A Man’s Guide to Fully Embodying a “Look of Luxury”

Want to crank up the luxe levels on your look? We could tell you to go to the fanciest appointment-only boutique you can find, toss a ton of cash at the most expensive labels, and pre-order hyped-up pieces from the latest drops. But that would be the easy way out, and that’s no fun.

In reality, all the best-dressed guys of the modern day mix luxury with soul—a neat Patek Philippe watch with a retro tee from the throwback shop; a pair of funky, primary-hued Chanel x Pharrell loafers with a well-tailored suit—proving that luxury style is about a whole lot more than the MSRP or the name on the label. If you want to embody this soulful luxury, take some cues from this guide.

Finding Your Luxury Look

Luxury means different things to different people. It might mean Savile Row tailored or limited edition streetwear. It might mean platinum or stainless steel. And the true luxury arbiters forge their own aesthetics by mixing components from many schools of style. To get started with your new luxury lifestyle, look to a few of the best-dressed style icons for some inspiration.

  • Tailored and Sporty: The LeBron James – Your style icons are LeBron James, Drake, Russel Westbrook, and all the other sporty guys who helped make the phrase “high-end athleisure” a thing. Your idea of luxury involves names like John Elliott, Stone Island, and Rhude. You’re a sneakerhead and, in an ideal world, you’d own a Hublot or an AP Royal Oak.
  • High-End Eclectic: The John Mayer – You’re a diligent student of the Beverly Hills boho style made famous by Mayer, which means you probably own apparel by Camp High, Visvim, Online Ceramics, and—if you’re feeling a bit utilitarian—as much Fear of God as you can get your hands on. You’re probably considering starting a kimono collection as we speak. To nail the look, don’t forget to top off your tie-dye with a few really rare, really expensive watches (preferably a Rolex Daytona or five).
  • Classic Gentleman: The David Beckham – Your style icons are David Beckham, Brad Pitt, Keanu Reeves, George Clooney, and Ryan Reynolds—basically all the guys who embody that uber-classic gentlemanly aesthetic. This look revolves around traditionally tailored suits in time-honored menswear prints and handsome dress shoes that were probably handmade somewhere in Italy. Ideally, you’d wear Tom Ford and own an Omega, just like James Bond.
  • Funky-Cool: The Donald Glover – Your style icons are Donald Glover, Pharrell Williams, and—when you’re feeling really daring—Anderson Paak. You definitely idolized Dennis Rodman growing up. You believe in mixing and matching to the highest degree, layering bold colors with busy patterns and then topping it off with some neon or velvet. Labels don’t matter so much to you, and your wardrobe is at least 50 percent vintage.

Investing in the Right Pieces

Now that you know which school of fashion you belong to, it’s time to start peppering the closet with some signature apparel and accessories. The key is to choose a few foundational items—a designer suit, a few men’s luxury watches, some core collection denim—and then add in some spirited pieces to punch it up. Here are the elements you need:

  • A Signature Watch – Regardless whether you’re more edgy, sporty, or sophisticated, your look won’t look luxurious unless you’re rocking an appropriate timepiece. If your goal is to look like you’re wearing exclusively high-end pieces, you really should stick with the core makers. Think: Rolex, Audemars Piguet, Patek Philippe, Breitling, Vacheron Constantin, Cartier, and IWC.
  • A Suit That’s All You – Even if you’re more into the Mayer-esque boho look or the luxe sportswear rocked by pro athletes, there will be suit-required occasions. Pro tip for achieving a super-luxury suiting aesthetic without the high price tag: Buy an affordable suit from a department store and have it tailored for the perfect fit. Usually, a full-suit tailoring will run you a couple hundred dollars or less, but it will look like it cost a few thousand.
  • A Few Go-To Shoes – Like a good watch, a pair of statement shoes can take an otherwise uninspired outfit and make it pop. Shoes are also a great item to invest your luxury bucks in because they take a ton of abuse, so you really need a pair that’s going to last. Whether you’re into special edition sneakers or designer loafers doesn’t matter as long as you pay close attention to your kicks.

Stay Groomed, Feel Great

In addition to your clothes, you also need to think a bit about your aesthetic as a whole. Grooming is huge, as it makes you look neat, clean, and trustworthy. But don’t mistake well-groomed for over-tailored—a little scruff and some deliberately messy hair is A-OK. It’s all about intention when it comes to grooming. Here are our best tips for staying fresh:

  • See a barber and have your facial hair professionally trimmed.
  • Use high-quality grooming products, including shaving cream, aftershave, and hair products.
  • Spend a couple hours at the department store choosing a signature cologne.
  • Devise a skin care routine and, for god’s sake, stick to it.
  • Wash your face in the morning and evening before bed, no exceptions.
  • Always carry mints in your pocket.

Infusing Some Personality

Any guy can achieve a “look of luxury” with a navy suit, a Rolex, some Ferragamo loafers, and a rocks glass of Johnnie Walker Blue. And, yeah, that’s definitely about as classic as you can get when it comes to men’s luxury style. But the fashion icons we pay attention to don’t follow a specific formula like the one above. They take timeless, foundational pieces and dress them up with interesting touches. Make sure to add some personality to your look—vintage, heirloom, special edition, funky, bold, rare, unexpected—to truly embody what it means to be a man of modern luxury.

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