How to choose a watch?

Choosing a watch

Image courtesy of GQ

As someone who only recently treated himself to a classic watch as a birthday gift, I have come to realize the incomparable worth watches have as timeless investment pieces. Though many people say a watch is simply a thing of the past, I beg to differ. A watch is an understated accessory that, though forgotten by many, makes quite a statement of class when it is rightfully noticed. With all that said, if the snow on the ground is of any indication, Christmas is rapidly approaching, and a watch is an excellent item to ask for a well-deserved gift. Even if you were naughty instead of nice, a watch is a perfect gift for anyone, young or old.

As mentioned in GQ, the importance of a watch is most understood when it is compared to something as common as a tie. “Who cares if it’s not purely functional? It still plays an integral role in what it means to be a man.” Though watches may no longer be truly useful when everyone is constantly clutching their cellphones, it adds an undeniable air of timeless elegance that can be appreciated by all. Furthermore, even though a watch usually hidden under sleeves, that quick moment when it peeks from under the sleeve is capable of saying a lot more about someone than any outfit ever could.

Accordingly, when choosing a watch this Christmas season, I would first recommend really taking the time to choose the style that suits you and your style the most. In my case, because of my penchant for minimalist detailing, I chose a watch devoid of any embellishments, except a crocodile-skin texture on the leather straps. To complement that classic touch, my watch also features a super-slim watch dial with no more than to hands. I really chose this because value the personal value of classic items like watches, the value that isn’t necessarily noticed by all, but that you know is always there. Some call it boring timidity, I call it understated confidence.

However, because minimalism might not be everyone’s cup of tea, there a thankfully a plethora of other watches to please everyone’s taste. From the more opulent, diamond-encrusted watch, to the more casual weekend watch with preppy stripes on canvas, watches can truly cater to any man’s particular style. With that said, I would also recommend not being afraid to try something new when choosing a watch. If it’s your first “real” watch purchase, then sticking to the classics is probably ideal. However, if you’ve become accustomed to this procedure, then step out of your shell and surprise yourself! On that note, a trend that I would love to see more men adopt is the rose-gold tinted watch. Though the saying “only real men wear pink” is now a tad trite, it remains true that it takes a good deal of confidence to wear something so modern.

Naturally, the size of a watch should never compensate for anything else. As stated on eHow, “A man with a smaller wrist doesn’t look good wearing a watch with a large face or he may find a large band to be too bulky.” Be wise when it comes to size!

One final suggestion when choosing a watch is to shop around as much as you can. Because there are currently as many watch brands as there are watch styles, you should really take your time to find the one that fits all of your specifications. Be it you budget, your mechanism preference or even your ideal material composition, doing your research before hand enables you to find exactly what you want. With something as timeless as a watch, it is crucial that you find your perfect match seeing as you could be wearing it for the rest of your life. Thankfully, with the lifetime warranties many watchmakers offer, a lifetime doesn’t sound so crazy.

How to remove salt stains from leather shoes?

Leather winter boots

Image courtesy of The Guardian

Though winter has yet to officially begin, it’s pretty safe to say that it’s finally here, and here to stay. With the excessive amounts of snow some places have already received, winter and its accompanying woes are back for the next couple of frigid months. While to defend oneself from the cold, one must bundle up, to defend one’s garments from the disastrous effects of snow, one must protect them with the appropriate techniques.

Accordingly, one of the most important pieces of clothing that is used daily to affront winter are the winter boots. Though they come in all shapes and sizes, for professional men, winter boots are usually of the leather variety, a characteristic highlighted in this past Suit Upp post. Though leather is known for its incomparable durability  and timelessness, one element that regrettably has the upper-hand over it is snow, more specifically the salt that is used to melt snow.

As discussed in this GQ article, an effective way of  removing salt stains from winter boots made from natural materials like leather and suede is to “mix a tablespoon of white vinegar with a cup of water and wipe the stains off with a soft cloth.” Because vinegar is an acidic substance, it acts as a great cleaner because it efficiently dissolves dirt while leaving the original surface intact. Another notable benefit of using white vinegar to remove annoying salt stains is that it is an environmentally-friendly alternative that harms both your leather winter boots and the planet far less than the toxic cleaning formulas available. Can you ask for anything better?

However, before you apply the solution of water and vinegar to your shoes, it is important to clean off all excess dust or dirt so as to make sure the solution will be as effective as possible. Once you’ve gently rubbed on the solution, clean off the area with a towel dampened with water so as to remove an excess vinegar on your leather boots. Then let them dry in a naturally heated place that will prevent the wet leather from getting brittle. And voilà, you’re all done!

The main thing to remember when using a solution of vinegar and water to clean your leather boots is that you should use the vinegar sparingly. Due to the fact that vinegar is an acid, it is important to not use it in excess, if not the solution will simply become oversaturated, and consequently ineffective.

When removing salt stains, it is very important to try and rid yourself of the nuisance as soon as possible so as to prevent the salt from eating into the leather and, as a result, making it unwearable. When you invest in a pair of winter leather boots, it is crucial that you also invest in making them looking like brand new as much as possible. Though winter is a pain to deal with on a daily basis, it’s definitely more bearable when you know you look good while doing it. Furthermore, the more you take care of your leather winter boots, the longer they will last you.

Should I invest in a designer suit?

Designer suit

Image courtesy of Hugo Boss

As we all know, designer clothing is expensive. Though much is said about the quality and fit of clothes from designer labels, the fact remains that most people simply cannot afford to purchase anything from a designer. However, a distinction must be made between owning trendy designer pieces and investing in timeless garments from designer brand. While the former is more appropriate for the fashion-obsessed whose “style” depends solely on how much on-trend designer clothes they’re wearing, the latter option is for people who recognize the many qualities in designer pieces that are made to transcend both time and trends.

Accordingly, in response to the question in this post’s title, I strongly believe that one should invest in a designer garment, especially when it comes to something as essential and timeless as a good suit. The main reason I support such a stance is because, as mentioned previously, you truly can’t beat the impeccable quality and seemingly made-to-measure fit that characterizes designer pieces. Despite the fact that you can get a suit from pretty much any store that sells menswear, you certainly cannot compare a suit bought from an establishment like H&M to one purchased from a high-end label. When it comes to a suit, the fit is something that can never be compromised. The great thing about investing in a designer suit is that you’re purchasing pieces that will conserve their fit for as long as you plan to wear them. Furthermore, while those cheaper stores are more focused on producing trendy items that will only last you for the very short season that they will be in style, designer suits are made to last, both in terms of the construction and of the timelessness of its style. As stated in this NZS, ” designer suit is not always cheap, but getting the right cut will result in a much more flattering fit, and a good looking suit never goes out of style.” A modern suit that fits impeccably will always be in high demand.

In the specific case of the suit, one of the best things about investing in a designer suit is that you’ll most likely only have to do it once. Unlike clothes from stores that specialize in mass production, when you invest in a designer suit, you know you’re investing in something that will last you a very long time. Why? It’s simply a question of the truly incomparable construction and choice of materials that are such a defining element in designer suits. Premium natural materials like wool, cotton and cashmere are undeniably far more resistant to the naturally devastating effects of time on cheaper synthetic materials or composites like polyester, rayon and acrylic. Consequently, designer suits retain their specific tailoring far longer than any mass-produced item ever could.

Another element that makes investing in a designer suit a rational decision is the truly exquisite construction. Most of the time, that aspect can be noticed by simply looking at the garment. Specifically in the case of a suit, the construction plays such an important part in the value of both the pieces because they are supposed to be worn so often and in such formal settings. As mentioned in this excellent post by TRCB, “inspect the seams, lining, and small details [...] a cheaply made jacket will pull at the seams, and the lining will roll in the wrong places, emphasizing all that is inferior.”

With all that said, when you invest in a designer suit, just know that you truly are getting what you’re paying for. High prices yield high-quality garments. For suit, it should always be quality over quantity.

What type of suit does Obama wear?

Barack Obama

Image courtesy of the White House

As today is the big election day for all American voters across the country, and because last week’s post was dedicated to Mitt Romney’s conservative style, the post for this week is naturally all about Barack Obama and the presidential style of dressing he has perfected over the last four years.

Though the topic of Obama’s style has been discussed thoroughly since 2008 when he was first elected as president of the United States, it remains an important aspect of the president himself seeing as so much of one’s personality can be taken from how they are presented. Consequently, when he originally assumed his leadership position four years ago, Obama adapted his style in a manner that took into consideration the importance of first impressions, especially in a role as nationally and globally paramount as his. According to Politico, Obama “has shed his traditional center-cut suit coats in favor of jackets sporting two side vents, a sleeker look that originated on London’s Savile Row to cater to the riding set.” That more modern and slender look is exactly what the president needed to convey the image of modern confidence necessary for the leader of a nation in our day and age.

Furthermore, in accordance with his political stature, Barack Obama gets his suits customs tailored by Hartmarx, a 125-year-old menswear company and the country’s largest suit-maker located in Obama’s hometown of Chicago. As mentioned on About.com’s Men Fashion site, “the Obama suit, as it is often called, is always the same style and material — a two-button, single-breasted suit jacket and single pleated pant with inch-and-a-quarter cuffs, and is made of a 97% worsted wool and 3% cashmere blend.”

One of the best things about President Obama’s classic style is that he constantly exudes refinement and elegance through his well-tailored suits. Though his are actually custom-tailored, the main lesson to take out of his style is that the fit truly is key in looking president-level good. Coincidentally, while he was senator of Illinois, Obama bought his suits off-the-rack (i.e. from stores), but simply made sure to choose the ones that fit him best. Clearly, Barack Obama has thankfully never compromised the tailoring of his suits. In that manner, the president is only ever seen in suits that fit his tall and slender frame. In accordance, that enables his suits to drape perfectly over and around his torso, and also for his pants to fall at the perfect level above his dress shoes. Additionally, by being picky with his tailoring, all of Obama’s suits fit perfectly around the shoulders in a manner that ensures his sleeves have the ideal length of being just short enough to let the sleeves of his dress-shirts peak from underneath.

Another important element of Obama’s style is how he sticks to time-tested classics no matter the occasion. As stated in AskMen, “the foundational rule of Barack Obama’s style is to keep your wardrobe simple with finely made dark suits, a crisp white shirt and the camera-friendly pale blue tie or a deep red tie just to change things up.” Citing a previous SuitUpp post, “the most commendable aspect of Mr. Obama’s attire is his devotion to consistency.” Classics truly never change.

With a style like that, one can only hope President Barack Obama will be given the opportunity to showcase the best of menswear tailoring (and leadership, of course) to the rest of the world for the next four years. On that note, if you’re an American, make sure it vote today! Be it for whoever, each and every single voice counts!

What type of suit does Mitt Romney wear?

Mitt Romney

Image courtesy of Archives

With only a few days left to go until the American presidential elections on Tuesday November 6th, 2012, it certainly is high-time that a post be dedicated to the main topic that seems to have been on everyone’s mind for the past few months. Despite the fact that both contenders have spent their entire presidential campaign being scrutinized by anyone and everyone, one thing that is often overlooked is their respective sartorial style. Though the discussion of fashion choices has proven to be something usually reserved for the wives of the nominees, a person’s style can definitely say a lot about their personality, especially when in such an important position as the president of the United States of America.

Seeing as Barack Obama has retained the presidential limelight for the past four years, I only find it fitting that Mitt Romney’s personal style be discussed first. When it comes to the suits he wears, Mitt Romney is unsurprisingly exceptionally conservative, in the sense that he has a clear tendency of sticking to the tried and true basics of business-appropriate formal menswear. Just like the policies and values he preaches, Mitt Romney is evidently authentic to his true nature.

Romney’s reluctancy to stray away from the conservative element that has come to define is most evident in the classic tailoring he has adopted from the beginning of his presidential campaign. Despite certain occasions where he has taken a more laid-back approach in an attempt to widen his audience, as described by the Washington Post, Mitt Romney can often be seen “with carefully rolled sleeves and an ice-blue tie, looked polished, the way presidential candidates often do.” His classic, controlled appearance is often seen by many as a defining trait in the air of affluence he deservedly gives off.

With that said, though Romney has never really talked about the type of suits he wears, it is pretty obvious that he is quite fond of the higher-end models from the classic and revered American menswear brands. According to this Ask Andy About Clothes forum commenter, Mitt Romney’s suits are “of a conservative style so they’re probably high-end Brooks Brothers, Hickey Freeman or another American maker. Furthermore, in accordance with his immense wealth, as mentioned in this post by All Things Fashion DC, “Romney [often] sports [an] Oxford button down with a Brooks Brothers or Nordstrom suit. A suit from Nordstrom can cost anywhere between $600-1900.”

Contrarily to what you would expect from a presidential candidate, Mitt Romney is also regrettably often seen wearing suits that are a tad too long on the sleeves. As stated in the Philly Post, “Romney wears things too big and too long. His jacket sleeves are always too long.” However, to Romney’s benefit, he is well-versed in the art of choosing the right type of collar for his dress-shirts. Because of his slightly more stocky build, Mitt Romney chooses to wear shirts that have “a very small gap between [the] collar, which is pointing straight down. A smaller tie knot, and a smaller gap between collar points.” Again according to the Philly Post, that subtle style element is great for his conservative platform.

All in all, Mitt Romney is a conservative man who dresses like a conservative man should. His immense wealth aside, you can’t help but respect someone who doesn’t resort to gaudy embellishments for attention, yet still knows what’s more appropriate for his physical appearance and personality. Even to the point of the particular steel-blue shade of his suits that is rapidly becoming his sartorial trademark, Mitt Romney knows what’s best for Mitt Romney.

How should I wear my winter accessories?

Winter accessories

Image courtesy of Sharp For Men

When it comes to winter, it truly is all about keeping warm. After the pristine white snow has turned slushy and ugly, there truly is nothing else that can keep one’s mind away from the fact that it is frigid outside. Despite that truly bone-chilling fact, there thankfully still are small ways to look good while also being warm. As it is often said, everything is in the details. In the case of winter menswear, those details are the winter accessories that are often overlooked as trivial pieces that can’t mesh form and function together. Luckily, that isn’t the case.

As it is to be expected, the essential winter accessories are the scarf, the tuque, and last but certainly not least, the gloves. When used in a knowledgeable manner, these three pieces can keep one warm and stylish all at the same time. The key to achieving that is not being afraid of embracing colour, patterns and textures. When those three elements are incorporated into one’s decision-making process, only good things lie ahead.

On the subject of the scarf, I would highly recommend either purchasing one that features either an eye-catching yet mature pattern or an equally arresting bold colour. If you have more of a penchant for patterns, the easiest ones to incorporate into one’s winter attire are without a doubt stripes. Be it large in-your-face stripes, small -barely-stripes, or a refined mix of both, striped scarves are definitely the way to go this winter. The great thing about stripes is that they add a highly-appreciated graphic element to any outfit in a manner that is still subdued and completely business-appropriate. Stripes catch the eye, for all the right reasons. Furthermore, stripes are an excellent way of color-blocking with a wide range of winter-appropriate colours that can go with all winter attire. As mentioned in AskMen, “great fabrics for scarves are wool, cotton and fleece” because of their classic versatility.

When it comes to tuques, I would strongly suggest sticking to a solid colour seeing as a tuque is supposed to act as a functional complement to a winter outfit. Additionally, you don’t want to direct all the attention away from your actual outfit, and instead to your head by wearing a tuque with a graphic print or excessively gaudy tones. Accordingly, if you want to try something that isn’t black or grey, I would recommend choosing winter hues like burgundy, army green, navy blue or even brown. However, just remember that for tuques it’s all about simplicity.

In regards to the final element of the trio of winter accessories, gloves are a great way to have fun with new materials and textures. A material I would certainly suggest experimenting with is leather. Because of it’s natural “hard” edge, leather is a fantastic way of adding a certain visual intrigue to an outfit mainly composed of dark solids (i.e. all winter outfits). As stated in Sharp for Men, be it in black or buttery camel, brown or even burgundy, leather “can help you show some character” in a sublime manner that exudes modern elegance.

All in all, winter accessories are a great way of breathing life into any winter outfit. The cold becomes a second-thought when you look so damn good.

Should I invest in a trench coat?

Trench coat

Image courtesy of Burberry

As a recent owner of a rather dapper trench coat, I honestly have nothing but good things to say about this timeless piece of outerwear in menswear. From it’s well-documented beginnings during the First World War as a coat worn by officers and soldiers alike, to its present state as a classic heritage garment appreciated by all, the trench coat as survived the time of test because of its incomparable durability and its undeniable versatility.

When it comes to its durability, there is no doubt whatsoever that the trench coat is a piece made to last. Seeing as it’s first documented appearance was during WWI were its use was practically a standard among officials and soldiers, the trench coat’s enduring construction ensures it survives even through the toughest conditions. The main characteristic that permits this one-of-a-kind durability is the heavy-duty nature of the materials used to construct a trench coat. Originally, the material used by Thomas Burberry, whose namesake brand is famous worldwide for its highly-coveted trench coats, is gabardine. According to The Art of Manliness, gabardine is “an innovative and durable wool fabric designed by Burberry to repel water and keep the wearer warm but ventilated.” Consequently, the ingenious textile construction of the trench coat is a critical factor to its timeless and well-warranted appeal.

Other than its renowned durability, the other quality that makes the trench coat such a unique outwear piece is its versatility that ensures that it can transcend seasons like no other garment can. Be it as a heavy duty fall coat, or a light-weight winter jacket or even a classic spring transition piece, the trench coat is ideal for all seasons. Though it is commonly used as a fall coat, some more traditional trench coats even feature a wool or quilted lining that has the added benefits of being both insulating and removable. Accordingly, that lining naturally aids in the conservation of body heat when the trench coat is used as a winter jacket. Talk about being stylish and practical! However, the only thing that must be remembered when wearing a trench coat during the winter season is that it calls for layering! That requirement acts as a benefit seeing as it prevents one from feeling stuffy when the layers of warm clothes are piled on.

Another element to the versatility of the trench coat is the fact that it can also be worn during the warmer spring months. Seeing as it was originally meant to counter both war and bad weather, the trench coat is a great choice for beating the cold, and an even better choice for staying dry even under the pounding rain. As spring is a season highly characterized by constant rain, the trench coat is certainly the best option in repelling the water seeing as it is made of a material , either gabardine or a cotton-based composite, apt in water-repelling. Having originated from a country known for its often overcast and rainy climate, the trench coat does its job splendidly.

So in response to whether or not you should invest in a trench coat, all I can say is that it really all depends on if you’re a fan of durability, versatility and timeless style. As Esquire put it so concisely, the trench coat is “one of the most important pieces a man can have hanging in his closet.” The ball is in your court!

Should I wear a plaid suit this winter?

Wearing a plaid suit

Image courtesy of GQ

When it comes to winter fashion, the graphic pattern that is plaid is one of the essentials in beating the cold, while still looking stylish. Though before this print was viewed as a pattern fit solely for lumberjacks, Scots and people of the like, plaid has thankfully encountered a resurgence in menswear over the past seasons. Be it during the warmer months of spring/summer of the cooler days of fall/winter, plaid is certainly one of the most versatile patterns out there.

For this fall/winter season, plaid was seen all over the runways during the menswear fashion week. From suits to shirts to ties, plaid was the pattern of choice for a lot of designers who embraced it as a classic manner of bringing attention to one’s clothes, especially in a business setting. With that said, the great thing about plaid is that no matter how you wear it, you’ll definitely get the attention of other for all the right reasons.

Though wearing a plaid suit this winter might seem like an excessively flamboyant option, it surprisingly isn’t because the plethora of plaid suits that are being produced this season all feature the pattern in an understated manner that prevents one from looking gaudy. One of the ways this was accomplished was by using a slender tailoring for plaid suits, one that takes attention away from the pattern and brings it to the slenderness of your profile. As mentioned in GQ on the subject of modern plaid suits, “these new designer incarnations are cut slimmer and shorter, with higher armholes, minimal lining, and natural shoulders. That means they make you look slender—but with a gentlemanly ease.”

 

Another benefit of wearing a plaid suit is the fact that it is such a versatile pattern that can be found in many different variations, and can be paired in as many different ways. As stated in this excellent guide to patterned suits by GQ, the main plaid prints that one should think of investing in this winter season are glen plaid, blanket plaid, checked plaid and windowpane plaid. While the first two are more graphic and bold, the latter two variations of plaid are much more subdued and can be worn as classic solid colours. As discussed in this post by AskMen, an additional element of versatility that characterizes plaid is the fact that “The individual components can be worn separately to more relaxed, stylish events. For instance, pair a bold-plaid blazer with jeans for your next date to impress her with your outside-the-box abilities.”

When it comes to pairing plaid suits with dress shirts, you have two distinct options that depend greatly on which type of plaid you decide to invest in. If you decide to purchase a plaid suit in either glen plaid, prince of wales plaid or blanket plaid, I would highly recommend pairing the suit with a solid-coloured dress shirt because the plaid is bold already bold enough on its own. A great way to make the pairing a bit more interesting is by using lighter, more lively hues to contrast with the neutral tones of those plaids. An easy example is mixing the iconic grey of a prince of wales plaid with a refreshing baby blue.

On the other hand, if you decide to invest in a checked plaid or windowpane plaid suit, I would then suggest being more adventurous with your pairings seeing as those plaids are so subdued that they act as neutral solid colours. Accordingly, you have a lot more leeway in wearing patterned dress shirts in plaid, stripes and even the more risky paisley. However, when pairing patterns with patterns, it’s always important to remember, as stated in this GQ post, “if you wear stripes with stripes or checks with checks, you should have a difference in amplitude. A pin-striped shirt is generally better with a chalk-striped suit than with a pin-striped suit; a big check would complement a small check.” Furthermore, the colours in the plaids can’t match unless you want all eyes to be on your for all the wrong reasons!

As mentioned in this post by Every Guyed, “both casual and formal, the plaid suit can be worn almost anywhere, if you know just what you’re doing.” So, just take a leap and have fun with it! Who said winter had to be boring?

Can I wear a sweater with my suit?

Suit and V-neck sweater

Image courtesy of GQ

As the latest installment to the winter series of posts, this week is all about layering in the work environment. Naturally, an important part of winter dressing is being able to keep warm by layering different pieces one atop each other. When answering the question of whether or not one can wear a sweater with a suit, the easiest answer to give is it depends. The main difficulty with layering while wearing a suit is that it usually takes away from the classic formality of the suit by making the entire look seem much more casual and a lot less business-appropriate. Thankfully though, there are many ways to work around this regrettable element that will leave you looking as stylish as you are warm. When it comes to winter dressing, you certainly can’t ask for anything better!

With that said, the first recommendation I would give when choosing a sweater to layer over a shirt and tie when wearing a suit would be the classic V-neck sweater. One of the best qualities of this type of sweater is its undeniable versatility. It can be dressed down with a pair of jeans on a casual weekend outing, or it can be dressed up with a sharply tailored suit and a pair of spiffy winter boots. Either way, the V-neck is a great layering piece that makes winter all the more bearable! Furthermore, as explained in Real Men Real Style, “the good thing about wearing a V-neck sweater with a suit, as opposed to a crew neck sweater, is that you have a good opportunity to show off the knot of your tie.”

On the subject of wearing a V-neck sweater with a suit, there is one guideline that must be respected. Considering the more severe nature of the winter season and the business environment in general,  it is most recommended to wear a V-neck sweater in a solid muted colour so as to not detract attention from the formality of the suit. I suggest choosing more conservative fall/winter tones like grey, navy, hunter green, burgundy and even brown because, as mentioned in this article by Put This On, “you want the sweater to contrast significantly with the jacket, but you don’t necessarily want it to stand out.”

Another type of sweater that would be appropriate to pair with a suit is the now-ubiquitous cardigan. Though this is not the most traditional option, it certainly is a modern and very stylish one that does the job of keeping you warm despite the cold outside. Though as versatile as the V-neck sweater, the cardigan is a bit more tricky to pair with a suit because the fact that it features buttons means that there is a lot more going on. Accordingly, as discussed in this post by Suit Society, “the length of the cardigan should match with the suit. The cardigan should rest on the belt of your suit pants and not go over it.” Also, you should also leave the last button of your cardigan unbuttoned because, as stated by this forum comment, it “resist[s] the bottom edge of the cardigan’s inclination to ride up one’s waist, as you move around.”

On the subject of both the V-neck sweater and the cardigan, it is critical to remember that layering a piece of clothing on top of a dress-shirt might cause a “stuffed effect” when paired with a suit. The simplest remedy to this pesky problem is to make sure, beforehand, that there is enough room between your suit and your torso for a sweater. It’s all about being warm, not stuffy!

What kind of boots should I buy for winter to wear with a suit?

Winter Brogues with Wedge Sole

Image courtesy of The Sartorialist

Following the winter theme of the past two posts, many style elements must be taken into consideration when getting ready for the dreaded season that is rapidly approaching. An important winter purchase that must be reviewed thoroughly is the winter boot. As your footwear of choice during the many long, cold, and exceptionally snowy months of winter, it is critical that you chose something that meshes function with form in a seamless manner. Despite the little attention, or lack thereof, placed on winter boots for men, there are surprisingly quite a number of versatile choices to choose from, so it’s certain that you’ll be able to find a pair that fit your needs perfectly. From the classic ankle boot to the more fashion-forward Chelsea boot, there’s definitely something for everyone!

When investing in a winter boot, the important thing to remember is that you want it to be as versatile and wearable as possible, both during winter and during other seasons like fall and spring. Accordingly, the ideal winter boot would naturally be one that covers your ankle so as to protect your ankles from the frigid winter wind. Another benefit of the ankle boot is that it gives off an air of rugged sophistication that will definitely complement the classic formality of your suit. As stated in this post on Styletread, “ankle boots give you the coverage you need for the cooler months, and they are dressy enough to wear to work or with a casual outfit for a night out with the guys.”

With that said, the first winter boot that I would recommend to pair with a suit is the brogue ankle boot. As a versatile footwear option inspired by the classic styling of the brogue, this model is one that combines practicality with style in a unique way that enabled it to emerge as a standout piece last winter. The great thing about the brogue ankle boot is that many footwear companies are now making new models that feature very sturdy and functional wedge soles that make combating the often truly treacherous winter terrain a more feasible task. As mentioned in this boot guide by Esquire, another benefit to this style of winter footwear is the unique fact “at work, no one is going to be able to tell the difference between these and regular brogues unless you’re like, crossing your legs in their face.”

The next style of winter boot I would suggest investing in for the upcoming winter is the timeless desert boot. As a current owner of two pairs of desert boots, I can certainly attest to their versatility and functionality. However, my only recommendations would be to purchase a pair made out of a more weatherproof material like leather, in a subtle colour like black or dark chocolate, and that features a dressier and more understated sole than crepe. The reason I state these points is because, as you all know, water and salt can be terrible for suede and crepe. Consequently, you should take advantage of the fact that many shoe companies are now exploring new design avenues in an attempt to their desert boots more versatile! These shoes are a great investment that you will be able to wear year-round!

The third, and final, kind of boot I would counsel buying for the fast-approaching winter season is the fashion-forward Chelsea boot. One of the most important qualities of the Chelsea boot is how easy it is to put on! With its elastic panels at the ankle, this model is pretty much the boot equivalent of the slip-on. Though that may sound like a rather irrelevant detail, speaking from firsthand experience, it definitely isn’t when your fingers are numb from the cold and you are totally incapable of tying your laces! On top of the elastic panels at the ankle that makes getting them on and off so simple, the Chelsea boot is also incredibly on-trend at the moment because of its sleek and very understated silhouette. That stylistic element makes these boots the perfect choice for sharply tailored suits. As mentioned in NY Times’ T Magazine, “Stefano Tonchi, the editor of T, suggests you try a Chelsea boot”. When it comes to effortless style, he certainly is a man to trust!

On a final note, all I can say is have fun this winter! Try something new and invest in a pair of winter boots you can be proud of while wearing them for a very long time! Sometimes, you just have to get your feet wet!