American humorist Will Rogers once said that every time a woman leaves off something she looks better, but every time a man leaves off something he looks worse. Sadly, that may not always be true. Whether or not you keep up with the latest styles and fashion trends, everyone knows that there are some items of clothing that everyone, be it man or woman, should refrain from wearing in public. Many of these horrific styles are actually appropriate in certain situations, such as for participants (but not simply for spectators) in athletic events. While it is true that fashion is in the eye of the beholder, most would agree that the following fashion faux-pas are no longer, or never were, in style.
1. Fanny Pack
Despite the fact that they went out of fashion in the 1980s (were they ever really in fashion?), many people persist in wearing these hideous belted wallets around their waists. Never mind that they’re a temptation to thieves everywhere, the bottom line is, they just look plain stupid. Admit it: doesn’t your opinion of someone immediately change if you see them wearing a fanny pack? Figure out another place to stash your valuables. Isn’t that why pockets were invented?
The Snuggie is a great invention that keeps millions of people warm and cozy – inside their own homes. It is not meant to be worn in public, no matter how cold it might get outside. Wearing a Snuggie in public is just gauche, no matter the setting – on a college campus, at a sporting event, or at a family gathering. You wouldn’t wear a blanket or bed sheet in public, would you? Regardless of the answer to that question, please keep your Snuggie at home.
3. Socks with Sandals
What fashionista first started this ghastly trend? Sandals are meant to be worn when it’s warm enough to go without socks, not to be paired with socks. Unfortunately, some people did not receive this memo, and persist in wearing sandals on top of socks. There are even groups of people who have dedicated themselves to being part of the “sandal and soxer” (as it’s known) movement, for some unknown reason. Unless you’re elderly with poor circulation and your feet are freezing, keep your socks in the drawer when putting on your sandals.
4. Shorts with Knee Socks
Nothing screams “tourist” more than pairing shorts with knee socks. Sure, if you’re an athlete, shorts with knee socks might make sense, on the playing field. Or when you’re working out at the gym, shorts with knee socks are a passable offence. But at any other time, they’re a no-no. Unless you want to be the object of ridicule, try to find a shorter pair of socks to wear with your shorts.
5. Flip Flops anywhere other than the beach or swimming pool
Flip-flops are perfect to wear at the beach or around a swimming pool. Usually made of rubber, if they happen to get wet, they dry out quickly and easily, to be worn another day. But in public, flip-flops should be taboo. Even though there are some very expensive, supposedly fashionable flip-flops currently on the market, wearing flip-flops in public labels you as a person with no fashion sense. It’s as if you couldn’t be bothered to choose a stylish pair of shoes to wear, so you grabbed your flip-flops before heading out the door. Keep them in your beach bag, please.
6. Belly shirts
With the exception of a very small number of people with perfect abs, in general, people should not wear belly shirts in public. The reason becomes apparent in the photo. This applies to males and females (as males have been known to show this sort of fashion disregard as well). The problem with belly shirts is, those who should not wear them either don’t own a mirror or have poor self-perception of their bodies, and must not realize their mistake when they put on a belly shirt. The rest of us are the ones who suffer when you wear a belly shirt. Please refrain from doing so.
Men in Speedos (or other brief-style swimsuits) fall under the same general principle as women in belly shirts: most can’t wear them without looking laughable. The form-fitting nature of the Speedo suits professional swimmers perfectly, and should be limited to their use. Many men in Speedos seem to think they’re God’s gift to women. In reality, most women, upon seeing a man in a Speedo (no matter what his body type or size is) can’t help acting on their first instinct: to laugh. Unless you’re Michael Phelps, you might want to consider choosing another style of swimsuit.
Although the codpiece originated in the Middle Ages, some men persist in wearing them today. Their original purpose was to accentuate the genital area, which may explain why some performing artists choose to wear codpieces in this era. However, the average Joe shouldn’t be caught wearing a codpiece in public. It’s just gross. If you’re not Larry Blackmon of Cameo, keep the codpiece in the closet and just wear it (if you must) in the privacy of your own home.
9. Sagging pants
Sure, they might be “in” among rappers and gangstas, but sagging pants on most people are just gross. No one wants to see the parts of your body you should be keeping covered under those jeans. Once thought of as a fashion faux-pas, shockingly, now some people actually wear their pants like this on purpose. If you’re not in a hip-hop group, buy yourself a decent belt and hike up those pants, please!
10. Too-tight Jeans (or Pants, or Shorts...)
We all can appreciate a good body in tight jeans. However, some jeans, pants, or shorts are simply too tight, leaving nothing to the imagination, or making even the most fit people look like a sausage. If you have to lay down and suck in your gut every time you put on your favourite pair of jeans, chances are they should no longer be your favourites. Ever heard of the term cameltoe? And guys, we don’t need to be able to see what religion you are. Head to the mall and choose a new pair of jeans already!