What turns a good outfit into a great one? Attention to detail. Accessories can transform a simple outfit into a luxe look or turn a formal ensemble into a statement, and anyone can achieve this level of style simply by adding a few of the right pieces — especially jewellery.
For men, however, wearing jewellery is a fine art, as doing so incorrectly can come across as gaudy. So, how do you know you’re getting the balance right between too much and too little? Below, we’ll be taking you through some of our top tips for wearing bracelets, necklaces, rings, and watches in a subtle yet sophisticated way.
Necklaces and bracelets
We’ll start with necklaces and bracelets, because they are probably the two trickiest types of jewellery for a man to pull off. This is partly because there are so many varieties to choose from — a blessing and a curse for jewellery collectors. But, mostly, it’s because you have to take your outfit into account before you select a style.
For example, what top you’re wearing affects whether you can wear a necklace or not. A collared shirt with the top button undone allows just a glimpse of the jewellery to be seen, which is the perfect amount. A shirt with a tie would just obscure it, and a collarless shirt is the wrong shape altogether. For a more casual look, you could also consider wearing a necklace tucked under a T-shirt.
In terms of what style to go for, a good starting point would be a gold or silver chain. Metal jewellery is easier to pull off because the colours work well with pretty much every tone, so it’s simply a matter of personal preference when you're choosing which to go for. If you can’t decide, base your decision on what colours you usually wear: if it's a lot of blue and grey, you’re probably better off sticking to silver. Reds and purples are warmer colours, so gold would be a safer bet.
Then, you should choose your style. Are you looking for a chunky, statement piece of jewellery, or something more understated? Again, it’s your choice, but if you’re going down the larger route you should stick to either a bracelet or a necklace in this style. Choosing one over the other means your chosen piece will draw the eye and have more of an impact, whereas going for both can be too much for a gentlemanly look. If you want to wear more jewellery, simpler pieces can be layered for a more contemporary effect.
Rings make a very masculine addition to any look and, as they don’t have to compete with the rest of your ensemble, you have a lot more scope than you do with necklaces and bracelets. You can use rings to express your personality through symbols, coloured stones, and other fancy features. Even selecting a clean, simple band is a great way to make a statement, so choose carefully and don’t just lump for any ring.
You can wear as many or as few rings as you like on any combination of fingers, excluding the ring finger on your left hand which is reserved for your wedding ring. Just make sure you don't wear so many that it looks gaudy, especially if you prefer a chunkier style such as signet or saddle rings.
To prevent going overboard, remember to look at your hands in front of a full-length mirror to assess the effect your chosen combo will have on your overall look. If in doubt, take one accessory off before you leave the house — it’s better to wear a few quality pieces than too many. Build up a collection, then only wear a few at a time to show variety in your looks.
Every man needs a watch, no matter what his age or style. For a lot of people, they’re a symbol that you're put-together, and they can actually complete an outfit as well as complement it.
That’s not to say that buying the perfect watch is easy, however, as there are so many different styles to choose from. That’s why many people have watch collections containing a number of statement pieces for different occasions: bold tool watches with lots of technical features for when they need to stand out, sleek and sporty watches for when they need to make a good impression, and stylish dress watches with leather straps to wear to formal events.
Whether you want to start a collection or find your next key piece, it’s important to stick to the big names in watchmaking if you want to get the most for your money. It’s more than a fashion thing: watches are tiny, delicate machines and the best movements are made by the best brands, such as Rolex, Tag Heuer, and Cartier. They also have better resale value than non-luxury watches, so your collection could be worth more over time.
Don’t forget that you can get these watches at a reduced price if you shop pre-owned collections. Not only will you get the best quality at a fraction of the cost, but you can find more models from discontinued lines this way. That means you could build up a more unique and impressive collection than you would if you only bought new.
If you’re a man who’s wondering what jewellery to wear and how, the tips in this blog post should point you in the right direction. At the end of the day, your confidence is the most important factor in how good you look, so make sure you’re comfortable in whichever pieces you choose.
While you’re here, why not check out the rest of our helpful blog? It has plenty more jewellery and watch advice, including our guide to choosing the best watches to add to your collection, to help you develop your personal style.