In this age of unrelenting trends that change every other day, it’s hard to tell what is actually popular and what is a desperate stab at beauty. Here are a few tips on bringing class back into your life whether you are a man or a woman.
1. How You Dress
There’s no doubting that a classy individual is universally admired by all ages and demographics. Just look at people like Maryl Streep, Kate Middleton, Rachel McAdams, Natalie Portman, Barack Obama, George Clooney, Brad Pitt, and Tom Brady. These men and women are well dressed, successful, and loved by many different generations and demographics.
But what makes these individuals so magnetic? They are classy, well spoken and well dressed.
In order to emulate such class, elegance and magnetism, start with how you dress. With so many options out there and the constant emergence of new styles, this can be a confusing process, so here are a few rules to abide by:
- Dress like yourself – Being a classy lady or gentleman doesn’t mean that you have to prance around in starchy dresses or suits. Dress in clothes that you like and that represent you accurately.
- Be well groomed – For men, this means keeping the stink to a minimum, grooming your facial hair, and keeping up on your haircut. For women, this means doing your hair everyday, presenting yourself in well fitting clothing, and not skipping out on the makeup routine.
- Don’t show too much skin – For men, this means that you need to stay away from those tight shorts and T-shirts. Denim jean shorts are also a BIG no. For women, this means keeping your neck lines and hem lines to a practical length, making sure your bum doesn’t hang out of your shorts/skirt/dress/ and staying away from gym wear as an everyday wardrobe choice.
- Avoid hoodies – Hoodies are an awesome and comfortable piece of clothing, but they should be used sparingly. Hoodies should not be a fashion staple in your closet. They are great for the gym, going camping, or for a sick day, but on other days, try a more stylish coat or jacket. Wearing less baggy and overly casual clothing shows that you take yourself seriously, and that others should too.
This rules aren’t about suppressing personal taste or self expression, it’s quite the opposite. If a person truly values themselves, it shows through the way they choose to present themselves (see 4 Classy Punk Styles). You need to respect yourself enough to care for your body and the way you present yourself. Putting on makeup or touching up your beard everyday doesn’t mean are vane, it means that you value yourself and want to put your best foot forward everywhere you go.
2. Respecting Yourself
Becoming a classy lady or gentleman largely hangs on your ability to respect yourself, but don’t take the “I’m perfect and don’t need to change” stance. Respecting yourself means valuing yourself enough to be able to learn and grow, acknowledging when you are wrong and working to become a better person.
- Find worth in yourself – Your personality and abilities are unique and worth developing. It is important for you to recognize what you’re good at and strive to be even better.
- Acknowledging your mistakes – Being classy involves acknowledging your humanity and the mistakes you make. You need to apologize for those mistakes and strive to be better. Never sweep a mistake or a personality flaw under the rug. Instead, work constantly to better yourself, never blaming destructive behaviors on others or on your genetics.
- Finding confidence – A classy man or woman is confident in who they are as a complete individual, despite their flaws. Confidence and arrogance are two very different things. Arrogance is shown when someone believes they are perfect and do not need to change for any reason. Arrogant people also need a lot of validation, because other people acknowledging their perfection is important to them. Confidence, on the other hand, is shown when someone values themselves despite the things they do wrong. Confident people apt for people’s respect, but are not motivated by what other people say about them. See the difference?
- Respect others – Once a person is able to respect him or herself, it becomes much easier for them to respect others, either those close to them or total strangers. When you respect other people, you become more attractive to those around you.
Example: you can use this as a measure of your sense of self-worth and confidence: If you were dropped in the middle of a daunting social situation, say, the red carpet tomorrow in among the most respected, poised and famous leaders, philanthropists, business men and women, actresses, designers, etc – would you be comfortable, and looking forward to the event? Would you believe that you too, have something of value to bring to the occasion? – Renee Wade
Mrs. Wade offers many other great tips on her website!
3. How You Act
Being classy involves far more than having the right mindset and looking nice. The most important factor to consider when being classy is how you treat those around you. You need to nourish, respect, and take care of others needs just as much, if not more, than yourself.
- Listening – A classy lady or gentleman knows how to listen to other people (see Learn to Listen). They put their phone away when they are at social gatherings and when spending quality time with family or friends. Making eye contact and responding to what is being said shows that you are attentive, intelligent, and care for the other person.
- Conversing – Being classy involves knowing how to talk to people and carrying on interesting conversations. Knowing how to ask questions and be attentive to answers, as well as being able to add valuable insights yourself, will make you a very magnetic person (see How to Talk to People)!
- Addressing – A respectful and classy person always addresses other people in a polite manner. Using titles such as Mr., Ms., or Mrs. are wonderful ways to make a first impression and to show your respect, especially to those older than you. You can use titles such as these until the person you’re addressing specifies that you can use their first name.
- Language – Swearing is a great way to make an impression or a point, however, it is never becoming on someone who wishes to be classy and charismatic! Stay away from vulgar vocabulary.
- Arriving on Time – It is important to show respect for both yourself and others by arriving to gatherings and events on time. Make sure you always show up on time, dressed for the occasion. Also, remember to bring a host gift with you if you are invited to someone’s home.
- Consideration – Being classy involves considering the needs of those around you more than your own needs. This means giving up your seat for an elderly person or busy mother. It also means opening the door for other people and expressing interest in other people’s views and opinions.
So there you go: Dressing well, maintaining a healthy mindset, and treating those around you with courtesy and respect will put you on the road to eternal class. In this world of trend followers, it is important to learn to stand out by respecting those around you.