Theodore Dalrymple explains why you should comb your hair before leaving the house and forego the “I don’t care” sentiment while the rest of us have to look at you wearing sweat pants with holes in them.
The problem is not merely absence of self-respect, it is active hostility to self-respect, replaced entirely by self-esteem. The former says, “I will keep myself looking good in the eyes of others;” the latter says, “What is good enough for me is good enough for everyone else, and if they find me an eyesore they can jolly well put up with it.”
Modern scruffiness, then, is a manifestation of egotism.
Not just because you’ll be wearing fat guy clothes, but because your confidence and self-esteem will show through any garment.
Fit is the subject that is never spoken about in fashion and yet it is a fundamental of good dressing and comfortable dressing. Going out in clothes that hang from your body or those with buttons set to explode will lead most to think you are wearing hand me downs from your brother or roommate. The comfort concept is as follows: If you are not comfortable in your clothes, you will not look comfortable to others, and others will not feel comfortable around you. She wants to feel comfortable around you.
“Close the door,” he said. “I have to ask you something.”
”Do you…clean your navel?”
”Well, you should. You’re a man now, and you sweat, and sweat can collect in your navel and produce an odor that is very…offensive.” Then: “This is witch hazel. It eliminates odors. This is a Q-Tip. To clean your navel, just dip the Q-Tip into the witch hazel and then swab the Q-Tip around your navel. For about thirty seconds. You don’t have to do it every day; just once a week or so.” He demonstrated the technique on himself, then handed me my own Q-Tip.
”But Dad, who is going to smell my navel?”
”You’re going off to college, son. You’re going to meet women. You never want to risk turning them off with an offensive odor.”