It’s become sort of an issue when men date women with good fashion sense, but have none of their own. We women feel compelled to make up for short-comings, spending hundreds of dollars on fashionable items for our lovers, our boyfriends, and our husbands so they look good on our arm. It’s only because we love you, guys. And you know you want to look good too! So why not save us some trouble and money in 2011?
I have compiled a list of eleven essentials for men consisting of items that all have the power to seduce–an enigmatic kaleidoscope of the most attractive qualities women desire. And the best part about this is that even if you don’t have money to buy a new wardrobe, most of this stuff is available at your local thrift or vintage store!
1. The Blazer
The blazer is a must-have for every man, no doubt about it. It projects an air of professionalism. The blazer can be worn as a jacket when it’s chilly and it looks amazing dressed up with a pair of slacks or dressed down with a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. Are you a business man? Are you a musician? Are you a doctor? A professor, maybe? You can have (and project) it all with this jacket. Mystify her when she first sets eyes on you.
Where can I find it: Anywhere.
Colors: black, brown, navy blue, burgundy, green
Material: wool, corduroy, velvet, leather
Example: the Standard Cloth Velvet Blazer, via Urban, $48
2. The Body Wash + Face Wash + Loofa + Cologne Combo
You know what’s depressing? Spending the night at your place and seeing that you only have a bar of soap in your bathroom and/or shower. You know how you men love to touch our soft skin? Well, the same goes for us too. You need the loofa + body wash for exfoliation, the face wash for a fresh face, and the cologne? Well if you wear the right cologne, we’ll be swimming in our sex sheets for days, sniffing your pillow to inhale you in. Make sure you go high-end on the cologne.
Where can I find it: grocery stores, drug stores, specialty stores, and department stores everywhere
Example: L’Occitane and Kiehl’s lines for men
3. The ‘Vintage’ Novelty Tee
The more worn and older looking the better. Let this shirt bring out the essence of you. It could be of a rock band you like or of a sports team you love, it could be a witty, whip-smart tee, or even one with a political message. Hint: Get an extra one a size too small, spray some of your cologne on it, and that one night we stay over at your place, let us sleep in it. We’ll fall harder thinking you gave us your most prized possession and we probably won’t even wash it.
Where can I find it: H&M, Urban Outfitters, thrift stores, your dad’s and your grandfather’s dresser
Example: the E-A-G-L-E-S tee, via Urban, $28
4. The Zip-Up Hoodie Sweatshirt
This is as practical as it is fashionable. The great thing about the hoodie is the whole warmth with layers thing. One of my favorite looks is the vintage tee + hooded sweatshirt + corduroy blazer. It is just straight up Paddington cool. And you know you like hoodies anyway.
Where can I find it: anywhere, especially athletic stores
Colors: black, navy blue, gray, brown
Material: cotton, cotton/poly blend
Example: the Archer Full-Zip Hoodie, via Ralph Lauren, $70
5. The Faded, Relaxed Jean
I can honestly sympathize with the difficult endeavor of finding the right pair of jeans. It’s hard for women too. You need a pair that shows a bit of the shape of your ass, that sits a bit lower on the hips, and that is very comfortable. My faves for men? Diesel if you are on the high-end, Levi‘s for the guys who are classic.
Where can I find it: boutiques, department stores, vintage stores
Colors: dark blue, medium blue
Example: the 8ZT Jean by Diesel, via Asos, $169
6. The Boot
Since I couldn’t choose between my two favorite types of boots, the best thing for you to do is… just get them both. The workman boot is awesome. It is perfect for the winter and it looks HOT when your relaxed jeans are tucked in, just a little. We’ll be thinking, Wow I bet he is really good with his hands and let’s face it, anything construction worker/handyman/carpenter-related is always a no-fail. I’m also a fan of the duck boot. The western boot is also always great, and you can even wear them for dressier occasions. Square toe or pointy toe, in leather. Oh yes.
Where can I find it: boutiques, department stores, specialty shoe stores, vintage stores
Colors: brown, black
Example: the Bed Stu Folk Engineer Boot, via Urban, $188
7. The Watch
Yes, we know wearing jewelry isn’t the most masculine thing, but you can bypass this stereotype with a silver or gold watch. The shinier the better. And you just may bump into that special someone who happens to ask, Excuse me kind gentleman, but do you have the time? When it comes to seduction, I’d advise against digital. Old school nostalgia is key.
Where can I find it: boutiques, department stores, fine jewelry stores
Material: stainless steel, gold, silver, platinum (never hurts)
Example: the Timex Black Dial Quartz Watch, via Bloomingdales, $110
8. The Wide Brim Hat
There is something about a hat with a nice brim. Pull the front a little over your eyes and become even more mysterious because we won’t be able to tell if you are checking us out. And it looks amazing with the new blazer you just bought. Looking to be even more alluring? Pair the hat with a quality trench coat. Hello, dark stranger!
Where can I find it: boutiques, department stores, hat stores, where pimps shop
Colors: black, brown
Example: the Stetson Bozeman Hat, via Cabela’s, $60
9. The Boxer Briefs
If you don’t wear underwear at all, don’t worry about this one. But if you do, well, seeing a guy come out of the shower in a pair of these does something to us, I swear. Just make sure they are fitted to accentuate your manhood.
Where can I find it: department stores
Colors: white, black, navy, gray
Example: the Calvin Klein Body Boxer Brief, $20
10. The Plaid Button-Down Shirt
An exceptional layering piece to add to your wardrobe, both comfy and classy, the plaid button-down has that lovely get-down-to-business-working-class look. And yes, it looks great with your novelty tee, blazer, and workman boots. Didn’t you know grunge is back? And unbuttoned? Hell. Yes.
Where can I find it: outdoors stores, department stores, thrift stores
Colors: plaid with a color hue that brings out your eyes
Material: flannel, cotton
Example: the 6.0 Rod Dog Men’s Flannel Shirt, via Nike, $50
11. The Tie
This is your dress up accessory. Make sure you get a print that matches your eyes. Or go glam and sport a black-button down with a black satin tie for a bit of texture. I think you get the picture.
Where can I find it: boutiques, department stores, thrift stores, places like TJ MAXX and Marshall’s
Colors: any–but nothing tropical, please!
Material: silk, satin
Example: the Paul Smith London Dot Skinny Tie, via Bloomingdale’s, $95