We’ve had several great weeks of guest posts here on Guy Style Guide. Today we finish this run of guest articles with a fantastic piece written by Isabella Woods. Here for your reading pleasure is a top ten of the worst style mistakes for men to make. Many thanks to Izzy for such a well-authored piece…

There are so many common style errors that it’s difficult to know where to start with this list. Hopefully by now the message that socks with sandals has filtered through to the present generation. But some style errors still need highlighting. These are the things that give us style rage.

Ugg Boots

These are a particularly unstylish form of footwear, more often associated with women than men. They have crept into the menswear market of late and it is not a trend to be encouraged in our view. Comfort should not be at the top of your list when choosing footwear if you want to be stylish, and frankly the only thing that seems to recommend the Ugg Boot is that they are comfortable. They are neither stylish nor practical, particularly in winter, when they fair miserably in the boot department and end up as a soggy mess. Avoid at all costs.

Tracksuit bottoms

There is nothing less flattering and less stylish than tracksuit bottoms. The fact they are so often seen with various stains, from paint to food does not endear them to the style aficionado. Their main problem is shapelessness, and they fall into the trap of putting comfort above style, which is always a slippery slope.

Too Much Denim

too much denim

There is a limit to the amount of denim one should wear. Jeans are fine, as long as they are the perfect length. Too short and you will never recover your fashion cred, too long and you look like you’re made of rubber. As with all trousers, they should simply break upon the shoe, the back of them never touching the ground at the heel, the front never allowing the socks to show at the front. Wearing a denim jacket with jeans should be illegal. Dark coloured denim tends to be more flattering than lighter coloured. Don’t ever wear jeans that are too light, as they will appear old-fashioned, as if you have walked out of an 80’s time machine. Who wants to be reminded of that style era?

Sunglasses – Overuse of

You might want to look like you’re on a luxury ski holiday by keeping your shades on inside, or after dark, but seriously, it just makes you look foolish. You’re not a film star, so don’t fall into their fashion faults.

Too Much Cologne

The issue of fragrance on men is a contentious one. With the capture of the male grooming market more and more manufacturers seem to be pushing perfumed products at men. This can lead to a terrible fragrance disharmony occurring. Any early morning commute will find you surrounded by young men with scented hair products, overlaid with the niff of cheap deodorant, which in turn battles with the smell of aftershave balm. Fighting for some recognition in amongst this mêlée might be a half decent aftershave, but we’re blowed if we can smell it. Try and lighten up on the fragrances and buy unscented products if you are wearing a good aftershave. Our preference is for the latter. Scent on a man should be subtle, not overwhelming.

Floral Shirts

Out. Out. Out. They are so over. They had their moment in the sun, but the moment has passed and you need to let them go. James May wore them, yes. But now it’s time to find your own style and move on.

Novelty Items

By now you really should be over this. As a man with a certain sense of style the novelty clothing item should never feature in your wardrobe. Included in this is Exhibit A: baseball cap, worn sideways or any way Exhibit B: the novelty tee-shirt, with ‘witty gag’ on it Exhibit C: silly tie. Just put it away now. Everyone likes a bit of fun sometimes, but if you’re serious about looking good, don’t blow it by going for the cheap laugh. Style is a serious business.

Too Many Labels

Wearing too many labels can be a real turn-off style-wise. We would far rather see a beautiful, elegant, understated Armani belt with quite ordinary dark jeans and tee-shirt that have the name emblazoned across your chest, competing with your Gucci scarf. Tone it down. Quiet elegance is the watchword when it comes to cool style. You don’t need to shout it from the rooftops. Just embody it.


stained shirt

Uggghh! There is no worse style mistake than going out in stained clothing. Check your suit every day when you take it off after work. And your tie. Most food stains can probably be gentle sponged off, but regardless of this, try to have your suits dry-cleaned on a regular basis. Airing them at the weekend helps to keep them fresh too, and a steamer will keep the creases at bay.

Clothes That Don’t Fit

Optimal fitting clothes is absolutely essential if you want to look good. We all change with age, and it is likely that over time most of your wardrobe will need replacing. It doesn’t mean you’re getting fat, it just means you’re getting older. Your wardrobe should need updating style-wise as your body changes. The other key to style know-how is to dress for your age. So lose the skinny jeans when your legs start looking like sausages, and leave the tight-fit tee-shirts to the twenty somethings.

About The Author

Johnathan Bell is the founder, owner and main author of Guy Style Guide, a website dedicated to everyday male fashion, style and grooming. The primary mission? To guide clueless men through the tricky mindfield that is the growing world of male couture. Find him on , Twitter and Tumblr.

11 Responses

  1. Jonathan

    Hi there

    My name is Jonathan and I’m 28 years old. My height is 175cm. I often have problems finding correct clothes especially Jeans and pants. I have a broad shoulder, 30 inch hip, kinda skinny legs and size 9 feet. So what is the ‘yes’ and ‘no’ for a body size like me?

    Thank You

  2. Lizzie

    I love this post, it is spot on.. I was looking for some ideas for what to get my feller for christmas when I came across this article.. too funny and too true. Luckily my boyfriend has never dared to step out in UGG boots, he’s got 3x ,pre style than I have. I might get him a novelty christmas tie though to go with his new Fred Perry Shoes he got last weekend!

  3. wouldn'tyouliketoknow

    I have a bone to pick with you about the part about uggs. While I agree that they aren’t functional in the rain or snow, uggs were created by a male australian surfer for males. I grew up in a surfing family and there’s pics of me in uggs going back to the early 90’s. It wasn’t until about 5 years ago or so that girls starting wearing them and it makes me angry that they’re now off-limits for men simply because people are ignorant of their origin.

    “The UGG® Australia story began in 1978, when Brian Smith, a young surfer from Australia, took a trip to the United States with a bag full of sheepskin boots. After finding a new home amongst California surfers, the UGG® Australia brand began to take shape.” http://www.uggaustralia.com/the-story-of-ugg/story-ugg,default,pg.html

    • Mike

      Knowing the history of Uggs doesn’t make them any less hideous.

      • wouldn'tyouliketoknow

        They’re utilitarian. Would I wear them to work or on a date or any other occasion where I cared about looking fashionable? Absolutely not. But for a quick trip to the store on a dry winter day or relaxing in the chalet after a day on the slopes there’s nothing wrong with men wearing them.

    • Johnathan

      Good point, Matt.

      While I can’t speak for Isabella’s opinion, I tend to say a dress shirt should always be tucked in unless you’re within an informal setting – they simply look too ‘messy’ otherwise. When going casual, try to ensure an untucked shirt is only ever maintained as part of a layering system; there’s always a fine line between ‘indie chic’ and ‘scruffy’.

      Thanks for the comment.

  4. Adil

    Johnathan great thought to come up with “male style mistakes”.

    These small things are very small but these counts a lot. I think men go wrong where they try to overdo things.