Style Glossary

The fashion industry is replete with terminology that may be unfamiliar to many. Here, we present some common terms men may encounter when seeking to enhance their style in men’s fashion.


Accessories – Items that often help you look more stylish and add depth to your appearance. Some examples of men’s accessories are belts, ties, watches, pocket squares, scarves, etc.

Ankle Boots Boots that cover the foot and ankle, often with a low heel

Argyle – A diamond-shaped pattern, often seen in socks and knitwear

Automatic Watches – Wind themselves through the motion of the wearer’s wrist. They have a rotor that moves with wrist movement, winding the mainspring to power the watch, not requiring manual winding

Aviators – A style of sunglasses initially developed for military pilots that was made famous by the movie Top Gun


Balmacaan Coat A loose-fitting, full overcoat with raglan sleeves originally made of rough woolen cloth

Bespoke – Custom-made clothing, tailored to an individual’s specific measurements and preferences

Black Tie – Refers to a formal dress code typically associated with evening events or special occasions. For men, it traditionally entails wearing a black tuxedo jacket with matching trousers, a white formal dress shirt, a black bow tie, black dress shoes, and typically accessorized with cufflinks and a cummerbund or waistcoat

Boat Shoes – Also known as deck shoes, are constructed with a canvas or leather upper with rubber soles that enhance grip on a wet boat deck. It usually includes a lace-up fastening and lace detailing threaded around the side of the shoe

Bootcut – Denim pants that have a slight flare or widening of the leg opening at the ankle. They are designed to accommodate wearing boots and are known for their versatile and practical style

Boxer Briefs – A type of men’s undergarment that is long in the leg, similar to boxer shorts, but tight-fitting like briefs

Boxer Shorts – A type of men’s underwear similar in shape to shorts and the loosest undergarment a man can wear

Bow Tie A necktie in the form of a bow or a knot with two loops. Associated with formal attire

Briefs – A type of underwear with a Y shape known for its snug fit and support

Brogues – A style of low-wheeled shoe or boot characterized by decorative punching (or ‘brogueing’) of the leather and uppers.

Button-Down Collar Shirt – A dress or sports shirt whose collar attaches to the front panels of a shirt via buttons


Cardigan – A type of knitted sweater that has an open front, and is worn like a jacket

Cargo Pants – Trousers with multiple pockets, often made of durable materials, originally designed for outdoor activities

Cap Toe – Dress shoes with a decorative layer (cap) stitched onto the toe

Cashmere – A soft and luxurious natural fiber obtained from the wool of cashmere goats, known for its warmth and is often used in high-quality garments like sweaters and scarves

Chelsea Boot – Short boots that come up to your ankle. They’ve stretchy parts on the sides and a little loop at the back

Chinos – A style of pants without pleats and creases, maintaining a uniformly flat look along the leg. This style of pants offers a more relaxed and casual vibe compared to dressier trousers

Chukka Boot – Ankle-high boots that typically have two or three pairs of eyelets for lacing

Clogs – Type of footwear crafted partially or entirely from wood. Traditional clogs remain in use as protective footwear in agriculture and in some factories and mines

Closed Laced Shoes – A shoe design where the eyelets for lacing are stitched under the vamp (the front part covering the toes) and the vamp overlays the quarters (the sections wrapping around the sides and back). This design is common in formal shoes like oxfords

Collars – Sections on shirts or coats that wrap around the neckline of the garment. They’re typically stitched permanently and often designed to fold or rollover

Cologne – A type of fragrance with a lower concentration of aromatic compounds compared to Eau de Toilette or Eau de Parfum. It typically contains around 2% to 5%.

Contrast – The visual difference between two elements in an outfit, such as light and dark colors

Couture – High-end, custom-made fashion designed and tailored specifically for an individual person

Creases – A distinct line or fold, often intentionally made on clothing, such as pants or shirts, to create a polished and structured appearance

Crew Neck – A crew neck is a type of shirt or sweater that has a round neckline and no collar and is often worn with other layers

Cufflinks – A type of jewelry that holds together the cuffs of dress shirts, replacing the need for sewn-on buttons

Cummerbund – A broad waist sash, often folded, worn with formal attire, especially as part of black-tie attire


Dapper – A term used to describe a man who is impeccably dressed, stylish, and neat

Denim – A durable cotton twill fabric, commonly used in jeans and casualwear

Derby Shoes – Lace-up shoes characterized by an open lacing system, where the quarters (the sections with eyelets) are sewn on top of the vamp (the front part of the shoe)

Desert Boots – An ankle-high boots typically made from suede or leather, featuring a lace-up design and a crepe rubber sole

Dinner Jacket – A formal jacket for evening events or formal events, often in black or midnight blue, paired with matching trousers, typically part of black tie attire

Dress Boots – Refined footwear with a formal appearance, resembling boots but suitable for more elegant or semi-formal occasions

Dress Code – A set of rules or guidelines specifying the appropriate attire for a particular event, occasion, or place

Dress Shoes – Footwear designed for formal or semi-formal occasions, typically made of leather and featuring a refined, elegant appearance

Duster Coat – A long, lightweight coat typically made of canvas or linen, designed to protect clothing from dust while traveling, working, or riding horses


Eau de Parfum – A type of fragrance that contains a higher concentration of aromatic compounds which typically is 15-20%, making it more intense and longer-lasting than Eau de Toilette or Cologne

Eau de Toilette – A type of fragrance with a moderate concentration of aromatic compounds, typically ranging from 5% to 15%. Lighter than Eau de Parfum (EDP) but more concentrated than Eau de Cologne

Embroidery – The craft of decorating fabric or other materials using a needle to apply thread or yarn

Espadrille – A casual shoe with a canvas or fabric upper and a flexible sole made of esparto rope. The esparto rope sole is the defining characteristic of an espadrille

Eyelets – Small metal rings used for reinforcing holes in fabric or leather, often for laces or decoration


Fair Isle – A traditional knitting technique originating from Fair Isle, a Scottish island. It involves using multiple colors in a small repeating pattern, often seen in sweaters and garments

Fedora – A classic men’s hat with a pinched crown and a brim that can be shaped in various ways

Fragrance Notes – The individual scents that make up a perfume or cologne. These notes are divided into three categories: Top Notes, Middle Notes and Base Notes


Gingham – A checked pattern with evenly sized, usually white and colored squares, often used in shirts and casual wear

Gore-Tex – A waterproof and breathable fabric often used in outdoor and activewear

Grooming – Activities and practices men undertake to maintain their personal hygiene, appearance, and overall well-being. It includes practices such as bathing, hair care, skin care, and other personal care routines that contribute to cleanliness and a polished appearance


Hacking Pockets – Slanted pockets, often found on tailored jackets or blazers, designed to resemble the pockets seen on traditional hacking jackets worn for horseback riding

Harrington Jacket – A lightweight, waist-length jacket featuring a tartan lining, a stand-up collar, and often has buttoned flap pockets

Haute Couture – High-end, custom-made fashion created by top designers and fashion houses, known for its exclusivity, meticulous craftsmanship, and use of luxurious materials

Hawaiian Shirt – A colorful, often floral-printed, short-sleeved shirt, associated with a casual, tropical vibe

Hem – The edge or border of a piece of clothing, often folded and sewn to prevent fraying

Hemline – The lower edge of a garment, which can be long, short, or vary in length

Henley – A collarless pullover shirt, characterized by a round neckline and a placket about 3 to 5 inches (8 to 13 cm) long and usually having 2–5 buttons

Herringbone – A pattern consisting of parallel lines that slant in opposite directions forming V shapes

Houndstooth – A classic textile pattern, often seen in jackets and suits, characterized by a broken check or four-pointed star shape


Jeans – Hard-wearing casual trousers made of denim or other cotton fabric

Jogger Pants – Relaxed-fit pants, usually elasticized for comfort and flexibility, ideal for casual wear and active pursuits


Lace-ups – A shoe or boot that is fastened with laces

Lapel – The folded flap on the front of a jacket or coat, often on the collar, which can be peaked, notched, or shawl-shaped, forming part of the garment’s design

Linen – A textile made from fibers of the flax plant, known for its breathability, lightweight feel, and ability to keep you cool in warm weather

Lining – The interior fabric on any suit jacket or outerwear coat.

Loafers – Slip-on shoes, typically without laces or fastenings, known for their casual style and often feature a moccasin-like construction with a low heel

Loose Fit – Clothing that is relaxed and not tight-fitting, providing more room and comfort for movement


Made-To-Measure – A type of clothing customization where a garment is crafted based on the individual’s specific measurements and preferences

Mandarin Collar – A short, upright collar that stands vertically and doesn’t fold down, commonly seen in Asian-inspired clothing and some formal attire

Mechanical Watches – Timepieces that use a mechanical movement, driven by a mainspring, to measure time

Moccasins – Slip-on heelless shoes, typically made of soft leather and featuring a stitched seam around the top

Mock Neck – A high, close-fitting collar resembling a turtleneck but shorter in height, typically extending about halfway up the neck

Monk Strap – A style of shoe that features a strap and buckle closure, typically positioned across the shoe’s instep

Moire – A fabric with a wavy or rippled appearance, usually created by a special finishing process, resulting in a distinct, watered effect on the surface

Moisture Wicking – Fabrics designed to draw sweat and moisture away from the body to keep you dry and comfortable

Moleskin – A heavy cotton fabric with a soft, brushed surface, resembling the fur of a mole. It’s known for its durability and is often used in clothing, particularly for trousers or jackets

Monochromatic – Color scheme based on variations of a single color, using different shades, tones, and tints of that color


Nautical Stripes – Horizontal stripes, usually in navy and white, reminiscent of patterns seen on sailor’s clothing or maritime themes

Neckerchief – A small, triangular, or square piece of fabric worn around the neck for decorative or practical purposes

Neoprene –  A synthetic rubber-like material used for its insulating and water-resistant properties, often found in wetsuits and activewear

Nested Suit – A suit set where the jacket and pants are sold together, designed with a size ‘drop’ from the chest of the jacket to the waist of the pants


Ombré – A French word meaning shaded describes the appearance of related colors shading from light to dark or vice versa within one garment

Open Laced Shoes – A shoe design where the eyelet tabs (sections with lacing holes) are stitched on top of the vamp. The quarters (side and back sections) of the shoe are stitched on top of the vamp, creating a more visible and open appearance. Derby shoes are a classic example of footwear with an open laced system

Opera Gloves – Elbow-length gloves typically worn with formal gowns for opera or evening events

Opera Scarf – A long, fringed silk scarf often worn with formal attire for special occasions, such as the opera

Overshirt – Shirt-style jackets, blending shirt features like collars and cuffs with jacket-like warmth and thickness, often including pockets

Oversized – Clothing that is larger in size than the standard or typical measurements for a relaxed, loose-fitting style

Oxford Shoes – Lace-up shoes characterized by closed lacing, where the shoelace eyelets are sewn under the vamp, and they typically feature a low heel and a sleek design


Paisley – A distinctive, intricate, teardrop-shaped pattern often seen in ties and scarves

Parka – A type of coat with a hood, often lined with fur or faux fur designed to be worn in cold weather

Patch Pocket – An exterior pocket sewn onto the outside of a garment, often seen on blazers

Pea Coat – A short, double-breasted coat made of heavy wool, originally worn by sailors

Penny Loafers – A casual leather slip-on shoe with a distinctive leather strap and a diamond-shaped cutout at the instep

Pinstripe – A very thin, subtle line or stripe, typically in a contrasting color, that runs vertically on fabric, often seen on suits or dress shirts

Pleats – Folds in the fabric that are stitched in place to create a specific design or to provide additional room and flexibility in clothing usually found in pants and shirts

Pocket Watch – A watch that is made to be carried in a pocket and is typically attached to a chain and won with formal attire

Polarized Lenses – A type of sunglasses lens designed to reduce glare and eye strain from light that reflects off of different surfaces like water, roads, snow, and any other reflective surface, improving vision and eye safety outdoors

Polo Collar – A type of shirt collar without reinforcement with a short, buttoned placket, seen on polo shirts

Polo Shirt – A short-sleeved, collared shirt with a few neck buttons, usually crafted from cotton and known for its sporty, casual style

Poncho – A wide, draped garment with an opening for the head, often used for warmth and style

Popover Shirt – A polo shirt style that incorporates a button-down collar, but instead of the traditional button-up design, it is worn by pulling it over the head, similar to a sweater or t-shirt

Pullover – A pullover is typically a sweater or sweatshirt, designed to be pulled over the head without the need for buttons or zippers


Quartz Watches – Timepieces that use a quartz crystal to regulate timekeeping and rely on a battery for power

Quarter-Zip – A pullover shirt with a quarter-length zipper, often seen in casual and sporty attire

Quilted Jacket – A jacket filled with padding and stitched in a quilted pattern for warmth and style


Raw Denim – A type of denim fabric that has not undergone any washing or distressing processes after being dyed during manufacturing

Raw Edge – Refers to the untreated or unfinished edge of a fabric, typically left exposed intentionally for a relaxed or casual aesthetic. Commonly seen on t-shirts at the neck, arms, and hem

Ready-to-Wear – Clothing that is mass-produced and available off the rack in standard sizes

Relaxed Fit – A style of clothing, such as pants or jeans, that is designed to be looser and more comfortable

Rise – The distance between the crotch and the top of the waistband on a pair of pants or shorts. Pants usually include low, medium, or high-rise

Round Collar – It’s a neckline style that forms a circular or rounded shape around the base of the neck. It is a simple and classic design often seen in various types of tops, and shirts


Sack Suit – A suit characterized by a loose, unstructured fit without much waist suppression or shaping. The suit jacket has a straight-cut style

Saddle Shoes  Also known as oxford saddle which consist of a shoe having a piece of different color or leather stitched across the instep

Sam Browne Belt – A leather belt with a diagonal strap over the shoulder, originally designed for military use

Sartorial – Relating to the art of making clothes or the distinctive style of dress of a particular individual or group

Sash – A long strip or loop of cloth worn over one shoulder or round the waist, especially as part of a uniform or official dress

Selvedge Denim – A type of denim fabric known for its tightly woven and finished edges

Sequin – A sequin is a small, shiny, and typically flat decorative disk that is often sewn onto clothing to add sparkle and embellishment

Shawl – A piece of fabric, often rectangular or square, worn loosely over the shoulders, arms, or upper body

Slacks – Type of casual trousers, typically made of comfortable and softer materials than formal dress pants

Slim Fit – A style of clothing, such as shirts, pants, or suits, designed to have a narrower and more fitted silhouette

Stitching – The visible thread used to sew clothing, which can have functional or decorative purposes

Straight Fit – A style of clothing, such as pants or jeans, where the silhouette is relatively straight from the hip down to the leg opening

Suede – A type of leather that has a soft, napped surface known for its velvety feel and is commonly used in the manufacturing of shoes, bags, clothing, and accessories

Suspenders – Also known as braces, are straps worn over the shoulders to hold up trousers


Tailoring – The process of designing, cutting, and sewing garments to fit an individual’s body shape

Tapered Fit – A style of pants or jeans, where the garment gradually narrows or “tapers” from the hip or thigh down to the leg opening

Tie Bar – A small accessory worn horizontally across the front of a necktie with the function of fastening the tie to the underlying shirt, preventing it from swinging or becoming disheveled

Track Jacket – A sporty, casual jacket originally designed for athletes that typically features a zipper down the front, a high collar, and often includes ribbed cuffs and waistband

Trench Coat – A loose belted, double-breasted raincoat in a military-style

Trendsetter – An individual or entity that initiates or popularizes new styles, ideas, or behaviors, influencing others in the process

Trilby – A type of hat that typically has a narrow brim that is sharply turned up at the back and an indented crown

Turtleneck – A type of sweater or shirt with a high, close-fitting collar that extends and covers the neck

Tuxedo – A formal evening suit distinguished by its satin-faced lapels, typically in black or midnight blue. It is worn for special occasions and events that require a high level of formality, such as weddings, galas, or formal dinners


Utility Vest – A sleeveless garment that is designed with multiple pockets and features for practicality and functionality, often used for carrying tools or outdoor activities


V-Neck – A neckline style in clothing where the neck opening forms a “V” shape, dipping down from the shoulders and commonly found in various garments, including T-shirts, and sweaters

Vents – A vertical slit rising from the bottom hem of a jacket to allow for ease of movement


Waistcoat – Also known as a vest in American English, is a sleeveless upper-body garment that is typically worn over a dress shirt and beneath a jacket

Wardrobe Essentials –  Basic and, versatile pieces of clothing that form the foundation of a well-rounded and functional wardrobe

White Tie – The most formal dress code for evening events. It is characterized by specific and highly formal attire, typically worn at events such as state dinners, royal events, or very formal weddings

Windbreaker – A lightweight and typically water-resistant jacket designed to provide protection from wind and light rain


Yoke – A shaped piece of fabric that is fitted over the shoulders or around the neck and chest area of a garment