• Reviews
  • Infinities Menswear – My Review

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Incredibly excited about this one. Who doesn’t like designer brands? Although the price tag may not always appeal to us, the quality you get for your money is, generally speaking, worth it. I am an avid brand buyer, not because I want people to know I’m wearing Ralph Lauren or Armani, but because I know what to expect from a label. When you own multiple items from one brand, you start to get a feel for it and know how things will fit before you put them on. You know that even though you wear a size 8 shoe, with this brand you’ll need a size 9. It’s nice having that security, it gives you confidence. I remember when the only place to get these world-famous brands was at their outlet stores or at flagship stores like Harrods; which going into makes you feel the need to dress up for the occasion and act in the most ostentatious of fashions.

    Not to take anything away from the mega department stores, they are great, most of the time; I still regularly shop at House of Fraser. BHS obviously got left in the 80’s and have now closed down. The fact Selfridges have a Primark section says it all. Maybe it’s time to try out the smaller companies selling top brands at decent prices, maybe it’s time to try Infinities Menswear.

    Let’s see, shall we.

    Infinities Menswear As A Company

    Founded in 1991, they’ve been around awhile. They built their name by building relationships with big brands and then eventually becoming big enough to retail some labels exclusively. They appear to be a company that has a good turnover of stock which is fantastic since you won’t end up constantly seeing the same dated products every time you visit. I’ve noticed multiple new names and ranges added in the past weeks and on top of that; they ship worldwide for all of you outside the UK.

    Infinities sell all types of menswear clothes; smart, smart-casual, casual and sportswear. I’d say they are more geared towards the casual side of a man’s wardrobe but you can find something to suit almost every occasion. Although please note you’re not likely to find any tuxedos.

    infinites menswear store

    It is incredibly evident that Infinities have a strong relationship with a variety of big brands known across the world; Polo Ralph Lauren, Adidas, Paul Smith, Lyle & Scott and Stone Island to name but a few. I’d say the two biggest and strongest brands they have are Polo Ralph Lauren and Paul Smith. Not only that but with over 250 Ralph Lauren items and over 150 Adidas items, you’re set for all your casual and sportswear needs.

    Quality

    Judging quality is a difficult one. I count 60 brands on the Infinities website. Could I tell you how they all rank in quality? Probably not. Infinities stock many big names as I’ve mentioned previously like Ralph Lauren whereby quality is established, then they have the huge brands where the quality isn’t so up to scratch, not mentioning any names. The issue of quality concerns will always be there so long as you keep trying new brands but if the price is right and the item is aesthetically pleasing, then trying a new label is worth a go.

    Price

    Most of the time when I look at a brand or a product I usually always check the price and ask myself; is it worth that much? The answer is usually no. When it comes to buying branded clothing, looking at the price is one of the last things you want to do really. Obviously, you would have a price range in your head, i.e. I would expect a pair of Ralph Lauren socks to be between £5-12 each, any more than that and it’s just not worth it.

    The way I see branded clothing is simple; I’m paying more than normal for the privilege of a Ralph Lauren logo on my sock.

    Product Review – Ralph Lauren Socks

    I was incredibly fortunate to be sent these Ralph Lauren Polo socks to review. I love free things, for some strange reason I actually tend to wear all the stuff I get for free more than the stuff I pay for. Maybe it’s a psychological thing. I go through phases in the year, whereby I’ll wear colourful socks for a few months and then wear nothing but black socks for another few months. Thankfully with the British weather finally picking up and even recording the second hottest day in the last 10 years, I can wear my colourful socks again.

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren as a brand are fantastic, we know that we are basically told to believe that Ralph Lauren equals quality and I’m not about to disagree. Made from Egyptian cotton, these two pairs of socks in Navy & pink are wonderful. I have my reservations about Egyptian cotton as its usually quite thin and thus the elasticity won’t last long. I’ve had these now for two months and worn them many times and surprisingly the elasticity has stayed true. I’m yet to experience that horrible feeling of my sock rolling down my leg and bunching at my ankles.

    I tend to look after my clothes with regards to following the label in washing advice. Even though I take care, cheap socks always end up bubbling into random cotton bunches and usually within two months look a year old. Although the Ralph Lauren socks certainly don’t look brand new they don’t look a year old either. Take a look at them side by side with a pair of socks I bought for £1 a week after I got the Ralph ones.

    Obviously priced at £16 you would expect a difference in quality from the £1 socks but is £8 for a pair of socks really worth it. Well if you love brands and have a spare bit of change, why not? They are light, look fantastic and if you ever do take off your trousers or wear shorts then you can flash that expensive logo.

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    The Perfect Customer

    Infinities menswear is not for everyone, same way brands aren’t for everyone. Not all of us are cash rich and many of us have big commitments so sometimes brands are a little out of reach. I recommend if you fit into that category of NOT cash rich, then I suggest only shopping here during the sales and try your luck at grabbing stuff in your size.

    If you are either a massive designer brand wearer or money is not an issue for you then infinities is for you. With massive stock, good prices and exclusives, they have the balance perfect so you probably won’t bump into someone wearing the same thing as you.

    Average Prices

    Accessories – £50

    Whenever we want to buy a certain brand but are not able to quite afford it, we turn to accessories as they’re usually the cheapest. On Infinities buying any accessory will set you back a minimum of £5 for a pair of Egyptian cotton socks from a brand I don’t know. At the top end of the accessories, a Paul Smith leather bag will set you back a comfortable £500. The average accessory will set you back £50, while £60 would get you a Paul Smith leather belt and £30 with Infinities will get you two pairs of Ralph Lauren socks.

    Paul Smith Accessories City Embossed Weekend Bag Black

    I’d say this is fairly expensive for the accessories.

    Paul Smith Reversible Saffiano Leather Belt

    Paul Smith City Embossed Weekend Bag Black

    Polo Ralph Lauren 3 Pack Combed Cotton Socks Black/Navy/Grey

    Shirts – £60

    Shirts are a part of every man’s wardrobe (or at least should be) and quite possibly one of the most important components of the outfit. I’ve spent many years working in the office without my tie and blazer so how my shirt looked was critical. Infinities without a doubt have many shirts available although the vast majority would not be suitable for office wear. Most are quite casual from casual brands like Lyle & Scott, Paul Smith & Armani. Thankfully for us, they do have a fair number of dress shirts suitable for all office environments. An Armani dress shirt would cost you around £70, while you could get a Ralph Lauren or a Lyle & Scott dress shirt for around £60. I wouldn’t expect you to pick up a designer shirt for less than £50, not a nice one anyways.

    Lyle and Scott Lyle & Scott Micro Gingham Shirt Blue

    £60 is probably around the price I would pay for a designer shirt, most I’ve seen would cost a lot more. Overall, Infinities shirts are priced well.

    Lyle & Scott Micro Gingham Shirt Blue

    Polo Ralph Lauren Luxury Twill Shirt Blue

    Suits/Blazers – £200

    Infinities are aimed more towards casual clothing than it is office-wear, which is probably why they only stock one full suit and five blazers all from Paul Smith. The PS by Paul Smith mid-fit suit is the only they sell. It’s a single breasted, double vented navy suit with a playful interior lining. It’s truly a wonderful piece of tailoring made from 100% wool and would be the exact suit I’d love to buy. However Paul Smith’s suits are way above my pay grade, priced at £549.95, it’s not for those with small pockets.

    The other five blazers they stock are all designed by Paul Smith and are priced between £99 and £335. For me the suit is far too expensive while some of the blazers are decently priced, their stock is far too low.

    PS By Paul Smith Mid-Fit Broken Check Suit Navy

    Paul Smith Blazers Infinities Menswear

    Office Shoes – £80

    I must say I did not expect Infinities to stock any smart shoes, don’t judge a book by its cover right? I suppose seeing the giant that is Bass Weejuns on Infinities is enough to put that assumption to bed. The brands that supply Infinities with their smart shoes are four; Bass Weejuns, Paul Smith, Ralph Lauren & Swims. With about 40 shoes to choose from, all range between £65 and £200, which is about what you would expect. The stock once again isn’t fantastic but you can definitely work with it.

    Office Shoes

    The average cost for a pair of shoes you like in your size would probably be about £80. Not bad but not cheap either.

    Trainers – £50

    I’m quite into going smart/casual nowadays so trainers are becoming more and more my kind of thing. If like me, your interested in trainers then you can expect to pay roughly the same amount you would anywhere else. Maybe this is me being ignorant but trainers appear to be the same price across most companies/brands. The only time I can tell a difference in cost would be if one has a sale while the other doesn’t.

    Infinities Trainers

    £50 spent with Infinities will get you a pair of simple & smart Ralph Lauren trainers or a pair of Adidas originals.

    Similarities

    Infinities are just like many other sites, they are essentially a broker for big brands. I suppose they have may have been part of the first few companies that started selling other companies products but with the internet boom, there are now thousands of websites selling big branded items. The question then arises; what makes them different?

    The three main areas that would influence my decision to purchase from one brand as opposed to another would be price, stock & exclusivity.

    We’ve all been on websites where items are so cheap they are basically free, and you’re thinking ‘OMG Armani Suit for £10!!’ then you check and it’s out of stock. You also get those websites that have wonderful products, with free delivery and hundreds in stock but when you compare the price to House of Fraser, it’s £50 more expensive.One thing that makes companies stand out, other than price is exclusivity. If a man’s not bothered about the price for whatever reason then sometimes he can turn to wanting exclusive items others don’t have.

    We need balance and I wanted to see if Infinities has that balance.

    Price, Stock & Exclusivity Comparison

    Adidas Originals Los Angeles Trainers

    I first had a look at some new in trainers, I picked a personal favourite of mine; Adidas Originals Los Angeles Trainer Black. Priced at £74.95, I was fairly certain I’d be able to beat that price. I did manage to beat the £75 price tag by £10 on five or six different websites however none had the trainers in every size. The maximum number of sizes available on any one of the other sites was two (size 6 and size 13.) Infinities, however, had in stock all sizes from 6 to 12. These trainers are a classic example of what I mentioned earlier, most websites have super cheap prices and no stock – fantastic. Interestingly enough Infinities let me order fifteen pairs of these in size 8 so they clearly have stock. In terms of exclusivity the fact that most websites had these in stock themselves for seemly quite a while, I can assume that Infinities are a bit late to the party in that sense so I’d have to mark them down in terms of exclusivity.

    Adidas Originals Los Angeles Trainers

    Price Score – 7/10
    Stock Score – 10/10
    Exclusivity Score – 6/10

    Polo Ralph Lauren T-Shirt Grey

    Next up was the Polo Ralph Lauren Classic Crew Neck T-Shirt Grey Heather priced at £44.95. We all know and love Ralph Lauren and as such I expect Infinities to be off the mark on this one since the Ralph Lauren market is so competitive. I managed to find over ten suppliers selling this t-shirt with only three stocking it in every size, even Ralph Lauren’s own website was out of stock of XXL. Of the three that had every size in stock, all were priced at £45, same as Infinities.

    Polo Ralph Lauren T-Shirt Grey

    Price Score – 8/10
    Stock Score – 10/10
    Exclusivity Score – 7/10

    PS By Paul Smith Brushed Oxford Shirt Sky Blue

    Lastly comes the Paul Smith Oxford Shirt. I wanted to pick something that I thought could be quite unique and I picked well. I searched the web and only found one other company selling it, which is a good sign. Oddly I couldn’t even find it on the Paul Smith website. Priced at £114.95 on Infinities it’s 5 pence cheaper than the other website it’s sold on.

    PS By Paul Smith Brushed Oxford Shirt Sky Blue

    Price Score – 8/10
    Stock Score – 10/10
    Exclusivity Score – 10/10

    Blog

    I do like a good blog, hence why I got into blogging in the first place. I’m addicted to fashion and football blogs and in the last few weeks I’ve attempted to keep up with Infinities blog. Most of it isn’t really to my taste since it’s them promoting their new products rather than useful reads. Which to be fair to them, they are a store and how else would customers know about their new collections if they didn’t promote them. There are some decent reads on how to re-wax your jacket or how to roll up your sleeves however most are look-books.

    If you’re a football fan I’d recommend having a look at the Cruyff rapid trainers. I read the blog post and fell in love, have a read here.

    Cruyff Rapid Trainers Red

    Cruyff Rapid Trainers

    Newsletter

    I always recommend if you like a brand/company to sign up to their newsletter and Infinities newsletter seems to be pretty decent so far. It’s important to know when there’s going to be a new sale so that you can get hold of the discounted items first before the good stuff sells out.

    As a cheeky side benefit, Infinities will you 10% off your first order just for signing up. Not bad by my standards.

    infinities newsletter 10% off

    Final Words

    At first working out what Infinities’s game plan was confusing. I wasn’t sure if they were trying to be like House of Fraser or another version of ASOS. I find that they are pretty much neither or maybe a blend of the two. I suppose I’m still not sure what exactly they are but then again do they need to be anything? Is it possible they can just be themselves? I would say time will tell but they been around for more than twenty years so maybe time has already spoken and maybe you should give them a go.

    Infinities – Click Here

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

    Ralph Lauren Socks Above The Ankles

  • Reviews
  • Gruhme No.14 – Aftershave From A Well Dressed Lawyer

    Gruhme No.14 Above The Ankles Review

    Aftershave is not my field, I don’t know much about them or how they work. Although saying that, I couldn’t survive without it. I thrive off of aftershave and never stick to just one. I’m always jumping around trying new ones, looking for scents that will make people stop and comment. I’m an attention seeker, sue me. When I got the opportunity to review a new aftershave brand, I jumped at it with both hands. It’s a brand that is new and according to the world of the internet, Gruhme is doing really well. They have some fantastic reviews online from huge brands like GQ, Men’s Health & Esquire.

    First Impressions

    Gruhme No.14 Above The Ankles Review

    Gruhme No.14 Above The Ankles Review

    Gruhme No.14 Above The Ankles Review

    My first impression was probably the same as everybody else’s. Everything Gruhme do seems to be at a high standard. The delivery came within 48 hours. The box was standard but in good condition. The bottle to put it simply, is incredible. It is a brilliant solid black cover with a lovely matte finish to it. It has that ‘real deal’ feel to it, very heavy, very solid – well made. The bottle isn’t over decorated nor is it covered in text, just a simple classy bottle.

    The way I see things, first impressions are incredibly important, and i mean that in a general sense across all fields, haircut, outfit, CV, speech, texts – everything. Likewise that all important first smell, I wanted it to be strong overpowering and authoritative. Gruhme didn’t disappoint. It’s a very masculine smell, smell a lot like ginger and spices. Kind of makes me feel like I’m out in nature with the wind in my hair (whatever that means.)

    About Gruhme

    From what I can tell Gruhme is a small new brand, less than three years old and started by an ex lawyer with a vision. I asked a few people in the West Midlands about the brand and funnily enough they knew Rob (the founder.) Rob apparently mixes in with business networking groups and from what I’ve gathered “he’s a straight up guy.”

    Gruhme as a brand is designed and positioned exactly as I want my brand to be. Elegant, simple and effective.
    According to their website Gruhme believe fragrance designers have lost what it means to be daring and now just play it safe. How true this is, I don’t know, I’ve owned over 30 different bottles of aftershave and while some have smelt the same, I find the majority to be different and distinct. I’d like to see Gruhme do well and as a brand I think they’re doing a brilliant job. Below is an excerpt from their About US page and I think it sums up things wonderfully.

    Attention to detail and aesthetics are more important to us than just daily profit and spend. Welcome to our world and we hope you’ll stay with us on this journey from one-man start-up to industry changer. After all, without you there is no us.

    The Difference Between EDP & EDT

    Eau de Parfum and Eau de Toilette are French words, indicating the rise of the perfume industry in France. The terms themselves indicate the way that these products were generally used. Eau de Parfum was meant to create an aromatic experience, with a lasting fragrance that remained throughout the day. Eau de Toilette refers to a ladies’ toilette, or grooming ritual, and indicated the product was used for freshening up over the course of the day. The varying concentration levels of these fragrances means that they can still be used in this manner.

    Read more here.

    The Fragrance

    Gruhme No.14 Above The Ankles Review

    Here’s where I actually have to strive to put my smelling ability into words, here comes the artist me. The best way I can describe Gruhme No.14 is as a spicy ginger natural fragrance. It’s almost like you’re standing in the woods thinking about life. The scent is very masculine, strong and makes me feel like I have more money than I do. I think this picture describes it best;

    Picture Describing The Smell Of Gruhme No.14

    Stick-ability

    This Gruhme No.14 is their new and improved fragrance. This new fragrance is designed exactly as their original fragrance was originally designed with three years ago. The only difference between the original and the new No.14 is that Gruhme have increased the concentration from 10% to 14%. I think this shows that they had an issue with stick-ability and not the scent of the aftershave.

    Gruhme No.14 Above The Ankles Review

    I think  even now there is a problem  regarding the ability of Gruhme to last. I find myself spraying all my clothes and body with the spray and then within an hour it’s gone. I have asked people to describe the fragrance I’m wearing after meeting them outside and they have struggled. I even tried to google how to get my aftershave to stick around more – if you’re interested it’s a pretty decent post here.

    Price

    Gruhme No.14 is priced at £45, making it an average priced fragrance. You could purchase the Paco Rabanne 1 Million and many of the other well known aftershaves for that price. This begs the question: is £45 worth it for a 100ml of Gruhme? Well if you’re looking for a great new scent then Gruhme is for you. If you’re looking for a scent that will make people think about “Oooo this reminds me of…” then Gruhme is for you. Gruhme is most definitely remarkable in everything but it lacks massively in its ability to stick around.

    Compliments, Comments & Complaints

    Wife: Yeah it’s nice, I prefer it to all your feminine sprays, it’s like a real masculine smell, reminds me of smell of the woods.

    Friend: Oooo reminds me of one summer when we was going hyde park, it’s got that freshness smell to it.

    Friend: I’d say it’s like ginger, it’s very strong scent.

    Other Reviews Online

    I searched through the internet and found a whole army of reviews regarding Gruhme. Most are very short and concise, I suppose most people probably wouldn’t want to read too much into things. I did find however that most reviews only told half the story. If you focus on the scent and the brand image, then honestly I don’t think many fragrances can compete with Gruhme. I can imagine the problem with many bloggers is they don’t want to give a negative review for fear of offending the brand and potentially ruining any further opportunities. I differ from this view, I hope that Gruhme will be back with a stronger more lasting scent.

    Customers who have paid for a product always give the best review and that’s why brands like Amazon do so well since potential customers can read honest reviews. I found a customer review online in which I can relate to on every level. Please see below.

    Although I give this fragrance a neutral it has more to do with performance than the quality of its smell. I find this to be a rather beautiful green offering which oozes class. Smells like a walk in a dewy forest on a fresh early morning. It is masculine and gives me the impression that good quality ingredients have been harnessed. I imagine this would be a good office scent; however while longevity is almost average the silage is really poor. I used several sprays and a friend didn’t realize I was wearing it!

    Found here.

    Final Words

    I’m hopeful the guys at Gruhme will read this and think I’m right and maybe in the near future I’ll get the third version of Gruhme No.14. They have gotten literally everything else right. The bottle is beautiful, the website is aesthetically pleasing & functional, they have been endorsed by big online players, much bigger than I, but unfortunately for me, they are lacking in probably the second most important part of an aftershave: its ability to stick around.

    Customers can order a bottle here;
    Gruhme No.14 (EdT) 100ml

    Gruhme No.14 (EdT) 100ml

  • Reviews
  • Stiffies Review – Magnetic Metal Collar Stays

    White TM Lewin Shirt With Stiffies

    Reviewing anything related to suits is the most arousing thing since lasagne, almost enough to give you a stiffy, pun intended. As much as I like black socks, I can’t be bothered writing about them. New innovations like these from small start-ups is what I’m all about. It’s simple, it’s cheap, its cheerful, just what the doctor ordered. This review I’m going to have some fun with and try something new. In the first half of this post, I’ll review the magnetic collar stays before wearing them, just giving my initial thoughts on the product, idea, price, appearance etc. Then I’ll give them a spin for a week and then write the second half of this review. Which will be my exact true thoughts on Stiffies and if its worth buying them or not.

    Before Wearing Stiffies

    I recently lost a lot of my collar stays in a trip to the dry cleaners and was planning to buy a pair of metal ones from TM Lewin or John Lewis. So the email asking me to review a pair of Stiffies came at the perfect time. I’d like to thank the guys at Stiffies for sending me these, as always I’ll be brutally honest and mention all the good & bad, hopefully they don’t mind.

    The Idea

    The concept is simple, they’re metal collar stiffeners, that go into your collar and then you place a magnet under your shirt that pulls your collar towards it and holds your shirt collar firm in place.

    Price

    I’m a price man, I’m all about price and saving money where I can. I love looking good but I refuse to be wasteful with my money. Thankfully £20 isn’t a painful amount of money. Having metal collar stiffeners (collar bones) is an absolute must for me and should be for you so the fact these are metal is a big deal for me. Never will plastic do as good a job as metal!

    Delivery

    The delivery was super quick, took two days to get to me. I didn’t pay for my delivery so I’m not entirely sure on the delivery charge but it looks like it is free.

    Magnets

    I’m not a fan of having a small magnet on me, I just get the feeling it can easily come off throughout the day, if that happens you’d have to buy replacements which are sold by Stiffies. To be fair to them, it looks like they supply some spares in the package. I suppose that tells us they’re aware the magnets may be easy to lose. The idea behind it being magnetic isn’t something that has sunk in with me yet and I’ll go into more detail about how the magnet works and is used once I get my head around it all.

    There are actually some health and safety rules about these things which I’d definitely recommend reading; here.

    A Week Later

    Well what a difference a week makes. I’ve gone from being a doubter to being a possible lifetime customer. I’ll elaborate…

    I’m a skeptic, I look at adverts and think, yeah right, does it really do that or is this just over exaggerated. The trick with collar stays is if you wear a cheap shirt with nothing in the collars, then add in some plastic £2 collar stays, the collars would look much better. That’s what I thought was happening here. I’m glad I was wrong.

    I took Stiffies to work everyday for a week, except on casual Friday, while wearing my normal plastic collar stays for the first half of the day and then the Stiffies the second half. The results were pretty impressive, here’s an example of one of my shirts;

    Me With TM Lewin Plastic Collar Stays - Stiffies Review
    Me Wearing My TM Lewin Shirt With Plastic TM Lewin Collar Stays

    TM Lewin Plastic Collar Stays Abovetheankles

    Me With Stiffies Magnetic Collar Stays - Stiffies Review
    Same Shirt Now With Stiffies Magnetic Collar Stays

    I had some reservations as all my shirts are from TM Lewin, I know they’re made very well so my collars look good even without wearing any collar stiffeners. I did not expect Stiffies to improve the look of the shirt. With my collars placed firmly in place and me never having to readjust them meant I realized just how much I touch my collars throughout the day. On one day I touched my collar seven times over 3/4 hours. The novelty hasn’t quite worn off yet, so I’m still aching for someone to comment and ask my shirt looks so damn good, unfortunately no compliments or questions yet.

    How It Works

    How the magnet works is simple. You place the magnet underneath your shirt and then position the collar where you want it to stay and the magnet will click onto your collar from under your shirt, thus holding everything in place. Probably the best bit about this is the fact you can take off the shirt and the magnet will stay attached so as long you don’t lift up your collars.

    Silver Stiffies - Magnetic Collar Stays

    Was I Able To Lose Any Magnets?

    I wanted to see what it would take to lose the magnets so did a few tests to see if they would survive. In my first test, I decided to do some running, not like miles or anything, just sprinted for the bus and stuff. I purposely ran kind of all over the place to see if it would fall but to no avail, 1-0 to Stiffies .

    Next I decided I would wear my duffel bag across my shoulder (I normally carry it in my hand.) I fidgeted about with my bag while it was on, I took the bag off and then on a few times expecting for the magnet to fall down my shirt during this process – it stayed put. 2-0 Stiffies.

    Third and final test, I decided to leave the magnets on, take off the shirt, roll it up and throw it in the wash basket. Now I would never advise rolling your shirts up, I always hang my shirts up, even dirty ones. Anyways I threw it into the wash basket and needless to say, the test went in favour of the Stiffies. 3-0.

    Magnet Strength Fading

    In terms of magnet strength fading overtime, I’m not sure if that’s possible. I’ve only had these little over a week so this isn’t something I can comment on.

    The Two Sizes

    Of the two sizes, I use the smaller ones, the longer pair didn’t work at all. The longer pair looked ridiculous in my shirt. I wear a 15.5/16-inch collar with relatively long collars so I’d expect the longer pair to fit. I’m not sure I’d ever need the longer pair but for now the small ones are perfect.

    Silver Stiffies - Magnetic Collar Stays

    Metal Quality

    To be honest, I’m more of a fabric kind of guy, metals are not my thing so discussing how good the metal used to make Stiffies is, is pointless. I have no idea if it’s strong enough to build a house with or survive extreme heats so if you’re planning on going near a volcano, to be on the safe side, leave these at home. I will however say that they are definitely aesthetically pleasing.

    A Must Have Or A Luxury?

    I can’t say that an accessory is a must have, the reason why is because your shirt doesn’t need collar stays, especially if you wear a tie. Most shirts come with plastic collar stays so you could just use those. You could also buy normal metal collar stays. Then we come to the question;

    Why Should I Buy Stiffies?

    I’ll attempt to answer whether you should buy them or not in the most simple way. If you work in an environment where a tie is required, then just pass on these. If the shirts you wear are worth less than £20, then I wouldn’t advise spending £17.99 on collar stays, makes more sense to invest in a decent collection of shirts.

    If like me, you don’t wear a tie to work, and you own good quality shirts with decently made collars – then yes, get these and don’t delay. Honestly just in terms of confidence, it’s worth the £17.99. Not to mention you can go about your whole day not worrying about your collars moving, even a little.

    I’m incredibly pleased with Stiffies, companies like these deserve the recognition they get. They have found a way to improve every mans outfit without breaking any bank accounts and with little effort. I personally will be ordering another pair myself as a present for a friend. I would recommend you pick some up for yourself.

    Hope you enjoyed my review of Stiffies and if you have anything to add from your own experiences then please comment below.

    Get Your Own Magnetic Collar Stays Here – Stiffies!

    White TM Lewin Shirt With Plastic Collar Stays

    White TM Lewin Shirt With Stiffies

  • Reviews
  • Burton Reivewed

    burton review logo

    My Burton Review

    Burton as a whole is a good company.

    The above statement is generally what most people would say about Burton, it’s also my opinion. It is a good company that sell good clothes at a good price. Once upon a time, 80% of my wardrobe was Burton branded, that’s now declined to 2%. To sum up my Burton review simply, as mentioned, Burton sell good clothes but after awhile good just doesn’t cut it.

    History

    I can’t say this is my Burton review without mentioning it’s history. The company has some amazing history, ever heard the phrase, “the full monty”?

    Montague Burton founded Burton in 1904. After World War II, Montague Burton was one of the suppliers of suits to the British government. They supplied the jackets, trousers, waistcoats, shirt and underwear. Thus the phrase, “the full monty” was born.

    As nice as that is, history is history and nowadays Burton are known as the little brother to Topman. I mean that in the un-cute way. Burton is cheaper than Topman with very similar quality and lightly chubbier. Topman is generally marketed towards skinny fit men while Burton is aimed more generally towards everyone. The issue then falls onto Quality – which both brothers lack unfortunately.

    Burton is one of the cheapest options on the high street to buy a suit, usually ranging from £79 to £150. They fit the description of “off the rack” perfectly. Generally all are polyester or a polyblend with wool and usually come out quite thin. Their suits are not designed for an active man who enjoys walking or occasionally messing around. Try jumping onto a bench and it’s very likely you’ll rip the trousers at the crotch.

    Collections

    They have a few collections designed for everyone. I must admit, the difference between them is not much. I myself have owned a suit from every collection, as you can guess the best suits are the most expensive. The difference between the best and worse suits is very minimal.

    £79 Machine Washable Suits

    Supposedly Burton’s worst suit, this machine washable suit comes as a two piece suit, a jacket & trouser for £79. I’d never recommend machine washing your suits, even if they are machine washable. Out of all their collections, this suit is by far my favourite. All of the £79 suits come in default colours, black, grey & navy with no patterns or designs. They are simple, with very small lapels, usually forcing you into wearing a slim tie. They’re all a mix of polyester and viscose, which will often give them that shiny look to the suit, usually quite visible in the bright sun light. They way I see it, a suit for £79 – you can’t go wrong. Definitely the perfect suit for those starting out and building up their wardrobe.

    burton machine washable suits

    For an extra £30 you can grab a waistcoat to spice things up, totalling to £109.

    Wool Suits

    Wool suits from anywhere are pretty much guaranteed to be a good buy. The fabric wool is very reliable and comfortable. All their suits in their wool collection are 100% Italian wool. The quality is impressive, it feels good and looks better. The fit isn’t bad either.

    The wool suits have been created with work in mind. Designed in five colours you could wear to work, all year round. Black, Blue, Navy, Dark Grey & Grey.

    burton menswear wool suits

    For some strange reason, they only do wool suits in slim fit. If you happen to fit into a slim fitted suit, enjoy. Everybody else, jog on.

    Standard Skinny/Slim/Tailored Fit

    Burton design their suits in three different fits. They’re most successful line is their slim fitted suit. I wore Burton’s skinny fit suits for awhile but I found they just didn’t fit me comfortably enough and I ripped too many suits at the crotch. Slim fit was definitely my favourite fit in their suits, I found their slim fit suits the most comfortable and best quality. The tailored suits just felt a bit.. slim fit.

    Conclusion

    Burton review menswear

    Burton is without a doubt one of the best hight street retailers in the UK. Unfortunately that doesn’t say much for the high street retailers. Burton is really good for price but the honest truth is, there are cheaper options with similar quality. As 75% of Burton’s suits are made from polyester and viscose, literally the cheapest option possible – you can get similar suits everywhere. Matalan is a great cheaper alternative to Burton if you’re on a low budget. Obviously it’s much more reputable to have Burton on the inside of your suit jacket than Matalan.

    Overall a good company for anyone just starting to buy suits. I’d definitely avoid Burton if you don’t wear slim fitted suits. Tailored just aren’t there thing.

    Hope you enjoyed my Burton Review.

  • Reviews
  • WeirdApe – Excelsior Black & Gold Watch Review!

    Excelsior Black & White - Mechanical Skeleton Watch

    WeirdApe Excelsior Magnum Gold – Mechanical Skeleton Watch

    Excelsior Black & White - Mechanical Skeleton Watch
    There are some amazing small companies out there doing very innovative and crazy things for great prices. WeirdApe is one of them, considering all their watches range from £25 to £35 and they have over two-hundred different styles – they’re doing really well.

    WeirdApe have chosen some really creative designs that go really well, you’ll be spoilt for choice. As they all look pleasing and can go with many outfits. You get the choice of many colour sets along with strap colour and material. Some of their designs are in every sense of the word – WEIRD.

    First Impressions: Wow what a piece of art!

    Design

    Once you catch the Excelsior in your eye-sight it automatically makes you go for a double look, you get a craving to want to peer inside it. The kid inside me came out when I first took it out the packaging, I wanted to see it ticking away with all the mechanics moving around.

    The design is simple, gold and silver with a black synthetic leather strap. Anyone could see that the designs at WeirdApe are well thought of while at the same time being kind of crazy. The choice of gold and silver is well combined, for example the gold could be seen on the buckle, head, time-winder and inner clock work. The the silver stainless steel is then added to help make those small details stand out and be easily visible.

    With the gold skeleton design you can see right though the background into the inner clock work, allowing you to see the magic behind how the clock maintains its time. Seeing the magic is my favourite feature, it just amazes me. Undoubtedly most watches in this sort of design will cost you into three figures.

    The clock work can be viewed from the front and back, as there is a clear glass which allows you to look in. Now although it is so cool to have a watch were you can see the clock work, there really isn’t much you can actually see. Still amazing to look at none the less, on the first observation as the WeirdApe have put a skeletal background with static dials and gears to help enhance this feature.

    WeirdApe Cover

    General Use / Description

    The watches dials consist of a hour, minute and second ticker which can be set from the pin on the right hand side. The pin also needs to be used to wind up the clock work as this watch is not battery powered. This can be done by twisting the pin clockwise. You know you are doing this right when you can see the gears moving in the back. Its important to point that out as it did take me a little time to work out how to actually get the watch ticking. I must admit for the first twenty minutes I thought I had been sent a broken watch. Now this function is really unique and gives an old fashioned feel to the watch, however I’d rather just have a battery or even better, a decent watch that ticks away with out the need for batteries or a daily wind-up.

    This is my first mechanical powered watch, I’m not a fan. I’m not sure if this is the norm but since the watch does not have a battery or self winder, the mechanical wind up itself will only last around two days. In a way its still impressive and gives you the chance to crank it up when putting the watch on in the morning. That however is being really positive, in reality I can’t be asked to check the time on my phone then crank my watch up and get it to work accordingly.

    Excelsior Magnum Gold - Mechanical Skeleton Watch

    Occasion

    Upon getting this watch I was really excited to wear it and did hope to wear at on any occasion. I soon realised that this was not the case and the watch is really just a show piece, to grab peoples attention and rake in the compliments. This mainly is because of the type of style along with it being mechanically powered, which will get annoying when you forget to crank it back. I wore it wherever I could and showed many people to get their opinions on it, the compliments came flying in and people assumed the watch was an expensive timepiece. So thumbs up on the reasonable price tag.

    Durability and Quality

    For the average price tag of a non branded watch, you get a beautiful crafted watch made out of stainless steel with a high grade synthetic leather strap. Only shame for me was that the strap was very stiff and tough from new and even after wearing the watch after a week, it still struggled to fit my hand snugly. I will definitely be replacing the strap with a genuine leather strap. WeirdApe, if you’re reading, fix the straps, they’re horribly uncomfortable.

    Excelsior Magnum Gold - Mechanical Skeleton Watch

    Conclusion

    I really do love this watch and putting the obvious downfalls aside, I would highly recommend getting one for the watch collection. At only £35, you can’t go wrong. The WeirdApe Excelsior is not a watch to wear on a daily basis but it is a great go-to watch when looking to switch things up and grab a few compliments. As a first watch, I’d steer clear and get a reliable watch, but to add to the collection.. Perfect.

    Excelsior Magnum Gold - Mechanical Skeleton Watch

  • Reviews
  • Nike Team Training Mini Duffle Bag

    Nike Team Training Mini Duffle Bag

    I’m sitting down at my desk one morning just spinning around on my chair at work, bored as hell. Then I look up and see this small manly handbag with “NIKE” printed boldly on the back, it looked so neat and tidy – I wanted one. Went straight up to my colleague and asked him where he got it from. Unfortunately for him, he paid £25 for it.

    Do I mind having the exact same bag as someone else at work? Nope. As long as I look good I’m happy.

    He got it off Amazon and thankfully for me it was sold out. After some googling I managed to find a few different links. Good news, I ordered mine for a fraction of the price he paid – £18 from John Lewis.

    Diversity

    The obvious use is for the gym, it’s strangely big enough to carry my trainers, tracksuit, t-shirt and a bottle of water. It’s also small enough to hold comfortably hold my lunch box, shoes and book for those working days. One handy feature is that there is actually room to unzip one end of the bag and extend the bag by about 50%. This proves great for all those weekends away. However, let it be known, the bag loses all its s*x appeal when you extend it. Only use in emergencies.

    Nike Team Training Mini Duffle Bag

    Whether it’s the gym, work or a short break away – this quality Nike bag will do the job.

    Appearance

    When walking to the gym, I always hang it on my shoulder using the long strap. This keeps the look of the standard gym bag, which is neither good nor bad. However, when walking to work, I make it far more fashionable. The shoulder strap is removable, I tuck it away inside the bag and carry the bag in one hand using the soft holdall handles. Due to the compact size of the bag, all the weight is in one position and the bag holds shape fantastically well.

    Nike Team Training Mini Duffle Bag
    Nike Team Training Mini Duffle Bag

    Price

    How often do you find bags costing £18.00? – no brainer!

    Conclusion

    Gone are the days of me walking to work with my lunch in a shopping bag. I no longer have to walk to the gym with a half empty bag or carry some huge bag on holiday with me. This Nike bag is compact, functional and cheap. If only Adidas would create one similar (being the Adidas fan that I am.)

  • Reviews
  • Sioux Couture – Fancy Socks

    sioux couture cover image above the ankles

    I’ve been meaning to write this post for awhile and have just been putting it off for so long. I was approached awhile ago by Sioux Couture (I have no idea how to pronounce it) and they asked me to have a look through their site, pick some socks and review them. Obviously I weren’t going to turn them down so I figured I would give them a try and then write a review on their socks. I would just like to apologise to the guys and girls at Sioux Couture as I’m going to be brutally honest and say exactly what I love and don’t love about the socks.

    Sioux Couture Review

    In this review I’m going to go over five different areas; my first impressions, the look, the comfort, the practicality and the price.

    First Impressions – 8/10

    On first opening the package, I thought thank God it’s finally here. As its made in Italy and shipped from Spain it does take awhile to get through customs. So expect a week or two for delivery. Once opening the package I was quite impressed with the packaging. Each sock is packaged in a pocket like cover, which I now use them for other handy stuff around the house.

    Sioux Couture - Customs Package
    Sioux Couture - Pocket Packets

    The Look – 10/10

    The socks look amazing, when you wear them you literally draw compliments toward you. The colour is fantastic and vibrant. I enjoy standing out with my outfits and these socks really help me be seen a mile off. I have two blue socks, a red one and a purple (see below) and they are absolutely stunning. I’ve worn them and washed them each between 5-6 times so far and they still look brand new. Sioux Couture have done an amazing choice in picking the correct colour combinations, my favourite being the purple/pink.

    sioux couture purple blue and red socks by above the ankles

    The Comfort – 9/10

    The feel of these socks can easily be described as incredibly soft and comfortable due to them being made from egyptian cotton. Once you put them on you can really feel the difference in quality compared to your normal five navy socks you got for £3. Wearing them throughout the day is refreshing as they aren’t too tight and you get the feeling that your feet are being allowed to breathe. I also walked around the house in them and they did the job of keeping my feet warm in my not so warm flat.

    The Practicality – 6/10

    Here’s where the socks lack in awesomeness. What do I mean by practicality? How well they do their job. The job you expect from winter socks is to keep your feet warm. The job of invisible socks aka ballerina socks, is to be invisible when worn with trainers. The job of colourful socks is to look great and be seen. The colour of the socks are fantastic but where Sioux Couture have slipped up is how well the socks stay up throughout the day. I find myself every hour or so pulling my socks up, which considering I sit down at my desk in a call centre all day, it’s really unexpected. To be fair to them, this is a problem a lot of socks companies have, my TM Lewin socks are even worse than them, but regardless – it’s still a problem. Socks really don’t look attractive on a smart or smart/casual look if they are rolling down and getting bunched at the ankle.

    above the ankles - Sioux Couture

    The Price – 7/10

    How much will one of these bad boys set you back? £10.73

    Nope not for two pairs, just one pair, £10 for a pair of socks is a bit steep. I have owned a fair amount of socks in my time and these are among the most expensive. I do own socks that are much more expensive than Sioux Couture’s but I still get the feeling their over priced.

    Overall – 8/10

    Well in all the four areas I covered, you must say, Sioux Coutures fancy socks did a pretty decent job. I wouldn’t say they are the best socks in the world. However, they are pretty damn good and paying £10.73 for pretty damn good is in my opinion – worth it. I don’t recommend these if you are only just dipping your toes in the big pool of colourful and playful socks. On the other hand, if you’re a seasoned veteran in this sock game, then you really don’t have any excuse not to grab four of these beautifully crafted socks.

    To sum it all up, if you want compliments and socks that will grab people’s attention and don’t mind paying a premium for them or having to pull them up every so often, then grab yours here;

    siouxcouture.com/en/

    Sioux Couture - three stacked up
    Sioux Couture - socks lined up on a bench
  • Reviews
  • My Four Shirts – 10% OFF

    Do you ever just look at someone and think wow they are basically wearing the same thing as me but they look so much better, why? Or that guy looks great but he’s dressed so simplistically. Sometimes it can just be their complexion or their body shape just looks great with their outfit but 9/10 times it will just be the fact that they are wearing quality clothes.

    TM Lewin doesn’t fall short in terms of quality. People notice you when you wear a TM Lewin shirt. Your white shirt is leagues above the other guys white shirt. I went into TM Lewin a few times in the last month, trying to match four shirts for £80 but I could never find three shirts I actually liked, let alone four. The problem with TM Lewin is the retail stores are more expensive than the online stores and they have such a small selection in store. The know that the fit of the shirt is the most important thing.

    IMG_20150120_225828
    IMG_20150120_225721
    IMG_20150120_225718
    IMG_20150120_225850

    Try It On

    Go into the store and try on the different sizes, find your perfect size, ignore the sales reps and walk out. Jump online and order all the shirts you love. Not only are the shirts online cheaper; they have more colours, more designs and you can mix up the sale items with the non sale items.

    My Order & Vouchers

    I ordered four shirts and two socks online in the exact colours and fit I wanted when I was in the store. Not only did I find my perfect size/design I also ended up paying less for four shirts and two socks than I would have if I just would have bought four shirts in store. When shopping online you have the opportunity to add in discount codes and coupons that you can’t do in store. I used a voucher for 10% off which brought my order from £92 down to £82.80. I sometimes get emails with them offering me 20 or 30% off so you should definitely sign up to their mailing list.

    If you want me to send you any voucher codes I get for TM Lewin leave a comment below, I’ll gladly share.

    It get’s better…

    My order came with £50 wine voucher with Virgin wines, which I threw in the bin as I don’t drink wine. Better than the wine voucher, they sent me two vouchers with £10 off any order over £75.

    Want My TM Lewin Shirts

    Want to order the same shirts/socks as me, I definitely recommend them. Enjoy…

    Fitted Plain White Twill Cutaway Collar Shirt

    London Fitted White Curved Cutaway Collar Shirt

    Fitted Blue Poplin Double Cuff Shirt

    Fitted Plain Pink Luxury Twill Double Cuff Shirt

    Navy Blue Stripe Socks

    Navy Pink Stripe Socks

  • Reviews
  • 48 Hours Later… LG G Watch R Review

    lg g watch r review above the ankles

    So I’ve been using the LG G Watch R for over 48 hours now and I must say I’ve noticed some great things and some really crap things. Smart watch technology is clearly something new and you can tell there’s still many things all these geeky tech people need to work on.

    So as I’m a little different, I’m going to start of with all the negatives of this watch and really just explain all my frustrations with the LG G Watch R.

    What’s Annoying

    Although this watch has one of the biggest screens in comparison to other smart watches, it’s still not big enough meaning there’s not really enough space to move things around using your fingers.

    You have to actually talk to the watch more than you use your fingers to swipe which can get a little weird saying “ok google” into your wrist.

    The battery will drain in 6 hours if you have the brightness up and the screen always on. This means you’re basically have to use your watch carefully and not just leave everything on when you’re not really using it.

    The watch works via Bluetooth which means if you want to receive notifications your phones Bluetooth will need to be on constantly. So as you can imagine your phone’s battery will take a beating.

    What I Love

    Aside from all the negatives, this watch/piece-of-technology is absolutely amazing! I can turn off my WiFi, put my phone on silent, start/stop music, change the volume, read/reply to texts, browse the internet, check my heart rate, show me workout routines on my wrist, set reminders/alarms and most important – It tells me the time!

    Everything you ever wanted from a watch right? Well to be fair, there’s many more features like sending tweets, checking likes/comments on Instagram and play little silly games on your wrist.

    Conclusion

    At the end of the day, I don’t actually care about all of the features and benefits of this watch, I care how I look and will I inspire others when they look at me. Trust me when I say, this is watch that completes my outfit. The watch has an amazing glow that attracts people to stare at it while I walk. You can even change the straps to make it fit specifically to one of your outfits.

    If you want it – here’s the link.

    _77216213_lg_g_watch_r_05

  • Reviews
  • TM Lewin 4 Shirts Offer

    tmlewin.co.uk

    I’m sure there’s not many of you who don’t own TM Lewin shirts, I can only imagine my non UK/US readers not owning shirts from this amazing store. Then again, even if you’re not from UK/US, you still should grab yourself a couple of these shirts. Very rarely will you be able to find a shirt at around twenty or thirty pounds at the quality and consistency of TM Lewin.

    We all know about their 4 shirts for £100 promotion which is on all year round, well as you probably know this time of the year is the perfect time for offers and saving some money. TM Lewin thankfully is no different and they currently have their shirts on sale.

    4 Shirts For £80

    I have nothing but praise for TM Lewin’s shirts, I generally don’t but their ties or cufflinks from them as they’re usually more expensive than the shirts themselves and I know I could get similar ties from other stores for a much lower price. I definitely will be ordering my TM Lewin shirts online this week, make sure you do as well.

    My Recommendations

    I have owned two of these shirts in the past which I lost (don’t ask how), my close friend also bought the other two a few years ago and still wears them regularly so I highly recommend these four.

    Slim Fit Plain White Luxury Twill Shirt

    Slim Fit Plain White Twill Non-Iron Shirt

    Slim Fit Navy Bengal Stripe Poplin Shirt

    Slim Fit Plain Pink Luxury Twill Shirt