world of men's style / fashion / grooming

An UrbanDaddy Publication

Wax On, Wax Off: How to Fix Up After a Candle Spill

  • Caitlin Ganswindt

Wax spills

Here at Kempt HQ, we often receive letters from our readers—most of it adoring fan mail, but every so often we get a nude photo. Also every so often we get an inquiry from a wayward soul who we feel compelled to answer...

Thanks in part to your advice over the years, I was able to find and get a very handsome suit that was at the top level of my budget. And then, in its debut outing (at a wedding), some knucklehead knocked over a candle near me, which (of course!) managed to spill hot wax all over my trousers and shoes (not new, but still). Now what? Is the cost sunk? Can I at least write it off on my taxes?

Great to hear our words have guided you to the perfect suit; quite tragic that such a sartorial victory was followed by a real-life verse on irony. But this doesn’t necessarily mean a total loss. There are a few things you can try.

Starting with...»

A Brief Gentleman’s Guide to Fear


Fear comes in many forms.

There are fears with a logical evolutionary basis—the fear of heights, for example, was embedded pretty deep in our psyche so that our idiot ancestors wouldn’t go jumping off cliffs. Google would have you convinced that the only thing men fear is commitment (which, we’ll admit, is an objectively terrifying sentiment). Then there are ones you’re hesitant to bring up on a date in fear of coming off... soft.

Carnies. Insects. Stand-up comedians. We’ve all experienced those minor terrors of irrational fear. And that’s what we’re here to discuss. With a brief, uncontrolled and wholly unscientific polling of the Kempt staff, we’ve taken the time to learn about what makes men break out in a cold sweat and duck for cover. And we’ve uncovered quite a bit.

So close your eyes and pinch your nose as we plunge into: A Brief Gentleman’s Guide to Fear.»

Introducing Baseball Week: Catching a Foul Ball

  • Najib Benouar

Opening Day

America’s Pastime returns to regular season play this weekend, so in our countdown to opening day, we’re proclaiming it Baseball Week here on Kempt.

Deep in the baseball almanac of 2012 lies a very extraordinary yet underpublicized stat: your humble blogger caught two foul balls in the stands last season.

And luckily for you, I, as a seasoned veteran of foul ball fielding, plan on taking you under my wing Bull Durham–style to teach you the ways of the elusive foul ball catch. You will learn from my mistakes (and my triumphs) and we’ll grow all the closer for it. (As long as we don’t let Susan Sarandon make things weird). So when that life-defining moment finally arrives, and you’ve got a baseball hurling toward your face like an orb of red-stitched destiny, you’ll know exactly how to play it.

Herewith: a user’s guide to catching a foul ball.»

The Gentleman’s Guide to Becoming a Regular


Becoming a regular seems pretty easy: go to a place. Go there again. Go again and again until they know your name. Repeat ad infinitum.

But that’s only half the battle...

It requires dedication. It requires patience. And once you’ve made it, like any good relationship it’ll require some maintenance. But we promise, it’ll be worth it.

Without any further ado, Kempt presents: The Gentleman’s Guide to Becoming a Regular.»

The Gentleman’s Guide to Breaking Up

Heartbreak Hotel

Persistence is generally considered a virtue. Also: knowing when to call it quits.

Today we’re talking about that second thing.

Because even with the aid of Valentine’s-enhanced romance—and the champagne, the roses, the long weekend in the woods—your last shot still came up short. It’s not that she isn’t a spectacular gal and it hasn’t been great getting to know her... but, alas, the time has come to part ways.

So take a deep breath. Prep some band-aid metaphors. There’s no sense in putting it off:

This is the Gentleman’s Guide to Breaking Up.»

Field Guide: Open a Wine Bottle Without a Corkscrew

  • Jason Wire


Welcome to Kempt's Field Guide, in which our resident MacGyver and in-house shuffleboard pro, Jason Wire, offers practical solutions to all life's gentlemanly quandaries.

Every night, the same dream.

It’s early evening. Your home is filling with friends. You’ve just taken the Duke of Windsor’s jacket and offered him a glass of pinot when you realize: there’s not a corkscrew, wine key or crazily complicated robotic wine opener in sight.

What do you do? In real life, you keep calm, draw on your knowledge of physics and carry on. And give this list a read, just as a refresher. (In the dream, you... well, keep that to yourself.)

Allow us to present the Kempt Field Guide to Winning Everything, Vol. 1: Opening a Bottle of Wine Without a Corkscrew.»

Letterpress Cheat Sheets

  • Najib Benouar

Not everything requires an Internet search—just a quick glance to refresh your memory on the difference between bourbon and rye or a cut of Boston butt or rump.

And these handsome new letterpress prints from Bearings have got you covered on everything from tying your bow tie to identifying venomous snakes of the South (hat tip). They’re not exactly pocket-size flash cards at 9-by-12 on 220 lb cardstock, but they can be just as helpful framed and hanging in a strategic location—like next to your dresser mirror (the bow tie instructional), over your butcher table (the pork chart) or within eyesight of your overstuffed leather whiskey-drinking perch (the whiskey family tree).

Take a look at our favorites after the jump.»