Having at least a modicum of style has become a must for modern men — though some guys aren’t sure where to begin with updating or supplementing their wardrobes. Becoming more fashionably adventurous is generally a good thing, but sometimes budding male fashionistas can find themselves led astray by bad trends (especially if they’re being worn by other, less discriminating guys).
Here are nine of the worst recent men’s fashion trends that are best left untouched:
Really skinny jeans
Let’s face it; skinny jeans are just not for everyone. It takes a certain body type to pull off skinny jeans, and that body type is usually found on a woman. Regardless of whether you’re super skinny, extremely fit or on the chunkier side, skinny jeans will find any bodily imperfections and highlight them. If your jeans leave you barely able to walk, it’s time to seriously consider upgrading to a more suitable pair.
UGGs worn outside the house
We all like having a little comfort and pampering within the privacy of our own homes, which is why it is completely acceptable to wear UGGs or similar furry boots … provided that you stay indoors while wearing them. No matter how comfortable you find them to be, remember, they’re not substitute as real footwear.
Pinky rings for men
Unless you are involved with some nefarious characters and shady business dealings, pinky rings for men are probably something that you should skip altogether. While pinky rings for men technically can fall under the retro-inspired trends that have been so popular, they are generally too over the top for most outfits. Exceptions can be made for Halloween costumes and “Mad Men” themed parties.
Ed Hardy tees
It’s probably a good rule of thumb that any item of clothing frequently worn on Jersey Shore is one best avoided. At the top of this list are Ed Hardy T-shirts, which have become associated with the most hopeless kinds of fashion victims. If you are dying for a print tee, opt for a vintage-inspired graphic T-shirt instead.
Men should not use teenage boys as fashion icons in pretty much any circumstances. Not only should you abstain from any haircut that can be termed as Bieber-esque, but stay away from any styles that a neutral observer may best term as “silly.” This includes anything that involves a random tuft of hair, asymmetrical shaved section or hair that adds at least four inches to your height.
While showing a little personality in your jewelry and accessories can be a great thing, some mass produced items have bypassed quirky and gone straight to annoying. This can include anything with ironic imagery or phrases, oversized pendant necklaces and double rings for men. Remember, quirky doesn’t work if hundreds of other guys are wearing the same item.
Shorts instead of pants
What started out as a questionable trend in womenswear has spread to menswear: shorts where pants should be. Not only are men wearing shorts in more formal settings, but some are also going as far as to pair them with unquestionably dressy items, like suit jackets. Reserve the shorts for casual, hot days and beach vacations.
It has to be said: there is simply too much plaid floating around these days in menswear. What was once a classic print is being reproduced to an alarming degree, and even good plaid items are being dragged down by lesser-quality plaids. It happened with stripes, and doubtless some other innocent print will soon fall victim. Avoid plaid for now, and wait until it’s less ubiquitous.
The omni-present hat
Unless you live in a desert climate or some similarly hot environment, there is no need to wear a hat all of the time. While baseball hats tend to be the most egregious offenders, other styles, like fedoras, are quickly catching up. Don’t be the guy who wears his hat so often that he begins to be defined by it (“Oh, is he the guy that always wears that hat?”) — unless, of course, you are currently in the process of growing out a Justin Bieber-inspired haircut.