What Is Formal Dress for Men?


Quick Answer

For decades, formal dress for men has meant "black tie." This term refers to wearing a tuxedo, which is usually a black jacket, black pants, white shirt and black bow tie.

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What Is Formal Dress for Men?
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Full Answer

One of the most noticeable differences between a tuxedo and a suit is the lapel. Tuxedo lapels use a grosgrain silk or satin and have a peaked design. The pants usually have a braid or trim running down the side of the leg in the same fabric as the lapel. The bow tie is often the same material as the lapel. The white shirt features a turned-down collar style and either has pleats or a diamond print down the front.

Experts say it is important to wear black tie attire correctly because, unlike women, men at a formal event need to dress exactly the same. Tailoring is important as well. Making sure that the jacket sleeves and pants are the right length is very important when wearing a tuxedo. Evening wear must fit close to the body to accentuate a man's silhouette.

One of the advantages of buying a tuxedo rather than renting is that the owner can tailor it to fit perfectly. Purchasing a tuxedo is actually practical because the classic combo of a tuxedo jacket, pants, shirt, and bow tie never go out of style.

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