Formal Grooming for Men



A public event that calls for a man to dress formal can be a bit nerve-wracking, probably only unparalleled with public speaking and taxes. If public speaking is involved, I’ll leave the jokes there.


Every man wants to put his best face forward and sometimes a bit of a checklist helps.

Jewellery; keep this to a minimum. If jewellery is your style, stick to one piece, such as attractive cuff-links or a watch. Please leave nose piercings at home, if possible. A big tip here would be if cuff-links are the choice, probably not ones that would put the Eiffel Tower to shame.


Clothes; they say that the clothes make the man, so very true. Ensure that clothing is fresh and pressed. Also, that the outfit actually fits, formal calls for a jacket and shirt, check the invitation to see if a tie is called for, if so what type. Formal is not the time to wear knitted vests or that fabulous colourful but chunky scarf from Peru.


Shoes; are usually lace-up shoes, most of the time in classic black. Again, clean and polished is an expectation.


Collars; ensure that the collar on the shirt sits well and is comfortable. Cuffs and the jacket should also be simple but styled. Nothing more embarrassing than the back of your dinner jacket all twisted and not sitting properly.




Grooming; not the time to rush out and get a fake tan or a new haircut. If time allows step outside and get 5 minutes of fresh air to refresh yourself and mind before the elaborate dress begins. If the skin does look a bit dull, a light exfoliation will give that a lift, just use a light product we don’t want a rash!

Scent; a light scent and antiperspirant goes a long way, plus a mint for the mouth. Nothing like well groomed but sweating up a storm to lose a crowd.

Hair; neat and trimmed. The beard should also be neat and tidy, paying attention to remove any stray hairs. Or clean shaven but don’t leave that to the last minute, to avoid a rash.


Once the primping is complete, the overall tip would be to dress for the audience, be graceful and listen to others, go and look like a million dollars.