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The Everyman Fashion Guide: The Suit

Updated on August 13, 2012

Every Man Looks Good in A Suit

It just depends on the suit and like most suits, we men are uncomfortable in them. Last I checked, most of us don’t work for Goldman Sachs and don’t want to put a tie on and be reminded of our food service or valet days. Don’t be afraid of the suit though, guys: you can still pull off a manly, modern look in a suit, and trust me. Women will respond to the suit, guys, so you might as well pick one up. But what is the optimal choice for you?

Perhaps a slim cut works for some guys. Open collars with no tie, or loose ties, or even bowties may look better on different builds. You really can’t mess up looking bad in a suit, and if you do, well, it’s your fault. Here are a few tips to keep you looking sharp when the occasion calls for it – and for the ladies maybe you can help your man look a little better than his typical go to of old polos and jeans.

- The smaller guys. If you’re below 5’5”, or let’s say sometimes you have to look up at women when you’re talking to them at the bar, you’re already behind the eight ball a little bit. Women like height, and most women want a man at least 4 inches taller than themselves. They like feeling small next to their man, according to a recent study by Polish anthropologist Dr Boguslaw Pawlowski. Now, that doesn’t mean small guys are left out of the game – just look at Peter Dinklage, the little person star of Game of Thrones. It’s just a little difficult to break in. Looking dapper is definitely a great starting point. So for a shorter guy, you want a cut that accentuates any features you have that make you look a little bigger. Make sure your sleeves are a little shorter than the standard cut – all the better to show off those Rolex watches, for sure, but they’ll also make you seem like you have longer arms. Going with shoes that give a little lift and definitely going for the loosened tie are huge advantages for the short guy. Just don’t fight the bigger guy over the little lady – or you might be in need for some serious watch repair.

- The plus-sized man. There’s no gentle way to say it: you’re chubby, fat or maybe you are just a little soft in the middle. That’s okay, most people are obese anyway and probably bigger than you, so don’t worry about it. You can still land a slammin’ hottie like Kevin James did on The King of Queens, but obviously you won’t do it with a slim cut suit. The first note to help you get from fat to pleasantly plump and gregarious gentle giant: never, ever be caught without a tie. Having an open collar with no tie is an invitation to look at your stomach. Go with a wider tie and an unbuttoned jacket that’s small in the shoulders; you don’t want to put attention on your paunch, but it obviously can’t be completely hidden. Be clean shaven, don’t be too tight around the neck (you don’t want turkey-neck going on) and wear some slimming black slacks. You’ll be looking suave in no time.

- The taller gentleman. Guess what? You’re 6’1” and up – congratulations, you’re taller than 85% on the planet. BOOM. You’re starting from an advantageous position already. The problem is your proportions are probably a little odd, and there’s such a fine line between looking like you’re wearing highwaters and looking like you’re in Kris Kross with big, baggy jeans. It’s difficult. You can pull of a slim cut pant probably, but then again you don’t want to look like a string bean. A skinny tie will work for sure, and a tight, more athletic cut in the jacket is perfect. The pants are anyone’s guess really: just try a few pairs on and find some pants just tight enough to look stylish without looking like a hipster, and you’re good to go.

Well, gentlemen, you’re all set: go forth and get your fashion on…but in a totally manly, way of course.

How to Figure Out a Man's Dress Shirt Size

Men's suit then and now, Regular Fit vs. Slim Fit
Men's suit then and now, Regular Fit vs. Slim Fit

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T-Shirt – The t-shirts has it’s underwear origin where it should be wore casually. When wearing a t-shirt make sure it’s 100% cotton and it’s not see-through. Also, make sure the torso fits properly or it can make you look smaller than you are or an overstuffed sausage. If you can wear a polo or button down shirt, shoot for that because a short sleeve collar shirt is versatile. You can wear it to a birthday party or attend a meeting.

The Short Sleeve Polo – The polo originated from sports playing in the field. The polo shirt was popular for it’s moisture wicking properties and style. Many companies have accepted the polo as a standard uniform for summer casual wear. The polo is also gives men the flexibility to wear bright and bold colors without being accused for drawing attention. Always try to purchase polo shirts that are made from cotton.

The Button-Down Short Sleeve – This is the least popular style of all compared to the rest of the shirt styles. The button down shirt is hard to style because of the large armhole and ill-fitting midsections of the shirt. Taking it to the tailor will make the shirt a better fit. Make sure the sleeves cover 25% – 80% of your biceps. The less it covers the more casual it becomes.

The Long Sleeve Dress Shirt – Although not many men want to wear a long sleeve in a hot 90 degree weather, but it’s the most formal option. The long sleeve shirt is actually more versatile allowing men to roll up their sleeve to create a more stylish look. Make sure to choose a 100% cotton shirt with lightly patterned fabric such as weaves so the body can transmit the heat to the environment.

How to Pick The Right Collar For You


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    • liamhubpages profile image

      liamhubpages 2 years ago

      Great hub, really well written. I am especially fond of men's leather fashion, I believe every guy should have at least one leather jacket in his wardrobe. Some men look amazing also in leather pants. What's your take on men's leather fashion?