Looper star Noah Segan at Suits hotel lobby bar in the Trump International Hotel & Tower Toronto. Photo by Ava Baccari.
Noah Segan can totally judge a book by its cover—or the measure of a man by his suit. “Suiting is like armour, it has a purpose,” he says, blue eyes fixed intently. “And your suit should be representative of your purpose.”
While Segan, 28, grew up with a well-suited father—complete with “Oxford shirt, J. Press, ribbon belt,” he says— he also knows how quickly styles can change, or change you. “Yesterday for the first time in my life I wore French cuffs,” he tells me over breakfast at Suits lobby bar in the Trump International Hotel & Tower Toronto the morning after the premiere of his latest film, Rian Johnson’s Looper. The sci-fi action movie opened the Toronto International Film Festival Thursday night. “It was a growth moment.”
Just one of many, it seems, during his short stay in Toronto. “I just got my first manicure,” he proclaims, noticing me noticing his perfectly polished nails when he reaches out for a handshake as we first meet. “They’re buffed!” You know what buffed means? “Just learned it,” he beams, when I realize I said that out loud.
“I will try anything – I think that’s a good sign for a man,” he later tells me. Like taking direction from his co-star, Bruce Willis, to stand on his tippy toes as Willis throws him against the wall during a fight scene between the iconic action hero actor and Segan’s “sad version of a bad guy“-role as Kid Blue in his third collaboration with his friend, writer and director Rian Johnson (Brick, The Brothers Bloom), and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, all of whom for which the characters in Looper were specifically written. (Kid Blue, is in fact Segan’s real-life nickname, gleaned from the 1973 western of the same title, starring Dennis Hopper – “one of my idols,” – as the eponymous outlaw.)
Read on for Noah’s seven truths about men’s style!
Segan also rocks a pretty sweet fedora. Given these compulsory qualifications – as peripatetic and meticulous as he is, – we present the seven universal truths about style every dude should know, as told by Noah Segan.
1. Always come prepared: “There’s a few things I always carry on me: a toothpick, a guitar pick, a handkerchief, a pen and a pocketknife,” he says. Think about it: “If somebody needs a hanky and you’re the guy with the hanky, that’s karma.”
2. “You have to try everything once, or maybe twice. And if you really like it, you should do it all the time.” Putting his money where his mouth is, Segan plans to try out a pedicure next.
3. “I’ll tell you the most important thing; my father is very serious about this and I get irked about it too – I do judge a man: Always the middle, sometimes the top, never the bottom,” he says, referring to how to button a suit jacket. “It’s one of those universal truths.”
4. Figure out what you don’t like: “When you start making those decisions, that’s how you get a style. You can do a lot by process of elimination. Start with what does not look good on you and then don’t wear that shit,” he says, laughing.
5. It’s all about the touch: “I’m very into texture,” he tells me. “I had a few talks about it with some of my friends, including Joe [Joseph Gordon-Levitt], who’s famously a very dapper dresser,” says Segan about deciding on the perfect suit for the Roy Thomson Hall premiere. “My role is a little left of centre so I thought maybe I could let that inform what I do on the red carpet. I worked with Strellson and we started with the French cuff shirt. It makes you stand up straight, put your shoulders back and not look like a bum, and we ended up finding a very nice blue, textured heavy linen jacket that worked very well.”
6. How to tell time with style: “I’m a big accessory guy, one of my hobbies, other than photography, is collecting watches, and that got so out of hand that I invested in a small watch company called Bernhardt Watch based in North Carolina.” He unclasps the buckle of his brown leather band and hands the watch to me. “This is the watch that I wear in the film. It’s an Officer’s Watch and is a Swiss 6497 hand dial movement that is one of the oldest still in-production watch movements, they’ve been making it the same way in Switzerland for about 100 years.”
7. It’s actually not all about the suit (sort of): “At the end of the day, what people are looking for, what they’re really, really looking for, that thing that ends up being that weird x-factor that makes anyone attractive or interesting, is charisma, and I think that that comes from confidence. It comes from talent, it comes from skill, education, and you get powerful because of that; you get powerful if you’re good at your job, but that sense of attraction that someone has is about being able to stand up straight, and if doing something stylistically makes you feel that way, that’s what you got to do.”