It’s been happening for a long time now…at work, in the mall, in restaurants, at wedding events etc. however my experience yesterday evening at a birthday party organized by my 65-year-old aunt had me thinking seriously about it.
It all started shortly after I arrived at the party, around 4pm. As I walked in, I couldn’t help but notice a young man who should be in his 30s – wearing a T-shirt that had in front of it the slogan “MY MONEY GROWS LIKE GRASS”. I was so ashamed, not just because of what he was wearing but he had his wife and two young sons with him…what style lessons are these kids gonna learn from him?
After I settled down, out of the corner of my eye I caught sight of 2 very well presented gentlemen drinking red wine and having a chit chat. These guys should be in their late 30s and both were dressed in nice classy native wear attire looking dapper, but with a quick glance at their shoes, I saw that one of them wore a tennis shoe with his native wear attire. Smh.
Before I left, I counted at least 10 men who were literally swimming in their suits – their ill-fitting suits. I see this particular one a lot – almost every day of the week – at work, weddings and restaurants but yesterday’s experience at the party influenced my decision to write this piece. I said to myself…It’s not really enough to tell men WHAT and WHAT NOT to wear, it’s also important to let men know how to dress appropriately for their age.
There are some outfits you probably would look cool wearing in your 20’s but would certainly look ridiculous trying to pull off now that you are over 30. At 30, everything about your worldview becomes a bit more mature, and this means your wardrobe style should also evolve as you transition from your 20s into your 30s and beyond.
So in an effort to help you not look like you’re desperately holding on to your youth, check out these 10 items that no man should ever wear after 30.
10 Things You Definitely Need To Stop Wearing After You Turn 30
1. Wearing Graphic Print T-shirts or Slogan T-shirts with Loud Logos
Any middle-aged man that still wears t-shirts that have a large skull with inscriptions on it or dragon spitting fire plastered on them clearly doesn’t want to accept his real age. If he is a rock star, then we can understand, else there is no reason why any man above 30 should be dressed in any T-shirt meant for young boys or boy bands, for instance, an Ed Hardy T-shirt. As a real man, when looking for nice t-shirts to buy, you should stick to simple but classic t-shirts with tiny or no logo. Ralph Lauren Polo and Lacoste t-shirts are a good idea.
2. Wearing visible undershirt underneath a button up shirt
Sorry guys, I don’t care if the undershirt is Ralph Lauren or Armani brand, an undershirt popping out of your dress shirt doesn’t look good at all. If you must wear an undershirt when wearing a button up shirt, you should choose the V-Neck type which by default sits lower. If you have also noticed, of recent most designer shirt brands that manufacture round neck undershirts design the round neck to have a low cut, so you could go for these types. For instance the LUX brand. This goes a long way to show you the importance of concealing the neck region of your undershirt when wearing a button up shirt.
3. Wearing a Shirt but showing too much chest
There is simply no justifiable excuse for a 30-year-old man to show too much chest when wearing a shirt. I don’t care if you have broad hairy chest and you find it sexy enough to display to ladies in hopes that they can find it attractive…shhh… it doesn’t work that way…dude! You should never undo more than 2 buttons on your dress shirt. And let’s say you love V-neck t-shirt, simply avoid too deep of a V-Neck.
4. Wearing Socks with Sandals
There is no excuse for taking part in this fashion faux pas unless you are 30+ and still in secondary school, then perhaps we can assume “Oh! that’s part of his school uniform/dress code”. Think about it, Sandals are meant for cool comfort and ventilation, why then would you want to add socks to defeat the whole purpose. For those that claim “My feet are cold, that’s why I wear it”…I have a solution for you, wear close-toed shoes if that’s the case.
5. Wearing Three-Quarter Length Trousers
If they are not shorts and they are not trousers, please give it out to your much younger nephew who is half your age, it would look much better on him. If your intention is to wear cropped trousers, there is a much better way to do it than to buy trousers that stop at the calf. If you’re covering your knees, you’re not bold enough to be a man in shorts, opt for just-above-knee length shorts instead, they are way much better. Try chino shorts instead.
Recommended: Men’s Shorts Guide: How To Wear Shorts
6. Wearing sneakers/tennis shoes with suits and native wear attire
Nowadays you find guys wearing tennis shoes with their corporate suits or native wear attires (Agbada and dashiki) and while it’s a trend “someone” out there is pushing so hard in hopes that all stylish men would adopt, I personally think it’s a no-no for any man who is above 30. There are a lot of nice and classy formal dress shoes as well as loafers that you can wear instead. However, if you are in the entertainment sector and you really want to take your business casual style to a whole new level by pairing your suit with something order than a formal shoe, consider certain kind of sneakers that are more appropriate than tennis shoes. According to GQ, here are a list of approved sneakers than can be worn with suits.
Recommended Read: What Men Should & Shouldn’t Wear To The Gym
7. Wearing white socks with dress shoes
Once again, if you are 30 and still in primary or secondary school, then you might skip this part. But if you are a 30+ working professional or businessman and you still wear these…please continue reading.
You should Never! Ever! wear white socks for any other occasion other than for sports or to the gym. Choose a navy blue or black socks instead – no matter what you are wearing, you can never go wrong with these two colors, but if you are more fashion forward, try out some colorful socks.
8. Wearing Wrinkled Clothes
Looking like you slept in your clothes is highly inappropriate. At 30 you should not have any excuse arriving at any place – work or social function, wearing wrinkled cloth. “I’ve had no power for the last 3 days in my place”, “I was in a hurry, therefore I couldn’t iron”, “I actually ironed it but don’t know why it’s never straight”. I’m tired of hearing all these excuses. My advice is simple…keep all your clothes neatly ironed and wrinkle-free using a spray starch or better still invest in a good dry cleaning service, they are well trained to take care of your clothes and are never going to deliver a wrinkled shirt to you. Also, it’s a good habit to always hang up all your clothes – never throwing them on the floor of your room after use.
9. Wearing Clothes That Are Too Small or Too Big
This is really bad in every way. Skinny jeans, tight trousers, baggy jeans, oversized suits, oversized shirts etc…nothing has the power to create so much laughter than a grown up man wearing clothes that are either too small or too big for him. Always go for your perfect fit. Whether you’ve lost some weight or you’ve gained some weight, always adjust your clothes to fit you appropriately.
10. Wearing Backpack with Suit or Native Wear
This is very common among professionals, even the ones over 30. It’s highly unprofessional to wear a backpack with a suit. While these backpacks are okay for students, any middle-aged man is better served by a sleek and stylish leather briefcase or messenger bag that hangs across your chest. So this is definitely something everyone should stop wearing after you turn 30.
While style is not restricted by age, some fashion trends are just meant for young boys and not for adults.
I believe some of you would be wondering by now…”Am I too Old for my outfit?” Today we’ve covered what not to wear after you clock 30, some other time we will be dealing with what not to wear after 40, 50, 60 etc.
Until then, lose the rebellious teen uniform and avoid dressing younger than your age. Only stick to trendy clothing and styles which are very much appropriate for your age range.
Thanks so much for stopping by. If you liked this article, please share with your friends and whomever you think would find it useful by clicking on the Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and other Social media share buttons at the end of this article, below this page. Muchos gracias!
Continue to Do Well, Live Well and Dress Very Well. Be Classy!
Yours in Style,
Kobi O. Mbagwu (Mr. Kobi)
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