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Thread: OC Appearance

  1. #1
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    OC Appearance

    I'm just wondering what you guys think about appearance while OC? Are there less hassles (LEO, MWAG calls, uninformed citizens?) OC'ing while looking well groomed and dressed well? Reason I ask is because my normal day to day appearance is pretty ratty. I'm an auto tech, so it's hard staying clean lookin. Shave maybe once a week, don't comb my hair, wear sandals, t-shirt and shorts, you get it. I'm more comfortable dressing like this than slacks and nice shoes and shirt. I'll keep my post simple and hope to hear back!
    Last edited by Keens; 08-26-2011 at 09:56 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keens View Post
    I'm just wondering what you guys think about appearance while OC? Are there less hassles (LEO, MWAG calls, uninformed citizens?) OC'ing while looking well groomed and dressed well? Reason I ask is because my normal day to day appearance is pretty ratty. I'm an auto tech, so it's hard staying clean lookin. Shave maybe once a week, don't comb my hair, wear sandals, t-shirt and shorts, you get it. I'm more comfortable dressing like this than slacks and nice shoes and shirt. I'll keep my post simple and hope to hear back!
    Page through the threads and those in the General forum as well. This topic comes up regularly and there are lots of opinions in them to consider.

  3. #3
    Regular Member M-Taliesin's Avatar
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    Howdy Amigo!
    Speaking for myself, I wear whatever I normally would. That being said, I've upscaled my attire somewhat when I am not bumming. Usually, however, I am found in a tee shirt and jeans with sneakers on my clod bustin' stompers.

    Still, I'll wear a polo shirt and slacks quite often as well, with a pair of shoes that are a bit dressier than sneakers.

    All in all, I believe it is a matter of personal preference.

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  4. #4
    Founder's Club Member thebigsd's Avatar
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    Appearance matters to a lot of people whether you are OCing or not. It is sad that someone wearing a suit is better perceived than an auto mechanic. I wear what I would normally wear. Sometimes that's my yardwork clothes, sometimes a suit. I think it is more about the manner in which you conduct than what you wear.
    "When seconds count between living or dying, the police are only minutes away."

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    Quote Originally Posted by mahkagari View Post
    Page through the threads and those in the General forum as well. This topic comes up regularly and there are lots of opinions in them to consider.
    Thanks! I'll do that this weekend. It is time consuming for me right now as I only have an iPhone for Internet to dig that far into the forums.

  6. #6
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    I usually wear a hoodie and dark glasses.

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    Regular Member rushcreek2's Avatar
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    This is a topic that deserves further discussion whenever it is brought up.

    PERSONNALY - I "dress for" OC. This usually translates into "Dockers", and a selection of those "free-breathing" golf/polo shirts.

    That is my PERSONAL choice. Perhaps because I spent 21 years of my life wearing a uniform, and striving to present as "sharp" an image as I could. I did this because I realized that perception is at least 95 % of reality- in the eyes of those with whom you interact , or approach.

    Obviously it depends upon the particular context of one's OC.

    At the present political juncture - we OC'ers must " RE-market" our right to bear arms in public.

    The "market" is accustomed to the LEO stereotype - thus the occassional peculiar glance, or inquirey regarding whether you are a LEO.

    In my own OC experience - most folks perceive me as LE. That doesn't make me a very effective proponent for the right to bear arms, but it does expose the average citizen to the SIGHT of at least ONE MORE armed law-abiding citizen.

    I have never been questioned, or detained by LE, or questioned by a store manager regarding my OC.

    I will say this. There are going to be businesses that would rather we NOT OC on their property.

    One is the Goodwill Store on Constitution & Powers in Colorado Springs. They have placed a "NO Display" sign at the entrance. Therefore, I CC when there.

    This is why I say it is IMPORTANT how we present ourselves. We want the general public, business operators - to be at ease with our presence.

  8. #8
    Regular Member Beau's Avatar
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    My normal attire is Jeans and a t-shirt. Sometimes I tuck my shirt in. Sometimes I will just tuck my shirt behind my pistol. If I am going someplace upscale, e.g. any restaurant nicer than Denny's I will wear a polo or a "nice" t-shirt.
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    Colorado Firearm law.
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    Regular Member GvdM's Avatar
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    In reality I mostly side with Rushcreek2 on this, I tend to be in dockers, a button shirt and generally try to dress to the social norms of where I am. When I wear jeans and a t-shirt I am always clean and neat. The biggest thing is hygiene, I think, along with a good demeanor. The way you present and carry yourself goes a long way in winning the approval of others.

  10. #10
    Regular Member Motofixxer's Avatar
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    Welcome aboard,
    If you follow the link below in my Signature about New to OC, one of the first things is a guide to OC. You will find some some similar answers and useful info in there as well as lots of useful links in my New to OC thread.. I also linked the guide HERE
    Last edited by Motofixxer; 08-28-2011 at 04:08 AM.
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    The Armed Badger A WI site dedicated to Concealed Carry in WI

    "To disarm the people... was the best and most effectual way to enslave them." -- George Mason, Speech of June 14, 1788

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    Quote Originally Posted by rushcreek2 View Post
    I will say this. There are going to be businesses that would rather we NOT OC on their property.

    One is the Goodwill Store on Constitution & Powers in Colorado Springs. They have placed a "NO Display" sign at the entrance. Therefore, I CC when there.
    Goodwill across from Chapel Hills Mall put up their own sign this spring. It says "No open display of firearms." I have no problem CCing on those occasions where I determine CCing would be more appropriate, but I will not frequent a store where they choose to infringe upon my right to keep and bear arms.

    This is why I say it is IMPORTANT how we present ourselves. We want the general public, business operators - to be at ease with our presence.
    I agree wholeheartedly. If we dress as slobs, we'll be perceived as slobs with guns. If we dress professionally, we'll be perceives as armed professionals.
    The First protects the Second, and the Second protects the First. Together, they protect the rest of our Bill of Rights and our United States Constitution, and help We the People protect ourselves in the spirit of our Declaration of Independence.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rushcreek2 View Post
    ....perception is at least 95 % of reality- in the eyes of those with whom you interact , or approach.
    Agree. Appearance matters a LOT.

    If anything, a slobby appearance is hurting the impression of OC.

    Yes, its your right to carry. The next step is to gain acceptance from the general public. Unkempt hair and beards, ratty clothes and a big flabby gut hanging out is going to be the cause of ridicule.

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    Quote Originally Posted by since9 View Post
    Goodwill across from Chapel Hills Mall put up their own sign this spring. It says "No open display of firearms." I have no problem CCing on those occasions where I determine CCing would be more appropriate, but I will not frequent a store where they choose to infringe upon my right to keep and bear arms.



    I agree wholeheartedly. If we dress as slobs, we'll be perceived as slobs with guns. If we dress professionally, we'll be perceives as armed professionals.
    I very much agree! I did my first "big city" OC yesterday (talk about that soon) and dressed well with nice pants and a golf shirt. Most people thought I was either LEO or just simply a LAC.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mo View Post
    Agree. Appearance matters a LOT.

    If anything, a slobby appearance is hurting the impression of OC.

    Yes, its your right to carry. The next step is to gain acceptance from the general public. Unkempt hair and beards, ratty clothes and a big flabby gut hanging out is going to be the cause of ridicule.
    I will save my ratty appearance for work where I can't carry anyways. Now, when I OC, I will look presentable. I'll actually shower, shave, comb my hair and wear nice clothes. Best to look like a professional armed citizen!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keens View Post
    I will save my ratty appearance for work where I can't carry anyways. Now, when I OC, I will look presentable. I'll actually shower, shave, comb my hair and wear nice clothes. Best to look like a professional armed citizen!
    Hey Keens,

    I'm sorry, but I want you to know that what I said wasn't directed towards you personally. I didn't mean to sound like I was directing the word "ratty" towards your profession.

    Just to clear things up on that regard.

    I appreciate you execising your rights.

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    Quote Originally Posted by since9 View Post
    I agree wholeheartedly. If we dress as slobs, we'll be perceived as slobs with guns. If we dress professionally, we'll be perceives as armed professionals.
    And if we dress as respectable everyday citizens....

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    Quote Originally Posted by rushcreek2 View Post
    This is a topic that deserves further discussion whenever it is brought up.

    PERSONNALY - I "dress for" OC. This usually translates into "Dockers", and a selection of those "free-breathing" golf/polo shirts.

    That is my PERSONAL choice. Perhaps because I spent 21 years of my life wearing a uniform, and striving to present as "sharp" an image as I could. I did this because I realized that perception is at least 95 % of reality- in the eyes of those with whom you interact , or approach.

    Obviously it depends upon the particular context of one's OC.

    At the present political juncture - we OC'ers must " RE-market" our right to bear arms in public.
    The "market" is accustomed to the LEO stereotype - thus the occassional peculiar glance, or inquirey regarding whether you are a LEO.

    In my own OC experience - most folks perceive me as LE. That doesn't make me a very effective proponent for the right to bear arms, but it does expose the average citizen to the SIGHT of at least ONE MORE armed law-abiding citizen.

    I have never been questioned, or detained by LE, or questioned by a store manager regarding my OC.

    I will say this. There are going to be businesses that would rather we NOT OC on their property.

    One is the Goodwill Store on Constitution & Powers in Colorado Springs. They have placed a "NO Display" sign at the entrance. Therefore, I CC when there.

    This is why I say it is IMPORTANT how we present ourselves. We want the general public, business operators - to be at ease with our presence.
    That says it.

    "Normalizing" is a PR battle.
    "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." Benjamin Franklin

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mo View Post
    Hey Keens,

    I'm sorry, but I want you to know that what I said wasn't directed towards you personally. I didn't mean to sound like I was directing the word "ratty" towards your profession.

    Just to clear things up on that regard.

    I appreciate you execising your rights.
    Mo, its all cool. It didn't bother me at all. Some of us may have dirty jobs, like me, but at least I clean up and make myself presentable when I OC.

  19. #19
    Regular Member rushcreek2's Avatar
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    The Second Amendment wouldn't be ratified by the original 13 Colonies if the vote were taken today.

    The worst infringement is perpetrated by some of those 13 states.

    Regarding the Goodwill stores - Perhaps the concern regarding customers displaying stems from their back-room "help" being largely acquired through the criminal justice system.

  20. #20
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    Your age has a lot to do with it. I've been asked if I was a State Trooper in NH, OSI in CO and even a Federal Agent in VA. All while dressing conservatively, and CCing in gun stores! Go figure...as to OC, I wear what I wear, generally a T-shirt and shorts in the summer; long sleeved something and jeans in the cooler, but not yet coat, weather. Attitude has more to do with it than clothes, imo. A smile is still a good presentation.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

  21. #21
    Regular Member ooghost1oo's Avatar
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    The accepted appearance for good PR with Open Carrying is:

    - Shiny, expensive sneakers
    - saggy, over-sized designer pants
    - boxers visible from your waist to just below your ass
    - a jersey or long expensive t-shirt encrusted in plastic diamonds over a picture of Tupac, tucked into the boxers
    - an over-sized cap, with lots of metallic designs or logos, the more expensive the better

    Just stick your firearm into the pants waistband, where-ever it won't fall out (far below your waist), and you're Open Carrying because the grip is showing.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by rushcreek2 View Post
    Regarding the Goodwill stores - Perhaps the concern regarding customers displaying stems from their back-room "help" being largely acquired through the criminal justice system.
    Could be, although the only one I've ever seen bat an eye about it was the store manager herself. Everyone else who worked in the store was cool as a cucumber during the 20+ times I OC'd there.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gunslinger View Post
    Your age has a lot to do with it. I've been asked if I was a State Trooper in NH, OSI in CO and even a Federal Agent in VA. All while dressing conservatively, and CCing in gun stores! Go figure...as to OC, I wear what I wear, generally a T-shirt and shorts in the summer; long sleeved something and jeans in the cooler, but not yet coat, weather. Attitude has more to do with it than clothes, imo. A smile is still a good presentation.
    Excellent point, Gunslinger! How people carry themselves is more important than how or what they carry on their hip.
    The First protects the Second, and the Second protects the First. Together, they protect the rest of our Bill of Rights and our United States Constitution, and help We the People protect ourselves in the spirit of our Declaration of Independence.

  23. #23
    Regular Member hermannr's Avatar
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    I ditched the suit and tie stuff when I retired, I would say I look like a farmer now. Still no problem, but then I don't live near any city anymore either, .

  24. #24
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    I'm going to dress in a respectable manner when I'm armed. That way people perceive me as a respectable, honest, responsible LAC. Just some nice slacks and a decent shirt. But also smile and be courteous to those around me as I go about my day.

  25. #25
    Regular Member Kingfish's Avatar
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    Yes, you may only OC if you look like a LEO. Keep your face shaved and your hair high and tight. Also, slacks or at least khakis are mandatory. Shirts must have at least 3 buttons and shoes can have no more than 3 eyelets and will be either brown or black and must match the holster. Holsters must be leather buffed to a shine as does the belt. No shorts or t-shirts of any kind. You cannot OC on the way to the parts or hardware store in the middle of a project, you must first shower and shave and change then you can change again once you get home.

    Yeah, no thanks. I have a dress code at work and shed the "business casual" as soon as I walk in the door at home...Sometimes before.

    For OC to be normalized some would have you think we must look like LEO. I whole heatedly disagree. Wear what you normally wear. A good belt is about as far as I would go in telling anyone how they should dress. I wear cargo shorts, t-shirt and hiking boots or sandals. A hoodie and shorts when the weather cools and cargo pants in winter. I have have ZERO issues OCing and that is in TN and Georgia where carrying of firearms is not as accepted as out west. Also had no issues when I have visited CO.

    An OC dress code is 100% BS as far as I am concerned.

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