While warehouse suit stores used to be the go-to place for men to purchase a suit, times have changed, and options have become much better.
No longer do you have to try and squeeze into an ill-fitting suit that will look dated in only a matter of a year or two. A quality suit for men should fit well, rely on tested and durable fabrics, be cut in a style that is timeless, along with being priced affordably.
Not only will we review some of the best suit brands for men currently available, we will also help to inform you on a few things to consider when buying your next suit. In addition to understanding some of the important details, so you don’t commit a fashion faux pas, we will also share a few tips on how to care for and wear a suit, along with answering a few common questions people often have about them.
Let’s get started.
Table of Contents
What to Know When Buying a Suit
As we began reviewing a variety of suit brands, we identified nine key features that you will want to think about before making your purchase. Don’t worry, if it’s your first time purchasing a suit, the details we go over here will be easy to follow and remember.
Here’s what you should care about when purchasing a suit:
By far one of the most important features to consider will be the quality of the suit itself. Given that you will likely be wearing the suit for an entire day and even perhaps use it for several years, you will want to get a suit that will withstand the test of time.
Now we aren’t saying there are some great budget picks available for you to consider, there are, but we are saying that if you go too aggressively in trying to find a cheap or budget suit, in most cases you will be compromising heavily on quality.
Picking the right suit style is a deeply complicated process for some men – but it really doesn’t have to be.
When choosing a suit, you will find that they come in many different styles intended for a variety of occasions – this can include tuxedos, party or prom suits, wedding suits, daily workwear suits, and more.
What makes these styles subtly differ from one another will be the materials sourced, lapel type (shawl, notched, or peaked), pocket style, and more.
But don’t worry – you don’t need to have a degree in fashion in order to make sense of it all. Within our reviews below, we hand selected a few suits that we think will work well for a variety of scenarios.
As is the case with everything fashion related, brand names can carry an enormous amount of weight to the buying decision process.
While it is true that brands like Tom Ford or Canali are among the best men’s suit brands due to their well-executed tailoring and materials – an ill-fitting suit will never look good, no matter how much money you spend on it.
Our recommendation is to either go with a brand that you are already familiar with, or have tried on successfully in the past, or take the leap and try something new.
The truth of the matter is that no one will ask to see the inside label of your suit when you are at the office or a wedding.
Building off the previous section, while brand recognition can heavily sway the final price of the suit that you plan on buying, the basic rule will always remain:
- An ill-fitting $10,000 suit will look significantly worse than a $400 well-tailored suit
While it may be tempting to go with the $100 suit, especially if it is only to be used on occasion (i.e. a wedding or job interview), selecting a suit for your budget is a delicate balance.
Too cheap and you begin to run into quality issues with the fabric and craftsmanship. Too expensive and you are simply wasting your money.
In our research, we found that most quality suits can be found in the $300 to $750 price range.
Sure, there are some good options priced higher than $750, but for anything of acceptable quality, the above range should serve as a good reference point when shopping.
5. Color / Pattern
As you will see both in our reviews or visiting any of the popular online suit stores, colors and patterns can vary significantly when shopping for a suit.
The occasion or intent of the suit will often decide which sort of color or pattern to go with.
Common Suit Colors
As a rule of thumb, for formal events, job interviews, or simply your very first suit that you plan on owning, it is best to go with a solid color – typically navy, charcoal, or black. When purchasing a second or third suit, you can experiment with more aggressive colors including blue, burgundy, dark green, or perhaps even a muted teal.
Common Suit Patterns
Suit patterns can vary wildly, and their intent equally so. In our research we found the following patterns often associated with suits:
- Plaid / Check
Of each of the patterns mentioned above, the only one that could be worn in more formal settings (including office) would be either plaid or striped suits. As mentioned in some of our reviews, these patterns, when subtle, are a great way to demonstrate a keen sense of style.
As we touched on briefly, the occasion for which you plan on wearing your suit is important, in both the style and color selection of the suit, along with the quality and price that you have budgeted for this purpose.
Below are some of the primary categories along with a few shopping considerations that you may want to consider when buying a suit:
- Formal/Wedding/Funerals – When attending any of the mentioned events, a plain (typically black or navy) suit will be fine. It is a conservative choice and one that is versatile, whether it is a joyous or somber occasion. Furthermore, these events are infrequent and the amount of time that you wear your suit will be limited. So, don’t worry about spending a significant amount of money here.
- Interviews – The first impression that you make during the interview is important. When you are trying to market yourself to a prospective employer, you will want to look your best. While interviewing is critical to developing your career – you don’t need to go overboard on price or quality. Instead, tailoring is the most important aspect to consider. A well-fitting suit will make all the difference. Depending on the industry that you are interviewing in may dictate the style choices (i.e. if a creative field or industry a bold checked suit can work, if in finance then either navy or black).
- Work Wear – Work wear suits are all about comfort. When worn all day, you want the suit to be able to breath and not feel like its slowly suffocating you. Therefore, material source is an important consideration. Some modern work suit companies also add in a bit of elastane into the fabric which can provide some nice stretch properties in order to prevent any embarrassing splits in the pants.
- Party/Prom/Holiday/Christmas/Halloween – When attending a party (whether formal or costume) or prom, it’s a time to make some restrained but bold choices. Here you can go with a unique shawl lapel (we cover this later) or velvet material. As in the case of attending a wedding, party, or prom, these suits are worn infrequently – so don’t waste money seeking out quality fabrics or high-end suit brands (unless of course you are attending a high-class party with lots of important people). For holidays, a funky suit for the occasion could include loud patterns, holiday decorations (Christmas trees and snowflakes), question marks, skulls, etc can be pretty fun to wear.
- Formal Casual – Some men love to dress up on the weekends or even during the office Formal Fridays. These unique occasions can be a great way to boldly express your style here. Whether it’s through aggressively modern cuts, colors, or patterns, a formal cut suit made for casual occasions can be a unique addition to your wardrobe. If it becomes a regular habit, then comfort and quality will be important. However, if you only plan on wearing this type of suit occasionally (say only during fall), then style and design will outweigh the quality of the suit itself.
Perhaps one of the most important considerations when buying a suit will be the fit.
With so many fits to choose from, you should have no problem finding a perfectly fitted suit for your body type.
Common suit fits (and how they differ) include the following:
- Classic / Regular Fit – With plenty of room around the chest and waist, the classic cut is designed for both flexibility and comfort. While not as restrictive as a slim fit suit (more on this in a minute) a classic or regular fitted suit shouldn’t be too baggy. Pants for these types of suits should also follow a slightly tailored or tapered cut.
- Tailored Fit – Tailored suits are a preferred pick by many men. These suits are taken in just a bit around both the waist (for the suit jacket) and with the pants while still providing a liberal range of movement.
- Slim Fit – Slim fit suits are going to be cut to conform much closer to your body. With a slim cut suit there is very little excess fabric throughout the entire suit. For the pants on slim fit suits, they often rest just below the navel and have a more aggressive (i.e. form fitting cut) through the pant leg. This fit of suit is currently the most popular with men today.
- Skinny Fit – Very similar to the slim fit suits, skinny fit suits will be a touch more trim on both the length of the jacket, width of the lapels, along with being a bit more form fitting, by removing excess fabric. This cut of suit will be best for men who have a thinner or toned frame.
- Extreme or Extra Slim Fit – One of the most form fitting suit options available will be extreme or extra slim fit suits. These leave very little excess fabric in either the blazer or suit pants. With the extreme taper, we recommend this suit fit only for those men with slender bodies.
- Athletic Fit – Athletic suits are great for men with larger frames. With increased movement in both the chest and thigh areas, this cut of suit, like the classic or regular fit mentioned above, provides excess fabric for comfort and flexibility.
8. 2-Piece vs. 3-Piece Suit
As the name suggests, suits will come in either two-piece or three-piece varieties:
- Suit Jacket
- Matching Pants
- Matching Vest (optional)
Our recommendation here is to go with a three-piece suit if possible.
While yes, the three-piece suit is significantly more formal and likely might be overkill, the addition of a vest provides versatility in the future – plus it will match the rest of your suit perfectly.
Should you be attending a wedding or formal party, the addition of a matching vest can really set yourself apart from others in the room while not being too much.
9. Suit & Blazer Size
Once you have found a suit that you like, it is time to find the right measurement.
While it may be intimidating to see a lot of options regarding the coat size, here’s an overview of what the numbers mean and how you can find the perfect suit jacket for your body:
Suit jackets (sometimes referred to as blazers) come in four different length measurements:
- S (Short)
- R (Regular)
- L (Long)
- XL (Extra Long)
Unfortunately, many suit companies provide very little guidance when it comes to what suit length will work for certain body types.
Based on our research we found the following generally to be true:
- S Length Suit – Typically best for short men (under 5’ 7”)
- R Length Suit – Typically best for men between the heights of 5’ 7” and 6’ 2”
- L Length Suit – Typically best for tall men between 6’ 2” and 6’ 5”
- XL Length Suit – Typically best for really tall men greater than 6’ 5” (these are often found in custom big and tall shops)
Aside from the length, you will also notice a number associated with the blazer size. This number will typically range anywhere between 36 and 48 and indicates your chest size (in inches).
In order to determine your chest size, you will want to get either a string or piece of fabric measuring tape and wrap it around your mid-section.
When measuring, you will want to ensure that the measuring tape is completely horizontal (not sloping up or downwards) and crosses directly over your nipples at the fullest part of your chest.
Note: Make sure that you don’t pull the measuring tape skintight – you should be able to comfortably place two fingers between the measuring tape and your body. Also having someone perform this measurement for you is ideal for better accuracy.
10. Material / Fabrication
Suits can come in many different materials which may include the following:
Here’s a bit more on each type and some of the key details that you should be on the lookout for:
Cotton – Cotton-based suits provide the ultimate in breathability. A favored fabric for summertime use (such as the popular seersucker suit), cotton can be great for social gatherings and business meetings. Given that cotton naturally has a bit of stretch in the fabric, it also provides some increased comfort when moving around. Furthermore, with cotton being associated with warmer temperatures, many suits made from this fabric will be lighter in color (think khaki, tan, beige, taupe, etc.).
Wool – The most common material found in suits will be wool. Able to work for both warm and cold seasons, this versatile fabric not only naturally wicks away moisture from your body, keeping you both cool and dry, but also presents extremely well. When buying a wool suit, it’s important to be mindful of the S number (Super 140s, Super 220s, etc.). The S number refers to how fine the wool has been spun (source). A higher S number will correlate to a narrower diameter (e.g.: Super 80s = 19.75mm, Super 250s = 11.25mm).
What does this mean when buying a wool suit?
A finer diameter of wool will be much softer, making it great for more formal occasions as it will drape naturally on your body.
Linen – Another terrific fabric for summer use will be linen. This lightweight fabric is used for that classic white or salmon colored suit that demonstrates both a level of relaxation and sophistication. If there were any major drawbacks to this fabric when compared to the others, it is its tendency to wrinkle easily. With no natural elasticity found in this plant-based fiber, creases will form rather easily – making their maintenance and presentability a bit more work.
Mohair – Often found as a blend rather than the dominate fabric choice, mohair is used as a popular fabric in the construction of suits given its silk-like properties. Soft to the touch, this fabric, which has been sourced from Angora goats, is also both durable and resistant – making it a good choice for work suits (source). While commonly associated with the winter months, like wool, mohair does have some natural moisture wicking properties to keep your body both cool and dry.
Elastane – This synthetic fiber is being found more frequently in modern suits given its terrific function. Able to provide a bit of extra stretch, elastane (also known as spandex), will give you four-way stretch for increased comfort. If you are buying a suit for work wear or simply want a bit of extra comfort through increased range of motion (especially if you are wearing a suit to a wedding where dancing is involved), then be sure to pick up a suit with this fabric.
Corduroy – With the trademark cord or wale pattern, corduroy is often made from a blend of cotton and polyester (source). This unique style allows for greater warmth – especially important for winter months. However, corduroy suits are often more casual and will only be ideal for weekend or nearly informal office settings.
The Best Suits of 2021 Reviewed
1. Best Suit Overall: Brooks Brothers 1818 Two-Button Fitted Suit
While we found their non-iron dress shirts to be among the best, they carry this high level of craftsmanship over to their entire lineup of suits.
On paper, the suit might not sound remarkable – a 100% wool suit with a notched lapel, two vents on the backside, along with a standard pair of dress pants.
However, once worn, this suit will make a statement.
Subtlety and timeless style are key here when it comes to Brooks Brothers. If you have an image in your mind on what a suit should look like, then you are likely thinking of the Regent Fit Two-Button suit.
What’s truly unique about this suit is the fit.
Unlike other suits that are categorized as slim fit, classic fit, etc., Brooks Brothers has their own unique fit offered here – Regent Fit.
Bridging the gap between both the slim and classic fits, it offers a tailored and more streamlined look (especially when compared to a classic fit) without restricting movement at all.
The areas of the suit that have been tailored just a touch include the chest, shoulders, and waist (all on the blazer), while the pants are brought in just a hair throughout the leg.
This allows for a suit that not only wears well on most bodies, but also isn’t too caught up in the trends making it look obsolete or dated in a season or two.
As is the case with all suits made by Brooks Brothers, alterations are included with your purchase.
Another distinction of this suit is that it is made in the USA from Italian wool (a combination that is hard to find these days within the garment industry).
Lastly, given that this suit is made from natural fibers (100% wool), it will not only feel comfortable on your skin, but provide comfort all day long, especially important if you are looking for a suit to wear to the office or extended job interview.
- A classic suit that looks timeless
- Made in the USA
- Alterations included
What You Need To Know
2. Best Affordable (Cheap): Kenneth Cole REACTION Slim Fit 3-Piece Suit
A good suit shouldn’t have to cost you over $1,000 for you to feel confident in how you look. This was evident in the budget friendly Kenneth Cole REACTION slim suit that we found to be the best budget-friendly suit out there.
Available to purchase in separate pieces – blazer, vest, and pants – you won’t have to worry about paying for excess pieces that you never plan on wearing.
Furthermore, with each piece sold separately, you can also replace a piece should it start to look a bit tired, experience a rip in the fabric, or simply not fit your body anymore due to natural fluctuations in weight.
With each article costing anywhere between $50 and $150 (depending on size and availability), it won’t be expensive at all to own.
Given that this suit is affordable, there are a few notable differences in its design compared to others on our list.
Most notable will be the composition of the fabric itself. Take the pants for instance, with a blend of the following fabrics: polyester (87%), rayon (12%), and spandex (1%), it relies on synthetic fabrics rather than natural fibers (i.e. wool, cotton, or linen), which may be a bit uncomfortable for some men – especially if you plan on wearing this as a daily work suit.
However, if you plan on wearing this to the occasional job interview or wedding, it will be more than enough. The polyester and rayon should naturally wick any moisture from your skin to keep you feeling cool (important at both interviews and weddings), while also providing a touch of stretch with the inclusion of spandex.
While you should have no problem finding the right fit for your body, this suit is mass produced and will likely require some additional alterations if you want to look your best.
This is a slim fit suit, which can be a deal breaker for some men (especially the ones who are at the gym daily) as it might be a bit too tight and uncomfortable around the thighs.
- Perfect for men on a budget
- Can work if you need a suit quickly
- Able to purchase pieces individually
- Some compromises on fabric choice
What You Need To Know
3. Best Suit For Big & Tall Men: Bonobos Jetsetter Stretch Wool Suit
Finding a suit that both looks and feels great can be a challenge for both bigger and taller men.
One suit that caught the attention of a lot of larger men out there was this Jetsetter Stretch Wool suit by Bonobos.
While they made a name for themselves with an extremely comfortable pair of chinos, as we discussed at great length in our review of Bonobos, they are quickly turning heads with their formal clothing as well.
The Jetsetter has a lot of things going right for it – particularly on the measurements offered.
For the pant waist options, you can choose anywhere between 42″ and 50″. With pants offered only in standard fits, they will provide comfortable movement for your legs without ever feeling too tight or bunched up around the crotch or in the seat of the pants.
When checking out their blazer, you will find that they offer it in 3 variants (Short, Regular, and Long), along with sizes ranging from 48″ to 60″ – effortlessly working for any larger built men out there.
Size options aside, the style of the suit is conservative, allowing it to work for you in a variety of situations, also making it timeless.
The simple notched lapels along with the double vents will give you a streamlined look. Beyond how the suit looks, the little details are what sets this apart from other big and tall options out there. This includes a larger area around the neck of the blazer (to avoid squeezing), extended space between the buttons on the blazer, more belt loops on the pants to ensure evenly spaced pressure without feeling discomfort, and finally, larger pockets to not only compliment your larger frame, but also make it much easier to store your smartphone if you want to.
The last detail we want to touch on is the fabric. Relying on a blend of 97% wool and 3% lycra – it will present well while also allowing for just a little bit of stretch.
- Made with big and tall men in mind
- Smart little features make this a great choice
- Priced well
What You Need To Know
4. Best Tuxedo / Suit for Weddings: Hugo Boss Black Tuxedo
Whether you are attending a wedding or a black-tie event, a tuxedo is a great and sensible suit that you can wear to the occasion.
The Hugo Boss Black Tuxedo is a timeless suit that should work anytime you are invited to attend a formal event.
Hugo Boss does everything right when it comes to the design of this suit.
When taking a closer look at this suit, you will see that the lapels are notched (as opposed to shawl) and are satin. Furthermore, both the front pockets and side of the leg are also trimmed with satin – bringing this suit together nicely.
Made from wool, the suit will also be quite breathable when compared to polyester, making it a suit that will be comfortable wearing late into the evening or chatting it up with other guests.
The fit on this suit is considered, by Hugo Boss, to be that of a trim fit. We translate that to being somewhere between the classic and slim fits.
This compromising fit is perfect for this type of suit given that it will be worn infrequently, and it will still look good years down the road.
Available in several sizes ranging from 36S to 46L – you should have no problem finding the perfect suit to match your body.
- Classic tuxedo that looks and feels great
- Offers a timeless design style
- Subtle details bring this suit together nicely
What You Need To Know
5. Best Luxury (Under $500): Indochino Malvern Wool Navy Suit
A quality custom suit can easily cost more than $1,000. However, in order to get a luxury custom suit under $500, options available are severely limited.
However, one of the few standouts of this category will be the suits offered by Indochino.
A pioneer in the online custom suit world, they offer several great options that will make for a great pick – whether it’s your first or third suit that you own.
One suit that caught our attention was the Malvern Navy Suit.
This solid navy blue suit is a perfect seasonal suit that relies on a 100% wool composition.
What makes this suit so great would be the ability to customize.
Unlike other suits where you may need to make some compromises on the style or fit choices – everything is in your control when ordering this (or any) suit from Indochino.
While we won’t expand too much on the process, as we wrote about it extensively in our full review of Indochino, we will share a few of the highlights.
As you go through the customization process, you can make design tweaks to any of the following:
- Canvas Type (if you want structured or unstructured style)
- Shoulder Type
- Lapels (i.e. notched, peaked, shawl, etc.)
- Chest & Side Pocket Types (i.e. welted, flaps, rounded, etc.)
- Buttons & Button Colors
- Vents (on back of blazer)
- Suspender Buttons
Like we said, the customizations of this level are usually reserved for much pricier suits out there.
But for those guys who need a bit of hand holding during the process (nothing wrong with that), Indochino does have each customization pre-selected so you don’t commit an embarrassing fashion faux pas.
Like other online custom suit shops, the orders are made custom for you and do take some time to get to your front doorstep. So, you can expect about 2 to 3 weeks shipping and another week or so for alterations.
One major caveat when going with Indochino would be their return policy.
Given that the fabric has been cut for your body type – returns are not accepted – which is understandably a deal breaker for some.
Therefore, if you decide to go with them, you will want to make sure that you fully take advantage of the alteration credit or visit one of their showrooms to have any adjustments made.
- Wide array of customizations available
- Get a perfect fitting suit
- Return policy restrictions
What You Need To Know
6. Best High-End Suit: Black Lapel Blue Wool/Silk Full Canvas Tweed Suit
Black Lapel has made a splash in recent years at providing quality custom suits at an affordable price. While they do offer some terrific options starting at $500, one suit that really brings out their quality and craftsmanship would be their Blue Wool & Silk Tweed Suit.
Included in the Savoy Line, this suit relies on quality materials that fashion forward men often seek out:
- Italian Wools
- Full Canvas Construction
- Milanese Lapel Buttonholes
- Barchetta Chest Pockets
- V-Split Waistband
…and a host of other unique features that you can learn about here.
As you may have noticed in the name of this suit, it relies on a unique blend of both wool (95%) and silk (5%). This results in a suit that is not only much softer to the touch, but one that will drape nicely on your body to make you look sharp.
Black Lapel does suggest that this suit is best worn in the fall and winter months.
As far as color and style, this suit does come in a subtle dark check pattern for both the blazer and pants. Making it not only a great second suit to own, it is also one that can be comfortably worn to the office daily.
As great as the style and materials of this suit may be, what really makes it stand out from many of the others on our list is the customizations that can be done to it.
While you can have Black Lapel customize everything for you, should you want little details altered (such as a monogram on the inside pocket, slimmer lapel width, or even accent stitching on the boutonniere to match your inner coat lining – you can.
Of course, there are a few careful considerations that you will need to take into account when going with Black Lapel – alterations and shipping time.
Since you need to provide all your measurements to Black Lapel at the time of checkout, it does take a bit of time to place your order (about 15 minutes or so).
Furthermore, given that each one of their suits are made to order, the production time is substantial.
Based on our personal experience and what we see available on their site at the time of publication, you should expect to wait about a month before you will have the suit in your hands.
Given that alterations will likely be required when the suit arrives, you may want to tack on another week to the total time frame.
Quick Aside: Black Lapel does provide an alteration credit for you – you can learn more about it here.
Lastly, customer service.
A concern for many when shopping online, especially when it comes to ordering a suit, is customer service. To help alleviate any concerns as you go through the measuring and ordering process, Black Lapel staff will make recommendations and contact you should you have any concerns – it’s this terrific white glove service that really sets them apart.
- One of the best (and well-fitting) suits you can buy online
- Terrific customer service
- Quality materials
- Long shipping time
What You Need To Know
7. Best Party or Prom Suit: Ryan Seacrest Distinction Prom Suit
Whether you are going to prom or attending a party, the right suit for the occasion can really set yourself apart from the crowd.
While many may know Ryan Seacrest as the host of American Idol, his unique line of suits makes for a bold statement.
Unlike rented suits that are ill-fitting and tired looking, this slim fit stretch tuxedo is perfect for a night of fun.
Priced affordably (less than $100), this suit features a plethora of details that are well worth the price.
Let’s first look at the fun style and design choices:
Available in either silver or eggplant (dark red), the colors are bold but also timeless – especially for proms.
Unlike other suits that we reviewed that feature a notched lapel, this suit has a peaked lapel (which is ideal for more formal or party occasions).
Furthermore, you will notice that the lapel, pocket linings, and buttons are black – which provides a nice bit of contrast from the rest of the suit.
The suit blazer and pants come in a wide range of sizes that should work for most men.
Lastly, the suit does have spandex included in the fabric, which should provide a nice extra bit of stretch when you are shredding up the dance floor.
- Better alternative compared to rental suits
- Bold colors make a statement
- Included spandex allows for just enough stretch
- Likely only to be used once
What You Need To Know
Other Suits Reviewed
This unique blend of wool, polyester, and spandex allows this suit to wear well no matter the conditions. The pinstripe patterns on both the jacket and pants will also give you a much taller appearance.
If you are attending prom or homecoming, then this bold blazer by Cloudstyle can make a splash. Available in a paisley pattern of gold, black, silver, blue and burgundy – it can match well with most school colors.
Whether it’s a fun business party or a family gathering, make a splash with this unique Christmas suit and tie. Available in 5 different colors and priced affordably, you can dial up the fashion this holiday season.
The classic fit Haggar suit is a great pick for men looking for a bit more movement in their suit. With blazer and pants sold separately, you can restore your wardrobe if one piece begins to look worn.
Made from sharp worsted stretch-wool, this classic fit suit is a quality pick for larger men. With added room in both the chest of the blazer and seat of the pants, this suit will be comfortable when worn for several hours.
Widely considered to be among the best suit brands out there, this Canali suit has been made in Italy and relies on quality materials. Just expect to pay a premium.
A favorite for many men is the Reymond/Wenten extra slim suit by Hugo Boss. This narrow cut suit is perfect for the skinny men looking for a suit that will drape nicely on their body.
This warm and stylish suit by Lauren Ralph Lauren relies on nicely made corduroy that is perfect for winter wear. Made from a blend of cotton and spandex, it will be highly breathable and provide great range of movement.
Perfect for summer wear, this lightweight suit for men will feel both cool and comfortable when worn during the summer months. The slim notched lapel and two-button closure is a classic choice.
With a full trouser leg and extra room in the chest, this classic fit suit by Michael Kors is a comfortable and affordable everyday workplace suit. Made from wool, it offers terrific breathable and moisture wicking properties.
8 Killer Tips on How to Wear a Suit with Confidence
When it comes to wearing a suit, committing a fashion faux pas is rather easy.
With so many rules that you should conform to, we wanted to share with you eight easy-to-remember tips to keep in mind when getting fitted and wearing your suit:
1. Match Accordingly
You are likely already familiar with this rule as its one of the most important – but it bears repeating for the younger men out there:
Always match your dress shoes with your belt.
Wearing a brown belt?
Then wear brown dress shoes.
Wearing mismatched colors will not only look sloppy but will also divert the attention of the viewer from your face to your belt or shoes (or both).
2. Appropriate Sizing – Suit Jacket
Suit jackets shouldn’t be baggy, nor should they be so tight that they hug your midsection too much.
When ordering a suit jacket online, its important that you take it to your tailor to have any minor alterations made.
This minor change in the sizing of the fabric can make a suit go from looking ‘meh’ to ‘wow.’ This is especially true if you are wearing a secondhand suit.
Pro Tip: If you have been exercising heavily for the past month, or perhaps you have been overeating due to the holidays, try to make minor adjustments to adjust for body weight fluctuation (i.e. a hair more room if you feel like you are significantly below your average weight to account for any bounce back up in pounds later).
3. Appropriate Sizing & Length of Your Dress Pants
When sizing your dress pants or trousers, you want to make sure that you have them hemmed at the appropriate length.
A well-tailored pair of trousers should sit just above the foot and rest squarely at the middle of the heel of your shoe. Some men may choose a different length depending on comfort: shorter for a more contemporary cut or longer for more conservative.
As noted in our reviews, dress pants come in many different fits including classic, slim, and straight. The key here is to allow for comfort and a pant that compliments your body type.
Also worth mentioning is where the pants should lie on your hips.
Unlike jeans, which sit much lower on your natural waist, dress pants should be pulled up a couple inches more. Your tailor should help you with this when getting the pants hemmed – if unsure, don’t be afraid to ask.
4. Button Dress Shirt to Top
When wearing a tie with your dress shirt, you want to make sure that you always button up the top button.
If this feels too tight or restrictive, then you are likely in need of a new dress shirt.
A well-fitted dress shirt should allow for a finger or two of space between the collar and your skin.
Of course, if you aren’t wearing a tie, then you can keep the top button undone – it will look good.
5. Only Do the Top Button on Jackets
One of the age-old sideline questions when getting ready for a wedding is how the buttons should be done on the suit jacket.
No matter if you have a two or three button suit jacket, the bottom button must always be undone.
The bottom button is purely decorative for modern suits.
Furthermore, fastening the bottom button may result in restrictive movement or a suit jacket that looks too stiff or tight.
6. Always Unbutton Prior to Seating
This one is tricky, but when done properly, it will look effortless.
Next time you watch a late-night show, watch as any male guest who is wearing a suit, sits down for the interview.
They quickly and effortlessly will undo the buttons on their suit (often with one hand) as they go to take a seat.
Not unbuttoning your suit jacket will make the fabric bunch up around your midsection and generally look sloppy.
So, you will want to try to get into this habit any time you go to take a seat – even if it is only for a few seconds.
7. Bow Ties Aren’t Just for Tuxedos
The hard and fast rule pushed by some is that the bow tie should never be worn with a suit – instead only with tuxedos.
However, be it on Instagram or other highly respected men’s fashion sites, we have seen men pull off the bow tie and suit look incredibly well.
It all comes down to finding the right complementary fabric that isn’t too loud (more on this in a minute).
While we wouldn’t recommend wearing a bow tie to a job interview, if you are looking for an expressive style in the sea of suits and ties – this is a great way to set yourself apart.
8. Your Tie & Pocket Square for Self-Expression (When Appropriate)
Beyond bow ties, your standard tie or pocket square are also great avenues for you to express your sense of style.
However, we strongly urge you to use caution here as making a bold color or style choice can backfire on you.
The most important recommendation here is that you make sure that you get a tie or pocket square that is appropriate for the occasion.
If you are going to a funeral, then a snoopy tie might be a bit too much….
However, if you are going to a party and are looking for a conversation starter, then sure, a tie featuring your favorite cartoon characters is completely fine.
Context is everything here guys.
So, be aware of your surroundings when fingering through your tie rack.
Men’s Suits FAQs
How much is a decent suit?
As we touched on earlier in this guide, the price of the suit is not nearly as important as the actual fit. A poor fitting $1,000 suit will look far worse that a well-tailored thrift store suit.
When researching suits, we found that most made from quality materials began at the $300 price point.
Those less than $300 tended to rely on a mix of polyester and rayon – both are man-made fabrics which aren’t nearly as comfortable as some of the natural fabrics of wool, cotton, or linen.
How do I choose a suit?
If it’s your first time buying a suit, then we would recommend going with one that is either black or navy in color.
These colors are both conservative and versatile.
Whether you are attending a wedding, funeral, job interview, or just want to dress up every once in a while – navy and black will work perfectly fine.
Now if you are looking to add suits to your wardrobe due to job dress code requirements, then we recommend trying out alternative styles and patterns which may include charcoal, pinstriped and checkered.
What are some good suit brands?
As we got deep into the research, we found that brands of suits can vary significantly, both in price and craftsmanship.
While we touched on several brands in this guide that we think will be well loved by many men, here are a few brands that stood out during our research:
- Brooks Brothers
- Kenneth Cole
- Black Lapel
- Hugo Boss
- Suit Supply
- Tom Ford
- Lauren Ralph Lauren
- Calvin Klein
- Tommy Hilfiger
Now if you are wondering why some of the brands may not have been included, it was simply due to accessibility. Recommending a suit that can only be purchased in one area of the world (that only has brick and mortar shops) wouldn’t make sense when considering the options available to all our readers.
Should I just invest in a bespoke suit?
If you have the funds and want to look your absolute best, then there is no denying the allure of owning a bespoke suit.
Having your suit handmade to your individual specifications from a tailor will ensure not only a perfect fit, but one that will have exactly everything you would want.
Just be ready to spend a significant amount of money for this service (i.e. typically more than $3,000)
Suit vs. Blazer vs. Sports Coat
Suits, blazers, and sports coats are all uniquely different ways for a man to look a bit more fashionable. However, each of these options are significantly different from one another.
Here’s the differences:
Suits are made for formal occasions and always come in either two- or three-piece options:
- Suit jacket
- Suit pants
- Vest (optional)
Each of these pieces will feature matching fabrics in order to look both coordinated and sharp.
Furthermore, with matching articles of clothing, the jacket, pants, and vest will wear evenly over time – always ensuring a uniform look.
Suits often find their home at formal events including weddings, funerals, job interviews, and to a lesser extent, workplaces.
Very similar to the suit jacket, the blazer’s biggest difference isn’t in the structure of the garment itself, but rather what it is worn with.
Men’s blazers are often worn with off-color dress pants or chinos.
Blazers carry many of the same subtle features as a suit jacket including similar fabric choices, pocket closures, and vents.
Best for workplace or evening wear, a blazer, when worn properly, is an effortless way to look and feel confident in your style.
Shoe choices when wearing blazers can differ subtly when compared to suits. While dress shoes can still work with blazers, men may have some fun and go with Chelsea boots or casual shoes.
The most casual of the three would be the sports coat (also known as a sports jacket).
Made of much thicker and durable material, the sports coat is a great way to pull off a smart casual look at both the workplace and on the weekends.
Often made of a rough wool fabric (commonly tweed) that is complemented by leather patches on the elbows and ticket pockets, it is the ultimate jacket to own in the fall and spring months.
Able to be paired with dark selvedge denim jeans, dress boots, and even casual shoes, it is a great jacket to have in your wardrobe when you need to look just a bit more put together.
Whether you are going out on a nice dinner date with your significant other, or you simply want to look a bit more stylish by wearing something other than your North Face or activewear jacket, a sports coat is a perfect one to fall back on that will never go out of style.
Our Criteria for Choosing the Best Suits for Men
Finding the best suit for men in 2021 was difficult. The reason for the difficulty stemmed from a mix of considerations including quality, style, brand, price, color, occasion, fit, and accessibility.
However, after a careful review of the options covered in this guide, we are confident that we put together a well-rounded list of suits that can work for any man out there.
We hope that this guide was helpful in finding your first or fifth suit to add to your expanding wardrobe.