When a man turns 30, he turns around and looks back at his life.
But he should also turn around and look back at his wardrobe because, chances are, it’s been neglected in his younger years.
We’ve identified 22 of the most important essentials that every guy should have by the time he turns the big three-oh.
If you’re approaching or over 30, it might be time to go shopping.
A full suit that is tailored and fits well.
- Getty/Hannes Magerstaedt
No more excuses. There’s no questioning you’re an adult now. You need at least one suit, preferably in navy or gray.
Really, you should have both by now. What have you been doing all this time? Come on. Get on it.
A nice blazer to add some variety.
- Banana Republic
As American dress skews more informal, blazers have become more important than ever.
A nice blazer will make sure that you don’t overwhelm a room with a full suit when the occasion doesn’t call for it, but it will also separate you from the crowd a bit. You’ll get more use out of it than you’d expect.
An expensive wristwatch for special occasions.
Even if you’re not a watch guy, you should realize the importance of wearing a watch on occasion. They complete a formal outfit in a way that’s hard to describe, but you’ll know it when you feel it.
Drop a few hundred to have a timepiece that you can call your own.
Good leather dress shoes in black and brown.
Quality dress shoes are always worth the investment. Make sure that you’re set for the next decade by doing some research, and get some basic yet bulletproof shoes that you can wear with your suits.
A pair of chino shorts that fit.
- Facebook/J Crew
Though you seldom wear shorts these days, you should be prepared for the few times that you’ll need them.
And we don’t mean cargo shorts, either.
A quality and sturdy pair of boots.
Boots aren’t just for lumberjacks. They’re an essential part of every man’s fall and winter wardrobe.
A quality pair that can last your entire life is something that every guy should have at this stage. They’ll keep your feet warm in the winter and dry in the rain.
A quality summer shoe.
- Rancourt & Co
Whether it’s crisp white sneakers or a pair of trusty moccasins, you should have a signature summer shoe.
A winter coat that will actually keep you warm.
Most people who complain about the weather in mild climates like New York aren’t dressed properly for the weather. The machismo of freezing with a North Face Denali in the winter has worn a little thin by this point.
You’re wise enough to know that there’s no substitute for a parka when the mercury drops.
A winter coat for dressing up.
A parka isn’t always appropriate to wear, however, and a gentleman knows that.
A wool topcoat will match well with your suits when you wear them in the winter.
A real umbrella.
- Jeff J Mitchell / Staff / Getty Images
Sure, you can carry a collapsible around with you forever, but after 30 it starts to look a little silly.
A long umbrella with a solid wooden handle commands respect, even though it isn’t always convenient.
A real duffle bag.
When you’re 30, you should stop using your old college luggage and buy grown-up stuff.
Retire the duffle bag with your monogrammed initials sewn in the side, and invest in a heavy canvas – or better yet, all leather – duffle bag that will impress.
A grown-up work bag.
Because when was the last time you were jealous of a man who took a backpack to work with him?
There’s a reason for that. Backpacks have a youthful quality to them, and by the time you turn 30, it starts to look a little like you’re trying too hard to hold on to your youth.
A quality leather wallet.
If you’re still using a Velcro nylon Pac-Man wallet, listen up.
Leather wallets, especially ones from reputable makers that you can use for decades, are well worth the investment. We’re not talking the cheap ones from Marshalls and TJ Maxx, either. Those won’t last.
A belt that will last.
Instead of going through belts every year like usual, invest in an expensive one that you can wear for years.
Look for the words “full grain leather” to make sure you’re getting top-quality hide. Genuine leather is actually one of the worst quality of leathers you can buy.
- Pascal Le Segretain / Getty Images
With a tuxedo of your own, you’ll never be unprepared for a black-tie wedding again.
After all, we’d be surprised if you didn’t need one before now. The frequency of those occasions will only increase.
A pair of dark denim jeans that fit like a glove.
Jeans are an important part of every man’s wardrobe, and by this time, it’s pretty important to have a trusted pair that you really enjoy wearing.
Even if you don’t wear jeans that often, they’re an indispensable part of your casual wardrobe.
The perfect T-shirt.
The perfect T-shirt is not a myth. You just have to find it.
A perfectly fitting T-shirt is something that every man should have before he leaves his 20s. Experiment with a bunch of different brands when you’re young to find your one true love. By 30, you should be ready to commit.
A casual jacket that you love.
- Facebook/Alpha Industries
It doesn’t matter what style it is as long as it fits well and you absolutely love it.
Bomber jackets, denim jackets, waxed cotton jackets, windbreakers, and chore coats are all great candidates.
A casual but interesting shirt that you’ve made your signature.
- Brooks Brothers
Maybe it’s a henley. Maybe it’s an Oxford cloth button-down. Maybe it’s a sweatshirt.
Whatever it is, people have come to identify you by it when they see you on the weekends. This is what you’re wearing when people picture you in their mind’s eye.
A swimsuit that you’re not embarrassed to wear.
- http://www.solidandstriped.com/collections/mens-swimwear and http://www.uniqlo.com/us/product/men-swim-active-shorts-135772.html#68~/men/bottoms/shorts/swim/~ and https://www.jcrew.com/mens_category/swim/trunks/PRDOVR~A4316/A4316.jsp?color_name=MOROCCAN%20RED&styles=A4316-RD5527
Having a bathing suit that is actually flattering is one of the biggest tell-tale signs that you’ve grown up.
No more board shorts. Go as short as you’re comfortable with to prove how confident you are.
A tie collection you actually like.
- Dan Kitwood / Staff / Getty Images
Buy a few ties for yourself.
When your collection isn’t 100% gifts from family members, then you’ll actually have some ties that you’ll like to wear. And ones you might even get some positive comments on, too.
Eyewear that makes you look intelligent.
- Getty/Ron Sachs
By 30, you know what looks good on your face. Those frames you’ve had since 25, that don’t even quite fit your face correctly, just aren’t going to cut it anymore.
For help with finding the right shape for your face, check out our guide.