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What can be some good ways of saying that someone takes good care of himself? I'm looking for words rather than phrases. Someone who is always clean shaven and never has a strand of hair out of place? What do you call such a person?

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    Welcome to EL&U Charles! Please include your research in your question. – Kristina Lopez Jun 24 '15 at 14:57
15

well groomed
adjective
(especially of a person) clean, tidy, and smart.
(Google)

or as one word:

groomed
adjective
clean and tidy in appearance, clothes, etc
Even in jeans she managed to look groomed and well-dressed.
(collinsdictionary.com)

but some dictionaries may not agree that it can stand alone like that.

  • Considering the asker's explicit preference for "words rather than phrases", this answer would be better off suggesting simply groomed. – talrnu Jun 24 '15 at 20:50
  • @talmu AHD and Collins have well-groomed as a hyphenated compound, and even though ODO gives the open form, it classes 'well groomed' as 'adjective'. Compound words (even of the open-form variety) are usually regarded as single 'words' (and always as single lexemes). – Edwin Ashworth Jun 25 '15 at 13:15
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    @talrnu - well-groomed indicates results independent of the process; groomed, by itself, suggests to me that that someone else was doing the grooming. – bye Jun 25 '15 at 13:50
  • @bye I agree. They do to me too but, apart from normal usage, I don't see any reason why they should. – Avon Jun 25 '15 at 13:59
  • @bye I think it's unusual to assume the adjective groomed suggests an outside influence. Consider the example Avon pulled from collinsdictionary.com - it's a stretch to assume it implies the subject isn't responsible for her own appearance. The verb groom might make the suggestion you describe, e.g. "He was groomed for presidency," but that word isn't being suggested here. – talrnu Jun 25 '15 at 14:10
9

I like dapper

(Of a man) neat and trim in dress and appearance:

he looked very dapper in a dark silk suit

This only applies to men, which is okay since you are obviously talking about describing a man.

Women can be spruce

Neat in dress and appearance:

Angela was a very spruce and tidy person


Interestingly, you used a good expression in your post that applies here:

not a hair out of place

(Of a person) extremely neat and tidy in appearance.

(Oxford)

4

You could call such a person:

  • hygienic
  • clean
  • orderly
  • fresh
  • elegant
  • tidy
  • immaculate
  • well-groomed
  • well-kept
  • neat
4

For a single-word, gender-neutral answer, you could choose immaculate.

From the OED:

Perfectly clean, neat, or tidy

For example:

Returning from his grimy hours of manual labour, he dives into a hotel to wash away the dirt, emerging clean and immaculate in a fresh suit and tie.

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Sleek, adj. : well-groomed and neatly tailored; especially too well-groomed.(vocabulary.com)

  • Sleek (of hair, fur, or skin) smooth and glossy
  • (of a person) having a prosperous appearance (TFD)

rakish, adj. : marked by up-to-dateness in dress and manners

Used as an adjective to describe a dashing ladies’ man. Don Juan, the famous Spanish nobleman immortalized in 17th century Spanish tales, is the epitome of rakish: stylishly handsome and prone to saucy, fast behavior. (vocabulary.com)

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Consider kempt. It suggests active effort is applied to maintain a good appearance. While it doesn't implicitly suggest who is responsible for that maintenance, when used to describe a person's appearance it's generally understood to mean that they take good care of themselves. I've seen it used especially in descriptions of hair, which makes it an excellent fit for your examples.

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Impeccably groomed. (Dictionary form) Without a flaw.

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Dandy; foppish; rake; mannequin; vain; scrubbed; squeaky (clean); flawless; whoopin' (the latter no doubt made up by a dandy friend o' mine)

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    Hello, francine, and welcome to the site. Wouldn't you say that some of your suggestions go beyond 'well-groomed' and 'immaculate' to 'ostentatious'? – Edwin Ashworth Jun 25 '15 at 13:12
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    @Edwin ... good point, but being well-groomed IS ostentatious in my neck of the woods! – francine Jun 25 '15 at 13:42
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For the careful attention to grooming, especially with regard to how he will be perceived by onlookers (hopefully without flaw): To primp oneself, PRIMPED.

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