We all know some of the basic rules of fashion. We observe some of them and even play fashion police once in a while. No, we won’t be talking about the regular and stale ‘never wear a brown belt with a black dress shoe’ kinda mistakes. We will be discussing just five out of the many very common mistakes around.


Here we go.

Having sweat marks on your clothes

Having visible sweaty armpits or sweat stains on your clothes can be really embarrassing.


It is commonplace to see dapper dressed gents, wearing neatly ironed dress shirts but sadly, with sweat marks underneath their armpit area. That is so gross and belittling.

Asides health reasons (which is also not a valid excuse for sweaty armpits), forgetting to use a good deodorant or antiperspirant before leaving the house is usually the cause.

Deodorant or antiperspirant can be used to control sweat and odor in our underarms. Deodorants should be worn to cover up underarm smells, but if you sweat a lot, you definitely need an antiperspirant to slow down the production of underarm sweat.


Bulky wallet or bulky pocket

You are at the counter in a supermarket waiting for your turn to make payment, the guy waiting in line in front of you deeps hands into his pocket, struggles a bit and brings out his wallet from his pocket … you could hear him pant slightly.

Bulky wallet?

Did you stuff a whole brick in there?


Now, this completely ruins your style!

Here is what you can do instead. First, go buy a slimmer wallet and then spend a day in a week to rid your bulky wallet of irrelevant things – yeah you know what I’m talking about: those tiny papers, receipts, business cards, debit/credit cards.

Only keep one or two debit/credit cards which you frequently use and keep the rest in a safe place at home. For a business card, get a simple card wallet.

For those who are fond of putting their phones in their dress pants pocket thereby creating the bulge, desist from this bad style habit. Either insert the phone in your inner suit jacket or just hold it in your palm when you walk.


Wearing dress shirts untucked

A dress shirt is known as a formal shirt which has rigid collars with collar stays and they come in either barrel or French cuff. They are the primary type of shirts worn with suits and ties and they are usually too long to leave untucked.

But I see a lot of people wearing their long dress shirts with jeans, chinos or dress pants untucked. Which is very wrong!

You should always tuck in your dress shirt when wearing formal pieces, and avoid wearing long dress shirts for a casual setting (so you don’t have any reason to untuck it).


Now let me also mention that there are specific styles of modern dress shirts that can be worn in a casual setting – the length is usually cut lower and the tail of the shirt is usually above mid-crotch.

As a general rule, if the tail of your shirt is above your wrist or stops mid crotch, you should always leave it untucked. Anything below, you should definitely tuck in.

Wearing athletic socks (white or black) with dress shoes

A lot of men still believe that any kind of socks goes with dress shoes. Now that’s one bad style habit most of us learned growing up.

Well, in case you didn’t know, athletic socks are meant to be worn only for sports occasions or to the gym.

When it comes to dress shoes, wear traditional dark colored cotton or silk socks or any other form of dressy socks that come in different varieties, such as colorful, polka dot, funky and fun types.

Not paying attention to the shoes you wear

You can still tell a gentleman by his shoes. In fact, a fashion authority says you CANNOT always tell a man by his clothes, but you can invariably judge a gentleman by his shoes.

Most of the time, it’s either the shoe is not clean (which indicates laziness), warped or out of shape (which also indicates not paying attention to details) or the shoe doesn’t just match the outfit they are wearing (which indicates lack of style).

You should always keep your shoes clean, well shined and free of dirt at all times. Invest in pocket shoe shiner if need be to ensure you get it right all the time.

Invest in good quality shoes; there are at least 3 shoes every gentleman should own.

Final thoughts

Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak. Your personal style plays a huge role in telling people and the world who you are. Dress for success at all times ‘cos you never know whom you’ll meet.”

Until next time, continue to do well, live well and dress really well. Be Classy!

Kobi O. Mbagwu (Mr. Kobi) is a professional image consultant, menswear blogger & entrepreneur who uses fashion, style, and clothing as key tools in changing people’s lives. He frequently speaks and writes about fashion and style.

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