Class and elegance are difficult things to fake, though that certainly doesn’t stop people from trying.
And while “faking it ‘til you make it” can work for a lot of things, being classy isn’t one of them. Fake it hard enough, and it might even backfire on you.
So if you want to be more classy but aren’t sure how to go about doing it, check if you’re doing these habits.
Then stop doing them, because they’re not just making you look less classy, but just plain obnoxious altogether.
1. Posting A Lot On Social Media
Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok are some of the best places to show off, but that also means that they’re places with the biggest audience to catch you screwing up.
And given that social media is tailor-made to encourage you to show off, it’s often a good idea to just cut down – or even stop – posting on social media so much.
You don’t need to make a big deal out of everything that you do.
Just post the milestones worth celebrating.
If you find that you’re constantly obsessing over the best way to improve how you come across your social media profiles, that’s usually a sign that you’re overdoing it.
2. Buying Expensive Items
Branding costs a lot, but it’s not always indicative of quality.
And if you buy things for the sake of the brand (and especially to show it off) it doesn’t just come across as tacky – it just makes you seem like you’re trying too hard.
Being classy isn’t limited to choosing the right brand (though some brands certainly help with that impression), it’s about how you carry yourself.
It’s perfectly possible to appear classy with a no-name or common brand as long as you carry it well or understand the best ways to use or display what you have.
Class is ultimately about making the best of what you have. Prices, while a factor, will not always determine that.
3. Being Selfish
Self-centeredness is often a behavior that accompanies people trying too hard to appear classy, usually because they’re so focused on their self-image.
It’s easy to get caught up in wanting to appear better than everyone else, and that leads to selfish actions.
But being selfish doesn’t make you appear classy.
One of the best ways to know if someone is being classy is that they go out of their way to make everyone as comfortable as they are.
They’re considerate, and don’t impose their needs before the needs of everyone else.
Selfish behavior doesn’t just make you seem rude — it actually shows that you don’t have any consideration for anyone else aside from yourself.
And in my experience, that is as far from classy as you can get.
4. Mistreating Service Staff
A lot of people often confuse “classy” with “rich” – and while there is some overlap between the two, they’re not always mutually inclusive.
But for people who don’t know the difference, this often translates to “people poorer than me aren’t worth respecting.”
However, truly classy people know the value of service staff and are careful to treat them with respect.
They understand that while their position may not be as glamorous, someone has to do the tasks.
These people deserve just as much (or even more) respect than people in “higher” positions.
So the next time you dine out or have to deal with retail workers, take the extra few seconds to treat them nicely and thank them for their service.
You’ll not only appear more classy — you’ll also give service workers the respect that they often don’t get.
5. Criticizing What’s Popular
Another misconception that people have of “class” is “elitist”, even though the two things often have little to do with each other.
Criticizing what’s trending for the sake of appearing better doesn’t make you look superior, it just signals that you’re a snob.
I’ve met a lot of self-proclaimed classy people who think that people liking the latest Marvel movie is an offense against artful cinema, but the truly classy people I know understand that people can just like what they like.
There’s no need to force their tastes on anyone else.
Being classy means understanding that everyone has their own preferences.
What’s important is that everyone has an equal opportunity to pursue things or activities that they enjoy.
6. Answering Questions Vaguely
Something I’ve personally noticed when people are trying too hard is how much they want to appear like they’re being nonchalant about things.
They’ll constantly leap at opportunities to make themselves appear better than they really are, even if it’s just a response to a simple question.
They’ll usually answer questions with “Oh, I was doing so-so somewhere”, and they’ll never give you a straight answer.
It’s usually because they think that being vague will come across as sophisticated when it really just indicates that they have no idea what they’re talking about.
Communication is actually a hallmark of a classy person, simply because they value clarity that much.
They’ll always give you a straight answer and they’ll never deliberately muddle details – what would they gain from it?
7. Refusing To Recognize Where You Came From
Everyone has to start somewhere. It doesn’t matter where your starting point is, as long as you don’t deny your origins.
To do that isn’t just disrespectful, but it deliberately warps people’s perception of you.
People who are trying to appear classy will often refuse to recognize their origins, or outright just create a new reality altogether.
It’s a flimsy excuse that doesn’t hold up for very long, and in my experience, can backfire spectacularly.
Classy people understand where they came from, and never ignore their background or the circumstances that led them to where they are.
It’s a testament to their self-confidence in their abilities, but more importantly, it indicates that they don’t let their class or accomplishments get to their head.
8. Not Willing To Learn New Things
Class and elegance are not set characteristics. A quick look at culture over time will show you that what we think of class changes with what society thinks is classy or elegant.
Some traits will certainly carry on, but a lot will adjust depending on how we develop as a society.
All of this means that class is something that adjusts over time – so if you want to be classy, you need to be willing to learn new things.
Change is always a good indicator of how well you’re willing to accept the unknown.
The more gracefully you can do it, the classier you’ll be.
By learning new things, you expand your perspective on a variety of different things.
A well-learned individual is far more classy since they can understand things from different perspectives, and all it takes is a willingness to look into things they don’t know.
9. Taking Yourself Too Seriously
Laughter, humor, and just goofing around are all natural parts of the human experience.
Classy people understand that not everything is meant to be taken seriously all the time, and they’re willing to laugh at themselves and the world as much as anyone else.
In fact, they’re actually far more likely to make fun of themselves compared to people who are trying too hard, because they know that some things can only be laughed at.
This not only makes them more down-to-earth, but more pleasant people to be around.
Class isn’t limited to the serious things in life: it’s perfectly possible to be classy about the small stuff as well.
Knowing when to get serious and when to laugh things off is always something a classy person understands.
10. Thinking That You’re Above Mistakes
Classy people are often held as a standard to many things – but the truth is, these standards aren’t always met.
Classy people are just as prone to mistakes as anyone else. Class isn’t the lack of making mistakes, but being able to move past them gracefully.
The classy people I know aren’t afraid of admitting that they made mistakes or that they’re lacking in certain departments.
Knowing your limitations is being realistic about your capabilities.
This prevents you from getting too carried away with your capabilities but also opens opportunities for healthy self-reflection.
So don’t be afraid to admit that you don’t know something or you’re working on self-improvement.
You’re not being weak, but being courageous for working on it.
11. Not Taking The Extra Time For Self-Reflection
I’ve noticed that people trying too hard to appear classy always project what they think is an aura of confidence.
However, there’s a difference between the confidence of the truly classy person and the arrogance of someone who’s trying to be: self-reflection.
The reason why classy people always seem so confident is that it’s backed by a healthy dose of self-reflection.
Even taking a few minutes to think before you say or do something can make a lot of difference.
So if you want to develop the wisdom to act with class, reflect a little. You’d be surprised at how many improvements to yourself that you can make.
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