Saturday, August 9, 2014

Business Wear Tips for Every Size Man

Hi Beauty Bees, (Even though most of you may be Men),

Beyond my favorite hobby of shopping and playing with makeup, I have always enjoyed reading. I recently picked up the book, "Dress Your Best" written by hosts of TLC's What Not to Wear, Clinton Kelly and Stacy London. I have watched there show for years and almost cried when I found out they wrote a book.

After reading through the many pages of women's fashion tips, I came upon the men's section and it also gave amazing tips for work (business), weekend and evening wear. In this post I want to share some of those helpful tips as well as previous knowledge on the topic. I will only be touching upon the business wear as I feel this is where most men tend to want or need the help in.

Essential Work Wardrobe Pieces (Minimum; Feel free to own more as it is encouraged)

a two- or three-button suit in a neutral color like black/gray/navy in a heavier-weight wool as well as a tropical-weight wool
minimum of six dress shirts in a variety of colors
six ties
two pocket squares
an overcoat
brown and black lace-ups
brown and black belts
leather briefcase

Every man is a different height and size so why give tips for only the "model" size guy. Below I have tips for men of all shapes and sizes but also general tips that do work for everyone.

Selected View
Striped Dress shirt
Mens Wearhouse -$79.59

Short Men Tips
Strong vertical stripes on a shirt are a good way to add some visual length
Cuffed pants cut the line of the leg while we are trying to elongate them; look for flat-front trousers because pleated pants require a cuff
Length of trousers; have only a slight break or fold rest atop your shoe, too much pooling at the shoes makes your look shorter
Monochromatic belt, pant and shoe combo gives the longest line possible on the leg

Traveler Suit Separate 3-Button Jacket- Sizes 48-52
Three-Button Suit
Jos. A. Bank - $185

Tall Men Tips
Three-button suits with slightly higher stance works well on you because it covers the surface of the torso and makes you look less lanky
Don't always run to the big and tall section; Try regular jackets, if its long enough to cover your butt, the length is fine. Just watch out for sleeve length, if its too short check to see if there enough material to be let out
Do not buy pants with more then one pleat, it adds volume in the hips and you don't want to look "hippy"
Bold chalk striped suits will work well with your height
Soft Constructed Sharkskin Jacket
Tommy Hilfiger - $289.99

Athletic Men Tips
Look for softly constructed jackets (no shoulder padding and lies flat) as it will help with your broad shoulders and high traps keeping your neck from disappearing under the material 
Choose multicolored, striped button-front shirts as vertical lines prevent you from looking bulky. Shirts that fit well in the shoulders will be a bit loose in the waist, don't be discouraged, just take it to a tailor for alterations. 
Work out your glutes? Tight pants? Find pants that fit well in the butt and get the loose waist tailored in.
Classic Fit Trouser
Banana Republic - $80

Bigger in the Middle Tips
Bigger men can handle more pattern so have fun with it and stand out
Wide straight-leg trousers are important. No pleats what so ever, they add bulk. No tapered leg, they make everything look wider.
A strong shoulder construction (meaning even a smaller shoulder pad) is good for balancing out a larger tummy
Boxy jackets are also great because they are roomier in the midsection and lends the appearance that the jacket is creating the bulk, not you.

All Men
Wear ties only with dress shirts and make sure you fit two fingers into your buttoned collar for comfort and proper fit
Proper fit in a suit starts at the shoulder, it should not extend past your natural shoulder but also make sure that you have full range of motion throughout when the jacket is buttoned
Always tuck in your dress shirts, it looks neater (Keep a clean Gig Line: shirt placket (the rectangle of fabric where the front buttons are located), belt buckle and trouser seam should all be aligned)
Don't shy away from bright colored or patterned shirts, remember you will only be seeing small amounts of it underneath your jacket and those brighter patterns (when paired with a darker jacket) bring the attention to your face as well as give your outfit a huge fashion forward impact
Casual Fridays does not mean jeans and a t-shirt, trade a suit for trousers and a colorful button-down shirt.
Belts should be bought two inches bigger then your waist size, gives you more comfort and room for daily needs--and meals

Hopefully these tips will help every size man when they go clothes shopping for work. Have fun, be yourself, and for all that's good and fashionably, don't pass on pieces or get discouraged when something does not fit perfectly. Tailors should become your best friend and always remember anything can be brought in or out. 

Would any ladies be interested in a similar post?

Also, don't forget to check out this book for tips on what to wear when your out of the office. 

*Disclaimer: I bought this book with my own money and I am no way being sponsored or affiliated with it. I did however mention tips and tricks from the book and give full credit to the writers.


  1. The "vertical stripes" thing is one of the best fashion tips for short men I've ever gotten. It really is amazing how effectively something as simple as stripes can trick the eye!

    1. Yes it is! And it works for women as well! I am on the shorter side and I love using stripes and even other types of prints to help trick the eye.


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