A Guide to Wearing Neutrals

Men always seem to play it safe when it comes to wearing colours. While some of the bolder men embrace the brighter side of the colour wheel, most others are just content keeping it subtle. That’s good news, because subtle, neutral colours have not only been the backbone of fashion but in recent seasons they have gained even more popularity, thanks to designers using them widely in their creations.

But don’t get us wrong. We aren’t talking of beige or off-white here. Neutral colours are not just the summery, pastel shades of off-white. A neutral colour is any colour that does not appear on the colour wheel– think black, grey, white and khaki. In recent fashion, they have been taking centre stage.

Here’s a simple guide to incorporating neutral colours in your wardrobe…

Black

Times have changed, so has fashion. Today, black isn’t a funeral colour anymore. Most modern men’s wardrobes now boast of a whole section dedicated to black, from shirts and tees, to jackets and pants.

Black is easy to wear; it’s slimming, versatile, and suits everyone. An all-black outfit isn’t the sole preserve of rockstars any longer. From pairing a leather jacket with a black tee and black denims, to rocking a textured black and charcoal suit, the options are really endless when it comes to styling an all-black outfit.

White

The white colour family also includes cream and ivory, so do mix and match shades to avoid looking washed out in an all-white outfit. Mixing textures is another way to make an all-white attire interesting. Combine fabrics like denim, cotton, corduroy, and wool to make an interesting white outfit.

Do keep in mind that white is harder to pull off than black and doesn’t suit people with pale skin. White is also harder to maintain and may incur huge dry cleaning bills. To break down a white outfit, add colourful accents like pocket squares, shoes, and belts.

Earth tones

The latest obsession in menswear in terms of colour is neutral earth tones. Once upon a time, the only neutrals men wore were black, white, and grey. Now, with the rising popularity of earth tones, there’s more to look forward to in neutrals.

Earth tones are great for all seasons, and make for perfect cold weather layering. Earth tones are also ideal for smart-casual outfits. Mix and match different shades to achieve a chic look. Pair an olive knit tee or cardigan with a navy jacket or blazer for a rich dose of colour, or a chambray shirt with light brown trousers and beige jacket for a more casual look.

Grey

While charcoal, stone and heather grey is great for the bottom half, soft grey is ideal for the top half. A dark grey chino or denim looks great when paired with a lighter grey shirt or jersey tee, while a soft grey shirt under a textured blazer is great when the temperature drops.

Mixing textures is the key here also. Like any other neutral colour, an all-grey outfit can soon get boring if you don’t make it interesting by combining different prints and fabrics.

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