During the best of times, it is a challenge for men to know what to wear. When it comes to appropriate fashions, the summer is among the worst of times. There are the fashions that television and movies suggest they should wear. Then there are the fashions they believe will attract potential romantic partners. So many of our choices are based on this. Then, there are the fashions that feel good and look appropriate for the individual wearer. Here are a few suggestions that will help you decide:
Go ahead and keep on telling yourself that brands don’t matter. Brands are a kind of shorthand for things that we like. Among other things, a brand can convey a sense of style and taste. When you wear something that is clearly branded, you are saying something about your sense of style. It lets other aficionados of the brand know that you are also one of them. In the case of Johnnie-O, you can pick up branded summer fashion for 30% off the regular price, according to their Facebook page. Their unique West Coast branding is a good lesson in the power of online fashion promotion.
Whether or not you care about brands, you care about what people think of you, no matter what you might say to the contrary. You want to look like a person who belongs in the particular community in which you are trying so hard to fit. Take note of the brand choices around you. Mimicking those choices is a good first step toward fitting in. You don’t want to be the only person rocking the Reeboks at a Nike convention.
Forgive me if this question is too personal. But, how physically fit are you? More to the point, how is your physique? When it comes to choosing your summer attire, your build matters. Summer is a universal excuse for dressing down and showing off in ways that would be culturally inappropriate in the fall, even if it was just as comfortable to do so in that season where you happen to live. It is not about indecency. It is just that our mores about decency change during that time of year.
If you’ve got guns worthy of a comic book hero, a muscle shirt is indicated. You spent the winter and spring getting sculpted. The Summer is the time for showing your work. If those guns are accompanied by a six-pack, No one will be offended by a shirt that shows it off. By the way, showing it off doesn’t mean going shirtless. There are a number of styles that include collars and sleeves. That said, there are many places you can go in the summer where a towel around your neck is all the shirt you need. Let your level of fitness be your guide.
How hot is it where you are? The experience of summer can be very different depending on where in the world you happen to be. It also differs based on our individual body chemistries and tolerances. In the extremely humid Southeast, the same, short-sleeved shirt you wore in the early Spring is too hot in the mid Summer. High humidity makes some materials impractical. No antiperspirant on the market can stop you from sweating in 200% humidity.
Cotton, linen, and rayon are better in humid climates than wool or silk due to their ability to absorb moisture from the body, and dissipate it via evaporation. Avoid the kind of fabrics that trap moisture. If you have to choose between branding and comfort, go with comfort. Being uncomfortable will make you less pleasant to be around. Lean on your winning personality.
One quick word about sandals: Not everyone has the feet for flip-flops. Don’t be delusional. Look down and judge for yourself. If you don’t have the feet for exposed-toe footwear, don’t despair. Women have been dealing with this problem for ages. There are plenty of sandals cleverly designed to conceal the most hideous lower extremities. Your feet can breathe, and no one has to be the wiser. Just be realistic. Ultimately, being realistic is the best Summer fashion advice I can offer.