So I straight up lovingly borrowed this from Buzzfeed. There are some great suggestions and tips to make you be an even better (and more comfortable) version of yourself. No one can tell you who to be, so pick and choose which rules to follow, and add them to what is already working for you.
I’ve also added a little commentary under each rule to tell help you decipher between the BS and the genius.
18 Incredibly Simple Things Any Man Can Do To Look Better
1. If you can’t grow a beard, don’t grow a beard.
Patchy facial hair will always end up looking prickly and slovenly. Time to stop experimenting with the facial hair and start adhering to your clean-shaven regimen.
MSK: As a person who before this month considered facial hair just a result of laziness, I have been blessed with the ability to grow a pretty good beard, or at least a dense 4 o’clock shadow. Some guys are just not as lucky. I say don’t let that stop you! Some say the more you shave, the faster our hair will grow. Folklore?
2. Instead of a standard Hanes T-shirt, put on a henley.
You can unbutton the neck for a better neckline (especially if you’re wearing it underneath another shirt), they tend to have a slimmer fit, and you can roll the sleeves up all effortless and casual-like.
MSK: It obviously doesn’t hurt that the model is Michael Fassbender, but this is a tip that I am going to try more often. Having gone through all the various types of undershirts from white t’s to tank tops (I guess there are really only two variations), I attempted to wear a henley as an undershirt while trying to stay warm on the day after the Blizzard in NYC (yesterday). It. Was. Awesome. The soft cotton against my skin and staying fully warm from waist to wrist is something this guy could get used to. I don’t know how this will work once the weather warms up, but for now, I’ll take any comfort and warmth I can get (aka. my old online dating profile description). Now where can I get about a dozen of these things?
3. Opt for slimmer jeans.
They don’t have to be SKINNY jeans, but a more body-conforming pair of denim will go a long way to making you look leaner and taller. They shouldn’t cut off your blood circulation — buy a pair of skinny jeans and size up. Then, find a tailor to take in the waist. Or, just go to a tailor and see if they’re willing to update your current jeans.
Three more basic rules: Darker is better, a leg opening of 14”–16” is ideal, and go for a mid-rise. Low-rise jeans will make your legs look shorter.
MSK: Boy do I remember the days of Pipe Jeans and cargo pants. It was like a nightmare we had no idea we were living at the time. If there is one good argument why it doesn’t pay to be a follower in high school, it would be Pipe Jeans. You don’t need the extra fabric, you don’t need the extra leg room, and you certainly don’t need the extra pockets. I agree that every man needs a good pair of quality dark jeans. Dark denim is the new casual chic staple after all. You can pair these suckers with anything for almost any non-formal event whether it be a day at the park paired up with, lets say, a Henley and chucks, or at the office with a blazer and a nice pair of shoes. But when are jeans considered too tight? In my opinion tight jeans start to work against you when they are so tight you can’t tell the difference between jeans and jeggings. And guys, I do not recommend jeggings unless you’ve been blessed with a body like Beyonce, which 99% of you were not.
4. Clean those fingernails and keep ‘em trimmed.
Getting stabbed with someone’s toe talons in bed is like, the biggest boner killer ever.
MSK: It’s not that hard. Just be conscious of where you do it because some people are not big fans of a) watching you do it, b) hearing you do it, c) finding the aftermath laying around. Our finger nails seem to get a lot of attention just because we see them more, but don’t forget those toenails of yours. I think buzzfeed summed it up well in two words, “boner killer”.
5. Moisturize that dead, flaky skin away.
If you have serious flaking issues, exfoliate before you moisturize. This includes areas of your body, like your weird sandpaper elbows — not just your face.
MSK: It boggles my mind why men don’t take better care of their skin. I assume it is only because the amount of products out there make it about as confusing as me trying to work on the engine of a car…who the hell knows where to start? While the idea of facials may seem a little too “college girl sorority outing” for most, simple things you can do each evening or morning will really make a difference to your skin, and who doesn’t want better skin? Seriously, is there a person out there that would say “Matt, I wish my skin was more flawed”? Don’t think so. A simple cucumber mask (my personal favorite) or mint mask will take the grime-of-the-day off your skin each evening. Follow that up with a simple face moisturizer before bed and trust me, the next morning your face will feel amazing. If you apply any moisturizer during the day, make sure to get one with a little SPF to protect against the daily sun. You’ll feel 5 years younger (or more) and guess what? You may not end up looking like the Crypt Keeper once you are 50.
6. A simple swap: Trade in your Axe body spray for a keen-smelling deodorant.
Not only does Axe smell like a seventh-grade boys’ locker room, but it looks tacky in your bathroom. Forgo the body spray or cologne altogether and rely on your deodorant instead. It’ll enhance, not cover up, your natural smell.
MSK: I seemed to have missed the memo that Axe had become the staple scent of adolescent boys. While I never got into the body spray fad, I certainly have used the Axe deodorant in the past and received compliments on how good I smelled, just from that. Yes, the smell is very strong, but sometimes a guy needs something with some power (not naming any names). I of course stand behind Rochas as a cologne, but I think the key to success is picking something that isn’t overpowering and compliments your style (if the compliments start rolling in from friends/strangers, then so be it!).
7. Ditch the white socks.
They look chunky and awkward. Black trouser or crew socks are where it’s at.
MSK: Growing up I had an affinity for white socks. I got upset when they stated adding grey toes and heels to them, and down right infuriated when they started popping up with designs and styles stitched into them. I can say that after years of working to overcome my fears, I have moved on from plain white socks….to gray socks. What can I say? I’m a trendsetter! I CAN say that while I am starting to get a good collection of “fun socks” as they are referred to amongst friends, but I know for a fact that toe socks will never be found in any drawer of mine. A man has to draw the line somewhere.
8. No tennis shoes unless you’re at the gym.
They don’t really go with your new drawer full of black socks, anyway.
MSK: The title and photo say it all. Have you ever seen a guy walking down the street looking clutch and then see that he is wearing a pair of ratty tennis shoes? I just assume that those are their “travlin’ shoes” for their NYC commute. They may be comfortable, but they look like you dragged them through the mud AFTER you bought them from a yard sale. Save them for your weekend warrior projects……at home.
9. Treat that bacne.
Get some tea tree oil body wash, or try some activated charcoal soap, and go over your back with a loofah or sponge in the shower. It’s that easy!
MSK: I dont know much about the happenings of bacne. I used to have a few issues with getting acne on the top parts of my legs (well, lets just hope it was acne). Simple solution was after using a face scrub in the shower with a little grit to it, I would use the remaining scrub on my hands for my legs they would disappear within a few days.
10. Clean up the stray hairs between your eyebrows.
Consider it very basic maintenance. Pluck your unibrow, and if you happen to be cursed with the ever-sprouting mole hair, tweeze that shit too.
MSK: I have a pretty good thing going with eyebrows but you don’t have to take my word for it. I get compliments a lot on my eyebrows and I think it is because I choose to maintain them by simply following two words: “lower” and “Separate”. Now if left to their own accord, they would combine forces across my head and migrate towards my hairline. Not on my watch! Taking the back blade on my razor, I simply shave off the hairs that have grown between my eyebrows and then do the same for the strays above. Don’t over do it though! When men over face scape, its obvious, and we dont have those handy eyebrow pencils like the ladies. Well, not all of us do anyway.
11. Important: Trim your nose hair.
But use a trimmer, not tweezers. Plucking your nose hairs can lead to the most painful ingrown hairs you’ll ever experience.
MSK: They make electric razors/trimmers with nice hair attachment. Don’t forget about the ear hair as well!
12. Don’t let your mustache grow past your top lip, or curl near your mouth.
You don’t want those bedraggled strands all up in your mouth, much less anyone else’s.
MSK: When/If I find the secret to a presentable mustache, I’ll let you know. What I do know is: OWN IT.
13. Shave your neck!
That hair that grows there always seems to look scraggly and unappealing in a spine-tingling sort of way. And don’t forget the back of the neck.
MSK: Luckily, if you are growing a full out beard (as I happen to be doing at the moment) the neck shaving will only be necessary until the bear really fills in. Once it has some “depth” to it, the neck hair will blend right in. HOWEVER, if you are are one of those people who has a lot of chest hair, never, and let me say that again so it sinks in, NEVER allow a beard and chest hair to connect.
14. Don’t let your shirt creep past your butt.
Even if you’re a bigger guy, a thigh-length shirt-dress is not going to hide what lurks beneath. A long shirt will inevitably swallow you up and look sloppy.
MSK: What is this 1996? Along with the baggy pants, show your oversized shirts to the local clothing donation bin. And always tuck in a shirt if you are covering it with a sweater or cardigan. It’s just polite.
15. For the business-casual set: Forgo your short-sleeved dress shirts for rolled-up long-sleeved ones.
Here is a delightful guide on the *right* way to roll up your sleeves.
MSK: Can’t roll my sleeves up past these pythons so they naturally sit above my elbow when rolled up. A great way to casual up the professional business look.
16. Stand up straight.
Bad posture will enhance man boobs and make your otherwise well-fitted clothes puff out in weird places. So remember: shoulders down, shoulders back, chin up.
You can also gauge your posture with the pencil test. It’ll tell you if you’re standing up straight, or if you need some work in this department.
MSK: We have terrible posture. Maybe its because some of us are crouched over desks all day. Maybe it because some of us are crouched over bars all night. Maybe its because we found out on Ancestry.com that we are direct decedents of Quasimodo. Either way, you wont know the benefits of good posture until you put it into effect. Besides, now that you have clothes that fit you properly as guided above, show off the body of yours with a firm solid stance.
17. Own a soft, well-fitting sweater or five.
Preferably one that is so soft and delectable, you want to bury your face in it. That is how people will feel about you when you wear your Special Sweater.
MSK: ABSOLUTELY. You are currently reading the ramblings of an 29 yo guy with the mentality of an (awesome) 85 yo man. My main go-to “grandpa sweater” was a LA thrift store find, and I highly anticipate handing it down to my favorite grandchild. Duh, I’ll have favorites.
18. Exercise basic hygiene so you don’t emanate disgusting smells.
Brush, floss, scrape your tongue. Sprinkle baking soda in your shoes so they don’t smell like rotting cheese. Take a shower every day, and for crissakes — launder your clothes, don’t just Febreze them.
MSK: All of the above. It’s sad that my dog has better hygiene than some people I know.
What did they miss? Any tips or tricks that you recommend?