Style & Beauty

How To Wear Menswear, No Matter Who You Are

A one-stop guide to the best of fall fashion's menswear, no matter your gender identity.

Google just about any mainstream clothing brand, and you’ll find that it’s separated into strictly “menswear” and “womenswear” categories, with its sizing based on standards set by the industry and its clothing modeled by the conventionally tall and thin. Diverse body types and racial and gender identities are often not represented, causing many folks to feel left out.

As a woman who loves menswear, it’s personally taken me years of research to find the brands that work best for me. So I’ve tried to make it easier for everyone else by creating a guide to fall fashion for anyone who loves menswear, no matter their gender identity.

Fall is a great time to step up your fashion game, as the season lends itself to more layering opportunities. Take a look below and find some inspiration for your next shopping spree.

Formal And Work Looks

Formal and work looks modeled by Ethan, left, and Jeaux, right.
Formal and work looks modeled by Ethan, left, and Jeaux, right.

Left: The look on the left comes from The Phluid Project, a gender-neutral clothing store based in Soho, New York City. With both formal and streetwear elements, this Unbound/Bound Fall 2019 collection suit packs a ton of style and boldness. This suit is perfect for formal occasions like a gala or for the fashionable professional looking to turn heads.

Ethan is wearing the red double-breasted blazer, paper bag pants, the corset belt and a cape in black and white. He has long arms and often has to go up a size when buying shirts and blazers. The corset belt gives him a more fitted silhouette on top that he really enjoyed. This look gives off a powerful young samurai vibe.

Right: Going to work doesn’t always have to mean a formal suit is involved. This modern take on workwear features a tan bomber, pinstripe pants, a black crew neck and a pair of gray lug sole boots. This look is one of my favorites because of its day-to-night versatility. After work, you can feel comfortable heading to a bar or out with friends for dinner while looking sleek and put-together.

This look is modeled by Jeaux, who is gender non-conforming. They often have issues finding menswear that is true to size and have found great success by shopping on ASOS.com. For a similar look, combine this wool mix harrington jacket, textured crew neck and tapered crop smart pants with a pair of Dr. Martens Chelsea boots.

Formal and work looks modeled by Mariana, left, and Shelly, right.
Formal and work looks modeled by Mariana, left, and Shelly, right.

Left: Show just how solutions-oriented you are with this look. Mariana found this Tommy Hilfiger suit in the women’s department at Macy’s and took it to Beyond Bespoke tailors to get the menswear silhouette they were looking for. Since women’s suits usually accentuate curves, Mariana requested that the tailor let out some of the waist, take out the middle seam in the back and trim any extra fabric. The arms were slimmed down and the pants tapered and cropped to give the final product a fitted look.

Note: For alterations, I recommend starting with a suit that looks close enough to the silhouette you want so that only minor adjustments need to be made. This suit by Bar III at Macy’s might be a good place to start. Lastly, if you’re a person with a bust and shop strictly in the men’s section, keep in mind that menswear blazers won’t always button shut, even with tailoring (and that’s OK, you’ll still look good).

Right: This look features a jumpsuit, blazer and hot pink turtleneck for a fun and creative take on formal suiting by The Tailory New York. The Tailory is a custom clothing company that believes that clothing is genderless and differentiates itself by catering its options to women, men and non-binary folk. It’s pricier to have custom-tailored clothes, but nothing beats the satisfaction of wearing a garment made to fit you perfectly. The Tailory products can be made as standard or as creative as you like.

Our model Shelly often has issues with pants being too long or jackets not fitting snugly enough because of their height and weight distribution. All of these are good reasons to invest in proper tailoring. For more information or to book an appointment with The Tailory New York, check out The Tailory’s site.

Streetwear

Streetwear looks modeled by Mariana, left, and Jeaux, right.
Streetwear looks modeled by Mariana, left, and Jeaux, right.

Left: This everyday look comes from conscientious clothing company Kirrin Finch, which offers a variety of menswear-inspired clothing for women and non-binary bodies, including button-downs, pants, outerwear, blazers and even T-shirts. Mariana is sporting the “Oakley” button-down and “Ginsberg” olive green shirt jacket with a pair of jeans. As temperatures fluctuate between cool and warm, it’s important to have ways of layering up or taking off pieces. This look allows you to do that without a ton of added bulkiness.

Right: The next look focuses on another fall must-have: the jogger. Think of it as your elevated sweatpant. You can find joggers in just about any store, in fabrics ranging from cotton for a casual look or suiting fabric for the smart/business casual look. Because they offer a more tapered silhouette, you can wear joggers with just about anything, including button-downs, sweaters or T-shirts. For the ultimate street-style look, Jeaux is wearing their own Zella Fermani joggers with a black mandarin-collared button-down and a black leather jacket. Here, find a similar button down and leather jacket to wear with your joggers.

Streetwear looks modeled by Shelly, left, and Ethan, right.
Streetwear looks modeled by Shelly, left, and Ethan, right.

Left: This look features the “all-flattering” turtleneck. Seriously, it looks good on everybody. Just like joggers, turtlenecks offer a great amount of versatility and can be worn in both casual and formal settings. I recommend getting a few to rotate during the cold months. Shelly is wearing a turtleneck with a tan trucker jacket and casual pants. This outfit is cool, like a stroll through London on the grayest day. For a similar look, check out this turtleneck, trucker jacket and pants.

Right: There’s a reason hoodies go missing between friends and lovers ― they’re extremely comfortable. It’s like wearing a blanket and it’s about one of the most gender-neutral pieces of clothing that anyone can get their hands on. Wear a hoodie with jeans, casual pants and even suits. Dress them down with a nice chunky sneaker or do it up with a pair of boots. You really can’t go wrong. Ethan is wearing the “Have Hope” hoodie from The Phluid Project with his own jumper underneath.

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