Wardrobe Malfunction? What not to wear on the first date — GTJ dating series with Erika E. (week 4)

Ah, the age-old question of what to wear on the first date…

Now, I’m not saying we should all be fashion mavens (I can’t believe I’m even saying this, but my store of choice is Wet Seal, and as long as it still fits, I’ll be shopping there ‘til I’m 80. ;)), but for the first date, it’s important to put yourself together nicely.

Some first dates are right after work (a happy hour drink), so that’s easy – just go in your work clothes.  But some aren’t.  I always have to laugh because on my first date with Jeremy, I wore a very heavy sweater dress because I had actually made plans afterwards to go to this après-ski party in case he was a dud.  (Luckily, he wasn’t, and I ditched the party.)  But that was not a good first date outfit, and we still joke about it because it was so not representative of my clothes.  (I recently donated it, so hopefully some girl out there will have good luck in it too.)

For women, if you’re coming from work, a nice business casual outfit works well.  Try not to look too “business” and no fun, but a nice pair of pants or skirt and a top that shows off your shape but isn’t too revealing works well.  Save the low-cut, curve-hugging stuff for going dancing Saturday night.  I know it’s not the right season for it, but when it’s cold, try not to wear anything like a huge turtleneck (or the dress I wore) because it makes you look very closed off from the guy’s point of view, like he’d need a lock and key just to get to your neck.  And in the winter, a good pair of tall boots is very sexy.

Irons are a man's best friend?

For men, all I can say is that the iron is your friend.  I can’t think of anything worse than a guy showing up in clothes that are completely wrinkled.  Heck – I’m not even saying you need to iron anything yourself.  I often bring my shirts to get dry-cleaned because I really just want them pressed.  Don’t tell!  Other than that, just go with your style.  Check your teeth, make sure there are no stains on your shirt, and you’re good to go.

One final note: If you go on a date with someone you consider a bad dresser, remember that while their personality may not change, their clothes can, so don’t let it be a deal breaker.  Although Jeremy and I like most of each other’s clothes, there’s a certain blue striped sweater that I subtly (or maybe not so subtly) mentioned wasn’t my favorite.  Oddly enough, I haven’t seen it since.

So, go get dressed and enjoy your date!

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Erika Ettin is the Founder of A Little Nudge, helping people find success in online dating and getting them excited about its possibilities. “Like” A Little Nudge on Facebook, or follow on Twitter.

Got burning questions you want answered in a future post?  E-mail date411@alittlenudge.com

Past dating articles by Erika E:

1) Rome Wasn’t Built in a Day
2) Extra Cheese, Please!
3) Getting Hot Hot Hot