First impressions matter.

As unfair as you may think this is, people will make judgments based on what they see within the first few seconds of meeting you.

You can whine and complain about it – or you sharpen up your appearance to create a killer first impression.

The former makes you no fun to be around. The latter makes you appear like someone with self-respect, who invests time, energy and effort into himself

You don’t have to break the bank to improve your fashion. In fact, you could improve your appearance today with a few simple tweaks.

Below are six simple steps you can take to freshen up your look.

Invest in fitted clothes

This is the number one fashion rule. If it’s not a close flattering fit, don’t wear it.

Take all shirts and jackets to the tailors for adjustments. This will do a lot to show off your body and it’s cheaper than buying new outfits.

Fitted doesn’t mean tight. It simply means to contour your body in a way that shows off its shape. Have yourself properly measured by the tailor, or bring them a shirt that you feel already fits you perfectly.

Pants and jeans should be tailored too. Big baggy pants do nothing to flatter you. In fact, they can often make you look shorter and fatter than you actually are.

Fitted pants bring a whole outfit together. Ensure they rest on the material of your shoes. Showing a bit of ankle looks better than a ton of unnecessary material resting around your feet.

Spend big on your essentials

Spend big on timeless essentials like a winter coat, black jeans, blazer, formal white shirt, plain white tee, dress shoes etc

These never go out of style and will provide a quality fashion foundation for decades to come. Invest wisely here and you won’t need to worry about following the latest ‘trends’.  

You’ll look better, plus you’ll spend less in the long-term because it’ll take years before these quality garments need replacing.

Click the link for some great modern ideas for eye-catching blazers.

Experiment with accessories

A couple of cleverly-chosen accessories can bring a plain-looking outfit to life. Don’t be afraid to be bold with these. They can do a lot to add some personality to your look without making your whole outfit appear over the top.

Consider following a few of your favorite fashion brands on social media for ideas on how to add a bit of spice to your image.   

Keep your shoes clean and relevant

Shoes are an underrated element of your fashion arsenal.

Keep them clean and make sure they match the rest of your outfit. Scruffy kicks can ruin your entire image no matter what they’re paired with. Your belt should always match your shoes.

Dress your age

There are few bigger turn-offs than grown men dressing like immature teenagers. As a rule, over-dressing is always less embarrassing than coming across as too casual.  

Consider replacing graphic tees with classic button-downs. Backpacks with leather briefcases. Baseball caps with more formal headwear. Say goodbye to wearing sportswear outside the gym, or beachwear away from the beach.  

For more ideas, see our guide on how to dress in your 40s.

Groom yourself

The above tips will count for little if you can’t invest time to take care of your hygiene and grooming yourself properly.

Basics, like showering, cleaning your teeth and styling your hair, should come before anything if you’re trying to present yourself well.

Take care to pluck or trim nose or ear hair. Facial hair can look sophisticated, but only if you put effort into maintaining it.

Failing to do this is the number one turn-off for women, and people in general.