Image by: Mariah Gale | Styled by: Wave + Woven


WHEN you’re a dude in college or in your early twenties kicking it with your buddies, you get to enjoy more freedom with how you present yourself.  But as you get older, the art of dressing well becomes more and more important.  If you don’t think you get judged by your clothing, you’re wrong.   

And let’s be real, it feels good to look good.  It’s time to trade in the sweatpants and your plaid button-down uniform and trade up for something more put together.  From the boardroom to the bar, I’ve got you on some easy tips from a professional stylist to make dressing simpler and streamlined.   

Image and Styled by: Wave + Woven


Arguably the most important determinant of looking good boils down to the fit of your clothes and a majority of your styling issues will be solved by focusing in on this.  

If you’re shopping off the rack, I want you to try pulling THREE sizes. Grab the size you are, one size smaller and one larger for a fit check.  Sizing varies greatly from brand to brand but even within the same brand depending on cut.   

Pay close attention to fit around the neck, shoulders, waist, hips, and hemlines.  Be mindful of your pants as this can often scream outdated, I always opt for a slim cut and a slight break – nothing overly baggy.   

And never, ever wear a dress shirt left untucked unless it was cut that way purposefully.  When in doubt get yourself to a good tailor or have your garments custom made. It can be the difference between looking frumpy versus polished.  

Image via Ric Flair Instagram


As a stylist, I dial in on core pieces needed to create a look.   

For guys, wearing a layer can act as your outfits’ secret weapon. A t-shirt and jeans on its own are fine but throw on a dope jacket and see how it pulls together the whole look.  There’s a reason you see male celebrities who work with top stylists rocking layers ALL THE TIME.   

It’s cool and visually interesting. Whether it’s a track jacket, bomber, shacket, sport coat or quarter zip I encourage you to find which styles speak to you and wear in rotation.  

And here’s a pro tip: stick with no more than three layers and wear thinnest materials closest to the body with the bulkiest being the outer layer.  


Guys, you’ll want to build a foundation to your wardrobe first.  Think about classic suiting in shades of navy/grey/beige, white and light blue button downs, and quality t-shirts in neutrals.  Once you have the basics, you can start adding color and patterns in.  

The key is to have colors and patterns complement each other, but never look too “matchy matchy.”   

The easiest ones for men to pull off are: steel blue, olive green, evergreen and burgundy as these are more muted and universally flattering.   

Play around with solids in these colors or patterned variations.  Also look for classic check prints, plaids, etc. and steer towards smaller, neutral patterns for something more low key.    

Image and Styled by: Wave + Woven


What I tell my clients all the time, don’t let your shoes go and ruin your whole look once you’re dressed!  

Having a good mix of casual and dressy styles will give you more options, and start with more minimalistic styles before building up your shoe collection.  

You need two sneakers (one more athletic and one more dressy,) a boot, an oxford and a loafer all in GREAT condition.  And pairing the right shoe with the right outfit can be really tricky so make sure you’re mindful of the occasion and where the pant line is hitting it.     


What are the must-have accessories for a man?   

Unless the look is athleisure, it’s your sunglasses, belt and watch. From business casual to more formal attire, you’re going to want to reach for these to finish off your outfit.  I don’t recommend going cheap on these, but you also don’t have to go buy yourself a Rolex to look dope. A simple classic leather belt and aviators can go a long way.    

Image by BostonMan Mag | Styled by Wave + Woven

If your goal is to feel better about your wardrobe, start being more mindful of what you buy and ask yourself – does it fit my body, lifestyle and work with the rest of my wardrobe?   

If not, it’s a hard pass. Nothing is worse than ending up with a closet of stuff and nothing to wear.   

And if you don’t have the time or energy to elevate your look on your own, good news. Hire a stylist and take the heavy lifting off of your shoulders. While shopping and getting dressed can feel overwhelming, it pays to work with someone who can break it down, navigate retail and find those outfit formulas that work. 


Amanda Vargus spent her career in the music industry before pivoting into fashion. She excelled in the industry as a Luxury Manager with The RealReal, a high-end resale website, where she specialized in closet editing and was in charge of merchandise acquisition in the northeast. Now Amanda runs her own independent personal styling company, Wave +Woven, produced Boston’s First Annual Runway Ball, and consults with entrepreneurs, executives and elite professionals to create more exciting and functional wardrobes. Helping clients find their original and unique style through fashion is her passion.