Tag Archives: fashion

How to Look as Cool as Your Favorite Movie Character for Less!

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by the folks at Sunglass Warehouse.

Many of us spend a good amount of time watching movies. Sometimes the humor is what keeps us entertained, like in The Hangover. Sometimes its the genuine badassness that hooks us like in Scarface.  From Bradley Cooper to Al Pacino to Zach Galifinakis and the Blues Brothers, classic movie characters often come with classic style.

While we can’t typically afford the threads that our favorite actors wear on the silver screen, we can get their look for less.

For those of us on a budget (like me) trying to look like these iconic characters can be tough. That’s where Sunglass Warehouse helps us out! You can find a variety of styles inspired from some of the styles in these classic guy movies.

Personally, aviator sunglasses have long been a favorite Spring and Summer style staple for me but I like to switch it up every now and then. After all, style is all about personal expression and how often do we always feel the same?  Right?!

Take a look below to see how you can have your favorite sunglass looks for less.

Click on the image to buy the recommended alternative from Sunglass Warehouse.

 

 

Fall is (Almost) Here!

fall bench

I know that for a lot of us we’ve been braving some pretty hot and humid summer days the past few months.  And if you’re like me your patience is starting to wear very thin. Thankfully, fall is almost here!

A few days ago NYC hit a heat record, with a 90+ day in September.  It’s time for this to all be over my friends!  I have always really loved the moderate temps in both the fall and spring.  With fall comes the excitement to bust out layers and boots which, in my opinion, offers the best fashion out there. And who doesn’t love a nice cardigan?!

In an effort to relish in the upcoming hopefully chilly weather, I’ve been shopping.  I’ve taken some time to really up my game in the MANE MAN Shop.  There are some great new threads to choose from as well as some more stuff for home so feel free to check it out!

 

Disclosure: Please note that I do receive a commission on any items purchased through the shop located at manemanblog.nmrkt.com.

A Guys Night Out with Rockport

One of the hardest things (see: #firstworldproblems) about going out and socializing, is for me, deciding what to wear.  As a guy, we often have limited options to choose from and have less acceptability in attending a function wearing a glorified t-shirt.

That’s why it’s always fun to take advantage of a guy’s night out every once in a while, but that’s no excuse to look like a slob (especially in a place like New York City).  One of the things I actually like most about style here is how everyone manages to have this  cool work/sleek/stylish/comfortable wardrobe that seamlessly transitions from days at the office to happy hours to date nights.  I guess it’s because we’re often running right from one event to the other.  I’m not entirely sure that’s a good thing, but that’s neither here nor there.

I’ve found the perfect style combination for me that usually includes dark jeans, a button up shirt, some chukkas and a nice jacket. Substitute a blazer or cardigan for the jacket and a polo for the button-up shirt and you pretty much have what I wear 90% of the time.  Yes, sadly I’m not that inventive.  I do try and switch up colors a bit from time to time, however.

guys night out

If you can’t tell, I’m all about comfort and function.  If a shirt hugs just a little too tight I’ll toss/donate it.  If my shoes hurt my feet I’ll never wear them.   That’s one of the reasons why I’m really glad to have partnered with Rockport shoes for this post. Their Parker Hill Desert Boot comes with ADIPRENE technology which basically means you feel like you’re wearing tennis shoes/sneakers but with the look of a boot. They are just awesome.

So for me, guys night out can consist of drinks, likely some carb-heavy food and maybe a movie.  Sometimes that plan devolves into  a variety of things, but hey I guess that’s one of the down upsides of living in the Big Apple with so many options.

That’s a quick look at my guys’ night out style.  Check back here on the blog soon with a really special offer from Rockport. I promise you won’t be disappointed!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post by Rockport shoes.

A Good Ol Fashion Rant

It’s very appropriate that this post is coming to you in the middle of Fashion Week because I’ve been holding on to this one for a while. Let’s go down the rabbit hole, shall we?

I AM TIRED WITH FASHION’S OBSESSION WITH VANITY. Now, I know what you’re probably thinking, “isn’t fashion all about looking good and well…vanity?” Well, yeah. But I’m not upset about looking good. It’s the vanity part that really gets me going.

If you shop at inexpensive big box stores or chains like (Old Navy, Gap, H&M, Banana Republic, etc…) then you’ve likely felt the pinch too, especially if you’re a dude and of a particular body type.

Vanity sizing, which I’ve written about before, is now firmly a big part of shopping for men. For guys like me, we have found ourselves having a harder time finding clothes that fit like they used to, especially amid America’s current obsession with “slim fit”.

So I’m going to say it now. Slim fit is not for everyone. But if you’re shopping at those big retail chains you probably wouldn’t know it judging by the racks of clothes staring at you in the face. Classic cuts like “regular” fit or “straight” fit are increasingly more difficult to find so sometimes I find myself having to choose slim fit but a size up, and this is no fun.

Some guys have beer guts, athletic legs and sizable backsides. And some guys don’t. This post isn’t a tirade against super slim men, not in the slightest. I’m just a little concerned.

I know that this territory of grossly inaccurate sizing and inability to find clothing that works for you has long been a female phenomenon/problem. Trust me, that’s not lost on me. Now I’m finding myself, along with a bunch of other dudes, I’m sure, right in the same boat. And it’s annoying…really annoying.

Product Review: Mission Belt Co.

Back in March 2014, I wrote a small feature on Mission Belt Co., a company that makes specially designed hole-less belts.  After being enthralled with the brand, I finally got one!

Not only does Mission Belt Co. provide cool, unique belts, they also use $1 from every belt sold to provide micro-lending through Kiva and help fight global hunger.

Recently, Mission Belt Co. just launched a few new summer inspired belts in bold colors and I had to get my hands on the purple one:

mission belt co.

One of the best-selling features of their belts, is that no piece has any holes.  None!  So if you’re in between sizes or feeling a little thinner after months of dedicated work outs then you just ratchet up the belt a bit.  There are no unsightly holes anywhere.

While I personally really dig my belt I have to say that the ratcheting sound definitely took some getting used to.  Admittedly, I was a little self-conscious my first couple of times using a public bathroom (which tend to be eerily quiet) because the sound is kind of unexpected.  Not loud, per se, but definitely unexpected.

If you’re like me, and Seeley Booth, then embracing this little style piece of rebellion in your otherwise basic or classic wardrobe, you probably won’t be disappointed. Belts are available in the Mission Belt Co. online store and range from about $26 to $40 each.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Mission Belt Co. and all the opinions listed herein are mine and mine alone.

What’s YOUR color?

What’s YOUR color? Everyone has one. Women have pretty much mastered the basics of style and if you ask most women the question, “what is YOUR color?” I have to believe that a sizable percentage will know.

When it comes to style, YOUR color isn’t necessarily your favorite, but more so the color that really captures you.

I can’t lie to you, I don’t think I wore anything outside of the blue/gray/black color spectrum until freshman year of college, hell, maybe even sophomore year. That’s because like most guys, I was scared of color. I’m glad to say I have attended dull color rehab and am doing much better these days, but there’s always the occasional gloomy outfit.

Imagine my surprise when I stepped out of morose color-comfort-zone and found that whenever I wear deep pinks or purples I get a lot of compliments. Imagine that!

What I’ve learned is, it’s really all about color balance. If you are lighter skinned with pinkish undertones, steely blues and bright greens might do the trick while if you’re like me, and have dark skin with yellow undertones, deep saturated pinks and purples might just be your ticket to getting noticed.  If you have olive-y skin then cooler dark colors usually work really well (ex. black).

Here are some examples:

whatsyourcolor-collection
Click image once to enlarge.

Now, it may take a little time to get used to straying from the color safety-line but it’s ok to toe it every so often. Stepping out of your color-comfort-zone will definitely get you noticed. Just make sure you’re ready for all the new positive attention.

4 Elements of the Perfect Outfit

In my previous post, How to Dress to Impress Without Trying too Hard, I discussed the 3 elements of style (color, pattern and texture) and I realized I had one glaring omission…FIT.

Any fashionisto/a worth their salt will tell you that fit might just be the single most important part of an outfit.  While styles change over eras, a well fitting shirt and pants will take any guy far in this world. Dressing well shows a sense of self-awareness, commitment to self care and a palpable sense of confidence.   These days, slim fit is everywhere and while slim or “fit” looking guys will likely fare well with the contemporary cuts, meatier gents should likely rely on more classic cuts in both formal and casual wear.  With the cooler seasons among us, layering makes it a bit easier to pack in these critical four style elements in one outfit.

To review, these are the four elements of style and examples of how to implement them:

  • Color (choose at least one non-neutral color to add character to your outfit; ie gray, black, olive & khaki don’t count)
  • Pattern (one element should have a distinctive visible pattern; think gingham, plaid, polka dots, stripes, etc.)
  • Texture (one element should feature a rich texture; think cashmere, wool, tweed, etc.
  • Fit (the perfect foundation for any outfit; body conscious fit is the single most important element)

But, how does one put all these rules together in one outfit?

4 Elements of Style
4 Elements of Style
  1. Burgundy knit tie from MIV Neck ties $12.95 (color)
  2. Traveler Spread Collar Slim Fit Patterned Dress Shirt $55 from Jos A Bank (pattern)
  3. Men’s Cashmere Sweater, V Neck $129.99 from LL Bean (texture)
  4. Dockers Signature Khaki D1 Slim-Fit Flat Front Pants $58.00 from Kohls (fit)
  5. Kenneth Cole Reaction High Pitch SU from Zappos.com $105.99 (texture)

 

Size DOES Matter

It’s an age-old question, does size really matter? Well, when it comes to fashion it certainly does.  But the key to looking your best often rests in knowing the numbers and how your favorite stores might be sizing you up in a really bad way.

Recently, I was fitted for a tux as I’m gearing up for a friend’s wedding and imagine my surprise when I tried on a jacket that was a couple of sizes smaller than my favorite blazer from H&M! Well, it turns out there’s this little concept called “vanity sizing” that has affected women for decades and has obviously spread to the men’s aisles.

Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about vanity sizing:

Vanity sizing, also known as size inflation refers to the phenomenon of ready-to-wear clothing of the same nominal size becoming bigger in physical size over time.

Basically, a true size 32 waist in, let’s say, 1950 likely now measures 34 or 36 inches in true circumference depending on the brand. That’s a big difference!  If you have found yourself wearing different sizes at your favorite big box stores (think Gap, H&M, Old Navy) then you’ve definitely fallen prey to vanity sizing. But make no mistake, vanity sizing is a problem among even the flashiest of brands too.

Image source: The Style Blog by Abram Sauer for Esquire
Image source: The Style Blog by Abram Sauer for Esquire

The good news is that it doesn’t matter all that much as long you pick clothing that actually fits for each respective store.  Trust me, women have been dealing with this for a while now.  But, some of you, like myself, may find it helpful to actually get measured (or measure yourself) from time to time so you know your true size.

There are some brands who demonstrate modest changes in true size while others flat-out lie by turning your true 40 inch waist into size 36 pants.  But in the end, it is key to always shop smart and know your true measurements. Who knows, it may even help keep your self-esteem from taking a deep plunge.

 

My Personal Style Evolution

rsz_12timeline1_original

If you also grew up in the 1990s then you know that the 80s were not the only terrible decade when it comes to fashion. Obviously these days we have our own challenges for which will look back on with contempt (ahem, skinny jeans), but hindsight is 20/20, right?

You may have read on my evolving style here on MANE MAN before but I had to admit that it is only recently that I have started to look at myself as someone who is even remotely interested in “fashion” and style. I have undergone a serious style evolution that includes rocking some pretty bright/bold colors from time to time which was not a big part of my younger years.

Many moons ago, in both middle and high school I was terribly afraid of color. And when I mean color, what I really mean is anything other than black or whatever shade of blue was popular at the time. During those teen years, it is especially difficult to fit in for everyone and picking the right clothes to wear often helps a lot. Thankfully, I sort of got by but at the time my style was all about being preppy and fitting in with the other kids in my class. I guess it sort of worked.

For me, I was (and still am) a bit of a prep. I have always liked classic looks and largely that still serves me well to this day. But, “classic” (read old) can also leave you looking a bit outdated if you don’t put your own personal sense style into every outfit. Otherwise you’ll end up looking like a store window mannequin and who wants that?!

For me, my change from un-styled fashion lemming to MANE MAN, the individual, has in large part, emerged due to my decision to embrace color. Just a few months ago I actually bought red pants…red pants! Who does that?! Well, I guess a lot of people do now a days, but there was a time when I wasn’t a part of that bunch.

Taking risks with color has helped me feel a bit more confident in my own sense of personal style which has helped me continue to take more risks. Remember the green blazer from a few weeks ago? I knew I might have looked like Tiger Woods at his Masters tournament when I wore it, but I did it anyway. I’m sure some people liked it while others thought I looked like an overgrown sweet pea, but you know what? I loved every second of wearing it. It helped me realize that my sense of style is not just about wearing what other people wear, but more about doing my style, my way. Style is all about being an individual in whatever big, or small, way that works for you. It’s about my continuing to take risks and feeling good in whatever I’m wearing whether that’s a green blazer, a hot pink guayabera-inspired shirt or an obnoxiously multicolored pair of slip on shoes. It will be interesting to see where this style evolution takes me next.

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Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Mount Gay Distilleries via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Mount Gay Distilleries.

How to Dress to Impress Without Trying too Hard

willsmith
Will Smith on the red carpet.

People think that looking good is all about buying the latest fashions and trends but for me, it’s all about re-inventing the classic in a new way.  I always try to pair something older, or less trendy, with something a little more fashion forward or risky and this is the key to my personal sense of style.  It takes time to develop that personal sense of style but it’s all about confidence and ultimately tasking some risks!

There are tons of fashion rules that guys often get confused about and they are ever changing. So how do you manage to always look great without looking like you’re trying too hard?  I ALWAYS come back what I like to call the fashion rule of 3.  COLOR, PATTERN, TEXTURE.  It’s that simple!

Each outfit should have a component of each. For instance, pair some khakis (flat-front, please) with a saturated oxford shirt and a patterned tie OR pair your favorite pair of jeans with a chunky cardigan and brightly colored chukkas…get it?

You can also combine two of the three elements in one item if you’d like.  Take the picture below for example.  This was taken at my recent birthday celebration.  I paired a dark pair of jeans with black chukka boots, a black dress shirt, a patterned wool knit tie (pattern and texture!) and a green blazer.   The elements themselves are basic pieces but when added together using the fashion rule of 3, you get something pretty special without looking like you’re trying too hard.  Take a look!

Birthday Suit 4-2013

How do you dress to impress without trying too hard?