Why is Jewelry and watches an important element of men’s fashion?

Well, it is arguable and may have multiple acceptable answers to this particular question about men’s fashion. Regardless of gender, humans have carried centuries-long relationships with jewelry made of gemstones, metals, precious rocks, and embedded symbols. There have been numerous reasons why have men been wearing jewelry of any kind in the past. Some major known reasons in history are status and rank, religion and beliefs, culture and tradition, superstition, and protection. Unlike women, jewelry has always more attached to it than just fashion when it comes to men. Why do I say that? A woman can also have a story behind her dazzling gold earrings or a distinctive broken-heart necklace around her neck. By keeping the majority in view, here I am going to discuss men’s perspective of styling with jewelry in light of some known facts.

What makes a guy wear jewelry?

Nowadays you must be seeing more men wearing rings, bracelets, and pendants — like Jay-Z, John Mayer, or Hiroshi Fujiwara who is the Godfather of Tokyo’s trendy Harajuku area. Contrary to what many of us might have thought, men’s use of jewelry is a very old trend. But it began to revive its importance in fashion in the recent past along with the birth of men’s wear fashion weeks and has much-taken hold around the world.

According to Euromonitor International, a market research company, the global sales of men’s luxury fine jewelry in 2012 was $4.3 billion which jumped to $5.3 billion in 2017. An increase of 22 percent may not seem like much in comparison to the $31.9 billion sales in women’s jewelry in 2017 but in the men’s sector, this growth is much steadier.

Men don’t put on matching jewelry and watches with every outfit. They don’t buy tens of different rings and bracelets in matching colors with their shirt, tie, and boots. Rather, their choice of jewelry is mostly influenced by the permanent aspects of their personality—facial look, hairstyle, skin tone, beard, and signature impression. Men’s collection of jewelry is mostly very small but expressive. They don’t own too many items. And certainly, there are best practices to follow when shopping for men’s jewelry.

What are the best practices in buying men’s jewelry?

Industry experts on men’s fashion recommend choosing one metal instead of wearing five jewelry items made of different metals. It is not a prohibition, but if you want to look modish and classy you will likely be following these guidelines.

First of all, depending on your preference you need to decide on a material. It seems a tiny detail but becomes very significant when you want to separate your personal meaningful expression of a gentleman from a tacky boyish look. Let’s discuss the three most common options in metal.

Gold

Gold is a symbol of status and wealth. Gold is a confident choice and goes well with one exhibiting a richness, but done incorrectly it can look loud. It can also come across brash and/or ostentatious, so it’s best to keep it to a minimum if you decide to go for it.

It’s ideal for smaller, inconspicuous pieces such as wedding bands and cufflinks, but also works well on watches, particularly when combined with steel or silver to help take the edge off. Leave the chunky, solid gold necklaces to the likes of Conor McGregor.

Sterling Silver

Sterling silver is a classic, affordable and versatile metal that is loved by many men. Its wearability and understated nature make it a go-to option for those who want to subtly accent their outfit, rather than make a bold statement.

That said, it doesn’t mean you should pile the stuff on – it can still look too much if done incorrectly. A good rule of thumb is no more than two pieces on any wrist (including your watch), no more than three pieces on any arm (including your fingers), and no more than five pieces overall.

Platinum

Something many men would have only heard of if they were considering buying an engagement ring, platinum is a precious metal that combines the luxurious, eye-catching nature of gold with the durability and sophistication of silver. Therefore, it comes with a hefty price tag and is often saved for high-end jewelry such as wedding bands, or luxury watches.

Rings

Still widely associated with marriage or family, rings have long been a staple in a man’s jewelry arsenal, but that doesn’t mean you can’t experiment a little.

No longer just for toffs and gangsters, the signet ring is back in fashion and makes an excellent option for those that want to wear something other than a plain band. They look particularly good if engraved with a family crest, your initials, or something of significance to the wearer.

Otherwise, the best advice is to keep it simple and timeless. A sterling silver tiger eye ring will never go out of style and can even be worn with a wedding band (on a different finger, of course) in the same material, should the day arrive.

A Necklace

The majority of men still shy away from choosing necklaces to complement their looks as they can, indeed, be a bit of a tough trial. Too dainty will look like womanish, too it comes across feminine, too weighty and you’re suddenly Rick Ross.

In order to do it just right, try a mid-weight chain with a small pendant, which will detail your appearance and leave an interesting impression when put on.

A Bracelet

Gentlemen, when pursuing fashion, they likely already put on a watch on their left wrist, so why not consider adding a bracelet to your right? Opt for a genuine leather three-layer magnetic bracelet or a minimal cuff, always added to your strong hand, for an easy way to make a masculine statement in a T-shirt and pared-back jeans combination.

A Chain

Those who are somewhat hesitant of putting on necklaces, usually go for chains to add an edge to their outlook. You can either put on a Miami Hip Hop Iced Curb Cuban Chain a little outside of your crew neck sweatshirt or a stainless-steel clasp leather cord inside your open collar button-down dress shirt. Both styles have grace and standout factors, no matter what you end up choosing.

Cufflinks

Cufflinks are a must for many formal occasions, such as a black-tie, when a French (double) cuff shirt is often required. But they can also add a bit of interest to your bog-standard suit and tie combinations during the working week.

Don’t be afraid to have a little fun with your everyday casual routine lifestyle cufflinks – they’re a minimal part of your look and will go unnoticed by the majority of people. Again, the metal choice should be dictated by other jewelry you currently wear (your wedding ring or watch, for example) but there is the opportunity to introduce a contrast material like onyx or mother of pearl, or even a diamond, here.

When it comes to design, quirkier options such as animals or skulls can add personality to your look, but the best styles are those that mean something to the wearer and serve as a conversation starter – for example, you may choose plane cufflinks because you’re currently learning to fly, or vintage racing cars because you’re an enthusiast.

If you’re struggling or prefer to keep things simple, why not consider a subtle, monogrammed pair – whether you have your own initials or those of a loved one? They’re an ideal purchase for special occasions such as weddings but will maintain their sentimental value for years to come.

A Watch

It’s true what they say, the classics never die – and there’s nothing more classic or revered in a man’s wardrobe than his timepiece. This is strange, considering men seem to have a natural aversion to bracelets and a watch is basically the same thing.

If you’re lucky, your watch will have been handed down over generations and will have amassed true sentimental value to you. For the rest of us, there’s a lot to consider when purchasing a new watch; everything from budget to lifestyle to wrist size should be assessed before taking the plunge.

In the end, whether you opt for quartz or mechanical, military or diver, gold or silver, your watch needs to tick off the same boxes laid out previously for other pieces of jewelry: is it classic? Is it high quality? Will it remain stylish in 20 years’ time? If the answer is yes, yes and yes – you’re onto a winner.

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