Dressing for a Night Out

For some reason, there’s this aura of nervousness and mystery associated with a night out. Nervous wallflowers the world over fret over what they’re going to wear, how to dance, and when it’s acceptable to offer to buy someone a drink. Answer: Anytime (who doesn’t like a free drink?)

This kind of over thinking can kill a night. With all the other things to consider, the last thing you need to worry about is what you’re wearing. So for the benefit of those still tearing apart their closets and racking their brains we're  here to explain just ‘How To Dress For A Night Out Anywhere.

Just by considering the club you’re going to, and adjusting your wardrobe accordingly you can really make yourself stand out from the status quo.

The College Club
It’s a college club. The usual mix of frat guys, sorority girls, serious students looking to cut loose, and older high school kids with fake IDs. People are drinking. A lot. It’s a generic venue that doesn’t cater to any specific style.

What To Wear: Casual. Nowhere else will effort be more apparent than at a college bar. Throwing on a suit or even the latest designer t-shirt will be a wasted effort here that will mark you as a slumming yuppie.

A decent pair of sneakers or slip-ons, a clean fitted t-shirt, and jeans will work just fine. If you feel the urge to wear something really nice, designer denim is never a bad choice.

The Top-40 Club
Sort of a grown-up version of the college bar, these places offer the same sort of noncommittal, everyguy entertainment. A good mix of 9-to-5ers, and the bridge and tunnel kids who don’t know of any better clubs. Expect remixes of radio hits, and girls who freak out and start screaming and high-fiving when the latest track comes on.

What To Wear: Casual smart. A lot of these places have dress codes that ban hooded sweatshirts, hats, sneakers, or anything too distressed. Unfortunately this mentality really lends itself to guys rocking jeans paired with a club shirt, it’s the easiest path to take.

For those looking for something a bit different, consider trim black slacks paired with a polo shirt, or a pair of slim khaki’s and a nice navy cardigan.

The Lounge
It’s a more downbeat crowd; it’s an older crowd, with the occasional discussion about 401k’s, girls in cocktail dresses instead of leggings, and a lot less dancing. DJs working these venues throw out terms like ‘Minimal House’ and ‘Progressive’ with dead seriousness. A great choice if you’re feeling a bit too old to go out and dance in a crowd of kids wearing shutter shades.

What To Wear: Many of these places are pretty strict about dress codes, and sometimes don’t let in people in runners and jeans. Even if you do manage to get in while wearing those ratty old Adidas, nobody is going to want to take your broke-ass home. You’re going to have to suit up.

Don’t just wear that same old work suit; pick something in a slim cut, and with a matching shirt underneath. Rock a necktie only if you feel comfortable in it, otherwise they’re unnecessary.

The Hip-Hop Club
Who’s down with OPP? This whole party, that’s who! It’s the kind of place that blows up once the DJ drops Clipse or R. Kelly, and the kind of place that you wish you could walk into in slow motion, because that’s invariably what they do in the music videos.

What To Wear: The big mistake people make when dressing for a hip-hop club is the notion that you have to dress like the rappers whose music pumps through the speakers. Just take your normal weekend attire and add a few little touches if you feel you need to, such as some low-key jewelry or a fresh pair of new kicks. Try swapping your regular pants for a pair of easy-fit jeans and some Air Jordan’s.

Don’t go crazy though; Lil Wayne can drop his jeans around his thighs, but that’s strictly because he is Lil Wayne.

The Mega Club
I hope you absolutely love house music; otherwise this is going to be a very long night. Multiple rooms hosted by DJs and promoters high off of their own sense of achievement. However, these events offer some of the most fun, and lead to the best stories you will ever be a part of.

Expect to see people in costumes, fog machines, and people with nicknames as strange as their attire. Don’t be surprised to wake up with glitter on your crotch; that stuff takes forever to get out.
What To Wear: You may feel the urge to pick up candy necklaces or Day-Glo mesh shirts, but resist. It’s not 1995, and rave is not what it once was, thank God.

Start with a clean, bright top. Add a comfortable pair of pants that breathe well (you are probably going to sweat no matter what).

Don’t wear anything you would object to having champagne and confetti spilled onto. In many of these places, sitting room is at a premium, so make comfortable shoes a priority.

General Club Advice
Though every club is different, there are a few rules for all of them that you ought to keep in mind.
  • Don’t wear anything you’re going to object to getting dirty, especially shoes, since they will end up sticky and probably covered with dirt.
  • Most clubs get very sweaty, very fast. Owners don’t object to this, because it sells more drinks. Take this into consideration when planning what you’re wearing. Leave the Mohair sweater at home.
  • Use the coat check.
  • Don’t build your entire outfit around one item. Being ‘awesome story guy’ or ‘surprisingly good at dancing guy’ is one thing, but nobody wants to be ‘hat guy’ or ‘popped collar guy.
  • Just by considering the club you’re going to, and adjusting your wardrobe accordingly you can really make you stand out from the status quo.
Cool New Stands for Your Headphones

The curved shape of on- or over-ear headphones makes them comfortable to wear, but also makes them a pain to display. Omega Headphone Stands ($180) solve this problem by offering a simple Omega-shaped stand, formed from a single piece of wood, coated in matte clear lacquer, and available in cherry, maple, walnut, or zebrano finishes. As a bonus, it should help in keeping your cord untangled, but we know you're really just worried about keeping your Beats out where everyone can seem 'em.
Shoes Need Winterizing Too

With the weekend that most of us on the east coast just had, most have come to realize that winter is rough on everything, from your sinuses, to your clothes, to your car, right down to your shoes.  Unless you’re planning on taking a flight down south every time the cold weather hits, you’re probably going to have to invest in a solid pair of boots to combat the elements for the next couple of months. To help keep your boots in tip top shape.  These easy and simple wintertime shoe maintenance tips could help to keep your shoes in good shape for years to come.  

Protect before you get wet

Being prepared for the worst the weather will do is essential in keeping your boots looking their best. So, before you pass over that protective spray the sales woman is pushing at checkout, you should consider how exactly you plan on protecting your new boots from salt stains and snow.

Buy the spray and use it.   Spray your boots outside holding the can at least six to eight inches away from your winter footwear. Give your shoes a good coat and let them fully dry before trekking out in the snow.

Then do it all over again with a second coat. Your boots, will thank you for the countless hours you’ve saved scrubbing the salt stains off.

When in Doubt, Air Dry it Out

Unfortunately when all that snow melts, you’re left with a giant puddle wreaking havoc on or under your favorite boots. Though it may be tempting to whip out your girlfriend’s hair dryer to speed up the drying process, don’t.

Pack your shoes with old newspaper (or shoe trees) to maintain the shoe’s shape and air-dry your boots.

Getting Rid of Pesky Salt Stains

If you’re wondering what that ever so attractive ring of white is around your boot, it’s a salt stain. Like on your car. Although great at preventing you from falling flat on your face on that icy surface you totally thought was fine, salt is hell on shoes.

If you don’t want to spend money on salt removing products, here's a home made remedy that even Martha Stewart would be proud of.

A 1 to 1 solution of white vinegar and water, gently applied it to the salt stained area does wonders. Make sure you re-apply your protective spray once your boots are fully dry. Your shoes won’t look absolutely flawless, but the closest you can get without taking them in for repairs.
The Ultimate IPod Speaker

Philips brings you an elegant speaker dock for your iPhone, iPod Touch or iPod Classic. The Fidelio Speaker dock features special PureDigital sound processing technology for great sounding tunes anywhere in your house. Output comes in at 2×15 W stereo sound with 5 band EQ, and the dock has a proximity sensor for illuminating the backlit controls when you’re close, and turning them off when you walk away. The Fidelio is yours for $199.99.
Personal Finance: Your Debt Card Is Still Plastic

As people all over are in the final dash of the holiday shopping season it is wise to remember that your debt card is still plastic.
Increasingly, people have come to believe their debit card is the sweeter answer to credit.  Credit card use is at an all-time low as people turn to debit cards, according to Javelin Strategy & Research. Debit transactions have grown 10 percent from 2008 to 2009, reports Pulse, an ATM/debit network.
As the theory goes, a debit card is considered the good plastic.
Forty-three percent of holiday shoppers will use debit cards as their primary form of payment, up 20 percent from five years ago, according to the National Retail Federation. Only 28 percent of shoppers will be using their credit cards, the lowest level since 2002.

When people pay with plastic, they don't see their money being handed over. Many consumers don't do the same mental accounting they might do if they have to peel off actual paper money, researchers have found.
Still, people have come to believe that a debit card is the same as cash. It's not. Thanks to a feature called overdraft protection, a debit card is not the same as using cash if your financial institution will cover you when your account is short. Of course, that service will cost you.
That’s where you need to be careful.  If you put yourself in the mindset that your debt card is cash and don’t fall into the overspending trap you can disregard this article.  But, research says that too many of you don’t so thus the friendly reminder. 
Burn Three Times as Many Calories by Jumping Rope

Old-time boxers knew what they were doing. According to the Compendium of Physical Studies, jumping rope for 10 minutes can burn as many calories as jogging at an eight-minute-per-mile pace. No wonder many fitness experts call the jump rope the best all-around piece of exercise equipment you can own. Here are five reasons to learn the ropes:

1.) Cost. Unlike a treadmill, elliptical, or other high-tech cardio machine, jump ropes sell for about $15, and a good one should last for years — if not decades.

2.) Portability. You can take it anywhere and use it indoors or out.

3.) Strength gain. Jumping builds bone-mineral density and improves total-body power. Athletes have used it to improve their vertical jump height.

4.) Improved coordination. The jump rope forces you to keep a rhythmic pace and use proper form, otherwise you trip.

5.) Fat Loss. Jumping rope involves nearly every muscle. Some people report that it's the only cardio they need to lose fat.

This beginner's routine will jump-start your conditioning
Jump for 30 reps swinging the rope forward. If you trip up, it's OK, just continue until you hit 30. Rest 30 seconds, and then do another 30 reps, swinging the rope backward. (Hint: it's harder.) Rest again. That's one set. Perform four to eight sets depending on your endurance. If you have never jumped rope before or haven't for a while, imitate a jump-rope workout for a few days—pretend you're using a rope and rotate your wrists in time with your jumps. It may feel silly, but you'll learn timing and condition your body to use the rope.
Suit Your Shape

The 5 Tips Every Large Man Should Know

1) Wear a pocket square. It brings the focus to your chest, not your gut.
2) Keep your jacket buttoned unless you’re sitting down.
3) Wear a simple, elegant shirt. Avoid plaids and checks.
4) You can wear flat-front pants. They are engineered to be comfortable, even without pleats.
5) Avoid superskinny ties and lapels. Proportion with your torso is key.

Winter Grooming

It seems that no matter where you are this winter season, it’s really cold. Even Florida is   having freeze warnings…

So since we have to adjust to the winter weather, and not the other way around, let’s make sure that your grooming regimen can handle this cold and dry time of year!
Hair – Conditioners help to replenish the natural oils in your scalp so this should be done at least twice a week. And, no matter what you style your hair with, always start with a moisturizing hair cream first.
Face – Do you shave?  If you do, protection is even more important during the winter months. Proper shaving prep is paramount!
Lips – Do you like the way sandpaper feels on your cheeks? Well, neither does your partner. A lip balm (ex. ChapStick) should always be kept handy.
Body – there is nothing worse than dry skin in the winter. Not to mention, the longer you keep your skin dry on a daily basis, the more difficult it is for your skin to re-balance once you start. So get a body lotion you like and stick with it!
When Grey Hair Comes

Sooner or later we’ll all have to deal with turning grey. While it might not top our list of hair concerns right now (yeah we’re looking at you, hair loss), going grey can be a real concern.
It all starts when the pigment which gives our hair color stops being produced – making the hair appear transparent. And it’s this transparent hair that stands out as grey amongst the healthy hair, lacking nutrients and often appearing stiff, brittle and dry. But enough geek speak, we all know what grey hair looks like but it’s about how you deal with it.

In terms of dealing with turning grey, most people fall into one of two camps. You either see grey hair as a sign of power,
maturity and sophistication and embrace your transformation into a ‘silver fox’, or you associate going grey with acquiring a free bus pass and picking up your pension.  
Embrace the grey
While the knee jerk reaction for women is to reach for the hair dye, it seems that for men going grey isn’t always seen as a negative. It’s less about going grey and more about your attitude towards it – if you embrace grey hair with the confidence to pull it off then it can work in your favor.

First thing’s first,  pick a shampoo that works with your lighter grey tones and not against them. Many regular shampoos can cause grey hair to turn yellow, as the grey hair absorbs the colouration of the shampoo – not a strong look. But luckily there are specially formulated products like L’Oreal Professionnel Homme Grey and Redken For Men Silver Charge designed to enhance the look of your hair, offering moisture and shine without a yellow tone in sight.
In addition to choosing the right shampoo, your choice of hair style and the styling products you use also have a huge impact on your ‘silver fox’ status.  A close cropped cut can give you a definite air of masculine charm and accentuates your ‘salt and pepper’ look.  As will a short, sharp cut around the back and sides keeping it natural with texture and definition on the top, but this can obviously vary depending on your age and overall style.
The real key to growing old gracefully is not to fight it , but see how best to embrace it; the end result is that you will not only see a new you, but maybe an even better you.
Extra sharp; finishing touches

Achieving that crisp, sharp look requires a little attention to detail.  Wether you buy your suit off the rack or at a second hand store you should get it tailored to to fit your body.  African American men have a difficult time getting off the rack suits to fit them just right, because a lot of us have broader shoulders.

Give yourself a little contouring,  get the jacket and pants tailored.  The pants should fit on your waist, and although you must wear a belt, you shouldn't need one to hold your pants up.  Proper tailoring will give you a finished look that will  make you look like a million bucks.

Nike Zoom Kobe VI

Basketball season is in full swing, which means it's time for another round of signature sneakers. Near the top of the list is the Nike Zoom Kobe VI ($TBA), the latest shoe designed especially for the Lakers' star shooting guard. Carrying on the "Black Mamba" obsession from earlier models, the VI features Mamba-inspired patterns on the cast urethane outer shell and solid rubber outsole, Zoom Air units in the heel and forefoot, a low-cut profile, sculpted dual-density sockliner, a three-layer Flywire package to maximize support while reducing weight down to a paltry 10.6 ounces, and an injected TPU heel counter to provide a better fit, which you'll need if you plan to avoid ridicule when wearing these to your local pick-up game.
A Real Guy Car: 2011 Dodge Charger

Dodge's unapologetically muscular sedan is back and rowdy as ever. The 2011 Dodge Charger ($TBA) sports a more menacing front end, a "racetrack" brake lamp composed of 164 LEDs, Garmin navigation, available all-wheel-drive on the R/T model, 19-inch wheels, and, of course, you choice between a boisterous 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 — with fuel-saving four-cylinder mode — or the 3.6-liter Pentastar V6.
An Old Standard Improves -- Marker's Mark 46

Marker's Mark has introduced a new, even smoother version of its old standard, bourbon whisky Marker's 46 ($40).  Removed from the barrel like the standard Marker's Mark at full maturity.  But while it's removed, 10 seared French oak staves are attached to the inside of the barrel, then the Marker's goes back in to begin the months long process of becoming 46, a process which adds natural caramel, vanilla, and spice flavors without adding any bitterness.

Only 25,000 cases will be shipped this year, so if your wanting to give it a try and see it in the local liquor store, don't hesitate.
Lupe Fiasco Tries His Hand at Designing Clothes

Rapper Lupe Fiasco is launching a new "high-end" clothing line, called Trilly and Truly that is expected to  resonate far beyond Fiasco's typical fan base.

One of the first two pieces of this new collection is this jacket called Overthrown Junta by Trilly and Truly. And while the name is a mouthful, the classic leather motorcycle jacket (with a camouflage twist) is made in New York by Coyote Leathers — a manufacturer tapped by some of fashion's biggest names and known for its attention to detail in the garments. The jacket will be hitting RSVP Gallery in Chicago in the next three weeks, and the designers are in negotiations with several other boutiques.
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