Jeans are a staple in your wardrobe, and despite being a casual item, they’re probably the most important pair of pants in your closet, outside of chinos. So obviously it’s critical that you’re wearing them the right way and giving them the consideration they deserve. Because they’re so important, if you’re wearing them incorrectly you can be doing yourself a huge disservice, especially in the eyes of the opposite sex. After you read this and check out the video, make sure you take a look at our Jeans Fit Guide and our Dark Wash Jeans primer for how to do it right!
\We see all kinds of bad jeans-wearing these days and the worst part is these mistakes are easy to fix! So, here are 6 ways you’re wearing your jeans wrong!
Obviously, it goes without saying that baggy jeans look awful. They aren’t flattering and just look sloppy. Baggy jeans only make slim guys look more skinny and bigger guys look more chubby. The right fit will be comfortable, so don’t think that you can get away with it because of comfort. Getting the right size and fit is a huge key, so make sure you’ve checked out our Jeans Fit Guide.
The right taper is important but overly tight is definitely really bad. It can be super unflattering especially if you don’t have a butt which most men don’t have. It also makes you look very juvenile if your jeans are way too tight and it’s definitely not professional, regardless of how casual your work environment may be.
Washes that are too light (very light blue or grey/white) or acid-washes are neither timeless nor versatile. They just make you look like you’re trying too hard to be trendy. We recommend keeping your jeans in a clean, dark wash or check out a few of our other recommendations for jean colors.
Distressed or Ripped Jeans
It’s a fine line between good and bad but for 95% of men over the age of 25, this just isn’t a good look. Like some of the lighter washes, it makes you look like a teenager/fuccboi who is trying hard to be trendy. Sometimes a little bit of distressing is fine, but again only if you’re under the age of 25.
Such a bad look and such an easy fit. Find the right length or got to a tailor, it’s a simple $5-10 fix. It just looks sloppy and can ruin an otherwise good fit. Also, it can make you look really short; not flattering at all.
Yikes, this is super unattractive. Find the right fit in the seat – proper rise (the length from the bottom of the crotch to the top of the waistband) is crucial. Here’s a handy reference image for what the “rise” is. The key is to not have a ton of excess fabric in the booty area. You want a trim fit but not overly tight.
Denim is the absolute foundation of your pants rotation and the importance of stylish, well-fitting denim can’t be overstated. It’s so important, in fact, that we’ve covered it multiple times before, in our Dark Wash Jeans Essentials piece and in our Jeans Fit Guide. So, before you go any further, make sure you check those out, the basics we cover in those articles are critical in knowing what to look for in your denim.
These days jeans come in a huge range of price points and while many people can get snobby about their jeans, we believe that great denim doesn’t have to be expensive. The picks we have below offer you everything you need at an affordable price. One thing to remember, when it comes to denim colors focus on dark washes first, so dark indigo and black, and then grey and medium blue.
Banana Republic offers a range of fits and styles but we really their basic version the most. At just under $100 the quality is great and there are fits for every body type. Just a solid, all-around classic pair of denim.
We’ve always been big fans of Uniqlo’s budget-friendly style. They always do clean and versatile very well and like their awesome chinos, their jeans are no exception. They’ve got two great fits, and we love the black jeans they have in stores and online right now.
You can’ talk great denim without talking about Levis, they still make awesome jeans. We recommend the 511 Slim Fit and the 514 Straight Fit as the two to look for. (The 513 slim straight is also a nice in-between option too.) Stick to the dark and medium wash indigo or their black and grey options. At around $50-$60 these are classic and affordable, you can’t go wrong.
It’s peak swim trunk season and we want to help you look your most stylish at the pool or beach. There are a ton of different styles out there, but generally-speaking we always lean towards swimwear that can also look like you’re wearing shorts. That way you look great in and out of the pool.
Fit-wise, as we talked about in our swim trunk fit guide, you want to look for inseams around 5″ as they will hit around mid-thigh for most men. We also recommend versions that have fabric on the thicker/stiffer side as they’ll look less clingy and keep their shape. All our picks are below and Ashley chose her favorites at several different price points.
Here are our picks for the best men’s swim trunks for 2019!
These floral print shorts have a 5″ inseam and come in a cotton blend, The fabric is going to be on the thinner side but that’s okay because the design is of a more runner-style with the elastic waistband and drawstring. Ashley chose this because this is a design that will hide any fabric sticking to you when you get out of the pool. We love a fun pattern and the price is very affordable. They also come in a range of solid colors too.
Clean, simple and ready for anything, we love these basic swim trunks from Hill City thanks to their high-quality material and minimal design. They’ve got a comfortable drawstring waist and handy pockets that will keep them looking sharp enough to be worn outside of the beach or pool. The 6″ inseam is a nice middle-ground for guys of any height and they come in a range of basic colors.
We love this retro-inspired print and the zip fly and snap closure style. It really does look like a pair of shorts and will have you looking sharp in and out of the water, that’s why this style of trunks are our favorite. The polyester material is durable and a little bit stiff so they will lay nicely against the body with a trim fit.
Another classic, minimal design, these trunks from Saturdays feature a fixed-waist boardshort design and a 6.5″ inseam with a nice trim fit. We loved the streamlined design and very minimal branding. The shorts also feature very nice, thick material with a bit of stretch for comfort and movement in and out of the water.
We’re huge fans of the shorts from Onia, a luxury swimwear company from New York. They feature a really sharp and summery blue color with just a hint of pattern. This pair of shorts comes in a nylon blend that’s nice and thick but with a hint of stretch so it will lay flat against the body. We like this version with a 5″ inseam best but there’s a 7.5″ inseam version for you taller guys too. It has two front pockets and a handy rear pocket plus a thin mesh lining. The snap closure and zip fly meet a fixed waistband in the front but the back portion of the waist has some elastic for added comfort, a really cool feature. As with anything you invest in, these shorts will last you a long time.
Orelebar Brown is another luxury swimwear brand and they’re known for their retro prints and photo print shorts. We loved this retro-style version because it’s got a fun pop but it’s not overwhelming. The quality is really excellent and the material is both durable and stretchy but also very comfortable. They have a snap waist and zip fly and a nice 5.5″ inseam that’s perfect for a range of heights. The design also features adjustable waist tabs, a very cool feature that not only gives you a precise fit but is s a nice detail you don’t normally see on swim trunks.
That’s right, it’s t-shirt time again! As we’ve discussed in the past, t-shirts are a critical essential wardrobe item, no matter what time of year it is. You can wear them on their own, layer them and wear them casually or dressed up. Now that it has warmed up it’s the perfect time for us to share all of our favorite picks for The Best Budget-Friendly T-Shirts For 2019!
We didn’t really love the overall fit as it was quite roomy in the body and sleeves but for those of you broader guys or those who carry a little bit more room around the middle, this would probably a great option for you.
At almost $18 we weren’t fans of the expensive price and firmly believe that t-shirts aren’t really something men should spend a lot on. The fit was quite tight around the middle and almost tapered in the body, so not the best fit, even for tall, slim guys. Fabric-wise, it had a weird stretch composition that we didn’t like and, overall, this was our least favorite of the bunch.
Another fairly expensive option, we did think that this option had a pretty good fit, despite a few issues with the sleeve width. If you’re a more athletic guy with bigger arms this would probably be a great option for you.
Building a stylish, versatile wardrobe starts with a solid foundation, and with shirts, you want to find simple, versatile options that are timeless and go with everything. Don’t be afraid to buy multiple colors of the same shirt to take out over-thinking about wardrobe. These are the five essentials shirts that every man should own!
Don’t forget to check out our shirt Fit Guides for more info.
1. White dress shirt
Simple, timeless and will go with everything. Every man should have a few crisp white dress shirts in his closet. Wear with everything from a suit to jeans.
In this article and video, I wanted to show you some of my favorite boots and shoes for this Fall & Winter. If you missed my big men’s Fall & Winter Essentials series, you should definitely check that out first, since this is more of a supplement to that instead of the other way around.
Although you can certainly go with leather boots, I am a huge fan of these suede ones by Allen Edmonds. Everything from the superior construction, to the neutral taupe grey color, which I’ll often use in place of black or brown, easily makes this boot a winner in my eyes.
Another favorite of mine are these suede chukkas (aka desert boots) which lend a very Autumn feel to any outfit. Again, just like with the boots I mentioned before, you can certainly go with regular leather Chukka boots, as well. But I love these, specifically because they have a slim profile and a comfortable crepe sole which will feel like you’re wearing sneakers. Pair them with jeans or chinos for a put-together casual look.
Outside of white sneakers, grey is a Fall favorite of mine because it’s another neutral color that compliments the darker, more jewel-toned colors you’ll be wearing this season. You can go with suede, leather, or a fabric material, but just make sure to keep the design simple like these ones.
There’s only a few weeks of Winter left, so pretty soon we’re all going to have to start thinking about transitioning to our Spring wardrobe. So in addition to your year-round Men’s Essential staples that are already in your closet, Jordan O’Brien from The Gentlemans Cove and I each came up with a list of 10 Spring Essentials that every man should own.
My Top 10 Men’s Spring Essentials
1. Lightweight, Spring Suit
Whether you go with a linen, cotton, seersucker, or lightweight wool suit, these options will make a statement and keep you cool throughout the Spring and Summer months.
These lightweight blazers are perfect for casual Fridays at work or heading to lunch or dinner with friends. They’re a great way to insert a stylish statement while keeping cool. Linen will wrinkle a bit, but that’s part of its character so embrace it.
I love gingham shirts for the Spring because they can be worn dressed up with a suit or blazer or dressed down on their own or underneath a sweater. I included some great lavender, navy, and light grey gingham options below.
There’s no other brand that I love more than The Tie Bar. The quality, construction, and color/pattern choice can’t be beat by any other brand. Like I’ve always said, they’re not paying me to say this.
Polo shirts instantly make an outfit look more put together and Spring is the perfect time to start wearing them. I like John Varvatos, but be careful if you’re not in shape or have erect nipples because their silkier shirts will highlight these areas. The fit on Theory and Fred Perry polos is excellent and H&M is my go-to when I’m more price-conscious. You’ll need to replace those roughly every 8 weeks though due to fading.
Not only do short sleeve button-up shirts look stylish, but every man (regardless of age or body type) can wear these. There’s currently so many great options from J.Crew and come March/April, Topman will have an equally great selection.
I’ve maintained in some of my other videos and articles that you should save your suede for Spring. Well, it’s time to break out those items. I love the options below – you can choose from navy, light grey, and brown suede jackets. The A.P.C. jacket is a BIFL piece and will never go out of style.
Finally we’re entering ankle season, which means penny loafers can finally be worn. I love Ferragamo’s loafers (I got a pair for my fiance Dorian 2 or 3 years ago) and they’re totally worth the price because they definitely hold up and still look great after years and years of wear.
Suede monkstraps, whether you get a dark brown, grey, or navy pair, can just take an outfit to another level. It’s such a stylish touch to any outfit and can be worn with a suit, chinos, or jeans. Make sure to Scotch Guard them before you wear them for the first time – always gotta protect your suede items!
Chinos should only be worn in Spring, Summer, and early Fall and that’s it. They’re a great alternative for those days when you don’t feel like wearing jeans and when you want to just feel cool and comfortable.
Whether you need some extra sun protection or want to look stylish while staying cool, straw hats are super breathable and lightweight. Every year I get J.Crew’s panama hat, but it only lasts the season before it starts to fall apart. I’m currently eyeing Loro Piana, Brooks Brothers and Stetson’s hats because I know I can count on the quality and construction.
I like long sleeve henleys when they’re worn as a layering piece, so underneath a casual button down shirt paired with some dark wash jeans and boots or sneakers. If you’re a slim or wider gentleman, I highly advise against wearing henleys on their own because they emphasize your body size even more (and not in a good way).
If you’re new to wearing denim jackets, I suggest going with a black or dark grey version because it’ll be a lot easier to wear, especially if you wear jeans a lot because you don’t want to look like you’re wearing a Canadian tuxedo.
Chino pants should be a staple in every man’s wardrobe. They are among the most versatile of men’s pants—they look great with a t-shirt, a sweater and button-down, or can be dressed up for a business casual event. They’re the perfect alternative to jeans since they are more comfortable and breathe easier. This is especially true in warmer weather due to the soft, worn-in cotton twill fabric that breathes easier than denim. And when you want to inject some color into your wardrobe, chinos provide an excellent avenue for this.
The Chino Pants Rules Most Guys Break
I see a boatload of guys making the following mistakes, so I want you to be aware of them:
Do not wear or own black chino pants. You’ll look like a waiter or valet guy.
Chinos are not dress pants or trousers. They’re the middle ground between casual and formal and should not be worn for anything above a business casual event.
Chinos should be worn with a quarter or no break. They can even be worn at ankle length in some cases, but never, ever longer than a quarter break.
Chino pants do not have extra pockets on the legs, hammer loops, stitching, etc. Those aren’t chinos, no matter what their name says.
Don’t wear pleated chinos. See the pleats section below for an explanation of why you should never wear them.
Pressed creases on the legs are the devil’s work. Don’t ever buy them like this or add them yourself.
The same goes for pre-cuffed hems. Don’t wear them, please. You can roll the cuff later on, but don’t buy the ones that come pre-cuffed.
To see more style mistakes that men make and how to fix them, click here.
What are Chinos?
The word “chino” means “toasted” and is derived from Latin American Spanish. Chino pants are named after the cotton twill fabric they’re constructed from, often called Chino Cloth. Another distinguishing characteristic is that chino pants will also usually have side-loading pockets, which are different than the traditional front or top-loading pockets as traditionally found on jeans.
Khaki vs Chino
In the most simple terms possible: Khaki is a shade of brown. Chino is a type of pants and called this because they’re usually made from Chino cloth.
The original khaki (light brown) is the traditional and most popular color, but chinos are come in many shades. See my color preferences for men below.
I don’t care how old or young you are or what your body type is – whether you’re thin or a larger guy, you should NEVER, EVER have pleated chino pants. Honestly, I f*#@%ing hate them because they’re so unnecessary and are unflattering on every guy. I’ll be the first to dance on their grave if they ever completely go away. I’ve never seen a guy look good while wearing them – ever.
To Cuff & Crease or Not
You can, and sometimes should, cuff or roll up chino pants. But don’t ever buy a pair of chinos that are pre-cuffed. It’ll be very hard to get that crease out and the hem will likely be very thick, which won’t look that great.
As for creasing the front the of leg, if you’re looking at a pair of chinos that’s creased like this, run for the hills! They should never be creased like dress pants because… repeat after me: They’re not dress pants.
What colors should you get?
You should at least have two colors of chinos because they’ll pair well with all the other items in your Essential Wardrobe. A quick note about colors: Whatever you do, make sure the colors you choose are not too shiny or glossy looking. You’ll know it when you see it. You want a more matte finish to your chinos.
Sand – I prefer this lighter brown/tan color than the darker, flatter khaki color. Some brands will call sand colored pants khaki, so just go for lighter brown colors regardless of what the brand calls them. The model in the image at the top of this article is wearing, what I’d consider, the perfect sand color. Shoot for something similar.
Navy – Whatever you do, just don’t get such a dark navy that it looks black. That’s a big no-no. The navy in my first “Best Ways To Wear” image below is what I’m talking about.
If you already own these colors and want to add more, then go for gray/charcoal or an olive color. If you want to try other colors, just make sure you understand what colors work best with your skin tone.
The Best Chino Pants For Your Body Type
Slim or Regular Build
You’ll want to get a “Slim” fit chino pant that will hug the thighs, knees, and calves while tapering down from your knee to ankle.
A lot of my slim & regular built clients initially believe this style will make them look too skinny. This couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s just that they’re used to wearing super baggier clothes to try and hide their slimness, which, coincidentally, just makes them look slimmer. A proper fitting pair of chino pants just looks right, regardless of your build, and doesn’t make you look one way or another – I promise.
Determining the ideal cut of your chinos depends on your physique.
If you’re a heftier guy or have larger thighs, I recommend a straight leg chino. It will give your body a trim, well-proportioned appearance. Slim fit chinos that taper slightly in the leg will make you look somewhat imbalanced—giving you a top-heavy look with skinny legs. Unless you’re on the shorter side, then a slight taper is OK, but under no other circumstances should your chinos be tapered.
The classic “Straight-Leg” fit is perfect for you. No matter a man’s build, but especially in your case, it’s all about balancing your body’s proportions to make sure your bottom half complements your upper half. So stick to this cut of chinos for your physique and you’ll look fantastic.
If you’re on a budget, all three of these are great. Each brand offers a few color choices, which are usually the typical khaki, navy, and gray. A great thing about Uniqlo is that they offer free hemming service so there’s no excuse to have your chinos be too long 🙂