How and when to wear cufflinks

Who would ever think that something so small could have such a big impact on your look. Despite their small size, cufflinks are a very powerful accessory that can make a big difference in your attire. So, all suit wearers out there you might want to pay attention to this. 

Walking into a store and getting spellbound while looking at cufflinks, or losing track of time while browsing an online catalog (without making any genuine purchase) are both more frequent situations than you may think. But there’s no reason to panic, we are here to share with you all our tips on how to incorporate cufflinks to your looks and when to wear them in the correct way.  

Aside from their functional purpose, cufflinks are decorative and a symbol of elegance in men’s fashion. They are an additional styling opportunity to showcase your personality and achieve that smart, classy look. For such a small accessory, cufflinks can attract a lot of attention. Therefore, there are a few things to take into consideration before making a purchase or choosing the one you’re going to wear. No more talking, let’s begin! 


The right shirt with the right cuffs

If you take a look at your shirt cuffs and they don’t have any buttons or, on the other hand, they have double cuffs, then it’s essential you add some cufflinks to your look. Their main function is to join the cuffs of a shirt or additional folds of fabric, so you can use them when going for a full suit look, or if you are just wearing a blazer.

ither way, you can’t be wearing any type of shirt because they are not all suitable to wear cufflinks. The shirt cuffs available today are: French cuffs 一also known as “double cuffs”一, single cuffs, and barrel or button cuffs.

  • The single cuff is the regular, classic shirt that features a cuff link instead of a sewn-on button. It’s the correct choice for white-tie occasions and it’s perfect for wing collar shirts.  
  • The French or double cuff is longer than the single one, but they both require cufflinks to fasten. You can identify this type of shirt because it has two pairs of buttonholes in which you can place this accessory. This style is great for formal occasions, like business events or black-tie affairs. 
  • Another alternative for business matters, is the barrel or button cuff, which is usually worn with two buttons spaced from each other.  

A cufflink for each scenario

We’ve been over which shirt is suitable for cufflinks and when it’s possible to wear them. Now, it’s time to go over which style of cufflinks is better for each occasion. 

But before we go on, here’s a must-follow tip: no matter the case, always make sure that you match the color of your cufflinks with any other accessories you might wear too. That includes watches, ties, belt buckles, bracelets, and so on. There should be a certain harmony of color/tones between all these to assure your outfit is on point.

For most formal events, a plain, monochromatic, metal cufflink will add distinction to your look. It can be a copper or gold tone, just make sure the material they are made of gives certain authenticity, so you don’t jeopardize your outfit’s level of sophistication. The same rule applies to weddings, although we have to tell you they are also a great opportunity to free up a little bit and maybe opt for a colorful or playful design.

Weddings are more personal events and that should also be visible in your accessories. Stay elegant and refined, while standing out with your personality. On the other hand, if it’s a business occasion you are attending, then always keep this rule in mind: the simpler, the more elegant. You can take a look at these essential suit colors for the perfect man’s wardrobe.

We often think that cufflinks can only be worn in formal events because it’s an accessory that emanates formality. Yet far from that, you can also wear them in casual occasions, as long as you choose the proper ones. It’s all about the style and the ceremony you go to. As a consideration for wearing them in an informal event especially if you are opting for a colorful design we recommend adding them with a white shirt to make sure they stand out.  

So, to round up you should aim to have at least three pairs of cufflinks in your collection: a pair for social, black-tie events; another one for casual attire and a last one for work events. Accessories can make one outfit become many. Yet under no circumstance prioritize quantity over quality. If you can only afford one pair, then opt for a clean, simple design of good quality that can be versatile for different situations.  

One more thing, cufflinks should always stay visible, so if you are wearing a jacket on top, make sure the cuffs of the shirt are an inch longer than the jacket.  

Surely you now have a better understanding on how and when to wear cufflinks and make the most out of them. Remember, it’s always in the details! If you’d like to know more about other accessories you can choose, check out our guide to wearing suspenders