Jewelry is a timeless way to complete any look and make a statement. And contrary to popular belief, any man with the right dressing sense can pull it off.
Since time immemorial, jewelry has helped men set themselves apart, express their inner sophistication, and broadcast to the world their personal achievements. Sadly, it has been relegated to something gauche and tacky, which is not helped by really bad examples of jewelry wear that modern media sensationalizes.
That’s the thing with jewelry: much like any other accessory, there are right and wrong ways to wear it. If you’re unaware of the subtleties of styling with metals and gems, they’ll look as cheap as any trinket from a gift shop.
It’s a good thing styling with jewelry isn’t rocket science or astrology. There are trusty fundamentals you can follow to look good with bracelets, rings, necklaces, earrings, and more unique accessory choices.
If that’s what you’re looking for, you’ve come to the right place. Whether you’re putting together an outfit for a formal function or a set for nights out with the boys, here’s what you need to know about wearing jewelry.
Understanding The Basics Of Wearing Jewelry
Jewelry is one of those timeless accessories that many people wear worldwide. Many cultures, genders, and ages wear jewelry. Most men seem averse to them, but they were always something they had when they could afford them. Male icons like Elvis Presley confidently sported their favorite jewelry pieces. From bead necklaces to obsidian crystal bracelets, they were a staple in men’s wardrobes.
The trick is execution. When done right, wearing jewelry can be an effortless way for men to show off their unique style.
Popular Jewelry Choices For Men
Of the few visibly popular jewelry choices men have, crystals are a classic. And they’re not meant for purely high-end streetwear; rings, earrings, and necklaces made with blue lapis lazuli crystals have been spotted on some of the world’s most fashionable celebrities. Visiting a reputable crystal shop can provide great concrete examples to choose from.
Besides crystals, more popular choices exist. The classic chain is a centerpiece of street fashion that continues to this day. Stacking bracelets, watches, rings, and pendants with crosses, symbols, or even initials are also popular.
So long as they complete your look and suit the occasion, any combination of these jewelry elements can give you the sophistication you want from your accessories.
If you don’t know where to start, here are some tips for beginner jewelry wearers.
Tips For Wearing Necklaces and Pendants
The most basic way to pull these off is to start with a single small pendant on a thin chain. From there, you can try layering different lengths to create a staircase, drawing effect that makes short tops pop out.
On the other hand, longer chains draw the eye down. That makes them pair well with dress shirts and vests.
You can also try a statement necklace, like a heavy medallion, gold chain, or chunky locket, for something bolder. These look great with t-shirts and give otherwise simple outfits a sharp edge.
The best pieces work with your body shape and complement your clothing. Here are a few tips:
- If you have a triangular shape (wide shoulders and slim waist), wear something that emphasizes your upper third, like a dog tag necklace or pendant with sharp edges.
- If you’re an inverted triangle (narrow shoulders and wider waist), put on something that gives dimension to your lower third, like a long necklace, gold chain, or multi-strand choker.
- If you have an oval shape (broadest at the waist), focus on layers in both directions, like multiple necklaces of different lengths.
- For square shapes (broad shoulders and hips), look for pieces that highlight curves like hoops or oval shapes.
Keeping these in mind will help you find the chain or statement necklace that melds right into your silhouette and rounds out your style.
Tips For Wearing Watches
This is a classic choice for all men. With various styles available, figuring out which watch suits you best can be tricky. These should make picking yours easy:
Watches come in almost every style imaginable, from classic to contemporary. It’s important to find one that fits your wardrobe. Look for a watch that can be worn as part of both casual and formal looks, as this will give you more options and make it easier to accessorize with other pieces.
A larger face may not suit someone with smaller wrists. However, someone with broader wrists can get one equally large for maximum impact. Consider the type of outfit you’re wearing, too. A large-faced timepiece can look out of place on a business suit, while an overly tiny one may look lost on a more casual outfit.
This makes all the difference when choosing the right watch. Stainless steel is perfect for everyday use and special occasions. Meanwhile, gold watches work well with classier events such as black-tie events or formal dinners. Regular leather straps are ideal for business wear or smart-casual dressing.
Tips For Wearing Bracelets
As a man, your options can range from classic to modern, like chains, cuffs, and even wristbands. So how do you select the right one for you?
A good place to start is by picking the right material. It can be silver, gold, or stainless steel if you plan to wear them for high-end events. The basic leather-based ones will probably stay stuck in streetwear for a long while.
The most classic option is a chain link. It’s versatile and looks great with casual and formal looks. Those with thicker links and extra features like spikes give off an edge, making them suited for showing off on strolls and nights out. For something playful and funky, wear bracelets or wristbands accessorized with logos or sayings that speak to you.
Cuffs are another popular choice; they are thicker than chains but similar in style and versatility.
When wearing bracelets, there are no hard and fast rules. Just wear what makes you feel good without overdoing it.
A good rule of thumb is to limit yourself to two at most. A simple chain on one side and something more eye-catching on the other is the typical way for casual settings. Going a little more conservative for classier functions is best.
How To Wear Rings And Earrings
Another popular jewelry option for men is rings and earrings. Here are a few helpful tips when adding them to your look.
Less is more. Two or three subtle and tasteful pieces are all you need. Anything more than that could quickly become overwhelming and tacky. A classic signet ring or a simple gold band on the pinky are good starting points.
The same rule applies. Simple studs or hoops are subtle yet still make a statement. For something with a bit more sparkle but within styling bounds, look for pieces in rose gold.
Be What You Wear
To look good in jewelry, men need to know their own body shape, style, and the occasions they frequently attend well. That alone takes out most of the guesswork in pulling off these accessories.
Don’t be afraid to experiment with pieces to create a look that truly reflects your style and personality. And remember, the most powerful style equalizer is confidence.