Trends are essential. They keep fashion moving forwards. Without them, we’d all just be stuck wearing the same thing day in, day out. But just because we need trends it doesn’t mean that we have to like them all. Because for every new craze that sticks around and takes menswear in an exciting new direction, there are 10 that will leave adopters cringing at old photos in years to come.
Let us preface this by acknowledging that we are not the final arbiter of what is cool and what is not. Nor are any of the menswear sites or fashion mags for that matter. Style is largely subjective, and if you like something and it makes you feel good, wear it.
That said, there are definitely some recent trends we’ll be glad to see that back of – trends that from experience we expect to age poorly. So, if you want to minimise the amount of time you spend regretting past sartorial choices, they could be ones to avoid.
From overdoing it on the logos to shuffling around the town centre in dirty white socks and pool slides – these are trends we won’t miss one little bit when they inevitably bite the dust.
Party In The Back
There was a time, not so very long ago, when the mere suggestion that mullets could be about to stage a comeback would have been met with laughter and ridicule. After all, how could a haircut as preposterous as the mullet ever rise to popularity more than once? Surely – surely – society learned its lesson the first time around.
Ah, how naive we were. Because as we sit here typing these words, young men all around the world are lining up at barbers’ doors, patiently waiting to have their very own beaver paddles crafted, without so much as a hint of irony.
Leave this one to the German techno DJs if you know what’s good for you.
Big Jort Energy
Denim shorts and three-quarter lengths. Surely two of the most unflattering breeds of legwear to ever walk the earth. Perhaps unsurprisingly, things don’t get much better when the two are combined, in spite of what FashionTok influencers would lead you to believe.
Below-the-knee jorts, in our opinion, are right up there with Everest-grade down suits and head-to-toe leather in terms of things we never want to wear in the summer.
For us, a good ol’ five-inch inseam is hard to beat when it comes to shorts, or at the very least, an inseam that sits somewhere above the knee.
Peaky Blinders Core
We get it, Peaky Blinders was a good show. And it’s full of manly men doing manly things that might seem cool to emulate if you’re into that sort of thing.
Unfortunately, for many fans this admiration of the band of Brummy brothers has manifested itself in a penchant for Amazon newsboy caps, tweed three pieces and braces.
Don’t get us wrong, we’re all for the renewed interest in tailoring, but even we have to draw the line at showing up at weddings in full Tommy Shelby cosplay.
It’s hard to imagine a hair trend more ridiculous than the mullet, but whoever dreamt up the broccoli cut that has been spreading through the world’s young male population like a plague for the last few years somehow managed it.
This now-ubiquitous trim involves a short back and sides, often faded, combined with a bouncy crop of tight curls on top.
If you’re finding this difficult to picture, simply open your fridge’s vegetable drawer, take out a floret of broccoli and imagine a man’s face in place of the stem. Not a great look, is it?
There’s a time and a place for oversized hoodies and sweatpants. That time and place is not all the time, everywhere you go. It seems some people got a bit too comfortable in their loungewear during the pandemic, to the point that they now refuse to dress in anything else.
There are a number of brands perpetuating this look. Think Fear of God Essentials, Cole Buxton, Represent and the like. Sure, it’s comfy, but saving the oversized stuff for chilling time and focusing on a good fit for your day-to-day clothes is never a bad idea.
Socks And Slides
The grubby white socks and pool slides combo has been proliferating for not far off a decade now. Frankly, we were never on board, and we’ll be glad when it finally dies out.
We can just about get on board with a pair of ‘Stocks and socks if they’re styled right, but as far as rubber sliders go, their place should be on bare feet, and only when there is a beach or a pool in spitting distance.
Those Aimé Leon Dore lookbooks have a lot to answer for. The beanie perched atop the head look has got to be one of the stupidest trends since sagging. We’re not talking undersized fisherman beanies, we’re talking full-length woolly hats worn above the ears covering roughly the same surface area of the head as a kippah.
It’s a look reminiscent of a garden gnome, but instead of toadstools, these guys can usually be found sitting on overpriced mid-century designer furniture replicas in moodily lit photographs on their aesthetic Instagram accounts.
A good outfit doesn’t need to signal where its components were purchased from. It’s just a good outfit.
If you want to dress well, focus on how your clothes look together rather than whose name is printed onto them. A logo-heavy outfit always looks cheap, even if it’s anything but.
We appreciate a good Gore-Tex shell as much as the next guy, but dressing head to toe in eye-wateringly expensive outdoor gear is largely unnecessary when the closest you ever get to nature is drinking questionable pints of Guinness in a London beer garden.
Don’t get us wrong, the odd outdoorsy piece here and there as part of a cohesive outfit is certainly no bad thing, but if you’re starting to look like a mannequin from Arc’teryx it’s probably time to rethink your outfit.