How To Find Your Look As A Rapper
I Cover Everything From Clothes, Shoes and Jewelry To Tattoos In This Part Of The Guide
One key thing I learned is you have to look like who YOU want to be. You want to make sure the first thought when someone looks at you is “Who is that person? They look like a Somebody Important!'”
Our human brain has a part of it called the reptilian brain. As soon as I see a person, the reptilian brain instantly puts that person into a category for me. It instantly judges a book by it’s cover before the other part of my brain can process and say “No, that person might be pretty cool.” It’s human nature, there is no arguing this fact.
The way you look is essential to being taken seriously as an artist.
Your style will evolve as you evolve and acquire money. I mean let’s start with a prime example of when you have no money or style to when you grow as a start and have your money and style. I’ll use TWO Prime hip hop examples from a white guy and a black guy that most people know in rap, MGK and Wiz Khalifa.
MGK BEFORE Money And Style Knowledge
MGK AFTER Money And Style Knowledge
More tattoos, neck wear, rings on both hands, an actual hair style and clothing style, a better demeanor and I’m sure his shoes were on point too.
Wiz Khalifa BEFORE money and style knowledge
Wiz Khalifa AFTER money and style knowledge
Look how ordinary he looks in the original pictures. That was his original style. He blew up with that style! Then he evolved. They removed his reading glasses for a fiercer more edgy look. He was already tattooed but now he shows it off a lot more.
The Proper length chains to compliment his slender frame, numerous rings, look at all those wrist accessories, different earrings and a streak of blond to make him more ‘super star’. This is what making $15 Million dollars a year will do for you.
What I’m proving is….
We all start somewhere. You may look and feel lame now, but we all start there. Everything takes growth, knowledge and understanding of that knowledge. 🙂 That’s what smartrapper is here for!
I personally never had extra money to try out things, I was more in the background writing 20+ songs a week for the last few years. I understand and know that as I gain money and fashionable friends and influences my style will gradually build.
Plus I am a person who prides himself on his skill set more than his image so It was never THAT important to me. But now that I have honed my skills to the level I feel necessary, My mind is shifting much more towards wanting to complete my entire look for WHO and what I am.
Sometimes we don’t know who and what we are till later.
It took me forever to find myself, but now I know how I want to look. Like I told you, I learn from my mistakes, one mistake I made was not building a solid image that could grow with me from the start (since it wasn’t a priority, because I didn’t realize it was so important).
You can start now and build that image and be ahead of your later self!
Let’s go over a few keys to the rapper and artist style.
Let’s not forget where Kanye started
Chains And Neck Wear
I can honestly say after trying tons of different neck wear that it is a must to gain a better look for yourself. Let’s go over the types of neck wear.
No one cares if they are fake.
We are at a time where the richest rappers have been called out for wearing fake jewelry.
The fact is, if you have the confidence to wear it, they think…. Yo, what if that’s real though? Who the hell is that person and how do they have the confidence to wear that?
They can’t prove it’s fake unless they steal it and get it tested which you know isn’t going to happen. lol Click Here For Hip Hop Bling Chains
How To Determine The length of a chain online
How to determine the length of a chain online chart is above
the Most common chain sizes are 20″ 24″ 30″ 36″. I recommend 24″ as it is not to long and not too short.
How To Determine The Thickness of a chain online
In order to determine the THICKNESS of a chain on the internet here is a chart for you compared to an item you are very familiar with.
My recommendation is to start with a smaller MM chain and move up in size and length. A good starting size would be 24 inches and 8MM in thickness.
ALWAYS Check the clearance section of these websites. You get the stuff for like 80% off.
Click Here For Hip Hop Bling Chains
Below I’ve linked Dog Tags that are $4.50 that you can get in any color PLUS they are custom lines. See below for what my custom tags say.
Read the description you can see that you inbox them what you want on the tags after purchase.
Here are my custom ordered Dog Tags with custom text.
It is all the things I feel like I am, have, and will have.
Look at the difference in appearance and style dog tags make with and with out in the picture in the next section.
I always wear 1 or 2 Villain Squad bracelets on my left wrist and a watch on my right wrist. You can get them for dirt cheap here Novi Novak Store
Look at the different in appearance and style a little bracelet makes with and with out in the picture in the next section.
Get one solid black watch it generally goes with every outfit. I currently have this Marc Anthony watch from Kohls.
The face of the watch should match the size of your body. If you are thinner, a smaller watch may suit you better since the face is smaller.
You have to shop around for deals and find things that match the style and look you are going for. Or even get things you see on sale that you may be able to pair with an outfit later.
For instance, I had to get this watch, It’s only $7 and it’s free shipping.
It’s not AMAZING quality, but no one knows that but you.
Or Check out some watches on Hip Hop Bling.
Click Here For Hip Hop Bling Watches
I’m assuming you can’t exactly go spend a grand on shoes right now. So the basics you really need are a solid black pair of shoes and a solid white pair of shoes. Then a separate pair of shoes for the gym.
The shoes you choose depend on YOUR style. So I can’t really tell you the exact ones to buy. But try to stick with what is currently in style.
When you start getting some money you can snatch up some sick ass shoes for any outfit. The good shoes are gonna cost you $120+ a pair but you can always find deals if you are looking.
Here are a variety of Supra Shoes in numerous colors for decent prices – Click Here To Check Out Shoes On Amazon
Let’s talk about types of pants and ones you should wear. Below is a chart of the basic pant types. Yes, there are many more types, but they aren’t something you need to be wearing.
As you can see Straight leg pants are obviously…. Straight. They are the common looking jeans and fit almost every style of clothing. It is good to have a solid dark pair of straight jeans and a solid light blue jean pair. These 2 types of pants will fit almost any look you want to pull off.
This page has BOTH Solid Pairs Of Light Blue – Straight Leg Jeans and Solid Pairs Of Dark – Straight Leg Jeans
Click Here To Check Them Out On Amazon
These are the jeans right in between Straight leg and Skinny. It’s a clean look, check them out here for an example.
These are clean, I’d wear them. I own quite a few pairs of Levi’s. Again, no one knows they are Levi’s but you. And they last for freaking ever.
Solid Pair Of Dark – Slim Leg Jeans
Click Here To Check It Out On Amazon
Solid Pair Of Light Blue – Slim Leg Jeans
Click Here To Check It Out On Amazon
are just what they are called, they are skinny and tight fit to your body.
Booty cut jeans
They leave a little room in the crotch area for you, get skinnier as they go down the leg, then flare out at the bottom to allow room for ‘Boots’. Lol I said booty cut, you know whats on my mind haha . But I’m going to leave that there since it’s a funny mistake. *Boot Cut*
Wide Leg pants
NEVER EVER GET THESE. Completely unnecessary for any style in 2016+.
These fit certain looks and are a useful type of pant to own because you can match it with certain things to stand out.
I don’t know what your specific style is, so again, I can’t tell you what is right for you.
You will have to figure that out for yourself. But now you know the pant types, so when you purchase you can understand what the terms mean.
Whatever belt you choose, the belt should match your shoes in color AND in texture. Keep that in mind.
Big belt buckles are a no no. Medium sized are a good choice.
I just bought this Hermes knock off belt buckle. It is medium sized and looks great with most of my outfits since I wear a lot of black.
I only paid $8 for it. It ships from China so It took 3 weeks, but I got it and I like it!
Click Here To Check It Out On Amazon
And for those sick white dog tags that go great with white T shirts Click Here They are only 99 Cents Plus shipping.
For the black version of those dog tags that are also 99 Cents Plus shipping Click Here
I’m not going to go too deep into rings because they aren’t really something I know a great deal about and I don’t want to falsely give you information I’m not super informed on.
But I do know that one ring per hand is generally the best rule of thumb (No pun intended lol) even though MGK and Wiz are wearing numerous above. Try what works for you!
If you are into rings though, check out some cheap $5-$10 ones at Hip Hop Bling
Click Here For Hip Hop Bling Rings
Most people don’t know this, but the way you do your hair depends on a bunch of factors, such as the shape and size of your head, the thinness of your hair and the length.
And the hair style should correspond to the shape of the face and head so it looks better.
If you have a square hair cut and a square ass head, you look like Frankenstein. And if you have a round ass face and a rounded swoopy hair cut, it makes your head look EVEN more round.
Bet you never considered that huh?
Rule of thumb, the hair should contrast your face shape. If you have a square head, a rounded swoopy hair style look adds more dimension and takes away from your square head as a total package.
You can research that more anywhere online where hair stylist hang out.
Hair style is important, just look above at how drastically different MGK and Wiz Khalifa look from their hair style change.
No, Just no. You shouldn’t be wearing a grill unless you are so hood you couldn’t even manage to find my website. lol
They do add SOME appeal in certain circumstances but when I say that I generally mean just 2 teeth with gold or silver. Not an entire grill.
HUGE TIPS AND MISTAKES I MADE WITH MINE
VIDEO WILL INSERT HERE WHEN ITS FINISHED
Tip 1: Don’t get color! Stick with black.
I was told color was a big mistake by all tattoo artist I have talked too and dealt with. And these guys were covered in color. They regretted it. Sick shading with black, is classy and bad ass. Color is very trashy and it fades VERY fast so it only really looks cool the first couple months.
Tip 2: WHY YOU SHOULD GOTO A PROFESSIONAL FOR YOUR TATTOO
DO NOT JUST LET ANYONE GIVE YOU A TATTOO. PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF LORD JEEBUS.
I had a guy I trusted, a good friend, I thought he was a great tattoo artist. But you know what? I didn’t know ANYTHING about tattoos. His work looked great to my untrained tattoo eye. It’s not BAD, but it wasn’t AMAZING.
What is more fucked up is he did my tattoos for free (Kinda) I threw him like $200. But I was taking a Korean bus from LA to Sacramento to go to him to get my tattoos done and it costs me $80 per trip there and back and I went there 2 times, the first time I flew there and that costs me $120. PLUS I was there for 3 days both times.
1) It was a waste of my work time. I HATE not being able to work and we only tattooed like 6 hours tops of the 3 days. wtf?! No wonder I had to go twice.
2) I paid the professional guy $500 to finish my upper arm and he drew an INCREDIBLE piece from my sample drawing AND had incredible ideas since he was more experienced.
3) The professional guy didn’t scar me. My friend did. My wrist and a bunch of other parts of my arm are scarred from his tattoos.
4) The tattoos hurt like fuck from my friend, they weren’t even painful from the professional, like… AT ALL. It was like getting shot compared to getting punched in the face on a pain scale.
5) I let this guy do the first half of my life story on my left arm. And not only is it sub par and non creative, it is scarred. Because of it’s thickness, the tattoo will eventually blob a bit in the thick lettering areas. Lastly, the main picture piece on my arm that could have been a masterpiece from the professional, looks like an ancient Egyptian wall drawing.
6) My friend said he couldn’t fit small pictures like the ones I wanted in such small spaces on my arm. Well….. okay…. well then how the fuck did the 2nd half of my arm fit EVEN smaller pictures than I asked him for? Get a professional that has done AMAZING work and make a deal with him on a FULL tattoo.
I cannot even stress enough through texts how annoyed and angry I was when I found out how absolutely incredible some tattoo artist are compared to my friend. And let’s remember the kicker…. In the end, I paid LESS for the professional.
Tip 3: DO NOT GET THICK BOLD LETTERING.
It breaks down over time and smudges under the skin and will eventually just turn into a blob. I was told this by the professional guy who pointed out that the other guy just didn’t know any better. ANOTHER REASON TO GO WITH A PROFESSIONAL.
Tip 4: Make sure you 100% KNOW what you are getting and keeping on your body.
Right now I am in the process of getting the tattoo on my right arm lasered off so I can fit more of my life story on my right arm since there is so much to tell. I didn’t consider I would be doing this, but at the same time, my right arm tattoo was completely unnecessary.
I was on a tattoo high and really wanted tattoos so I found something that resembled me as a person and I got it tattooed on me. What an idiot I was.
BUt thats what this site is for, to help you learn from my mistakes. Make sure you 100% have a plan for ALL your tattoos, don’t just get them one at a time unless you really just want ONE tattoo.
TIP 5: I recommend NO HAND TATTOOS, NO FACE TATTOOS and NO NECK TATTOOS. PLEASE….
Just don’t… until you are making $50,000 a year from music. DO NOT FUCKING GET THESE TATTOOS, and even then… You still shouldn’t!
They are very VERY low class tattoos. Females and other people do not see you the same as soon as you are spotted with them.
It will change the whole perspective of how people see you. And unless you can back it up with the money to distance you from low class, it’s no bueno my friend.
Tip 6: Get a professional that has done AMAZING work
Make a deal with him on a FULL tattoo.
Tell him you went through dozens and DOZENS of other tattoo artist (Which you fucking better do!) And that you want HIM to be the guy that does your tattoos. Tell him you respect his work and don’t want any of the other amateurs touching what is going to be on you forever.
He will respect that you took time to look around and found his work so good you chose him. Now make a deal with him for the entire piece of your tattoo.
The guy who finished mine charges $100 an hour. He did my arm for like $35 an hour in the end.
Tip 7: Make sure your tattoo is unique and relevant to YOU.
Last thing you want to do is run into someone who has the same tattoo you do. You will look and feel like an idiot.
Tip 8: Make sure you do all post care to the tattoo
Such as moisturizing etc. This is common sense but it is something I must mention.
Let’s talk about location of the tattoo, where you get it on your body.
This is completely up to you.
I recommend you start somewhere on your body where no one will be able to just see it. At least for your first tattoo. This way you can see how you feel as a tattoo owner haha. Then you can expand from there.
If you watch the Draw My Life Video it has my tattoos. Just Click Novi’s Life Story at the top of the page.
Unique Indicators Of Style
UIOS – I totally just made this saying up, but what I mean by it is that every artist has something about them that makes them stand out from the crowd. Something that is generally unique to them and their style, especially if they are a super star.
A lot of artist wouldn’t be who they are with out their tattoos. Wiz Khalifa and MGK are prime examples. Let’s look at before and after pictures and see how much it truly changed their look.
Dreads add a ton of swag if you can pull it off. Every one from Lil Wayne, Wale, 2 Chainz, Ace Hood, Chief Keef and more rock the dreads. And honestly, with out the dreads they wouldn’t have NEAR the swag they have. You can also consider the Weeknds hair as his trade mark. Even G -Eazy’s slicked back hair look is his own look.
I recommend NO. But we all think Gucci when we think face tattoos don’t we? Let’s look at some other people with face tattoos too!
He also has guns on his hands which are unique and sick. I have seen it before, but his are done well.
Though they may seem like things to make fun of people for, some people kept these things intact in their image and brand to stand apart from the crowd and show their confidence. So far I hope I helped you find your look as a rapper or at least understand what you need to do!
You may be asking what my unique indicator of style is.
My unique indicator of style is that my tattoos are ONLY on the inside of my arms. No one on the planet has only an inner arm sleeve. I purposefully thought of this while looking for my UIOS.
And it is even more unique because it is my crazy life story. Which you probably already know, but if you don’t here is a full in depth video on the insanity that was my childhood. LINK
You should have way more than enough information above to start building your look piece by piece. Test and experiment and most of all be confident in this process.
Don’t let others tear you down as you are building into a unique person for the future. They are just bland and unoriginal, let them stay that way.