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5 tips to avoid mistakes when wearing your sneakers

by Uneeb Khan

You may know how to wear a beard, hair, and mustache. You may know how to combine shorts and shirt, and choose the best pants – but if your very worthy feet don’t match, you can ruin your look.

Nobody wants to take that risk, right? Fortunately, since the 1990s, the men’s closet has a shoe that is a “jack of all trades”: the sneaker. But you have to know how to use them.

Do you really know what a sneaker is?

Until the 1980s, men faced an existential problem. Sneakers were very comfortable, but they were basically allowed only for doing sports or going to the barbecue. For more formal occasions, like going to work or to a cooler place, there were social shoes. Beautiful, but not always so comfortable.

Then the light came on!

Some brands brought the best of both worlds together and created a shoe with two basic elements: 

  • Sole made of synthetic material, straight and without springs – usually rubber;
  • An upper made of leather, suede, canvas or other sophisticated material.

Men finally had a shoe that went well at parties, at the bar, at the mall, at work, and even at a wedding, without looking too casual or serious.

But with all this versatility, everyone started to wear sneakers with any look and anywhere, and that’s not exactly how it works.

In fashion, there are even some fierce controversies. There are those who swear that they should never be worn together. Others say that, depending on the model, they can even go with a suit and tie! 

No arguments, however. The proposal here is to give you tips that will help you not to make a mistake with your sneakers.

1. Independence or death!

The first tip is to think of your sneaker as an independent piece with a life of its own. It needs to complement the look. Not be part of it as if it were a uniform.

So, you know that temptation to combine your sneaker with exactly the same color as your belt or your shirt? It may not look so elegant.  The colors should match, but they don’t have to be identical, and then you decide according to your intention.

If you want to act like a gentleman, the same color palette, complementary. If you want to attract attention and look cool, you can choose a color that contrasts more with what is on top.

2. 50 shades darker, or not so much

The second tip is that the color of the sneaker tells you where you are going, and then, my friend, you need to pay attention to the occasion. In general, sneakers in dark colors tend to be more formal and even work as a joker, because you can combine them with many types of pants.

By the way, take note: for more serious occasions, such as a dinner party, dark pants almost always ask for a dark sneaker.  The rule is reversed for a more summery look – with shorts, for example – or with light pants, such as faded jeans. In this case, bet on light sneakers.

3. Don’t just iron any cloth

Pay attention to the fabric of the pants. As the sapatenis is ‘halfway’ between formal and informal, it also looks better with fabrics that are ‘halfway’. 

Jeans are by far the most suitable, but other thick fabrics, such as twill, work very well. You can also take a chance with tailored pants, which resemble social pants, but are more full-bodied.

This means that social pants, which are made with lighter and more delicate fabrics, really need shoes… Unless you want to get into the fierce controversy that was mentioned earlier.

4. Size does matter

The type of fabric, length, and width of what is on the leg also give hints on the ‘style’ of the sneaker and how to wear it.

Dark-washed jeans, for example, go superbly with high-top sneakers, which resemble boots – and a golden tip: sneakers always go better with tighter pants, such as skinny or slim fit.

If what is on the leg is a pair of shorts, you also need to pay close attention to the size of the sock. The ideal is to wear no sock, or put on your best macho man version and put on a sock! Take your chances. They don’t show and are super helpful because, in this case, the sneaker has to be a low top.

5. Take care with care

To finish, take good care of the cleaning of your sneaker.

Those that are made of materials that allow washing can be cleaned as a common sneaker, but without exaggeration: neutral detergent, soft brush, coconut soap and wash only once in a while. 

If the material is leather, use the same care as for traditional shoes. A damp brush with a little soap and then a damp cloth is enough.

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