So you've secured a date for 14 February? That's great news! Well, except that this means you need to get dressed up.
Luckily I'm here to help you do Valentine's like a real man (bonus: no need for a trip to the mall, we all know Valentine's Day already crushes the wallet).
I'm assuming you got the basics covered: You have a nice shirt, a pair of trousers (no denim), and perhaps even an (optional) blazer to top things off. Oh, and just in case you don't, this is the place to go (sorry, I can't help myself).
1. Let's talk shoes.
If you're wearing slim-fit pants, and if you're young (at heart) sneakers are totally ok. Yes, even white ones (but first clean them up a bit, right?). That Kanye look can actually work as long as you keep the rest of your outfit fairly subdued (so leave the fat gold chain necklace behind, thug). If you're dressing seriously up, though, try and stick to the golden rules of shoe/pants matching: never wear brown shoes with black pants, and never wear black shoes with brown pants. Et voila!
2. Tie it up. Or don't.
If you don't usually wear a tie, or if you feel super uncomfortable on the rare occasions when you put one on, a date with a gorgeous lady (or guy!) is not the time to change the habit. A shirt - or even a shirt + V-neck combo - will work just as fine ... and will leave you without that unfamiliar strangulated feeling.
Just be sure to check that the restaurant doesn't actually require you to tie up. You don't want to end up wearing one of their weird, wide 80's lend-outs. I'm sure the waiters secretly enjoy forcing those grey/pink/purple diagonal stripes on poor forgetful guests).
To sum things up: The more casual (read: tie-less, or sneakers aplenty) you go, the more elegant your overall appearance has to be. So going sans the tie and wearing sneakers means a) no messy hair, and b) absolutely no lumber-jacked up flannel shirts. For the love of all things hipster holy.
Oh, and if you decide to wear a tie after all, there's so many ways to go wrong, that it's perhaps better to just check with the experts right away.
3. Chapstick. There - I said it.
Just ... moisturize them smackers. Seriously, it's not like I'm asking you to go for the glittery, mother of pearl glossy option. Just a dab of good old Vaseline will do.
You'll thank me later, and so will your partner when they don't have to kiss a dry wall. Wink-wink.
But hey - Valentine's Day is not about dressing up as much as it is about having a good ol' time, and enjoying the company of someone you (could potentially) love.
So consider the above mere guide lines, check if the restaurant you're going to requires you to suit up, and wear what ever you feel comfortable in. Just perhaps take it up a notch from tracksuit bottoms and a wrinkly t-shirt - If that's your go-to outfit I'm sure the extra effort will be greatly appreciated.
And most important of all: Don't forget to have fun and enjoy yourself!