5 Things Men Are Not Allowed To Wear

As a woman, I spend approximately 23.6 hours a day being told what I should and should not wear. And while I’ll never be able to thank Cosmopolitan Magazine enough for steering my pear-shaped body away from a low-cut bias dress (and in all seriousness, they do make me look like a marshmallow with a rubber band wrapped around it), I must say it can get a bit exhausting. I feel it’s only fair that men should suffer a similar fate. Yes, it’s true, they have GQ and The Sartorialist and other outlets to direct them to the proper number of buttons on their suit jacket, but how many average men regularly read these things? Not many. So I feel it is up to us to tell them just a few things that, under absolutely no circumstances, are acceptable to wear in public.

1. A Short-Sleeved Button-Down Shirt. For my money, there is absolutely no worse a sin a man can commit against those who must behold them — and humanity in general — than wearing a droopy, oversize, short-sleeve button-down shirt. Sure, we may have seen the errant salt-and-pepper Italian man who wears a well-cut one with some linen pants and suspenders, but YOU ARE NOT HIM, AVERAGE MAN. You are the one wearing the used-to-be-white-but-is-now-vaguely-eggshell abomination to do your programming at work because god forbid you do anything more than the minimum dress code requirement. Yes, technically, there are buttons on this shirt. No, that does not make that shirt anything close to business casual. It is the shirt of a man who has given up on life, who has few things left to live for, save a lukewarm Hot Pocket and a rerun of Two And A Half Men. Wearing this shirt will actually prevent you from succeeding in life, from prospering, and from fulfilling your dreams. Avoid at all costs.

2. Running Shoes In Any Context Other Than Running. If you are the kind of man who, on his way out for a night on the town or an afternoon with friends, decides to finish his otherwise respectable outfit of decent jeans and a well-cut shirt with a pair of scuffed New Balances, ugh. That’s all you deserve, a resounding “ugh.” It’s the exquisite disappointment of scanning a good-looking guy who seems to have his sartorial act together for the most part — who at least decides to present himself to society with a modicum of effort — and stopping just below the ankles to realize the outfit was all for naught. He finished things off with the footwear equivalent of room-temperature McDonald’s french fries. Were you not aware that a well-made pair of loafers are just as comfortable, and require the same amount of lace-tying, if not slightly less? Well, now you are. Now there is absolutely no excuse to ever appear amongst fellow humans wearing such unfortunate shoes.

3. Deep V-Neck T Shirt. I know that this may be controversial, as there are some who are ardent fans of a man in one of these, but I stand by my assertion that they are horrendous. First of all, a man who is so insistent upon showing off his chest hair and pecs is far too vain to consider — it’s all of the trappings of cleavage with absolutely none of the bouncy, voluptuous benefits. It’s also so awkward in social situations — do you address how much of your friend’s upper body you can now see? Does he want people to notice? Is this a strange, hairy attempt at getting female attention? Does he know this is not how you get it? So many questions, so little shirt. There are just far too many things wrong with this item to ever excuse it. Oh, and if you’ve ever worn a V-Neck T Shirt with a scarf, you are too much of a douchebag to live on this planet anymore.

4. Cargo Pants/ Shorts. Unless you are currently a member of a branch of a military, in which you are required both by your superior and necessity to wear a pair of these, you must never put them on. Just because your gender wasn’t given the awesome privilege of carrying around a purse (Which is so much more amazing than it looks — do you realize the amount of stuff you can put in there?! And no one’s allowed to touch it!), it doesn’t mean you can just sidestep the rule and carry around your entire life in a bunch of awkwardly-placed, overfull sacs on your legs. It just looks so incredibly uncomfortable, a pair of leg tubes being weighed down by these plush pockets filled with — what are they filled with? Spare change? Extra wallets? Condoms? (Just kidding, no one in cargo shorts has sex.) In any case, it’s just incredibly unflattering. And this goes quadruple if they are made out of that swish-swish windbreaker material.

5. Tribal Necklaces. Whether made of hemp, pooka shells, tribal beads, leather cords, or all of the above (good God, all of the above) there is never an occasion to wear these monstrosities. You know where they are acceptable, and even attractive? When they are on the people who actually wear/ create/ have some significance tied to them. But you know who you never see wearing them? Said people. You know who walks around in these, slapping you in the face with all of their unfortunateness? Whitey McDudebro. That’s who. The same white guys who used to wear JNCO jeans and get really, really into Papa Roach songs. Apparently the heinous tribal necklace is the last bastion of these kind of guys — the ones who get tattoos of flames and chinese characters that actually translate to “picnic table” or some other nonsense. These necklaces are just the worst in every way. You may think they add a bit of culture or exoticism, but they just make you look like the whitest whitey to ever resemble a sheet of paper. Avoid at all costs. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

image – Ash Violette

About the author

Chelsea Fagan

Chelsea Fagan founded the blog The Financial Diet. She is on Twitter.

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