Dress to impress…always.

David Deady

Valentine’s Day: the one day of the year when loved-up men across the country manage to cast aside their prized fatman pants, rugby jerseys and hoodies in favour of shirts, ties, suits, sweaters and slacks. While I am aware that by the time this article hits the windowsill of the Boole basement, Valentine’s Day will thankfully have passed for another year, I firmly believe this is no excuse to stop dressing up for your significant other.

So you thought that donning your best clothes on this one day would be enough to impress your better half? I can almost sense you nodding your head, but unfortunately you are sorely mistaken. In the words of the eminent Kurt Hummel: “Every moment of your life is an opportunity for fashion”. You are a girl’s favourite accessory; dress poorly for a date and it reflects badly, not only on you, but on her as well. Don’t worry though, I am here to guide you through a few of the “Dos and Don’ts” of dressing to impress!

While I love suits, I’m afraid I’m going to have to ask you to ignore Barney Stinson’s constant declaration to “suit up” when thinking of appropriate formal date attire. I know this may seem counter-intuitive, as a suit is probably the smartest item of clothing one can own, but hear me out. In the wrong setting, suits can make you look uptight; instead, opt for sweaters, shirts, ties, even suit separates to maintain an illusion of sophistication but also of leisure. So unless it is explicitly required, keep your full suit hanging in its dry-cleaning bag!

For more informal settings, jeans are of course allowed. Make sure to endeavour to wear a good quality, well fitting pair. Dark navy is always the best colour to shoot for, but make sure there is no fraying on the bottoms. For a more colourful alternative you could also try chinos. These are a great substitute to jeans and allow for a far more varied wardrobe. Team these with a simple polo shirt or cardigan/shirt combo and you’re good to go. With regards to jackets, I find a grey pea-coat can serve many functions in its capacity, being stylish but not overly formal.

Shoes: women are obsessed with them. Not just their own shoes, or shoes on other women, but your shoes as well. So wear nice ones, because her judging you on their appearance is inevitable. Pick a suitable pair, like lace-ups or Brogues for the evening, something like Dubarrys if it’s the afternoon and simple white sneakers or plimsolls when it’s just a casual get together. NEVER flip flops, for anything…ever!

Finally, one last tip: make sure to check your fly! Nothing is more embarrassing than having to zip-up in front of your lady friend. And remember, fashion is for life, not just for Valentine’s Day!

So good luck and happy dating!

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