By Alison Agosti
Sometimes accessories can make or break an outfit. Be it the perfect belt, bag or bracelet, accessories can knock an ensemble out of the park. However, the opposite can easily be true: a loud scarf, an ugly bag or a distracting necklace can detract from a look and send the wrong message. This goes for the fellas, too. Men are no strangers to over accessorizing, specifically; I want to talk about excess bling.
Fortunately, this seems to be a trend that is hard for the average guy on the street to achieve. Jewelry is expensive, especially the more intricate pieces. And I’m not talking about a guy with a nice watch or a single chain (although, honestly, I don’t like that much either). I’m talking about the guy with huge earrings, with several necklaces and bracelets usually accompanied by loud clothes and an unhealthy need for attention. This is not the A-Team, so you shouldn’t be dressed like Mr. T. And thus, the busy bling look has been resigned to the world of low-level rappers looking to turn heads and leathery cologne enthusiasts living in Florida.
While this look has never had mass appeal, I’m happy to report that bling has been toned down everywhere. The hip hop scene has attributed the loss of jewelry on the downturn economy and during the Academy Awards, the lack of jewels and gems on both men and women was highly reported on. Now, the look in men’s accessories seems to be a nice watch or simple bracelet and a wedding ring if need be (the ultimate turn off).
This adage is old and cliché and sexist, but that doesn’t make it any less true: women don’t like men who wear too much accessories or take longer to get ready than we do. Guys, we are not peacocks; “look at me” behavior is not something that should be rewarded. The bountiful bling (What? I like alliteration) seems to be part of a larger problem: this need to be noticed and looked at. Excessive jewelry and bright clothes are usually accompanied by a cheesy, ridiculous sports car, hair plugs that are almost undetectable and cologne that could tranquilize an elephant.
I’ve personally never encountered this in a romantic situation. I can’t imagine a scenario where I would agree to date a guy who looked like he had just left the set of a seventies mobster movie. I have, however, been approached by this type. It always starts with a line that goes something like, “You like what you see?” and when I’ve responded with “No, absolutely not.” or something similar, they exist immediately. This isn’t the type of guy who is looking to make a connection with anything other than the physical.
Excessive bling feels desperate, dated, unattractive and a sure sign of someone who is not self-aware or interested in being… interesting. Here’s a crazy idea: develop a personality! Cultivate some interests! I promise it will be much more attractive than the cheesy glitz.