When it comes to personal style, Ben Affleck is a man of consistency. For decades, the actor has relied on nondescript designer jackets, worn-in flannels, graphic tees, and hypebeast sneakers—the de facto uniform of many Gen-X, A-list men. (In fact, Ben’s been so unfailing with his style that he kept the custom Franck Muller watch his then-fiancée Jennifer Lopez gifted him in 2002 through the intervening two decades before they reunited and got married.) In the last month, Affleck has narrowed his scope even further to a single go-to formula, riffing on the same general ensemble (head-to-ankle Brunello Cucinelli casualwear accessorized with an iced coffee) with a rotating selection of eye-watering Nike Dunks.
Last week, Affleck was photographed outside of his children’s school in Los Angeles wearing his chosen look—a shearling-lined, cranberry-hued corduroy jacket layered over a zippered Fair Isle cardigan and straight-leg jeans, all by Brunello Cucinelli—and demonstrated his New England pride in a pair of limited-edition Ben and Jerry’s Nikes.
Affleck, a longtime sneakerhead, has an expansive collection of hard-to-find footwear—but this latest pair ranks among his rarest. Released in 2020, the Ben & Jerry’s x Nike SB Dunk Lows feature the brand’s signature blue sky/green meadow motif, faux cowhide detailing, tie-dye lining, and a dripping yellow swoosh whose “melted” edges are meant to evoke, say, a double-scoop Cherry Garcia cone on a July afternoon. The sneakers—unfortunately nicknamed “Chunky Dunky,” in honor of the Vermont dairy proprietors’ popular banana ice cream flavor Chunky Monkey—regularly fetch four figures on the resale market.
But just a week earlier, Affleck sported a nearly identical ensemble save for a different (but still covetable) pair of kicks: colorblocked “Friends and Family” Parra x Nike Dunks designed by Dutch artist Pieter “Parra'” Janssen. A day later, he swapped out the cardigan for a nubby blue crewneck and one pair of Parra SB Dunks for another, opting then for the patterned “Abstract Art” colorway from 2021.
We’re big fans of outfit-repeating here at GQ—if something’s working for you, let it. (See also: the very first rule on our list of 59 Dos and Don’ts for Getting Dressed Right Now, which urges re-wearing your best outfits over and over again.) Hollywood guys are into it, too: George Clooney’s been doing it forever. Jeremy Allen White’s giving it a whirl. Lately, even Bradley Cooper and his new favorite Louis Vuitton beanie are on board.
In Hollywood, famous dudes have been wearing more or less the same outfit (exceedingly normal-looking clothes plus an expensive pair of sneakers) for ages. Only recently, though, has the cultural phenomenon of A-lister outfit-repeating gained new strategic significance—for the extremely famous, outfit-repeating may offer a degree of self-preservation. As the aforementioned Jeremy Allen White told British GQ last fall, the new-fangled A-lister quickly made a habit of re-wearing the same garments to thwart paparazzi who’d become a constant presence in his life in the wake of The Bear’s success.
Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe famously deployed this tactic while he was doing a play in London in the late aughts. In a years-old paparazzi clip, Affleck’s young daughter, Violet, heartbreakingly explains Radcliffe’s outfit-repeating strategy to her father: “A different shirt and the same pants every day—know why? So they’re all exactly the same. Daniel Radcliffe did it and they couldn’t sell the pictures. He said that he loved watching them get frustrated.” Seems like Affleck, a consummate girl dad, took his daughter’s advice to heart.
Originally Appeared on GQ
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