formal attire for men

Dressing plays a key role in defining your personality. This is the age of casuals and sportswear. However, formal attire for men retains its remarkable essence even today, especially when it comes to office meetings, conferences, and formal gatherings. Formal attire can bring out your best persona rendering considerable benefits like confidence, a sense of establishment, and a strong sense of structure in your life. Typically, a formal dress refers to a black tie, a formal shirt, a pair of trousers, a belt, and shoes.

However, there are a few things to keep in mind when buying formal attire. Formal dressing boils down to some strict rules that are very simple to follow. And if followed properly, these rules can shape people’s perception of you.

In this post, we will take you through the rules that you should adhere to while buying any formal attire for men.

1. Importance of Formal Attire for Men

formal attire for men

When it comes to dressing for formal occasions, men can often find themselves at a loss as to what to wear. While casual attire may be comfortable and easy to throw on, formal events require a more refined and polished look. That’s where formal attire comes in. Formal attire for men is a wardrobe staple that can make all the difference when it comes to looking your best at important events.

The importance of formal attire in a man’s wardrobe cannot be overstated. Whether it’s for a wedding, job interview, or business meeting, the right formal attire can help you make a great first impression and exude confidence and professionalism. However, with so many options available, it can be overwhelming to choose the right outfit.

2. Rules for Buying Formal Attire for Men

Basically, there are two categories – traditional formal and modern formal. The rules below are going to address both categories. Opt for an appropriate category based on your requirements. Here are 6 golden rules for buying formal attire for men.

1.1. Know the Occasion

formal attire for men-know th occasion

When it comes to formal events, it’s important to know the type of event you’ll be attending in order to determine the appropriate attire. There are different types of formal events, such as black-tie events, white-tie events, and semi-formal events. Each type of event has its own dress code requirements, so it’s important to be aware of them before choosing your outfit.

  • Black-Tie Events

Black-tie events typically require a tuxedo, while white-tie events require a full dress suit. For semi-formal events, a suit and tie are usually appropriate. It’s important to follow the dress code requirements to avoid standing out for the wrong reasons.

Examples of appropriate attire for formal events include a black or navy suit with a white dress shirt and black dress shoes for semi-formal events. For black-tie events, a tuxedo with a black bow tie, black patent leather dress shoes, and a white dress shirt are typically required.

  • Interview or Meeting

For a traditional formal setting like a job interview or meeting, stick to shirts in plain & sober colours. Some of the colours you can choose include – white, light blue, lemon yellow, etc.

Subtle patterns like pinstripes and polka dots can be added to the list. Avoid using loud patterns, highly saturated colours, and half sleeves. In short, for traditional formal attire – you should try being quite subtle and sober.

In the case of modern formal settings, like new-age offices or formal parties, you can shift a little towards the colourful spectrum or semi-formal dress for men. Black, navy blue, brown, charcoal grey, etc., are excellent options to choose from. For the best pant-shirt combination, you should choose contrasting colours. For example, you can try – a white shirt + navy blue pants, a cream shirt + black pants, a maroon shirt + grey pants and so on.

1.2. Right Fit

Fit is key when it comes to formal attire. A well-fitted suit can make you look sharp and polished, while an ill-fitted suit can make you look sloppy and unprofessional. When choosing a suit, it’s important to consider factors such as your body shape, height, and weight.

To achieve a good fit, it’s important to have your measurements taken by a professional. This will ensure that you get a suit that fits well in all the right places. When trying on a suit, pay attention to how it fits in the shoulders, chest, waist, and length.

Common fitting issues to avoid include a suit that is too tight, too loose, or too short in the arms or legs. A suit that is too long in the sleeves or pants can also make you look sloppy.

For example, in a traditional setting, dark-coloured suit trousers with a slightly tapered base are perfect for a traditional formal setting. Jeans and chinos should be avoided in these settings. You can opt for black, navy blue, charcoal grey, and some shades of brown like beige.

Conversely, in a modern formal setting, you can opt for chinos. However, it is advised to always prefer deep colours like the ones mentioned above. The colour of your trousers should always be darker than your shirt. In any case, your pants should fit you comfortably without the need for a belt.

1.3.  Footwear

formal attire for men-footwear

When it comes to formal gatherings, choosing the right footwear is just as important as choosing the right suit. It’s best to stick with classic styles such as oxfords, derbies or loafers. These styles have been around for decades and are always appropriate for formal occasions.

The dress code will determine the colour and style of shoes you should wear. Black is the most formal colour, followed by brown and burgundy. If the dress code is black-tie, then black patent leather dress shoes are required.

The material of your shoes should match the formality of the event. Leather shoes are the most formal, while suede and velvet are less formal. The colour of the socks should always match your trousers or shoes. Wear full-length socks, instead of short or ankle socks.

By following these tips, you’ll be sure to choose the perfect pair of shoes for your next formal event.

1.4. Watch

formal attire for men-watch

Make sure the watch complements the rest of your outfit. The colour of the watch face should match the colour of your suit and tie, and the watch strap should match your shoes and belt.

A simple, understated watch is always a safe bet for a formal gathering. A watch with a leather strap and a clean, classic face is a great choice. The size of your watch should be appropriate for your wrist size. A larger watch can overpower a small wrist, while a smaller watch can get lost on a larger wrist. Aim for a watch that is proportional to your wrist.

If you are wearing other metal accessories such as cufflinks or a belt buckle, make sure the metal of your watch matches. For example, if you are wearing a silver belt buckle, choose a silver watch. Quartz watches are more accurate and require less maintenance than mechanical watches, but mechanical watches are often seen as more luxurious and can make a statement.

There are a plethora of watch designs and styles available, but formal attire demands some specific designs that enhance the elegance of the attire. For traditional formal settings, variants like steel watches and leather-strapped diver watches are the finest. While choosing modern formal attire, you can opt for a Chrono watch, aviator watch, or field watch.

1.5. Belts

formal attire for men-belt

Belts are the most underutilized fashion accessories in a man’s wardrobe. However, choosing the right belt for a formal gathering is an important part of completing your outfit. Look for a belt that is made from full-grain leather and has a solid metal buckle. Avoid large buckles, as they can be distracting and take away from the formality of your outfit.

The width of your belt should be appropriate for the loops on your trousers. A belt that is too wide or too narrow can look out of place. Make sure the belt complements the rest of your outfit. The colour of the belt should match the colour of your shoes and the buckle should match the metal of your watch and other accessories.

A general rule of thumb that most men follow is to match the belt with their shoes. Avoid cotton belts, braided leather belts, and suede leather as they don’t fit with formal attire.

1.6. Tie

formal attire for men-tie

The right-coloured tie can enhance your appearance to a great extent. Choose a tie colour that complements the colour of your suit and shirt. A simple rule is to choose a tie that is darker than your shirt but lighter than your suit. If you’re wearing a patterned shirt or suit, choose a tie with a complementary pattern. For example, a striped shirt pairs well with a polka-dot tie.

The width of your tie should be appropriate for the width of your lapels. A tie that is too narrow or too wide can look out of place. Make sure to tie your tie properly and to the appropriate length. A properly tied tie adds a touch of sophistication to your outfit.

You can choose from trending designs such as – a solid modern classic, striped ties, and spotted patterns with polka dots. A rare masterpiece is a paisley variant, which men have been wearing for decades. Ties usually look good

Grab the latest collection of neckties and enrich your wardrobe to cater to all your fashion requirements.

Bonus Rule!!

When it comes to formal attire, it’s best to keep it simple and classic. Timeless styles are always in fashion and are appropriate for any occasion.

A classic white dress shirt, black dress shoes, and a black or navy tie are appropriate for most formal events. If you want to add a pop of colour, a pocket square or tie pin can be a great way to do so without being too flashy.

Investing in high-quality formal attire is a smart decision. A high-quality suit can last for years with proper care and can make you look and feel your best.

When choosing a suit, look for signs of good quality, such as a well-constructed collar and lapel, quality lining, and durable stitching. It’s also important to


In conclusion, by following the 6 Golden Rules for buying formal attire for men, you can ensure that you always look sharp and sophisticated at any formal event. From knowing the occasion and choosing the right fit to select the right fabric and investing in quality, these rules will help you make the right choices when it comes to formal attire.

And don’t forget the details, from the right footwear to the perfect tie and belt, they can make all the difference in completing your look. So next time you’re getting ready for a formal event, keep these rules in mind and you’re sure to impress everyone with your impeccable style.


What is formal attire for men?

Formal attire includes a dress shirt, trousers, suit, shoes, belt, and watch. It is usually worn for official meetings or events.

What can be considered formal attire?

Ant outfit that is not casual or sports wear is considered formal attire. It even includes a business suit, jacket, or dress pants worn for business meetings.

What colour suit is formal?

The black-coloured suit is usually considered formal wear as it makes you look professional. Besides, one can wear brown or grey suits for official meetings.