Chukkas: the Shawn Marion of Your Shoe Game

You may not be aware of this, but the world post-World War II brought with it some pretty heavy developments. Once the specter of a dystopian global Nazi society had been defeated, things were naturally going to be a little different than before. A new world order, a sophisticated military-industrial complex, and a new less homicidal Germany all resulted from The War to End All Wars. All these things put together, however, pale in comparison to the most significant of WWII’s contributions to modern society, the legendary Chukka.

While it’s technically an ankle cut boot the Chukka can resemble a high top shoe. They were originally worn in Africa by soldiers who found that their military issued boots weren’t cutting it, so they adopted the desert boot, a form of Chukka. They found the desert boots comfort and grip to be second to none. Those desert boot wearing soldiers eventually went on to drive the Nazis out of North Africa, and they looked damn good doing it.

Now you too can wear one of the most versatile shoes every made, because Chukkas are back. You can find them nearly anywhere these days, from Aldo to Vans to Nordstroms. You can pair desert boots with any type of pant, though they work best with jeans in my experience. tomahawk, chukka boots, clay bowls 017

 

The Lions Mane

The Lions Mane

Maintaining Your Man-Fur

 

Gentlemen,

Today I wanted talk about a critical issue that is rather close to my heart; more accurately, covering it and most likely almost every area of your body: coarse, brittle Man-Fur. In specific, today we are taking a detailed look into how to correctly shave, cut, and tame that beard of yours to work for you. So before you raise your banners and wage another battle in the crusade between your face and that old disposable razor take a minute to read a few tips from us.

The Electric Razor – The Microwave Oven of Shaving

It’s not a bad idea these days for gents to own both a true bladed razor and its electric speedy cousin. Electric razors work well, but will never give you as close a shave as a razor. They are quick, leave little to no razor burn, and can be a money saver. Honestly these babies are the best for trimming body hair. This article isn’t really about that but since we are on the subject…

Your man coat is a lot like a yard or lawn. Have you ever driven by house who’s lawn is overgrown, desperately needs mowing, and looks like there may be something hiding in the tall grass? Not appealing. Next door is the house whose bushes are well shaped, the grass is trimmed, and the lawn looks welcoming. Let’s face it gents if you are letting the grass grow to 4-5 feet nobody wants to rummage around in there. Twenty or thirty years ago it was the norm for ole’ Dad to go Lion King and let that mangrove swamp grown in one seamless line from toe-knuckle to upper back, but thankfully those days are gone. I’m not saying we should all go for the fifth grader look and scorch the Earth, but every now and then you may want to edit that low budget kung-fu movie you have going on down there. Also while we are on this note, whatever you expect from your lady friend should be reflected in your own grooming; equal is equal (they can vote too you know). More likely than not these sweet amazing women have put their “jenny’s” through some form of cruel torture in the past few days that we would never dream of doing so the gentlemanly thing to do here is compliment, find out what they prefer, and reciprocate.

So remember whether you’re shaving down by the Hardy Boys or upstairs it’s no mystery, always use an electric shave solution, shoot for symmetry, and please be very, very careful.

The Razor Blade – Hair or Flesh I Cut It

The gold standard of shaving is a straight blade (or nowadays several blades stacked on a gel handled vibrator). This form of shaving definitely gives the closest and cleanest shave, but is also a great way to leave the bathroom looking like you just FaceTimed with Freddy Krueger. If you scroll down a bit I discuss the 5 S’s of shaving, but a sneak-peak will tell you to shower before shaving, use a sharp razor, and shave with the grain initially. If you are repeatedly the guy walking around the house with Quilted Northern stuck to gushing wounds, we here at The Gentlemen wanted to provide you with a few quick life-hacks to overcoming that never ending red stream:

 

  1. Ice – This should constrict the blood vessels and stop the bleeding, but it will melt and drip down and ruin your button –up.
  2. Witch Hazel – This oddly named substance can be found at most local grocery stores and is a known astringent. It will stop the bleeding.
  3. Pressure – Old school and time consuming but it works.
  4. Lip Balm/Deodorant – Lip balm is a sealant and will clot the cut but you will put a gleaming target on your face for everyone to stare at. Deodorant has differing amounts of aluminum chloride (or a substitute) and once applied will form a clot.
  5. Sugar (Pepper & Cayenne) – This last resort will work to stop bleeding as well as kill any bacteria present, but if you are debating whether to put pepper in your face or just walk around with a little blood, really weigh the pros and cons.
  6. Aspirin & Water Paste- Works and has a soothing effect.
  7. Hot Water – If you can bear the pain, extremely hot water essentially cauterizes the blood vessel and can stop the bleeding. Not my go to.

(There are also a number of products designed for this purpose.)

So before we jump into the art of shaving let’s talk quickly about what facial hair is appropriate for a gentleman to wear and what says “bush-league”. Generally the business standard is clean shaven; has been and always will be. If you do choose to grow out a certain style of facial hair, always make sure it is trimmed, clean, and well kept. Facial hair, attire, and physical presentation may be more lax of a subject for our generation, but typically in older circles what is acceptable and what is not is viewed with a strict eye. So if you notice your boss has never grown out any facial hair whatsoever, you may want to think twice before participating in No-Shave-November. There are a few styles of facial hair that need particular attention. No one our age should wear just a mustache ever; unless you’re a cop in which case you should always wear a mustache. The super-hipster Grizzly Adams style full beard is definitely rising in popularity amongst artists, stylists, and people who Instagram pictures of their food. But before you wrap a scarf around your neck throw on those black frames and beanie, please know that this style is usually totally unacceptable to anyone in a management role. We at The Gentlemen do not push conformity; always be yourself, but personal expression and “swagger” are hard to communicate when you don’t have the job that generated the income for those leathers and skinny tie.

Slice and Dice

So what is the textbook way to do this every day activity? The first thing to remember about facial hair is that is usually more sensitive than the hair anywhere else on your body. If you are shaving twice or more a week, you need to carefully negotiate a treaty with your face, and respect it’s boundaries. Have a routine and schedule for your shaves (every two to three days). Why? Because if you don’t wait for your face to recover before beginning another confrontation, then you risk ingrown hairs, skin irritation, razor burn, or those damn little nicks/cuts that seem to have a direct line to your aorta and never stop bleeding.

The next thing you have to remember is the 5 S’s of shaving.

  1. 1.    Shit (if you have to)
  2. 2.    Shower
  3. 3.    Shaving Cream
  4. 4.    Sharp
  5. 5.    Shaving Direction

Your skin needs to be soft and moist so post shower is the great time to crush a quick shave. If you are not going to be showering, but still need to shave hold a warm towel on your face for a few minutes before applying your shaving cream. Speaking of, if you have always used just the 1950’s Barbasol, try branching out a little. Jack Black makes a full line fantastic pre and post shaving creams (try the Beard Lube), but if you need to pick up something quick grab a bottle of Gillette – ProGlide Irritation Defense.

Next you need to make sure you’re using a sharp razor. Try to change to a fresh head every 5-7 shaves. It seems every year they add some weird feature to our razors, be it another blade, a vibrator, or some strange gel coating, but whatever your preference is just remember: small strokes and don’t push too hard. Also if you have the time and patience try to shave once with the grain of your hair and a second pass the opposite direction (for a closer shave). Lastly if you do use after shave, try to pick a non-greasy one and go easy on the volume.

So Gentlemen, best of luck this week gliding that razor sharp blade around the many curves of your face. Remember to always lube up before shaving, and keep it right here for the latest tips and tricks when it comes to being a Dapper Young Gentleman.

 

Cheers,

D. Y. Gennings

Musk Up!

Musk Up

The Art of Men’s Fragrance

Evening Gents,

We all know that scent is the strongest sense tied to memory, and that smell is the most sensitive of all the human senses. But did you know that your sense of smell is linked to emotional recollection (including pleasure & good memories), and that unfortunately for us women have a much stronger sense of smell than men? So ask yourself:

1.      Am I leaving this lady with a long-lasting pleasant memory that sparks good emotions and a cute smile when I walk up, or a reoccurring nasal nightmare that makes her associate me with trashcans?

More importantly;

2.     Am I making the absolute most of this valuable connection into the mind that controls those beautiful curves?

Well if you haven’t received a compliment on your man scent from the fairer sex in the past few weeks, most likely there is room for improvement.

Volume & Location

As The Gentlemen have already explained, one important rule to remember in men’s fragrance is not to marinate in your cologne. Everyone knows that guy that drenches himself in a good half bottle of “A&F-Fierce” before going out, and you better believe he is remembered (not fondly) by anyone who comes anywhere near him. So what is the appropriate amount of man scent? Depending on the strength of the cologne; generally apply 1-2 light sprays from an arm’s length away (not to concentrate in one spot).

There are a couple of different points on the body to choose from when wearing cologne. Generally the junction between the chest and neck is best area (good blood circulation and consistent body temperature). You can also apply it to your wrists, abdomen, or even behind your ears.

 

 Timing Is Everything

Maybe you heard that Matthew McConaughey doesn’t shower often or wear antiperspirant, and maybe you are thinking of following in his dirty footsteps. Well you are not Matthew McConaughey. It should go without saying, but just to be safe: A GENTLEMAN SHOWERS EVERYDAY. And after a nice hot shower, when your pores are open, is the best time to apply your cologne. It will last longer and mingle with your own natural scents to create something original and unique.

While on the subject of bodily scents, your sweat contains toxins and traces of your diet/habits. Smoking cigs, crushing beers, & eating unhealthy foods can affect the way you smell naturally, and consequently change the way your cologne smells. Just something to keep in mind in the drive-thru.

So check out some of the great summer colognes The Gentlemen have recommended, and remember to change your scent with the seasons. Always keep in mind that the way you smell can be a handy tool in creating a positive memory that yields future dividends, or a quick way to scare off anyone you were hoping to keep around.

Cheers,

D.Y. Gennings

Suit Up! 5 Ways to Spice Up a Suit

Suits featuredThere is little debate that every young gent should include at least one suit in their wardrobe.  It’s what goes beyond the suit where problems start to occur.  Many times it is hard to find ways to make the wardrobe unique to its wearer.  In an era of homogeneity, Dapper Young Gentleman is here with a few tips to set you apart from the crowd.

  1. Patterned Shirts-  Long gone are the days where plain white shirts are the only thing to wear under a jacket.  These days patterns are the only way to go.  While it is important that the shirt doesn’t take away from the suit itself, many styles can still be seen as complimentary.  Our recommendation is a simple, yet not understated plaid shirt.  This adjustment can really make an outfit stand out.
  2. Cuff Links-  Nothing brings out the sophistication of suit like a pair of fancy cuff lengths.  With countless styles to choose from, it is easy to find just the right pair to match your personality.  Note that cuff links are used with French Cuffs, which in their own right, bring about a style all their own.
  3. Tie and Pocket Square- Here is another way that you can show off your personality.  Again there are countless combinations to choose from.  One thing to remember when picking, be sure that it is not a distraction.  Like in many aspects of life, sometimes less is more.  Important thing to remember, the tie and pocket square do not have to be the exact same.  Having said that, they do need to be complementary to one another.
  4. Socks-  One commonly overlooked aspect of dressing up, the socks are a great way to show your fun side.  Don’t be afraid to add a little bit of color to your step.  Just look at George H. Bush, he definitely knows where it’t at when it comes to his sock game.
  5. Shoes-  Often the first thing that people notice, the shoes are essential to making a suit pop.  To help you out further, we have already discussed shoes briefly with our wingtip shoe feature.  Also remember it’s imperative that you match your shoes to your belt.

So what have we learned from this brief overview?  Sometimes less is more; while going over the top is alright in some situations, more often than not it leaves you looking like a fool.  Be careful to properly match your items, its much easier to make a suit look bad than it is good.  Choose accessories that are an extension of your personality, in doing so you’ll feel much more confident.  Be a little bit cocky, the easiest way to make a suit look good is to own it with confidence.

The Saddle Shoe

Gents, I present to you the saddle shoe. A current staple of the fashion forward wardrobe, the saddle shoe takes confidence to pull off. They are designed not to blend seamlessly with an outfit but to stand out, to be a statement of their own. Saddle shoes are a casual shoe, a low cut oxford that we do not recommend mixing in to your formal wear unless you have an unusually impressive pair. They do serve to spruce up any casual outfit, dressing up almost anything and endowing their wearer with a certain measure of flair.

The saddle shoe works with complimentary colors: lightsaddleAnd with a single color:band-of-outsiders-5-hole-saddle-shoes-selectism-0

 

The Wingtip Shoe

mctavish-WING-TIP-SHOESProperly referred to as brogues, the wingtip shoe brings a little classic English haberdashery to your style. Paired with the right pair of pants, a nice pair of wingtips can really make the difference for a gentleman’s look. They help bring an air of sophistication, effectively separating you from the less remarkable gentleman around you. We here at the Dapper Young Gentleman highly recommend you gents add a pair of wingtips to your shoe game, and if you need a place to start we’ve got you.

If money isn’t an issue you can find an incredible pair of To Boot New York Windsor Brogues at Nordstrom here: http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/to-boot-new-york-windsor-wingtip-oxford-men-online-only/3553882?origin=category-personalizedsort&contextualcategoryid=0&fashionColor=&resultback=4685&cm_sp=personalizedsort-_-browseresults-_-1_13_C

If you’re a gent with a budget you can find quality wingtips at Aldo for more affordable prices here: http://www.aldoshoes.com/us/men/shoes/dress-lace-ups/90796988-kitchell/28

The next time you walk in to work or the bar or whatever it is you’re doing, do so in style. Do so in a pair of wingtips.

Shoutout to trashness.com for the photo

5 Summer Colognes Every Young Gentleman Needs

Summer is a wonderful time for men everywhere for several reasons: the outdoors are far more inviting, the women look great in their sundresses, and we as men now have an excuse to drink seemingly everyday (as if we needed one). But summertime isn’t all pounding brews and wake boarding, believe it or not there are negatives as well. One of those negatives is that whatever cologne your wearing is activated by heat, meaning that a cologne that was perfect during the winter is now totally overpowering, instead of attracting the opposite sex all your accomplishing now is making them lightheaded. The answer? A lighter cologne designed for summer, one that may have seemed too weak during the winter but now feels just right, and here at the Dapper Young Gentleman we have five for you to consider.

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1. Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue $70

The Gentleman happens to personally own two of these fragrances, and this is one of them. Light Blue is light and citrusy, it’s different and absolutely perfect for summer wear. You also get a lot more bang for your buck here, the average cologne you’ll buy at this price will contain about 3.4 oz. of the smell good, where Light Blue is hitting you with with 4.2 oz. This cologne is flexible, you could use it during the day, at the office, on a date, or out at night. Light Blue pops up on almost any list of summer colognes, this one is simultaneously a classic and an essential.

 

 

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2. Frapin 1270 $155

This one is for the more dedicated or affluent gents among us. 1270 is for a night out, it’s an impress the ladies kind of cologne. It contains hints of honey, orange, and cocoa all mixed together, and while it’s the strongest scent we would recommend for a summer cologne I can personally assure that this stuff smells great.

 

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3. Bvlgari Man $70

This is the other cologne The Gentleman is proud to say he owns, and it has the prototypical level of lightness you need in a summer fragrance. With Bvlgari Man you get a woody summer scent that smells like a modern take on the colognes your dad used to wear. This is a classy fragrance, wear it at the office or at night.

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4. Acqua di Parma Eau de Colonia $150

This one comes highly rated from of The Gentleman’s most trusted cologne experts, and while it’s another expensive cologne, this one smells great and has a rich history of being used by gentlemen all the way back to WWI. It smells a mixture of lavender and citrus and can be used at nearly any type of occasion.

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5. Polo Sport $60

This one quite a few of you young gents out there should be familiar with, it’s a classic. It smells very fresh and clean as Polo colognes tend to do. This one is affordable, and with it’s light yet long lasting nature, is another essential for any man.