Time for some fashion advice here at Single Man’s Paradise.
South East Asia is a very hot, humid, tropical environment. When people think of Thailand they envision white sand beaches and palm trees. While this is true, you can’t be wearing your beach attire when roaming around the streets of Bangkok.
I remember when my buddy came from America to visit me in Thailand. I met him at his hotel in Bangkok and he came downstairs wearing flip flops and a tank top. I made him march back upstairs to change into pants, a collared shirt and nice shoes. “Dude we’re not going to the swimming pool! Suit up damn it!”
What’s funny is this guy never dresses like that in America. For some reason he thought since this is a laid back place where anything goes he could run around the bars dressed like that… Well you can, but you wont be my wing man!
Time for some more quick fashion advice. Here’s three things that every man should stop wearing immediately.
Flip Flops / Sandals
We all have a pair. We all need a pair. But please stop wearing them out in public. Flip flops should only be worn to the beach, swimming pool or in community showers such as the gym.
My simple rule is no wearing flip flops unless I am going to the beach or at least walking distance to the beach. I’m currently in a small beach side city where my hotel is a 2 minute walk to the beach. It’s normal and acceptable to go hang out on the beach wearing your sandals then go out to eat at a small local restaurant here. I’ve done it many times.
But If you go into the city or to a bar you need to ditch the sandals guys… Some people here are complete morons and they will walk into a restaurant shirtless wearing flip flops and a wet swim suit… These guys are idiots. Don’t be one of them.
Of course, every country has a different style. In Vietnam, the men always wear flip flops. Viet guys wear flip flops when wearing dress slacks and a tucked in shirt… I even see construction workers wearing flip flops on the job site… That is unheard of in the West. I guess they don’t have OSHA here.
I’m not a Vietnamese man so I’m not going to adopt their style. I wouldn’t dress like that in America so I’m not going to do it here. That brings me to my next topic.
Never wear tank tops. Nobody wants to see your hairy arm pits and shoulders out in public. If you are at the beach or the gym it’s acceptable but even then I will pass on this look.
What if you leave the beach and go to a restaurant or do some shopping? I prefer to wear a polo shirt. If I’m at the beach I will just take the shirt off anyways.
At the gym, why would you want your bare exposed skin on the bench/machines? It’s just a scrubby look and it’s not sanitary.
In Asia, local dudes work out shirtless with no shoes on and they never wipe down the machines. I recommend bringing a towel to lay on the benches. You don’t want some nasty rash or ring worm from these filthy places.
Also, most dudes are too damn skinny to be showing off their “guns” and they need to learn how to build muscle.
I don’t like hats at all. It’s a bad look for grown men. That said, I do have a hat that I wear if I’m doing some outdoors activities in the sun. A long hike or bike ride under the Vietnam sun will cook you alive. It’s wise to cover up.
If you must wear a hat for outdoor activities I recommend the golf style polo hat. This is a sporty look but it’s more grown up then a baseball cap. Baseball caps are for baseball players, urban youth and weirdo hipsters. It’s a juvenile look and grown men should avoid this.
I don’t know shit about grown men “stylish” hats such as fedoras or derby hats. I’m not Al Capone so that’s not my look. If you decide to wear one make sure it matches your attire and take the damn thing off indoors.
Those types of hats should be worn with dress clothes in winter environments only… Not something I have to worry about these days.
In summary, ditch the beach gear when you go out at night. Especially in a big city. Nothing screams TOURIST like a group of drunk, sun burnt, white guys wearing their flip flops and Chang tank tops to the bar.
You will see these guys all over the place in Asia. Usually playing beer pong at the local backpacker bar wearing tank tops they collected from all over south east Asia. Tiger Beer. I survived Cambodia. BeerLao. OK cool souvenirs but bad fashion taste.
The locals will think you’re a clown and the ladies wont give you a second look. Well… You can probably pull some hippy backpacker chicks if that’s your thing.
Some better options would be dirt cheap tailor made shirts in Thailand or Vietnam. Most markets sell fake Polo or Lacoste shirts for $5 each. Stock up. Stay fresh.
Hope you found this advice useful.