What Men Wear vs. How They Wear It

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Ask A Woman: Sex panther, rawwwrrr!

You're hovering a bit there bucko.

If you’ve got a question that needs the female treatment, chances are you’re not the only one who wants to ask it. Beth is our source for the answers. From opinions on men’s style to decoding the sometimes mysterious ways of women, she’ll take on a different question every Thursday. She also might provide an answer without waiting to be asked. That happens from time to time too. Click here to get to know Beth, then get in touch with her by sending your question to: askawoman@dappered.com .

 

Beth,

I don’t want to get you in trouble here, but… Clearly, the #menswear world has a bit of an obsession with double monk shoes. I’m not a fan, but that’s OK. But then in a recent post, Joe referred to a pair at DSW as “the new budget sex panther.”

“Sex panther”? Really? Maybe to other metrosexual men. But I gotta know – what’s the female take on double monks? Are they sexy, or do they signal a guy who is more interested in how he looks than he is in how you look?

- Ryan

 

Hi Ryan,

Funny you should ask about this shoe. Let’s be honest here. I have an interest in style, but that mainly applies to women’s style, as I’m a woman, and it’s easier to stay up on women’s style since it is directly applicable to my everyday life. I do care about men’s style, and from time to time I write about men’s style, but it’s more of a spectator sport for me. So when I first noticed it on Dappered (yes, I read the other articles, fellas, gotta stay sharp), I was…surprised. It looked like a pilgrim shoe to me. Add a black hat with a big buckle and call it Thanksgiving! As often happens with trends, the more I saw the shoe, the less odd I found it, and now, I think, meh, a shoe with straps and buckles.

double monksPass the yams. Left: Mercanti Fiorentini. Right: Allen Edmonds Neumora.

So Ryan, you and I are of a mind on the double monk. And it’s fine you don’t dig this style. If you dug every trend that came along, then you would be a slave to trends instead of cultivating your own personal taste and style, which is what this Dappered community is all about. I think what Joe meant when he called the shoe a sex panther is that it was a good looking shoe for a decent price. I don’t think he meant that if you wear this shoe the women, or men, will come flocking.

I’m sorry, I know this movie is a guy’s worst nightmare, but it cracks me up every time.

Which brings us to the second part of your question. What signals to women that the dude in front of them is more interested in his own reflection than in admiring the fairer sex? Certainly not the mere presence of double monks. True story: I am in frequent contact with a gentleman who is far and away the flashiest dresser I’ve ever seen (except for RuPaul, God love him). Grey suit with thick pink pinstripes, plaid pants, leopard-print man-blouses, seizure-inducing colored ties. Every time we have dinner, he never fails to admire what I’m wearing and tell me I look lovely. I never doubt that he is sincere in his compliments, and he seems to take real pleasure in seeing how I present myself, which of course, is flattering. I suppose at first glance, people would see a vain man because he clearly has very specific ideas about what he likes to wear. But this isn’t any different than someone who has a closet full of nicely tailored chinos, dapper brogues, and well-fitting neutral-colored blazers. Both men take pride in their appearance, it’s just that one of them has more outlandish taste. And likes brighter colors.

So what you wear isn’t a signal that you’re too into yourself. How you wear it is. Are you constantly smoothing out wrinkles, adjusting your tie, checking to make sure your shirt is tucked in? Do you never miss a chance to look in a store window at your appearance? Do you freak out if someone hugs you and musses your shirt collar? Most importantly, are you preening at the expense of noticing other people? All of that fidgeting and fussing will send a signal to other people that your appearance is your number one priority. And if you do that while talking to an interesting woman, she’ll definitely get the message that you’re not really seeing her, you’re only seeing yourself. The most attractive thing you can do while pursuing a woman is to give her your full, undivided attention. It’ll work better than a pair of double monks.

-Beth

Got a question for Beth? Send it to: askawoman@dappered.com