15 Signs of Low-Quality Clothing (Recognize and Avoid)

Hey! I hope you all are doing good. So today we are about to talk about Clothing. Things that make your clothes look cheap (low quality). We will be discussing signs of low-quality clothing as that can help you shop for better quality clothing. And that indeed equals a better return against your money.

Earlier on this blog, I’ve discussed certain tips to make your cheap and inexpensive clothes look great. You can read that article over here (16 Easy Ways to Make Cheap Clothes Look Expensive).

That said, I want you to share your most favorite outfit that you are proud of. It could be that navy blue suit of yours. Maybe it is your All-black outfit that you bought last month. I don’t know. Just hit me up over at my Instagram (@worldofnyazi) and we shall discuss that over there.

Alright, so what if I told you that your most favorite outfit is actually a reason why people think that you wear worn-out clothing? I mean, I am not judging but the buttons on that shirt tell a different story. A Story that you don’t want to wear.


That isn’t your mistake. Look, the thing is, No-one has discussed with you, the “Signs of low quality clothing”. And since you had no idea about such a thing, you bought what looked good (in your opinion).

And trust me, I am not saying that your choice isn’t good. In fact, I love this color combination but unfortunately, the story does not end there. You need to take care of plenty of other factors as well before picking up an item from the wrack.

The 15 signs that we will discuss today will definitely help you pick-up a better quality clothing item. Does that mean you will get a better quality item against the money that you are paying? Heck Yeah!

So without any further ado, let’s get straight into the list of signs of low-quality clothing aka things that make your clothes look cheap. After knowing these signs you can easily spot low-quality clothes. Let’s get started now, shall we?

Signs of Low Quality Clothing/Things that make your Clothes Look Cheap

  • Denim Edges (It’s all in the edges boys)
  • Loose Threads (Look around the seams)
  • Poorly sewn-on buttons and buttonholes
  • Quality of the Seam
  • Fabric Test
  • Are there any Extra Buttons Included?
  • How to test the quality of Cotton?
  • Focus on the Collar
  • Low-Priced Items usually are of Low-quality (Let’s Discuss)
  • The Zipper. Is it smooth Enough?
  • The Amount of Fabric (Weird Fitting = Low Quality)
  • Stitches and the Pattern Colour
  • Do Look at the Label (It’s all in there!)
  • Price of the Shoe explains it all (Leather)
  • Footwear Construction and its link with the Quality

Thats it. You have in front of you is a list of signs that determine whether you are buying a high-quality clothing item or not. Let’s dig deep into each of these signs to get a better understanding. Shall we?

1: Denim Edges

Denim Edges

Jimmy bought these really cool pair of jeans the other day. But what if I told you that those jeans that he bought aren’t going to last longer?

Look, He bought those thinking that he is buying a nice pair of jeans that fits him well. And he has been reading a couple of style blogs lately so he has the idea of how to match different clothing items, due to that he paired those jeans with complementing clothing items. Well done Jimmy!

But as they say, It’s all hidden in the details. But he didn’t know that so he ended up buying a pair of jeans that has bad quality edges.

When you flip down the ends (the cuffs), what you see is stitching. This stitching is responsible for the strength of your denim. If it has been done properly with threads placed properly, neatly, and even then you can expect your newly bought jean to last a couple of years.

But if these edges are joined with just a single pair of thread that does not look good (and durable) then you probably have bought bad quality jeans.

The details Gentlemen. I told you before as well, it’s all about the details only. What happens is that in order to complete the bulk orders or just to fulfill the orders (the newbie or not so good companies) ignore these details. However, good brands care about their customers, and thus they make sure that their products are constructed with great care with details being taken care of.

2: Loose Threads

The next in the list of Signs of Low quality Clothing/Things that Make your Clothes Look Cheap is “Loose Threads”.

I am 100% sure that you had never looked at your garment like that before. But this definitely is one of the authentic ways to identify whether you’ve bought a good quality clothing item or you’ve just burnt your money on cheap clothing.

For this one, you will have to flip your garment in order to have a look at the inside part of it. Now tell me how is it? Focus on the details, stitching, and threads. Are there threads laying around? Do the same thing with the collar as well. Is the stitching done properly? Can you pluck the threads easily? And Yes, is the stitching done uniformly?

Its About the Details

All of these little details show whether the manufacturer has paid proper attention while manufacturing the pair of clothing or not. Do this with a couple of different clothing items from that same exact brand and you will end up evaluating the “Production quality” of that brand.

Yes, it’s that easy to understand how things work in a particular brand. They can (if they want to) produce a better quality product but they choose not to focus on that and instead focus on fulfilling the bulk order which usually results in low-quality clothing items.

Yes, I know that this isn’t the case with all the brands as some brands produce bulk products and the quality is great as well. But again, you have to do the thread test for every product that you are buying because you just can’t spend money on the name of the brand only. After all, you are not getting that brand, you are getting a product that you are paying a good amount of money for. You don’t want it to worn out super quick. Do you?

3: Poorly Sewn-On Buttons and Buttonholes

The next in the list of Signs of Low quality Clothing/Things that Make your Clothes Look Cheap are “Poorly sewn-on buttons and buttonholes”.

As I already told you that I’ve written an article about In-expensive clothing and How you can turn your inexpensive clothes into higher quality clothing items. One of the ways that I discussed in that article was, “The Button Trick”.

The Button Trick

Cheap Shirts come with even More cheap buttons and when your goal is to look good on a budget then You should definitely avoid wearing at least these buttons. Those Cheap buttons obviously do not match with your shirt’s overall vibe and not to mention make it hard for you to match your shirt with other clothing pieces that go into making a complete outfit.

Now, thats a problem that needs to be taken care of. And the solution to this problem is very simple actually. Button trick Gentlemen.

All you need to do is to purchase a Set of Nice pair of buttons (You can get them for a dollar or two) and then what you gonna wanna do is that you wanna replace all those Cheap A#$ buttons of your Shirt with the ones you just bought. Thats it! What? Yeah, it’s as simple as that. Trust me Guys you are gonna thank me a lot for this one later.


What If I told you that the buttons are looking Ok. Yes, they aren’t of that much high quality but they are still ok. But the main problem here is how these buttons are stitched with the shirt. Are they too loose? If Yes then this probably is a manufacturing (quality) defect.

The same is the case with buttonholes as well. I want you to look at the buttonholes and see if their opening equals the size of the buttons or not. Are these holes too small that the button has to make extra effort to enter into the hole or is it too loose that the button seems to be hanging around freely?

No matter what the case is, both of the scenarios show that you are (probably) buying a cheap quality clothing item. Again, these are the small details that differentiate a good quality clothing item from the one that has been produced just to make money (and not to satisfy the customers).

4: Look at the seams

 Look at the seams

So What is a Seam?

The seam is the area where two parts or layers are held together with the help of stitches. Call it a joint if you want to. These joints are made to hold your clothing item in shape.

But how are the seams an identifier of the quality of your clothing item? First of all, the stitching tells it all. If the stitching has been done uniformly around the seam, it means that this piece of clothing is going to last longer.

And now let’s get into the details. Shall we?

For this one, you will have to grab the clothing piece and try to stretch both of the ends of the seam. Focus on what you are looking at. And Note it down.

If what you saw was a tightly woven seam with a lot of stitches and threads visible (that are there to hold the two ends together) then this clothing item is of good quality.

However, if you are looking at a lot of blank space then it means this clothing piece is going to tear apart and lose its original shape sooner or later. So we can say that you are looking at not-so-high quality clothing items.

5: Quality of the Fabric

The next in the list of Signs of Low-quality Clothing/Things that Make your Clothes Look Cheap are …. Let’s Find that out. Shall we?

Ok, at this point we shall try to find out about the quality of the clothing piece. First thing First, the weight of the Fabric is an indicator of its quality. But for this one, you will have to compare the 2 same things. You can’t compare a woolen sweater with a T-Shirt.

Another way to find out about the quality of the clothing item is to grab it and place it in front of the Sun. Notice how much light can pass through it. If the clothing item that you are holding allows almost all the light to pass through it then what you are looking at is a low quality clothing item. However, if it stops the light to some degree then this one is better than the previous one.

Let’s do the Stretch test Now. Shall we?

For this one, you have to grab your clothing item and stretch a part of it. Hold for a few seconds and then release. How does it respond? Does it goes back to the normal shape (Yes there can be a few wrinkles) or does it stays just there?

If the Former is the case then you are holding a good quality item but if it does not bounce back then that means, you are going to see this clothing item de-shape sooner or later. Yes! It isn’t a good quality clothing item, so skip that.

6: Extra Buttons

Extra Buttons are a Life Saver and good brands understand that. What if one of your buttons fall apart due to any possible reason? Maybe you were trying to do something creative but while doing that you’ve ended up breaking one of the buttons. What Now?

Well, you can easily grab a pair of buttons from the store but then why spend so much money on buying an expensive pair of shirts?

Quality Brands understand you and they know that you’ve to get your hands into a lot of stuff and just because of that they include extra buttons inside your shirt at the bottom or in the middle. Although this a minor, but sure it is, an indication that you are spending your money on a quality item.

7: Cotton Quality Test

Cotton Quality Test

The next in the list of Signs of Low quality Clothing/Things that Make your Clothes Look Cheap is … Let’s find that out after a short test.

Alright, so for this we will have to perform a test. This test will kind of help us in determining the quality of the Cotton made item. It could be a shirt, Cotton pants, etc. So without any further ado, let’s start the test.

I want you to grab your cotton-made clothing piece and squeeze a portion of it with a lot of force (keep holding the position for a few seconds). Now I want you to release the pressure and see what happens to the clothing piece.

What are you looking at at the moment? Has this squeeze turned your clothing item into a destroyed piece of paper? or are there a few wrinkles only?

If you are looking at the former then you probably wanna put this clothing item into your list of low quality clothing items. But if later is the case then congratulations! Your cotton made clothing has passed the test!

8: Stitches on the Collar

The next in the list of Signs of Low quality Clothing/Things that Make your Clothes Look Cheap is “Less number of stitches on the collar”.

You will have to grab a scale for this one bro. Alright, so Grab your favorite pair of Shirt and also grab a scale as well. Yeah, we are about to do the measurements.

On the Collar, put the scale against it and count the number of stitches per inch. How many do you see? Are these 6-7 (Bad quality Clothing) or are these around 10? (Fairly good quality). But if it has 12 or 14 then you are looking at a very high quality clothing item.

Again, it’s all about the details. The work that has been put in (during the manufacturing process of that shirt) and the care that has been taken to produce the shirt that you just evaluated determines how much the manufacturer cares about the need of the customer.

9: Let’s Talk a little about the Price

And this is probably one of the most important points of this entire list. Alright, so you have been told that these big brands rip you off. They try to steal your money to fill their pockets. I do understand that. I know that some brands do that. However, the low price does not always mean that you are getting a good return against your money.

By paying less, most of the times you are going to get a low quality clothing item that is only going to last you a season or 2 only. I am sure that after a season it is going to lose its appearance and then you may wear it just to cover your body and No, it won’t make you look good.

What’s your take on this investment of yours? Do you want to spend $15 on a pair of jeans that will last you just 6 months? Ahh. What if I told you that there is another pair of jeans that is worth $60 and it will stay with you for almost 4-5 years?

And Yes, jeans do look better with the passage of time if you don’t wash them. So don’t you want to see your jeans getting better and better with every year passed? If Yes then spend some extra money and buy a bit expensive pair of jeans.

And thats exactly the case most of the time. Prices are low usually due to the fact that the raw materials used are cheaper. Less price equals less value. I know that this isn’t the case all the time but most of the time, low price = low quality.

10: Let’s Have a Look at the Zipper

Let's Have a Look at the Zipper

Metal or Plastic Zipper? Closed ones or Open Ones? This is a whole another debate but for now, we shall touch jus the basics. I shall write an article talking just about the zippers and their effect on the overall outfit (quality and appearance).

Ok, so an easy way to quickly determine the quality of the Zipper is to zip it up and down quickly. Do it for some time and then evaluate the smoothness, speed, and ease of doing what you are doing.

Is it easy for you to operate this zipper? What about the smoothness? Is it smooth enough? The Speed, and the friction. What about that? If you can smoothly zip and unzip it quickly then you probably are looking at a clothing item that has a good quality Zipper which mostly means that the overall quality of the item is good as well.

But if it is hard for you to zip and unzip the zipper then you probably are looking at a bad quality zipper aka low quality clothing item. Sometimes manufacturers produce a good product but skip the zipper part and choose whatever they see (cheaper one). And this could be the case with the clothing item that you are holding.

It means that a bad quality zipper, not all the time indicates that the entire clothing item is of bad quality.

11: The Weird Fit

The next in the list of Signs of Low quality Clothing/Things that Make your Clothes Look Cheap is “The weird fit”.

Ok, I do understand that the Size of these Jeans says Small. But I think that something is definitely wrong with the fitting. I don’t know, maybe it’s because of the too-short pant legs. It looks really uncomfortable. I am sure it feels uncomfortable while wearing too. Correct?

The same thing happens when you wear a shirt that has weird shoulder fitting and maybe you notice short inseams as well. But what’s the catch?

Saving money! Manufacturers are using a limited amount of fabric to curate the garment. And as a result, what you are looking at is a weird fitting piece of clothing. Quality? Oh, come on. You are obviously looking at a low quality clothing item that has been made not to satisfy the customers but just to save money (and make more of it).

Wait a Minute!

You want to look great and wear high quality clothing items. But what If I told you that there are a couple of things that you think make you look rich and high class. However, these things make you look cheap! What are those things? They are as follows!

Buying Expensive Items while Living below the means (Show off Alert!)

You said you are driving this Brand new Toyota which consumes a lot of Fuel and then its oil change charges are also way more than any regular car.

But Your best friend & Neighbour, Jimmy, Told me that you cry all day because you can’t even manage to have good food and other basic necessities.

Look at me, I am your brother. Tell me what’s going on? Oh, So you want to make others believe that you are rich where in reality you are not. You want others to think that you are Successful but in reality, things are totally opposite.

Can’t you see for yourself, the harm that you are doing to yourself? You are literally putting your food money into this expensive car of yours! It’s very toxic. And it needs to stop, right now!

Buying Fake Branded Stuff, Again, Just to Show Off!

You want me to say, “I Got you Boy” and on the other hand you, yourself are buying FAKE watches, clothes, belts, and pants. Al you look for are the Logos of those big brands and you purchase them.

Do you want to know how I came to know about it?

Those Pants that you were wearing the other day, they are not available in your country yet. The brand hasn’t even launched it in your region. How did you get those?

Oh, so your uncle sent it to you from Canada? Since when did you have an Uncle and When did he go to Canada?

Stop Lying My Friend. I thought we were bros. But you broke me down into pieces. Still, I won’t stop. I will keep telling you about what’s right and what’s wrong (In my opinion). Alright, coming back to the topic, what you are doing is very wrong.

You have multiple options available boys. I’ve written an article just about that. It focuses on looking good on a budget. And You don’t need to buy fake branded clothing items to look good. To Look rich and successful? Class is the keyword Boy. Stay classy and let others follow you and your style.

There is a lot more to it. For the Complete List of 14 Things that make you look cheap in reality checkout, 14 Things Guys Think Make Them Look Rich (You Look Cheap!).

12: Stitches and Pattern Color

I want you to analyze your clothing item and see for yourself the patterns. See the overall color scheme and then compare it with the stitches used around the seams. What do you see?

Are you looking at a contrast that makes no sense? I mean, sometimes manufacturers focus on the stitching and not on the color combination at all. Their focus is on the production and not on the quality and due to that, they end up using a thread of any color to stitch the seams.

But here I want you to rethink the whole situation one more time. Chances are that what you consider a mistake is not actually a mistake but it’s actually a color combination that the brand is promoting already.

That said, you can never judge a brand or quality of the product in that case (on the basis of the color matching of stitches and the overall patterns). Do Checkout their social media and see if they have promoted their product in a way to highlight this new color combination.

I am not saying that you can’t match that thread of some other color with your outfit. Sure you can match it with your shoes, bracelet, etc. But at the end of the day, if the brand isn’t promoting that color difference or if the brand isn’t known for being a funky one then chances are this color difference is a sign of low quality or lack of attention from the manufacturer’s side.

13: Look at the Label First

Look at the Label First

The next in the list of Signs of Low quality Clothing/Things that Make your Clothes Look Cheap is “The Label”.

Brands aren’t always lying about the product. Sometimes they have already mentioned on the labels, the materials that have been used to manufacture that product. And now it’s your job to look at the label before making the purchase.

Purchase items that are not made from synthetic ingredients like polyester, acrylic, etc. Instead go for natural fabrics like cotton, linen, etc.

But at the end of the day, this alone isn’t a factor in determining the quality of the fabric. Still, yes, it can be used to make up your mind and you definitely must look at the label before making a purchase. And after all, after knowing what the fabric is, you can make better laundry decisions which also play a role in determining the life of the clothing item.

14: Price of the Shoe (Leather)

A shoe that stays at a cheaper price year-round and then has “Leather” written on it, is probably not a quality leather shoe.

Yes, if this shoe has gone on sale then chances are that you are buying a quality pair but Yeah, the truth is, cheap leather shoes, most of the time are of low quality.

So sometimes you have to raise your budget in order to get quality items which again, as I told you before as well, will last you for a long time.

15: Footwear Construction

And last, but not least in the list of signs of low-quality clothing/things that make your clothes look cheap is, “The construction model”.

Let me tell you an easy way to determine the quality of your footwear. If it is handmade then most probably it is high quality footwear. Forget about the Big brands that produce casual shoes in bulk and due to that, they use glue instead of stitches. If you manage to get a stitched pair then this one is better than the one you get from a big name brand.

Stitching is better because it gives you room to get your shoe repaired. However glued shoes (with upper and lower portion attached with the help of glue) can’t be repaired.

That said, I would like to conclude today’s article at this point. So what’s your take on it? Do let me know what you’ve learned from this article over at my Instagram (@worldofnyazi). And I will see you guys in another one,


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