Styling Guide To Men Smart Casual

Men Styling Guide

Smart casual is the modern style of smart clothing with a more relaxed twist to it. A lot of working environments that used to require a shirt and pants are asking for a much more informal style for work. However, it is not just workplaces that are asking for this dress code. A lot of restaurants, bars and clubs are also asking for you to dress in this style. 

The question is, what is smart-casual and how do you dress? Is it a blazer? A shirt? A pair of pants? All of these are technically correct but they need to be combined with something that gives it a much more casual twist. 

If you are one of those people that panics at the sight of reading smart casual, you have probably come to the right place. However, you should not be worried about what to wear at these events. 

Think of what you would wear for a more formal occasion and then swap something out so it is more casual, it is that simple. If you’re still not sure then we are going to explain what smart casual is and discuss the different outfits that you can wear. 

What Is Smart Casual? 

Smart casual is confusing because it is two styles that are the complete opposite of one another combined. One of the reasons we understand why someone wouldn’t understand this modern style. Finding the happy medium of smart casual can be difficult, especially if it is your first smart-casual event that you have ever been to. 

When it comes to your outfit, try not to overthink. Yes, that is easier said than done but honestly, you do not need to complicate it. The easy go-to option for a male is to wear a pair of jeans with a casual shirt. If you think that is too dressy, swap your shirt with a plain t-shirt. Then complete the outfit with a plain bomber jacket and that is you. Nonetheless, there are many other styles out there however, this is the easiest option to wear. 

As mentioned earlier, more places are deciding to ask for this style to be worn. It isn’t just restaurants and bars that are setting this dress code. Other settings are asking you to wear this style as well. For example, wedding receptions and graduations are also requesting this dress code. However, this is going to be slightly different to the style that you would wear in a club or restaurant. This is the style that you would choose for work as well. Something that is much more formal but still has that casual twist. 

What Are The Different Styles of Smart Casual

Luckily for you, there are many variations of smart casual which is the whole point of why you are here. One thing that you have always got to remember is the outfit depends on the event and the venue you are going to. As mentioned before, smart casual would be different at a wedding reception than at a bar. 

For a wedding reception, you want to make sure that you are wearing something dressy. For example, consider wearing a blazer to this event over the top of the t-shirt. Complete the look with a pair of pants and loafers and that is your outfit sorted for there. If that is too dressy for you, wear more casual footwear with a pair of black or dark blue jeans. 

When going to a fancy restaurant, you might want to scrap the idea of wearing a blazer. This time, wear a t-shirt with a pair of cropped pants. If the weather is slightly colder than usual, we would recommend that you wear either a bomber jacket or a Harrington jacket. With your pants, you could wear a pair of brogue shoes, depending on the length of your pants. If you are wearing cropped pants, we strongly advise you not to wear brogue shoes as they will look like it was a last-minute choice.

Essential Smart Casual Pieces

There are many key pieces to a smart casual outfit however, they do not need to be worn all at once. You could argue that you only need to wear one of them. Here are some of the key clothing items that you will need in your wardrobe for smart-casual outfits. 


A casual blazer is something that everybody needs. You will also need a smart blazer for those more formal events however, they won’t be needed for this outfit. There are many blazers out there that can be worn casually but, you must consider what you are going to be wearing underneath it as well. 

For the autumn/ winter months, choose to wear a turtleneck for those colder times. For the warmer months, you want to wear a t-shirt underneath your blazer. Another thing that we would advise is for you to avoid wearing blazers that have padding on the shoulders. 

Drawstring Trousers

Drawstring trousers are the dressier version of joggers and there are a lot of people who are hopping on this trend for their attire. However, they are not the usual joggers that you would find with plain tracksuits. They are another key piece for casual-smart wear and it is something that you should be looking at buying soon. 

Oxford Shirts

Oxford shirts are needed for every occasion, especially for a smart-casual outfit. It is just smart-casual events that an oxford shirt can be worn at either. They are great for those dressier occasions which are far more formal. Moreover, it doesn’t need to be an oxford shirt for your smart-casual attire, it can also be a branded shirt such as Tom Ford, Ralph Lauren or Tommy Hilfiger.  


The smart-casual outfit is one of the more modern styles that every man should learn how to master. As long as you purchase the key pieces that have been mentioned above, you will not go far wrong. Make sure that you are wearing it to the right venue and occasion.

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