In this article, I’ll specifically discuss the style mistakes that I frequently observe older men doing when they attempt to dress more youthful.
The following is a quote by French author Victor Hugo:
“40 is the old age of youth, while 50 is the youth of old age.”
Personal style is incredibly subjective, therefore it’s entirely acceptable if my preferences don’t align with yours.
Where is it written in stone that we must start wearing corduroy, tweed, and cardigan sweaters after we hit the age of forty?
In reality, I love cardigan sweaters, but they have to fit me perfectly.
Older men are subject to societal expectations that once we reach a certain age, we must begin dressing in a particular manner.
But I completely agree that it’s important to know where the lines are and what is no longer acceptable while still attempting to maintain a youthful edge in my attire.
No one wants to be the man who always seems to be trying too hard.
So let’s begin at the bottom and work upward.
Mistake 1 – Workout Shoes
The first mistake is to go out in public wearing your running or workout shoes when you aren’t actually going for a run or a workout.
We completely understand that you work out and that you want the world to know that you are still athletic.
The problem arises when most guys simply choose that sports shoe over something a bit more classy in an effort to look a little more youthful.
Fashion sneakers are yet another casual alternative. If you like sneakers, there are many stylish and sophisticated pairs available for you.
Why not choose something like a great fashion sneaker instead of wearing athletic shoes in public? Alternatively, white sneakers go with anything if that’s your style. Something classy, clean, and straightforward. Or perhaps something in chic black and white.
You have two further options that are nonetheless casual and comfortable: driving mocks and loafers.
It should go without saying that wearing sandals or flip-flops in public is inappropriate. However, I continue to notice it frequently.
Mistake 2 – Wrong Jeans
Wearing jeans or pants that are a little too trendy and don’t fit you is mistake number two.
This includes bootcut or relaxed fit jeans that are overly long and too baggy, as well as extremely tight skinny jeans. This also applies to jeans with numerous rips and severe distressing.
This is where you might want to slightly step over that line.
As I’ve previously stated, I do try to keep a youthful edge with the clothes I wear, but I also don’t go too far beyond my own set of acceptable limits.
I do experiment, though, and I do try some things that other guys might not.
I make an effort to create myself opportunities to experiment and try new things because I do spend a lot of time in the style space. I have no problems with thinking outside the box.
Nevertheless, I try to make an effort to keep everything classy.
Most mistakes are made by guys when they stick with what they did 10 or 15 years ago or follow trends a little too closely.
You will not look well in anything baggy or skin tight. Keep your pant legs trim, not too skintight, and tapered down to your foot. Maintain the hem at approximately your ankle. Jeans won’t work bundled or puddled at your foot.
Mistake 3 – Wrong Shirt
The third mistake is wearing the wrong shirt.
Graphic t-shirts with big branding logos, slogans, and cartoon characters are no longer acceptable.
Try using plain, solid colors instead.
Since we’re talking about t-shirts, no one wants to see your chest hair poking through a large v-neck or a big scoop neck t-shirt, either.
You should not wear your dress shirts untucked and your button-down shirts shouldn’t be too big and baggy.
Although not all dress shirts are meant to be worn untucked, I don’t mind the untucked look.
Dress shirts are meant to be worn tucked in and feature longer tails by design. When you wear these shirts untucked, they look incredibly silly and you look like wearing a small dress.
When worn untucked, shirt tails shouldn’t drop below the mid-crotch area.
I also try to avoid patterns that are too crowded and bold because they can make you look somewhat clownlike.
Here’s something else, guys.
Unfortunately, once we reach a certain age, our bodies begin to alter slightly.
Finding a professional tailor would help you more than you can imagine if you frequently need to size up when buying shirts or other clothing to accommodate your chest or perhaps your tummy.
They may nip and tuck all the fabric that is drooping and create you a shirt that appears to have been made specifically for your body.
Mistake 4 – Too Big Sport Coats
Wearing sport coats that are too big is the fourth mistake.
Going with dark jeans, brown brogues, and a sport coat is a pretty fashionable and classy look for guys. This outfit is perfect for a classy, smart, casual dating night.
The problem is that this look can quickly veer off course. Observing a pattern here would be fit. Fit is king. The clothing you wear should fit your body type.
An otherwise well-planned outfit can be ruined by a poor fit. When wearing a sport coat, your arms should be at your sides with about a half-inch of sleeve showing.
Take your sport coat to a tailor to have the sleeves shortened if they are excessively long.
A slight pull at the button should be felt when your sport coat is buttoned, which is another issue. I said slight. The jacket is too big for you if you can take it off when it’s buttoned and pull it away from your body.
Take a jacket to a tailor if the body of the jacket is a touch too loose or tight but the shoulders fit perfectly. The sides may be perfectly adjusted by taking them in or leaving them out.
Mistake 5 – Dressing Like You Are 25
The fifth mistake is attempting to dress as if you are still 25.
Take a quick look around you. Do you notice 20-somethings wearing similar attire to you? Are the salespeople in the stores you frequent acting like teenagers and is the music a touch too loud there?
If so, it’s likely that you need a new shop. Keep it traditional and make sure the fit is perfect.