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Online Dating Magazine > Self Improvement > What to Wear on the First Date

First Impressions Can Make or Break That First Date
Here's What to Wear

by Angela Ambrosini

Imagine a romantic date in Paris. Would you ever visualize the man in a tux and the woman in her sweats? First impressions, be they of a person or place, stay in our memory much longer than anything else.

This is why couples recall the most intricate details of their first dates or wedding days — because of the way they looked.

Although we are told numerous times to never judge a book by its cover, we all do it. The mismatched outfits and really bad haircuts grab our attention, slapping those who wear them with a label they can never shake.

"There is a saying that you never get a second chance to make a good first impression,” says Joe Tracy, publisher of Online Dating Magazine. "When meeting someone for the first time on a date, it is absolutely vital that you look your best. Part of that is your hygiene and grooming and the other part is the way you are dressed. Even if you aren’t the most attractive person in the world, you can make yourself look 10 times more attractive and appealing simply by the way you dress.”

In today’s fashion-conscious world, taking into consideration your body type and combining it with up-to-date trends for your dating attire may become overwhelming.

Even though the perfect date may be hard to find, following runway trends such as itchy angora, bright metallic belts or tight pants is definitely no way to impress anyone.

"Remember, a little goes a long way. You want your date to go home and remember your beautiful eyes or luscious lips, not your creepy fake fingernails or gaudy gold bracelets,” explains Kim Lance, associate publisher of the magazine.

Dating is not only about chivalry and good hygiene; it’s also about wearing a complimentary outfit that will leave your date speechless. The way we choose to dress is based on the type of people we attract. For example, creative people lean towards the more graphically interesting fabrics and colors while the professional and serious types tend to go for the darker and clean-lines.

"Today the style of dressing for a date is definitely more laid back, but don’t misinterpret that for casual. I always feel that being subtly sexy is a nice way to show your date that you take pride in how you look,” says Amanda Doll, a personal shopper and stylist for Girlshop Inc.

That means dresses with flats for women and blazers with jeans for the men, she says. Avoid sneakers and go with a nice pair of shoes instead.

Keeping your outfit clean and simple will enhance your features and boost your confidence, getting people to notice you. Feeling confident and secure in what you wear reflects in your personality and makes all the difference. When you are meeting someone for the first time or getting to know them, you want to make sure you are giving off all the right vibes.

"The reason you want to dress to impress your date — aside from appeal — is that you want to show that you care. You took some time to choose an outfit, the date is something special,” explains Lucia M. Tait, a product information specialist for VIVRE.

“Don’t overdo it, dress for the occasion and plan ahead,” Tait says.

Tips for Dressing to Impress The First Date

So, what do you do if you are still overwhelmed and want to look your best on your next date? Here are some simple tips.

Dating Fashion Do’s
• Do have clean hands and nicely manicured nails.
• Do have well-groomed facial hair and a clean haircut.
• Do wear well-fitting clothes, nothing too baggy or too tight.
• Do dress appropriately for the occasion — no tank tops and sandals if the date is a dinner party.

Dating Fashion Don’ts
• Don’t wear brand new shoes. They have the potential to hurt your feet, making for a miserable time.
• Don’t wear heavy make-up. Your date may wonder what you are trying to hide.
• Don’t wear an outfit you are not comfortable in. If you are going to be constantly adjusting your tie or button-up collar, don’t wear them.
• Don’t try to be too trendy. Leave experimentation with your look for a time when you are in a stable relationship.

Now peek into your closet and see what you’ve got. Are your clothes talking about you behind your back and leaving you dateless?

Always remember to dress according to your body type and no matter what designer label you choose, make sure your clothes are labeling you in all the right ways.

Tips courtesy of Kim Lance
Online Dating Magazine

This article originally appeared in the December 5, 2005 issue of New York Resident Magazine. It is republished here with the permission of the author.


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