dress shoes – including square toed slip on loafers.

I constantly see these shoes worn with suits, trousers, and jeans. It’s a tacky, amature look and can make an otherwise sharp outfit look terrible. Just want to point out: the square-toed slip on loafers that I’m talking about are not the penny loafers or driving mocs I listed in my Top 4 Men’s Shoes For Spring article.

Square Toed Dress Shoes 1 Ashley Weston

4. Ties that are too wide for your body type.

I see a lot of thin to average built men wearing 3.5″ wide ties. It really makes you look skinnier than you are, which sends a message to people that you’re not professional and might be sloppy in other aspects of your life and work. Think of the ‘Messy Bed, Messy Head’ mentality here.

Ties That Are Too Wide Ashley Weston

3. Wearing unpressed or wrinkled clothes.

It’s sloppy as hell no matter what you’re wearing.

Wrinkled Clothing Ashley Weston

2. Pants or jeans that are too long and end up with fabric stacked around your ankle.

Again, I see this problem at least a handful of times a day. This looks really sloppy and ends up making you look disproportionate as the stacking visually makes your legs look shorter.

1. Not wearing properly fitted clothing.

This applies to suits, dress shirts, tees, pants, jackets and sweaters. You want clothing to fit your body shape and not leave you swimming in fabric or showing off your mammal toe or the bottom of your stomach.

Clothing That Doesn't Fit Well Ashley Weston

7 Awesome Conversation Starters That Don’t Suck

Being a great conversationalist can be challenging, but the hardest part and often overlooked is the way to get INTO a conversation in the first place. You’d never walk up to someone out of the blue and ask them “What’s happening”, you already know exactly what’s happening ‘cus you’re at the same f#$ckin place! It drives me nuts when I see articles and videos peddling horrible advice like this because I have struggled with this in the past.

I want to show you how to actually start a conversation and show you the best opening topics. The goal of any great conversation is to find common ground. So you just start fishing for it, basically.

7. “Do you know where the restroom/bar/food is?”

You just need a way into a conversation, so this is the easiest opening. From there, you can talk about how hard “X” was to find.

6. “So where are you from?”

This applies to someone if they don’t seem like they’re from around here, but if you’re not sure, then you can default to “Hey! Are you from around here?” Whatever they’re answer may be, you now can talk about where they’re from or the city you both live in.

5. “That looks good. What is that? Where did you get that?”

If they’re eating or drinking something – this a great way to start talking with someone.

4. “I really like X (something they’re wearing). Who makes it or where did you get it?”

Similar to #5. Everyone loves being complimented. It makes them instantly let their guard down and then you can follow up with one of the next few conversation starters.

3. “What was the best part of your day today?”

In any kind of setting, this is an opening that will get you remembered. It can catch someone off guard at first, but then they’ll think about what an interesting and pleasant question that was.

2. “What brought you here today/tonight/etc?”

If you’re at a bar or an event that’s not hosted by someone specifically, then this is a great question to find common ground.

1. “So how do you know the host?”

This is my go-to conversation opener. If you’re at an event or party, you can always use the host as an excuse to learn about the people there.