Seven tips to looking great in a suit

by Moni on November 2, 2012

Looking great in suit will equip any man with confidence and poise which is why at M7 we believe in aspiring for a classic and timeless look, helping our clients to make careful choices along the way.

Here a few tips to ensure that you stand out from the crowd:

Tip 1: Make sure it fits

It may sound obvious, but there is nothing worse than a baggy or ill-fitted suit. It doesn’t matter if it’s a $20,000 suit from Hugo Boss or something straight from the department store. If the suit doesn’t fit, don’t wear it. . . .or buy it for that matter.

A good crisp suit will sculpt a man’s body frame and should never make you feel constricted. To test the quality of a good fitting jacket, one fist should fit comfortably between the chest and the jacket. The sleeves should also be cut short enough to allow half an inch of the cuff to show. Trousers should be tapered to give an elegant look and a fitted thigh-to-ankle finish. Finally, shirts should allow one finger to fit between the neck and shirt collar and should be fitted around the shoulders and chest (but not so tight that you can’t breathe… or have a good lunch!). So make sure your tailor doesn’t leave until you’re 100% confident with how the suit looks and feels.

Tip 2: Style and colour

At M7, we believe that most suits should have a timeless feel and should never succumb to the trap of being “fashionable.” Remember, the best suit in the room will be always be the one that is classically tailored to the individual and not the one chasing after the latest fad of the season or decade. So, always customize style and colour choice to body type, skin tone and personality. A good suit adviser should be able to help with all of these areas.

When it comes to style, shorter men should avoid long/standard sized suit jackets and wide lapels as these can draw attention to a shorter frame. Larger men should avoid chequered prints and single jacket vents, both of which accentuate size. Lastly, well-built men should avoid peak lapels and overly padded shoulders as they could over accentuate an already toned body. This could potentially take away from the pristine cut of the suit.

In terms of colour, every man should have a classic navy suit and a charcoal grey suit (these two colours serve as staples of any timeless man’s wardrobe.) Once you have these essentials, begin to experiment with other colours. For fairer skinned gents, darker shades such as dark grey or brown provide a nice contrast to skin tone whereas lighter shades such as light grey work well for the darker skinned. Despite the temptation, resist the urge to choose black for daytime wear. While this color can look sleek, it is actually best suited to a formal cocktail or black-tie event.

Finally, don’t forget the impact of great lining, piping or buttons to set the suit off and show some of your personality and swagger.

Tip 3: Choose the right fabric

In terms of fabric, stick with high quality Italian or English wool. This fabric looks and feels great, wears well and is comfortable through the year. Specifically, for hot and arid climates like Dubai lightweight Super 110s to 120s work very well. Avoid cashmere blends – while they have an irresistible feel, they insulate heat and can wear out quickly. Equally avoid “polywools” (mixture of wool and cotton); these fabrics will not retain their structure and will soon resemble a shiny coat.

Tip 4: Shoes – not just for walking

Never underestimate the power of proper shoes as they can make or break the suit. Don’t make the mistake of wearing a great suit with shabby / incorrect shoes; this will destroy the whole attire. Good shoes cost a minimum of AED 800-1000 and are a critical investment for any serious suit wearer. In terms of style, stick to classic dark brown or black lace-ups.

Note to remember: shoes must be kept clean and polished; dirty shoes can make even the finest suit look tacky and worn.

Tip 5: Dry clean, but with caution

The only thing worse than an ill-fitting suit is a dirty and creased one. So make sure you invest time looking for a good dry cleaner as bad cleaners can damage fine fabrics through over-treatment ultimately leading to the dreaded shine. What’s more, remember your suit is a natural material and too much washing will also damage it. A suit only needs to be dry-cleaned after every 10 wears, so regularly rotate suits to reduce the load.

You may want to invest in a conventional steamer, which can be found at any appliance store and can help you avoid unnecessary trips to the cleaner. (For those who don’t feel like making the investment, hanging a suit in a steamed shower is a great way to get the creases out!)

Tip 6: Wear it correctly

It may be the greatest suit, fitted to perfection but it is important to follow some simple tips for correct wear to make sure you pull off the look. It is quite simple: ensure shoulder pads are sitting correctly on the shoulder. Tuck the shirt in neatly, straighten the collar, tie and belt, pull shirt sleeves lower than the jacket sleeves and fit any cufflinks and buttons correctly. If it’s a two -button suit remember to only button the top and never the bottom. And finally, whenever seated take off the jacket and pull trousers up slightly at the knees, as this stops the fabric at the knees from wear. 

Tip 7: The final ingredient

Confidence – one word says it all. So straighten that spine, lift your chin and roll those shoulders back! Without a bit of swagger in your step nothing else matters.

Moni Nanda is Managing Director of M7 Bespoke, Dubai’s first premium travel-only bespoke tailoring service, and is available for personal consultations to help navigate clients through the maze of buying and wearing great suits. She can be contacted directly through e-mail on

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

James November 2, 2012 at 11:43 am

My brother recommended I might like this web site. He was entirely right. This post truly made my day. You cann’t imagine just how much time I had spent for this information! Thanks!


Moni November 8, 2012 at 7:30 pm

Hi, thanks to you and your brother for taking the time to read…yes, it takes just a few small things to remember when pulling of that perfect suit look. Feel free to drop us a line should you ever need any further info/advice. Moni


Angus November 14, 2012 at 7:06 am

Great tips except the steaming in a shower. I know people who do this and still can’t understand how people can justify the environmental waste of running boiling hot water for 10 minutes to get rid of a couple of creases for the sake of appearances. Pay for the hotel to iron it or wear it and face the consequences of not having packed properly.


Moni December 4, 2012 at 10:28 am

Hi, glad you liked the tips. As for the shower, indeed, would definitely be better if you’re showering at the same time!!


Alisia Stmary December 4, 2012 at 4:18 am

Hello,I love to read more about this field. Thank you for publishing Seven tips to looking great in a suit.


Moni December 4, 2012 at 10:27 am

We are glad you found the article helpful. Please watch this space for more articles soon..


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