But I also got this snarky comment:
I don’t know this man, I’ve never had any interaction with him, yet he felt compelled to come to my for-women-only fashion page, tell me I’m wrong, and lecture me about clothes. This is the first comment I’ve ever received from a man in my nearly 13 years online.
So why am I sharing this with you?
Because in his attempt to dismiss the role of clothing in the dating equation, he actually proved how much men rely on it in when considering suitable mates.
- A lot of work
…and not worth his effort. He prefers “casual, down-to-earth girls,” who “follow their hearts and not your wallet,” so he’s gonna give this one a pass.
Because, you know, he’s not superficial.
He just came up with that laundry list based on how she’s dressed.
Alright – I won’t torture him further, and I ask that you don’t either. Please do NOT go post anything on his Facebook wall or call him out in any way. Just leave him alone.
Because my guess is, this picture is incredibly painful for him. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have bothered to comment.
I like this picture and have used it several times because it makes me think of one of my private clients. She’s lovely and well educated, but she came to me because she felt her disjointed, casual wardrobe was holding her back career-wise. I agreed. We worked together, make some wardrobe changes, networking opportunities arose…and the next thing she knew, she had a handsome young entrepreneur hot on her trail. They’d been dating a few months when he had to go to Paris for a week on business, and he lasted two days before he missed her so much, he sent her a ticket to come join him. She texted me a photo similar to this, thanking me for my help. They got married a year later.
So when I see this, it reminds me of her success.
But when this guy saw it, my guess is it made him go ballistic because he:
- Jumped through hoops to try to please a high-maintenance woman who left him for a richer guy; or
- Had a big crush on a woman who dressed like this who wouldn’t give him the time of day because he couldn’t afford her; or
- Lost his father – and subsequently, his family – to an affair partner who dressed like this
To him, these types of women are gold diggers. Danger! Danger! Stay away.
Now I may be totally wrong, but I don’t think so. Most men don’t write much – ever – unless they do it for a living. They certainly don’t go out of their way to vent on a woman’s fashion blog or Facebook page. As I said, in nearly 13 years and over 400 posts, this is the first I’ve ever seen. So clearly, something was compelling him.
My guess is a broken heart. Or a broken family. There’s more here than he’s telling.
Regardless, I understand his viewpoint. I’ve known plenty of women who act exactly like he described: they’re more interested in a man’s money than his heart (although most of them typically show a lot more skin). Loud, demanding, petulant, moody – they CAN be difficult and self-centered, particularly when they don’t get their way. Often, they come from humble backgrounds, and once they claw and scratch their way to a higher income, they treat everyone around them like dirt. They may look good on the outside, but once they open their mouths and their poor manners, limited education, and loads of profanity spill out, they lose all their luster. Reality TV is replete with them.
But this behavior is certainly not limited to women. Self-centered men are also easy to spot. They also tend to be loud, crass, and demanding, and often build themselves up while putting everyone else down: “He’s a moron. She’s an idiot. They’re all losers.” There’s not point in arguing with them. They’re right, everyone else is wrong. They’re as frustrating as their female counterparts.
That said, you can’t always glean people’s personalities from how they dress.
Yes, sometimes it’s blatantly obvious:
But other times, not so much:
You actually have to talk to people to see what they’re like. Then, you go from there.
You can’t just accept or reject them based solely on how they dress.
And yet, people do it all the time – as our commenter so clearly demonstrated. He’s giving EVERY well dressed woman a “pass” based on the bad behavior of one (or two). That’s certainly his prerogative. Once burned, twice shy, as the saying goes.
But as I said before, his comment reiterates just how much clothing reveals without saying a word. In dating, if you dress like the woman in the Paris picture, men who feel up to the challenge you present will approach you; those who don’t, won’t. It’s a shortcut that saves everyone a lot of time and hassle.
Here was my response:
At the same time, I understand his frustration. It’s called “truth in advertising.”
If you’re going to dress like a woman of style and grace, you need to strive to actually be a woman of style and grace. Because being pretty on the outside but nasty, petty, or scheming on the inside is a really BIG turn off. Hence this guy’s likely upset.
No one likes to be toyed with. No one likes to be used.
Especially when there’s lots of money involved.
Get dumped AND taken to the cleaners at the same time? Wars have been started for less.
Which is why those who have lots to lose tend to be very, VERY careful.
I was talking recently to someone who runs a finishing school in the UK who jokingly said she was thinking of adding a matchmaking division because of all the aristocrats who keep calling, looking for a “nice girl” with finishing school polish. They need a wife who’s pretty, knows how to dress, speak, entertain, and run their multiple households with ease. In exchange, they’ll give her a six-figure monthly spending allowance and take her birthday shopping at Cartier. Cost isn’t the problem. Finding qualified candidates is. Models and actresses don’t seem to cut it. Neither do “celebutantes.” At this level, looking good isn’t enough. It’s just the beginning.
Which is what makes Kate Middleton so unique.
It’s fun to dream of a handsome prince picking you out of a crowd and whisking you away to a fairy tale life. Who wouldn’t want the attention? The clothes? The houses?
But it’s a two-way street.
What’s in it for him? What does he get, besides a pretty girl?
In the case of the Duchess of Cambridge, the handsome prince gets quite a lot. She:
- Looks amazing in diamonds and couture
- But typically shops for bargains on High Street
- Remains composed in front of very large crowds
- Yet is content taking walks with her husband and dog
- Has tea with the Queen
- Laughs with school children and their parents
- Is overseeing a multi-million dollar renovation of their Kensington Palace Apartment
- But does her own grocery shopping in Anglesey
Now imagine one of the Real Housewives swapping places with her. Or Kim Kardashian. Or Miley Cyrus. Yes, they’d all love the status and clothing and attention. But how many would go back to High Street after they started wearing couture? How many would change diapers or go grocery shopping once they had people to do it for them? How many would get bored while Prince William was at work, get drunk, and start tweeting half-naked selfies?
See the problem?
Money doesn’t equal class. It hasn’t for centuries. It’s much more complicated than that.
Class is a combination of occupation, education, income, and wealth. Money is only part of the equation. Which is why when savvy people come into money, they quickly further their education to smooth out the rough edges and better fit into high society. Those who think it’s all about money don’t. Then they wonder why they’re excluded from the highest circles.
Or why they leave bitter young men like our commenter in their wake.
Yes, it’s important to dress well so that your outside accurately reflects what’s inside – especially when you’re looking for a mate or a job. Accurate is the key word here. If you dress one way and act another, it leads to confusion and distrust.
You don’t want that. You want to attract a man who is smitten at first sight and loves you the rest of your life – regardless of his income.
Because in the end, it’s not about status or stuff. It’s about being loved and cherished.
Did you see the story about Fred Stobaugh, the 96 year old man who wrote a love song to his late wife, Lorraine? They’d been together for 75 years, married for nearly 73, when she passed away in April. He loved her and adored her and missed her so much, he wrote her a love song – that when viral. Notice how she’s dressed (tissues required):
Who cares about status?! I’d take a love song ANY day. Most women would – unless they’re the superficial sort our commenter condemned all well-dressed woman of being.
So if you’re looking to attract a guy who will love and adore you, pre-qualify them by dressing appropriately. It’s the fastest way to separate the serious from the not-so-serious, the ready to move forward from the “once bitten, twice shy.” Clothes That Get The Guy Can Help.