In a perfect world, we would be judged entirely on the what was on the inside. But the world we live in, and America in particular, is more concerned with outside appearances than one might think. We have all seen how this plays out when it comes to women in the media (if we hear one more critique of Hillary Clinton’s pants suits, we’re liable to go insane), but men are not immune to being judged heavily on appearance. In fact, wholly 55% of a first impression comes from how a man is dressed and carries himself, and these impressions can have pretty hefty consequences. The majority of employment recruiters for example say that when they are forced to choose between two equally qualified people, they’ll go with the one who is better dressed! Below are a few accessories we feel are key to making a man stand out from the sea of sensible interview suits, polos, and loafers:
1. A Good Belt
For men, the devil is really in the details when it comes to sartorial prowess. In terms of looking polished, custom belts can go a long way. They range between $30 and $100 depending on quality and pattern and practically guarantee a cemented, put-together look. Whether you are in need of an executive belt or paused over the facebook ads showing you pages of hand tooled leather belts, accessorizing with a belt is a bold decision that shows on-trend thinking and confidence in oneself. Speaking of…
Don’t Stop At The Belt–You Also Need A Belt Buckle
A good belt is nothing really without a belt buckle to, well….buckle, it all together. These days, sterling silver of over 92.5% purity is in vogue for men’s belt buckles due to both its durability and workability into customized designs. We would explain more how a belt buckle that makes you look like John Wayne or Jeff Bridges from True Grit is awesome–but really, do we have to? The real cowboy tradition is almost dead, so why not pay homage to the great American masculinity trope with your accessory choices?
Other Jewelry Is Alright–Just Think Silver
We often run into men who express admiration for this or that piece of jewelry, then lament that they would buy the jewelry if it were “allowed.” Well we are here to tell you–it’s official, you’re “allowed.” Last year, sales in men’s jewelry were over 3 billion dollars, and this year projections tell us that over 45% of men will buy a piece of jewelry, probably silver, for themselves. Silver jewelry is robust, durable, masculine, and usually thickly cut. It denotes wealth, trendiness, and taste, and is a much-needed avenue of individualistic self expression in a sea of black and navy blue fabric.
Basically what we are saying is go for it. If you are a man and like an accessory, buy it. You don’t have to look like everybody else–in fact, you don’t want to. Use your accessories to communicate pieces of who you are and pay your respects to a bygone era of sartorial manifest destiny. (And please let us know in the comments about particularly good buys and all the feedback you get!)