“You don’t have to make more money than you do to look better than you look.”
Let’s do a quick equation to see on average how much you should be spending on your clothing and grooming annually. Okay so take your yearly salary (minus holiday season), divide that by 10.4, subtract your monthly transportation budget and the average household income in your neighborhood. Multiply the cost of your wallet by how many siblings you have. Now add the your birth year to how many times you’ve watched The Sandlot minus the times you’ve been forced to watch Sex And The City and The Notebook. Turn to the left and cough and you’ve got your figure.
Can’t figure out the answer? Don’t worry, there’s no actual dollar amount you should be spending on your wardrobe. Men’s Style Point is here to guide you and save you plenty of money so that you can get that box set of Carrie Bradshaw’s most memorable moments (for your lady, of course).
Point 1: Don’t be a slave to labels.
We peruse through our favorite style magazines and we stop on a photo shoot of some famous actor who is razor sharp and groomed to perfection. Then we see this little box in the corner of the page that just ruins all of our hopes and dreams of replicating that exact look. That box goes as follows: (brands have been removed to protect the guilty) Suit- $2,995 Shirt- $595 Tie- $145 Shoes- $995. This A list actor may be able to afford his outfit at that price without having to refinance his home. For the average reader, buying those expensive brands will assure you a spot in line at your local soup kitchen. Instead of telling yourself you must buy that exact brand to pull of that look you admire, search for a similar suit that is within your price range. There’s scores of quality clothiers that make quality, styish clothing at a moderate price. Most people wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between a suit by Ermenegildo Zegna and Suitsupply anyway.
Point 2: Know what to spend more on.
Ever purchased an undershirt for $65? Ever paid $19.99 (retail) for dress shoes? Didn’t think so. Simple items like undergarments and simple accessories can be purchased for the price of a fast food meal. These things are to be bought on a regular basis and are in heavy rotation. No need to spend over $20 for a pack of undershirts you can get at your local “superchain” store. When considering footwear, you shouldn’t opt for the least expensive brand. This most likely will result in loose threads, awful creases, and the dreaded “talking shoe”. Whatever is on your feet for the day will undoubtedly take the largest amount of punishment. Go for shoes that cost $125 and up from a credible shoe company (ask if you want to know some brands). This will ensure that you get more bang for your buck because quality is paramount on your feet. And depending on how well you take care of those shoes, they can last you for decades.
Point 3: Mix up your seasonal clothing.
This one is pretty simple in theory. I’ll give you an example: That lightweight blazer you picked up for those summer days, throw that on in the fall with a scarf, sweater, and madras shirt and you’ve saved yourself plenty of money by leaving that fall blazer of the same color in the store. Try to mix up those fall colored clothes with some of those louder colors you adorn in the summer. This will take some experimenting but it should be fun.
Follow these three rules and you’ll be well on your way to find your Style Point.