It shouldn’t come as too much of shocker, but your skincare routine (or lack thereof) isn’t the only thing that can age you. Making these simple style mistakes can make you look so much older as well.

It’s tough, we get it. Modern society seems to prize youth above everything else, but dressing like Justin Bieber on his way to a Venice Beach skatepark is going to make most middle-aged dudes look even older. Conversely, clinging on to clothes that are wayway past their use-by date will also add a few years as well. So, in this guide, we’re going to check out six of the biggest style mistakes that are prematurely ageing you – and some things that you can do to keep your wardrobe looking fresher than ever.

Style mistakes you should avoid

#1: Worn and tired

Wearing stuff that is old and tired is one of the biggest style mistakes that a guy can make. However, for those aged 40 and over, the chances of having accumulated clothes that are well past their wear-by date are much greater. That worn-out band tee that reminds you of your carefree uni days? Bin it. Your so-called ‘lucky’ shirt that you met your better half in? Fraying collars and cuffs mean that it’s not so lucky anymore. All of these make you look old and tired in a very visceral and literal way.

It’s not just what you wear on the outside either. Old underwear and socks are especially sad. Buy a fresh set of the nicest underwear that your budget will allow every six months, and you’ll automatically feel 10 years younger.

#2: Size matters

It’s no secret that denim can be tricky. Obviously skinny jeans are a no-go, and those ultra-baggy skater pants that Hedi Slimane has been pushing are probably a little too trend-led for anyone over the age of 40. Shapeless bootcut jeans that sag in all the wrong places and make you look frumpy should also be avoided like the plague.

Instead, jeans which fit like a smart pair of trousers in a solid colour or simple wash make for a more dignified look. The Levi’s 501 is a great example, but if you’ve got the cash, brands such as Acne Studios, Loewe, and Nudie should also be on your radar.

#3: Actual dad shoes

The dad shoe hype is very real, but even though they’re called dad shoes, they’re probably not meant to be worn by actual dads. A footwear fad that began to gain steam in 2017, sportswear companies like Asics and New Balance have quickly become some of the biggest names in the business thanks to their retro sneakers that are inspired by old school running shoes from the ‘80s.

But the thing about old school running shoes from the ‘80s is that, well, they’re old school. Having a pair on your feet will, no doubt, add a few years on you. Instead, go for some chunky Derbys or Oxfords. If you really have to wear trainers, consider a pair of very simple tennis shoes.

#4: Accessorise appropriately

Remember when you were a teen and wearing hundreds of bracelets and necklaces and rings was sick? Yeah, let’s leave that in the past. Sure, it’s an easy way to express yourself and your personal aesthetic, but it’s also one of the biggest style mistakes and can come across as a little too try-hard and cringe.

Instead, select a few pieces that can add just the right amount of bling. You should also think about wearing a watch too. While you can obviously tell the time by just looking at your phone screen or asking your smart speaker, there’s nothing cooler than punching the air and flicking your wrist. Look for one with a regular-sized face and a steel or leather strap. Nothing too showy – unless you’ve got the funds, that is.

#5: You are what you wear

T-shirts with crazy graphics and hoodies with wild patterns should be part of your fits… if you’re 12. We get (and fully respect) that some of you aged 40 and over are still fun and hip, but if we didn’t know you that well, these pieces can make you look a little silly and juvenile, which isn’t exactly a good look. But that’s not to say that you should totally dress your age.

Clothes built largely from tweed, which are too obviously vintage and retro will age you and make it look like you’re in costume for a period drama. Three-piece suits, argyle knit jumpers, corduroy trousers, and leather jackets are also best left on the vintage rail.

#6: Hair is everything

Whether it’s a receding hairline, thinning, or you’ve just gone completely bald, your hair is going to change a lot as you age. Some might consider a transplant, others might slather their scalp in rosemary oil, but whatever you end up doing, don’t ask your barber for a trendy haircut. Modern mullets and Edgars look great on younger guys, but they may not have the same effect if you’re hitting 50.

While we’re on the topic of hair, going grey also seems to be a massive taboo with middle-aged men. It’s completely natural, and if you learn to embrace it, it can make you look sophisticated and dashing. Look at George Clooney, Patrick Dempsey, and Pierce Brosnan. They’re all silver foxes, but they’re also some of the best-looking dudes in the history of Planet Earth.