Forget what everyone says about intelligence, kindness and loyalty. When it comes to first dates, the way you look is most important. Shallow? No doubt. But we’re only human. What you wear and how you groom yourself can speak volumes before you even utter “hello.” Luckily, we’re here to help you put your best foot forward (literally) and prevent you from greeting your date with gnarly nails, all in the hopes that this initial encounter will end in something more than a seriously unsatisfying goodbye.
It’s no secret that every woman (and, for that matter, any well-dressed gent) is pretty much obsessed with shoes. And that’s because they’re the one thing that can make or break an entire getup. Fortunately, most men know that ratty running shoes are off-limits. But those aren’t the offenders here. Rather, the culprits are clunky, bulbous-toed slip-on shoes that guys dust off for date night. It’s time to part ways and invest in a lean-lined loafer or a lace-up brogues.
A button-down shirt
No, not an oversized, un-tucked one with a purple paisley print and contrasting stripes on the collar and cuffs. Keep it simple with solid white or blue, and focus on fit. Even if you’re packing some extra pounds, the shirt should have high armholes and be tailored through the torso.
A fitted sportcoat
In basic navy, windowpane or tweed, a sportcoat is a surefire (not to mention super-simple) way to swoon your date. And much like your shirt, the only thing that really matters is the cut. It should have two buttons, follow your form and just barely cover your caboose.
Light jeans look either too casual, too cheap or both. Darker washes in a straight-leg cut, alternatively, lend a more luxe look to any date-night duds. And unless your initial encounter is at a black-tie ball, you’re guaranteed entrance just about anywhere. In short, it’s an easy option with maximum impact.
Clipped nails, coiffed hair and cologne
A good rule of thumb: Cleanliness can help you get dirty later. There’s no bigger turnoff than talon-like toenails or tufts of scraggily hairs on the back of your neck. A clip here and a snip there should do the trick. Then polish yourself off with a spritz of cologne. Anything more would be a knockout -- and not in a good way.
Deep down, we know the inside is what really counts. But if you ignore the outside, you’ll be hard-pressed to get someone past the first date to see it ;).. Good luck!
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