Dressing as a skinny guy is no easy feat. It’s even more difficult if you fall on the shorter (5’7″ and under) or taller (6’2″ and up) end of the spectrum.
That’s why I’ve put together this quick guide to help you with a myriad of different examples of well-dressed skinny men (I think I’m somewhere in here too) that I’ve curated from across the interwebs.
Let’s get to it.
Style for the Skinny Guy
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There are those men who yearn to be on the slimmer side who are constantly attempting to lose the weight, and then there are those who are destined to be thin forever no matter what they do.
For the men out there who are looking to gain some insight into how to best present their smaller size to the world, then you have come to the right destination as we have the tips necessary to dress up and out.
For most men – and in particular thinner men – dressing to your strengths involves being a master illusionist in order to convey the proper proportions that create that winning visual.
Skinny men have to pay close attention to how clothes sit on their body – too tight and the discomfort level rises and makes the situation even more arduous. Avoid clothes that are overly fitted and instead take care to find the perfect fit to add a bit of heft to your frame. What does that mean in terms of cardinal rules, you may ask?
Vertical stripes are not your friend
For thin men, stripes have not, nor will they ever be the answer and a man with this body type should avoid forcing the issue by attempting this sartorial route unless they want to take a serious loss in the fashion column.
While stripes give everyone a boost in the vertical department, those stripes on a slim man only produce an even more slender frame than you already have. The 2 vertical striped shirts above are taking a major L, while the horizontal striped shirt below is a W.
Level up your layering
While most anyone from athletic guys to muscular guys can benefit from leveling up their layering game. Thin men especially must master the art of layering if they truly want to ascend to the next level of style as this particular body type demands it. Tactical layering is the best tool at your disposal to add some mass to a small frame.
Even though layering is the answer, there is some precision involved however, so keep it at a maximum of two layers or you will give the impression of being buried beneath your clothes.
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Surrender to symmetry
If your proportions aren’t in balance, then the whole look is compromised, which for a thinner man can be the death knell hard to come back from.
Maintain a balanced look by adhering to the rules of symmetry and you will avoid the conundrum of clothing confusion that befalls many thin guys attempting to ramp up their style.
Be the prince of patterns
We’ve already established that vertical stripes are not going to take you to the next level of sartorial brilliance, but luckily, thin guys still can turn to other patterns to add some depth to their look.
Instead skinny men should leave the pinstripes for wider guys with larger frames and opt for checks or floral prints if you absolutely must bring patterns into the picture.
Add a little padding
Fine tailoring is all about paying attention to the smallest of details, and for slender men that involves padding in the shoulders (ever so slightly) to create a silhouette that is a bit more formidable than to be expected.
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Skinny Guy Style Essentials
Now that you’ve come this far, there’s no need to stop when you can master the entire aesthetic with a few more tips for the pieces in your wardrobe.
A well proportioned suit should be the quintessential guideline for thin guys who want to be as impactful as possible when dressing up.
Jackets should accentuate shoulders in the most flattering way to show off your weight and broad shoulders. A double-breasted suit is an excellent option that adds just the right amount of density for skinny guys.
To add shape to your legs and enhance your silhouette, thinner men should wear straight-leg or bootcut chinos that fit well through the thigh and give you more structure. A great fabric that adds just the right heft to skinny men is corduroy, which are a great addition for the fall and winter months in particular.
Bootcut and straight leg jeans are the best options for skinny guys as they give the lower legs some shape, with selvedge denim an excellent choice to consider. Skinny and even slim jeans are another great alternative that are ideal for men that want a fitted look that enhances a silhouette.
The best coats for men (especially skinny guys) are ones that drape the body well without devouring the frame. Instead of boxy or longer coats, men with smaller frames look best in three-quarter length coats that can add bulk without stretching out for a prime, tailored effect.
Thinner men tend to have longer limbs, which makes V-neck and crew necks a great way to shape the collarbone and shoulder area. To add some size above the waist, plaid and macro prints are also another option to invest in. And for more formal occasions, a slim, fitted shirt is the best way to make a suit pop.
FAQ’s About Skinny Guy Style
What colors work best for skinny guys?
Lighter colors are the best approach for guys with smaller frames to add dimension to a frame, which equates to white, beige, and pastels as excellent choices for your wardrobe. But to be honest, you can wear any color you like really. What’s more important is your complexion when it comes to what colors to wear.
What are the best accessories for skinny frames?
Avoid bulky, oversized accessories and instead opt for thin, monochrome ties and belts that work best for smaller men.
What type of shoes should a skinny guys wear?
Leave the bigger more rugged boots for bigger guys and incorporate ankle boots and boat shoes into your shoe collection as they look best on smaller legs and give the illusion of more mass.
Wrapping Things Up
And there you have it, GW’s quick guide to dressing as a skinny man. I hope that this provided you with the inspiration that you needed to get out there and rock some killer fits.
Are you dressing appropriately for your body type?
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