17 Ways To Be More Stylish in 2017

If you plan to CRUSH IT with style in 2017, this post is for you.

You may have already read our article on Why Style is Worth Caring About. If you haven’t, you can read it later, here.

Being a stylish man has its advantages. Amazing things start to happen when you start dressing well. Beyond all of the things that happen to you, you start to feel like a better version of yourself. That alone is reason enough to strive for better style this year.

17 Ways To Be More Stylish in 2017 | Gentleman Within

Before you begin: This is a long post. So if you’d like a PDF version to read at your convenience later on, simply enter your name and email below and I’ll send it right away.

Now, let’s dive in!

1. Establish a personal uniform

Two reasons for a man to establish his own personal uniform is to be consistent and to save time.

Many powerful men have adopted a personal uniform of some type. Look at Mark Zuckerberg’s sea of gray t-shirts and hoodies or the late Steve Jobs’ iconic black turtlenecks and blue jeans. Simplicity and efficiency.

Adopting a personal uniform is perhaps the best thing you can do for your style in 2017. [Tweet this]

Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs’ look didn’t change at all over two decades

When you’re unsure of what to wear, a uniform can save the day. Think of it as your a go-to outfit of choice that you feel 100% your best-self wearing.

Do you have a closetful of gingham shirts? Or have you amassed a mighty collection of wingtip shoes? Those items are good candidates to be a part of your personal uniform.

My fall/winter personal uniform of late looks something like this. Functional, simple, and stylish without having to think too much.

The bottom line:
Locking down a personal uniform will make deciding what to wear easier. And shopping will be a breeze since you’ll already know what to get.

2. Start layering up

Winter Layering
Keep warm and stylish with multiple layers | credit: Pinterest

All stylish men know the power of dressing in layers. Start with lighter layers closest to your body and heavier layers going over top.

On a winter’s day, you can start with a base layer like a thermal or an undershirt. From there you can wear a button down or flannel shirt, then maybe a light down vest and finally a textured wool blazer with a stylish scarf to top it off. And if it’s frigid, you can throw on a topcoat with a pair of gloves.

Check out this Pinterest board to see more examples of stylish men dressed in layers.

The bottom line:
Layering up can keep you comfortably warm and looking real dapper. The great thing about layers is they can be subtracted or added as the temperature fluctuates.

3. Get out of your style comfort zone

Man standing alone
No comfort zones in 2017

In life, we feel most alive when we intentionally get outside of our comfort zone. Many people are content living in a safe bubble, but what happens when it bursts? You’ve got no choice but to try something new. But this is how we grow.

Just like personal growth in life, you won’t become more stylish unless you put in the effort. You have to be willing to experiment and try new things.

The bottom line:
Go find inspiration and learn how to make a statement as you slowly begin to level up your style.

4. Find a tailor you can trust

Tailor
A good tailor can help you look great | credit: Master Tailors Austin

One habit of a stylish man is to develop healthy relationships with people who can help make him look and feel good. This includes, but is not limited to his barber, spiritual or career mentor, and yes, even his tailor.

Antonio Centeno of Real Men Real Style put this informative article together on finding a good tailor.

The bottom line:
You don’t have to be all buddy-buddy, but it helps to have some sort of relationship with your tailor. The more he knows about you, your preferences and style goals, the better job he can do for you.

5. Prepare your outfit the night before

Clothes on floor
Prepared down to the accessories

Mise en place is a French culinary phrase which means “putting in place” or “everything in its place.” It refers to the set up required before cooking, and is often used in professional kitchens to refer to organizing and arranging the ingredients that a cook will require for the menu items that are expected to be prepared during a shift.

Why not apply this concept to getting dressed?

I’d say the majority of people don’t think about what they’re going to wear in advance, unless there’s a special occasion or important meeting coming up.

If you’ve ever found yourself frantically grabbing random pieces out of the closet as you scramble to get out the door in the morning, then maybe you could try a little “mise en place,” to set yourself up for a smooth transition from the bed to the bathroom and beyond.

The bottom line:
A daily habit of thoughtfully preparing your outfit the night before can save you time and energy. It’s like exercising a muscle. The more you think about what you wear on a daily basis—over time—your style will improve.

6. Try a subscription box service

Sprezzabox flatlays
A few of my favorite Sprezza boxes | Use referral code lifeaskhoi for 10% off your first box

You may have seen Facebook ads for Trendy Butler or Trunk Club. It seems a new men’s clothing, subscription box service pops up daily.

People like automation and making life easier and that’s exactly what a subscription box can help you with. Many services are pay as you go, so there’s no long-term commitment for you, unless you pay for the year upfront, usually at a discount.

If you want to check out some boxes, Kyle Ingham over at The Distilled Man crafted this comprehensive roundup of 50 awesome subscription boxes for men.

The bottom line:
Today, there’s a subscription box for men of all kinds. There’s boxes to help you dress better, eat and drink better, date better, and level up your life so that you can live better.

7. Strap up with a brown leather watch

Tired of the usual metal watch strap? Look no further than a brown leather strap. A brown strap is more versatile than black or gray, the two other popular strap colors, unless of course you only wear black and white.

Okay, so you’ve got a watch with a brown leather strap? Great. You can choose to match the strap to the color of your shoes or belt if you’re all about the details, but no biggie if you don’t. There’s plenty of separation between your shoes, belt and watch. It doesn’t hurt, however, to keep within the same color family.

Outfit collage
Check out the Gentleman Within Instagram page for more watch shots

A trend of late, made popular by Instagram influencers, is minimalist watches like the Daniel Wellington or The Fifth Watches popping up everywhere.

Brathwait, a bit pricier than the two above, has quartz and automatic options. Their mechanical watches have automatic movement which doesn’t require a battery. And the dome sapphire glass looks classic and modern at the same time. Paired with a brown leather strap, the watch really shines.

The bottom line:
A brown leather watch reaches levels of class and style that a metal watch can’t match.

8. Upgrade your sock collection

Time to switch out of those ratty, old white and black tube socks, and pick up a few pairs of dapper looking dress socks. You know, the colorful, stripped and dotted variety. It adds an element of fun and playfulness into your outfit and shows that you aren’t always about business.

You’ll get compliments and props regularly, for being such a stylish guy.

Fun socks
Have fun with your socks

If you’ve ever worn tube socks with dress shoes, shame on you. Just kidding! I’ve done it, I think most guys have. Of course the more a man learns about style, he knows that’s a huge no-no in menswear.

Don’t know where to find some cool socks? You can start here and here.

The bottom line:
With little effort, you can start feeling instantly more stylish by upgrading your sock game.

9. Focus on nailing the fit of your clothing

I feel like a broken record talking about fit, but it’s worth stressing that wearing clothing that fits your body is of utmost importance. It has the power to make or break your style in an instant.

A man wearing a $3,000 Prada suit, that’s ill-fitting could look homeless. In the same way, a man wearing a $100 H&M suit can look like million bucks after a few minor alterations.

clothing fit before and after
This often overlooked detail makes all the difference.

With so many different things for a man to consider when dressing for his body type, it’s easy to see why so many men struggle with fit.

Take some time to check out this aptly named site on how clothes should fit.

The bottom line:
Wearing clothes that fits your body is the most important rule in menswear and one that you don’t want to break. Understand this concept and half the battle is won.

10. Know your measurements

If I had to guess, a majority of men don’t know their measurements. I didn’t know mine, up until a few years ago when I became serious about how I present myself. It became especially important for me to know my measurements because I began ordering custom clothing.

Measurement cheat sheet
To help you, I created this simple “My Measurement Cheat Sheet” that you can use to jot down your measurements

Knot Standard has an excellent guide (with video) on all the important measurements for you to take. All you’ll need is a tape measure and a friend to help.

Don’t forget to save and print the accompanying cheat sheet. Once you know your measurements, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge to help you find your best fitting clothing.

The bottom line:
Knowledge is power. And knowing your measurements will help you nail the fit every time and become more stylish in the process.

11. Cleanse your closet

At Gentleman Within, we’re all about conscious development of personal style, over a period of time. A wardrobe purge can be difficult, but can also be one of the most liberating decisions you make all year.

Do you have items in your closet that you haven’t touched in years, but for some reason find impossible to toss? A shirt that’s comically tight? A pair of baggy cargo shorts that no longer represents your style?

There’s a good chance that at least a few pieces in your wardrobe are nearing their final days.

Closet
Wardrobe goals | credit: Mr. Porter

Here are a few questions you may want to ask yourself prior to your closet cleanse:

1. Does it fit?
2. When is the last time I wore it?
3. What condition is it in?
4. How does it make me feel?

If it doesn’t fit properly and isn’t worth taking to a tailor, it shouldn’t be in your wardrobe. Haven’t touched it in a year? You’ll probably never wear it again. If the fabric is torn, or in terrible shape, throw it away. And if you don’t feel great while wearing it, what’s the point?

Use your best judgement in deciding what to toss and what to keep, but I’m sure you’ll know what to do after answering the questions above.

If you’re feeling ambitious and want to achieve closet mastery, my friend Barron Cuadro over at Effortless Gent, offers a book featuring the Lean Wardrobe. It’s a philosophy which pares a wardrobe down to the bare essentials all the while still allowing for maximum versatility. Total game changer.

The bottom line:
Cleansing your closet can be a calming process that helps you assess what you have and what you need. Take the steps to rid of old pieces that may be holding you back and make room for new items that better represent who you are and who you seek to become in terms of style.

12. Wear a well-fitting suit

Kings of cool
Steve McQueen, Paul Newman and Robert Redford—3 kings of cool—wore suits. Rock a suit the right way and you can be a king too

Many men feel that suits are stuffy, uncomfortable and inappropriate for most situations. All valid points.

But let me tell ya—a well-tailored suit can make a man feel invincible. It’s like a layer of armor that makes the wearer feel ready to ride into battle and conquer the world. Okay, I may be exaggerating a bit, but wearing a suit really is more than just a style enhancer.

Why it’s worth it to suit up:

  • People treat you better
  • You stand taller
  • Women want to date you
  • You smile more
  • Men want to be like you
  • You feel more confident
  • You will actually be a more stylish man

If you still feel that wearing a suit will put you out-of-place, check out this Dappered post on places to wear a suit where you normally wouldn’t.

And for a comprehensive guide on buying an off-the-rack suit, check out our recent guest post over at The Dark Knot.

The bottom line:
There’s a reason they say to “dress for the job that you want, not the job that you have.” Wearing a well-fitting suit projects an image that can set you up to succeed in business and in life.

13. Invest in high quality shoes

Allen Edmonds Strand
The Allen Edmonds “Strand” is sure to turn heads

Your shoes can say a lot about you. They’re a big part of your overall appearance.

Maybe you feel that you’re not fashion forward enough to wear a pair of tan brogues. Or maybe $300+ shoes seems outrageous to you. For the longest time I thought the same, but not anymore.

Similar to wearing a well-fitting suit, a clean pair of oxfords will attract the right kind of attention.

My suggestion is a pair of brown cap-toe oxfords like the Allen Edmonds Park Avenue in a dark brown or oxblood color. And if you’re feeling more adventurous, the AE Strand in walnut or navy.

The bottom line:
Shoes speak volumes about a gentleman. This is one area that you do not want to skimp. Buy the best quality you can afford.

14. Play with pattern, color, and texture

A little bit of color never hurt anyone. Colors tell a story. Textures can too. As can patterns. What we wear, ultimately tells a story. If what you normally wear is more on the reserved, neutral side, then spice up your life with some pattern, color, and texture (PCT).

Here’s an analogy for why PCT works:

As a “graphic designer” I’m used to hearing the term, “make it pop” which is code for your design looks a little flat. Usually the solution is simple. Simply inject some color, perhaps throw in a few textures and patterns and voila, I’ve got a design that sings.

This works the same way with style. Just start adding PCT into your outfits. Don’t be afraid to play. Kids aren’t afraid of failure and rejection. Be like a kid. Fail, learn, and keep playing.

The bottom line:
Adding a dash of pattern, color and texture into your outfits can liven up style gone stale. Don’t be afraid to experiment and learn as you go.

15. Rock those sunglasses

Sunglasses at the beach
Yours truly at the beach, rocking shades and nonchalantly looking off into the distance—stylin’ ?

Wearing sunglasses helps with facial symmetry. And symmetric things appeal to human eyes. Dark lens sunglasses also provide an air of mystery to the wearer. If you can’t see a person’s eyes, you have no idea what they’re thinking.

It’s no wonder people who wear sunglasses look so damned cool.

The classic RayBan Wayfarer, one of the most popular sunglasses styles right now is a good pick since most people look good in them. I’ve also tried Warby Parker and they’ve got some good options too. Their home try-on program is super helpful. They allow you to select 5 frames to test out for 5 days and they’ll ship for free.

The bottom line:
A quick way to instantly appear more stylish is to throw on a pair of flattering shades. You’ll look cooler, not to mention help prevent wrinkles forming around the eyes from squinting so much on sunny days.

16. Be a master of details

Details matter
The devil is in the detail

How often do you pay attention to things like the roll of your pants or allowing a sliver of sleeve cuff show under your suit? Are you conscious of the appropriate time to wear fabrics like corduroy or chambray? Can you effortlessly mix and match patterns, colors and texture? How about pairing pocket squares and ties?

A meticulous attention to detail separates a stylish man from the rest. [Tweet this]

Stylish men are all about noticing the little things. They pay attention to how their jeans are cuffed. It’s intentional when the shade of their belt matches the shade of their shoes.

A master of details is someone who puts a price on personal presentation. He puts his best foot forward and dresses like he cares. He leaves the house not only stylish, but the best version of himself.

For some details inspiration, take a look at this Pinterest board.

The bottom line:
Great style is in the detail. Start paying attention to what you wear, how and, why you wear it. It makes a world of difference.

17. Be aware of rules and trends, but in the end DO YOU!

There are rules in menswear, but as the adage goes, “rules are meant to be broken.” And trends are ever fading. You don’t always have to fit in. Break the mold and create any image you want.

You can be the guy who wears suits just because. Who cares what people think.

Just Do You
It’s your life, your style, no one else’s

Ultimately great style is about confidence, owning it with whatever you decide to wear. [Tweet this]

Of course it has to be in line with your personal style and who you are.

The bottom line:
Being aware of rules and trends is cool, but it’s important to wear what flatters your body type, makes you feel great and ultimately makes you, you. Do this and I guarantee you’ll be a more stylish man.

In closing

Congrats on making it through 17 Ways To Be More Stylish in 2017!

Although some of these require little effort, others demand more patience and thoughtfulness. Naturally, humans suck at trying to do too many things simultaneously. And so, to avoid overwhelm, I suggest starting with one of these tips at a time.

Be patient, Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither is personal style. [Tweet this]

Cheers to a new year, and more importantly, your most stylish year yet.

Which of these are you looking forward to trying in 2017?

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