It’s May Day! That means that spring is here and it’s officially time to welcome the new season. Here are some easy and practical tips for a great spring!
If you suffer from spring pollen allergies and find yourself sneezing and wiping your watering stinging eyes, are you taking the gentlemen’s approach?
Sneezing into your sleeve works if you’re in a cramped public space like a subway, but the best way to reign in your sneezes and pollen-induced tears is of course, the hankie.
Using a cotton or linen handkerchief to wipe your dripping orifices is the better and more elegant way (plus it’s easier on the environment). Find them in department stores or check vintage shops for old and interesting hankies!
If you’re the type of guy who wears the same shoe all year around, or if you have a spring collection that’s made its way out of storage, sit down and take a good look at them–what kind of condition are they in? Scuffed? Worn? Heels ground down? Spring is a great time to take your shoes to a shoemaker and have them cleaned up, or do it yourself.
I’m always telling men not to toss their old shoes because they are easily restored. Have a look at this 7-minute video by British bootmaker, John Lobb, who shows the professional way to shine shoes–you’ll be astonished!
Besides shining, a shoemaker can re-heel or re-sole your shoes. Worn heels are unsightly and may put a damper on your confidence. Have your shoes redone to give yourself an instant boost!
Brighten and de-stink!
After a while, anything made of fabric will absorb the smells around it, and this is not necessarily good news. I am a proponent of natural cleaning products, and gents, nothing beats vinegar for cleaning and removing odours. Using vinegar in your laundry brightens colours, renews drabness, and prevents static cling.
For stuff like socks, gym shirts, stained tea towels, and dish rags, get a stock pot or other large cooking vessel and fill with water. Add a cup of white distilled vinegar and bring to a rolling boil. Add your items, turn of the heat, and let soak overnight. Run through the wash and hang to dry. If you’re lucky enough to have a clothes line, hang outside in the sun to naturally deodourize and mildly bleach.
Other great vinegar tips from 1001 Uses for White Distilled Vinegar:
Remove perspiration odour and stains on clothing, as well as those left by deodorants by spraying full-strength white distilled vinegar on underarm and collar areas before tossing them into the washing machine.
Get cleaner laundry! Add about 1/4 cup white distilled vinegar to the last rinse. The acid in white distilled vinegar is too mild to harm fabrics, yet strong enough to dissolve the alkalies in soaps and detergents. Besides removing soap, white distilled vinegar prevents yellowing, acts as a fabric softener and static cling reducer, and attacks mold and mildew.
Eliminate manufacturing chemicals from new clothes by adding 1/2 cup white distilled vinegar to the water.
In the words of Robin Williams, “Spring is nature’s way of saying “let’s party!”. Preparing for the party takes work and energy, but you’ll feel great about your efforts, so get in there and enjoy!