How to Look Like a Douchebag (Or, How Not to Be One)


It’s never fair to judge a book solely by its cover… but we all do it. And let’s face it, some people are just asking for it. You’re probably here to try and steer your style as far away from the douchebag look as you can, and don’t worry, you’re in the right place.

But if you don’t know what a douchebag is? And yet, you’re always wearing shades, your collar remains popped and you own more than one wife-beater… Chances are, you’re already a higher scorer on the douche scale.

How Does a Douchebag Behave?

It’s not all about looks. The reason douchebags have bagged their name is a lot to do with the personality traits that are closely tied to their style choices. Everyone has the right to dress how they wish, of course, and we’d never criticize our readers. But that said, if you act like a douche, then maybe this is the reality check you need.

If you’ve got an inflated ego, a heightened sense of self-worth, and a general obnoxious demeanor, then it’s probably more than the fashion choices that you need to change. Hey, we’re big fans of self-love. But there’s a fine line between confidence and arrogance, and believe it or not, your style can be that delineator. 

Douchebags also tend to have a superiority complex and this is clear in the way they hold themselves. It’s not uncommon for douchey guys to look down on women (and men! Hey, douchebaggery isn’t limited by sexuality). But it’s 2021 people. Misogyny just doesn’t cut it anymore. We’re not fooled by that sports car. We all know how big it is… your ego that is.

What Does a Douchebag Look Like?

The reason douchebags are so easy to label is that they stand out. They probably won’t be dressed like the rest of the other guys at the bar. They think this makes them better than everyone else, although everyone around them is surely thinking the same thing.

Their clothes are unlikely to be weather appropriate. If he’s wearing his varsity sweater in the scorching heat, just so he can perch next to you and ramble on about his sporting accolades, this reeks of lacking social awareness. Likewise, he has his top off, but you’re inside and there isn’t a beach in sight?…Douche! 

If you’re really starting to worry that these descriptions are a bit close to home, let’s break it down for you a bit more. If you’re guilty of just one of our top ten douchey style choices, then we can probably let you off. But if these start to add up, we’re sorry but, it’s not looking great for you. 

How to Look Like a Douchebag

Wearing Sunglasses at Night

This has to be one of the most telltale signs of douchebaggery. And we’re not talking about sunglasses resting on the top of your head because you just haven’t been home after a sunny day. We’re talking about the guy who’s fully shaded up, in the club, leaning against the bar and scouring the room like a predator. 

While this also shows no social awareness for the environment you’re in, wearing sunglasses at night highlights that the shades are purely a fashion statement, rather than a necessary accessory. This obsession with his personal appearance makes a douchebag stand out from the rest, just as he intends to do.

A douchebag may think that shades give him an air of mystery. What’s he hiding? Why’s he wearing something that protects your eyes from the sun when it’s 11 pm and slap bang in the middle of winter? But his need to have an edge, something about him that people will inquire over, shows his desire for attention. More often than not, it also highlights that something is lacking from his personality, something that he’s trying to make up for with sunglasses.  

Popping Your Collar

Popularized in the 80s by movie screen heartthrobs. The epitome of frat boy douchebaggery. Popped collars have lost their preppy appeal, just like wearing your jumper around your neck. This won’t get you anywhere close to looking like Tom Cruise, just like a douchebag instead. 

Don’t try and fool anyone, we know it wasn’t an accident. An ironing faux pas. An attempt to protect your neck from sunburn. The simple truth is, your collar is just not meant to be worn like this. And don’t get us started on layering up this look. If you don’t want to be the subject of a meme, then avoid this style at all costs. 

There’s a striking similarity between a popped collar and a peacock, showing off his feathers. We get it. You’re looking for a mate, and you think that you look good doing it. But trust us, no one is thinking the same. 

Wearing a Designer Tank or Wife-beater

We almost have no words about this contradiction of a look. Sure, a wife-beater will show off the muscles that you’ve spent tireless hours building in the gym. The iron you’ve pumped while grunting and staring yourself dead in the eyes in the mirror. Mansplaying just enough so that no one can use any of the weights in a ten-meter radius of your sweating bulk. 

But a designer tank? You know that wife-beaters are a signifier of trailer trash right? Unshowered, uneducated, hard-ass masculinity. Throwing an Armani logo onto one of these iconic sleeveless numbers almost has the exact opposite effect of giving you class. 

We know douchebags don’t always need buff arms to brave this style. Oh no, a tank top can actually make a skinny pale dude look like a real badass, who doesn’t care about anyone but his mommy. Yet, that designer logo ruins this facade. It’s clear you care a painful amount about something, and that’s your appearance. 

Showing Off Your Body in Public

We’re all about body positivity and in no way trying to shame any specific body type… but come on. There’s a time and a place. And anywhere out in public, nowhere near a body of water, is the wrong place for exhibiting yourself. This doesn’t just mean peacocking around topless and basking in the unlikely sunshine. No, no, no. A real douchebag will find any excuse to expose a bit too much flesh, even if he isn’t actually going full nude. 

We’re talking about unbuttoning your shirt one button too far or taking the opportunity to lift your tee and flaunt your abs for anyone who will look. The same goes for those tee shirts that are just far too tight that they can’t be anything but uncomfortable. For the sake of exposing your pecs, being able to see every line and crease of your body in a shirt that’s two sizes too small is not worth it. With such self-assurance comes douchebaggery. Save the partial nudity for flexing in your bedroom mirror. 

Deep-V Necklines

We can’t talk about skin exposure without mentioning this atrocity of a fashion statement. Of course, we’re not just referring to unbuttoned shirts here, but rather, the tee shirts designed to reveal so much of a douchebag’s chest that poor onlookers can almost see his belly button. That gaping V that serves no purpose other than to reveal far too much. And probably gives a brisk breeze in colder months, eek. 

This look either screams, ‘look at my pecs’ or ‘look at my chest hair’. Either way, having one or the other won’t reinforce your masculinity. The only thing it supports is the fact you jumped on a 2008 fashion trend that never should’ve taken, and you haven’t jumped off it. 

Over Accessorizing

Accessorizing can really bring an outfit together, and it’s something that lots of men don’t do enough. But douchebags tend to be really good at taking it too far with the extra details that are meant to complement an ensemble, not swamp it.

This applies to ties, watches, hats and pocket swatches. Only very few occasions call for some of these accessories in the first place. Making them a day-to-day feature isn’t fooling anyone into thinking you’re a high flyer.

Women aren’t magpies. Layering up with the bling might draw attention to you, but for all the wrong reasons. And don’t get us started on bracelets, we’ll get on to more about this later.

Offensive Tee Shirts

Offensive tees are the perfect way for douchebags to let you know their controversial views about the world, just in case they don’t get the time to bore you with conversation. Offensive slogan tee shirts say that even if you only get one glimpse of this guy, he wants you to know his opinions. Could you get more self-involved? 

Usually, these tend to air some misogynistic view or make reference to the go-to subject for simple-minded douchebag humor: alcohol. The only time you should be wearing one of these is if it reads “congratulations, you’re a douchebag”. 

Wearing Something Rebellious

A standout sign of a true douchebag is letting the rest of the world know that he doesn’t slot into your social structures. He wants to rebel, so every aspect of his being is designed to make him stand out from the crowd. Offensive tee shirts are a prime example of this, but a douchebag will find more than one way to rebel through his style.

Our favorite of these trends is the Yeezy style, ripped t-shirts, jeans and jumpers, covered in holes with no purpose at all. With Kanye West’s label on these, we can slightly let them slide and just leave our confusion down to our lack of understanding. But when they’re cheap knock-offs, these items will only make you look homeless. Leave these for the runways if you don’t want it to look like your wardrobe is moth ridden. 

Every Picture Includes a Peace Sign

We know you’re not actually all about world peace when you pull this for a photo. You probably don’t even know what it means. Pair this with a backward cap and a straight face and you’ve got the ultimate douchebag pose.

Doing this just highlights your lack of imagination, but also probably your need to stand out in every photograph. As if douches don’t stand out enough already. If your bling and bare skin aren’t doing it for you already, throw in the peace sign and people will definitely be looking. 

Always Tanning Excessively

We all love to boast a golden brown glow after a holiday, but douchebags seem fixated on it. Sunbathing on the beach is one thing, but spending hours in a tanning bed is taking it too far. Especially when it’s December and there’s no sun to be found. You’re not going to fool anyone into thinking your tan has lasted since the summer.

A fake tan is even worse. Sticky, messy and never quite applied properly. At least this is better for your skin than real tanning, but I think we’d take wrinkles over stained sheets. If tanning is part of your grooming routine, then you’ve got bigger problems than looking too pale. 

Douchiest Pieces of Clothing

Shutter Shades

This tops our list as the douchiest accessory you can find. And it’s for the same reason that we detest the wearing of sunglasses indoors too. Shutter shades completely miss the mark by having absolutely no purpose. No purpose, that is, that’s tied to the function of sunglasses. But if we’re talking about their purpose as a fashion item, the only thing they’ll achieve for you is a douche bag demeanor. 


Bracelets are the pinnacle douchebag jewelry items. Douchebags manage to take a seemingly unassuming accessory and pile them on top of each other to create not only a sore sight, but a clattering racket. 

And don’t get us started on beads. We know you’re trying to look spiritual and invite questions about your worldly travels. But we’ve seen those beads in every Target, and they only cost a few dollars. Please leave the bracelets to little girls. 

Cargo Shorts

One of the worst things about cargo shorts is the pair of shoes that guys who make this faux pas decide to wear with them. Whether it’s dad-trainers, flip flops or even sandals, there isn’t a single type of shoes that will make this clothing choice ooze any sort of style. 

Besides, you don’t need to expose this much skin unless it’s the depths of summer and you’re on the beach. That said, the only trousers that are worse than these shorts are cargo pants. If he wears cargo pants, he’s either a hoarder or a cheater, and definitely a douchebag. The only thing kept in those excessive pockets are secrets and lies. 

Varsity Jackets

All that these jackets tell us is, wow, you went to college. Join the millions of other aging males in the same boat. Those who spend too much time reminiscing about the good times, when the wife and kids weren’t holding them back from daytime drinking. 

That is, if you actually went to the school whose jacket you’re wearing, and didn’t just pick it up from a high street store. Wearing your varsity jacket beyond your early 20s is one thing, but wearing a jacket that you didn’t even get from being on a college sports team? Now that’s a whole other level of douchebag behavior. 

And don’t get us started on high school varsity jackets. You need to let go of your youth, man. Being a high school jock shouldn’t be your greatest achievement to date. 

Ribbon Belts

We get that you’re still trying to chase the preppy style, but this hasn’t gone down well since the 2000s. The worst thing about these belts is the collar combos that never match your shoes and trousers. The number one rule about belts is they’re not meant to be an eyesore. They’re actually useful and so should blend seamlessly into an outfit. Only a douche uses a belt to draw attention to his crotch. 

These are even more cringe-worthy when they boast a large designer emblem. Throwing a label on a belt doesn’t stop it from being a belt, we know you’re not a millionaire. Keep it lowkey and please think about your color combinations before throwing on accessories that clash with every other part of your outfit. 

Frequently Asked Questions about How to Look Like a Douchebag

How does someone become a douchebag?

Someone can become a douchebag by committing one simple fashion faux pas that they accidentally repeat. Or the problem could run deeper. Originating out of a sordid desire to be the center of attention.

You can still love yourself and not need to let the whole room know about it. Standing out and going against the grain is great sometimes. But the thing about douchebags is that they aren’t quite as original as they think, as our guide outlines.

Is douchebag a swear word?

Douchebag is a slang word, rather than a curse. But its negative connotations could hurt someone’s feelings. While it’s enjoyable to poke fun at the douchebag stereotype, please don’t use any of our tips to target someone else. Being a bully is only gonna make you the douchebag instead. 

What can I do to stop being such a douchebag?

Take all these style comments with a pinch of salt. If you’re worried about being a douchebag, it’s not your fashion sense that matters so much. How you treat people is far more important. 

You can start by wearing simpler and less douchebaggy clothes. But don’t let your fashion get ahead of you. Be yourself, and be more empathetic if you want to avoid the slippery slope of douchebaggery. 

A Final Word From The Trending Man

If you were offended by any of these descriptions. Chances are, you’re probably a bit of a douchebag. Hey, you’ll thank us later when you realize that all those stares you’ve been getting aren’t ones of jealousy, but mockery instead. 

You’re allowed to look good and feel good about it. You just don’t need to let the whole world know. So, leave it to the peacocks, okay?

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The Trending Man

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