The Evolution of Menswear: Looking hot and hip as you age
I recently received a request for a blog post about fashion for the hot hip urban man in his later years. Later as in 50's, 60's, 70's and beyond. As you can imagine, retailers aren't using many models in this demographic, so finding the right look can be challenging.*
This got me thinking about the evolution of menswear. Decades ago, men and women "dressed" for the day. Somehow over time, with the decline of the suit, came the decline of the expectation that men put together a thoughtful ensemble each day. By the 90's, a man who put some effort into his look was known as a metrosexual. It was unusual, for sure.
Nowadays, men have become fashion enthusiasts- talking about clothes, grooming products, tailors and retailers with pretty much anyone anywhere. Personally, I'm pretty excited about this transition as someone who loves menswear and is lucky to be married to my very own fashionable fella.
This also means that there are more opportunities for pieces that are functional and fashion forward for men of any age. The key: stay relevant and true to your style. Here's what you need to know now:
1. Fit. Fit. Fit.
When looking at your closet, it may seem that men's button up shirts are in style and you have button up shirts, so you are good to go. Not true, my friend. You want a slimmer fitting shirt. We're not going for super tight and your body shape will also determine how slim is attractive. But, a wide shirt from the 90's is going to feel outdated. Colors and prints don't change as rapidly for men as fit. Try a Calvin Klein shirt compared with what you already own to get a feel for the difference. I chose this one because it doesn't need to be ironed. It's essential that you are realistic about what is REALLY going to work for you- ironing, for example, may not be in the cards.
2. Buy a great coat…. or two.
Here in the Northwest, we're rocking jackets or coats about 9 months out of the year. Your coat is covering up your nicely fitted shirt, so be sure you make a great first impression with a coat that reflects your personal style and is flattering. Now that men are able to embrace style once again, don't be afraid to try out some bolder colors if you are drawn to them. I'm a big fan of having a couple of coats or jackets (if not more). Specifically, try a quilted coat that can be dressed up or down, a puffer vest for layering and if you wear a tie or prefer a more polished look, go for a quality overcoat or a peacoat.
Like that puffer vest? Try it over a button up shirt and a sport coat. Wearing your quilted jacket? Add a mock turtleneck sweater and a henley shirt underneath.
Accessorize. Matt Lauer, another hip man over 50 is doing it!
Add a bulky scarf with your peacoat. The weather is always changing and your outfit should allow you to do that easily. After all, a hip urban man is ready for anything.
Any other thoughts or ideas? Please share!
*I see you thinking that this post doesn't apply to you- well, I'll bet you purchase gifts for men of this age. And, this list of 50 Foxy Men Over 50 is pretty addictive. So there's that.