Great Contrasting Colour Combinations for Men

by Jamie Wilson

Reviewed & updated: October 19, 2022 by Jamie Wilson BA

Getting those colour combinations right this season is key and this simple guide will show you how to achieve it this season.

When you don’t know how to wear colour, it can go either of two ways: clashing bright colours worn together (taking us back to the 80s) or plain and neutral outfits day after day. The modern day man tends to stick to more neutral tones, like white, black, grey and tans but that can get pretty boring and make you look a little dull. Introducing colours into your wardrobe doesn’t need to be a hard task, the trick is to start with your main basics.

The Best Staple Colours

Start your wardrobe off with the main basics, and for these, make sure they are subtle versatile colours that can be mixed and matched. The best staple colours are the neutrals; black, brown, blue and tan.

This doesn’t mean that it’s limiting your wardrobe; you don’t actually have less choice than women! It’s just about how you wear the colours. With this in mind, the next step is to look at the colour wheel for help.

The Colour Wheel

Where colours sit on the wheel will point out if they go together.

Putting the Right Colours Together

Complimentary colours are opposite each other on the wheel. Red and green are a perfect example. Having said that, wearing them together at their brightest shades can be really tricky… you don’t want to look like the ultimate Christmas mascot. Team this Alpha Industries bomber jacket with a red Herschel backpack for a bang on trend look this season.

So what you can do is change the shade slightly, a nice bright or rich in colour pair of chinos with subtler shades up top will look great. This pretty preppy look has been seen at New York Fashion Week recently so don’t dismiss it just yet.

Adding colour to your suits

Yellow and blue are near to opposite on the colour wheel and if you choose a lighter shade of yellow this combo can work really well.

Contrasting colours are next to eachother or near eachother on the wheel. For example, blue, purple and pink are next to eachother and can work really well together. However, like the rule with complimentary colours, try not to wear all colours together at their brightest shades. To see the most obvious signs of getting it wrong, take a quick look around the office, it won’t take long to see who has got the great shirt and tie combo down, and who hasn’t.

Some men have terrible taste in shirts and ties but if you can understand the colour wheel then it won’t take long to know what looks great. Choosing something like a navy blue suit, light pink shirt and blue patterned tie is a great combo any man can pull off. If you have to wear a suit five days a week, this is a great way to have a different style everyday.

If you are still a little unsure then wearing a crisp white shirt and changing up your ties is fine too, just make sure they go with your suit. Another little trick to jazzing up your office outfit is to match your socks with your tie. Pink tie, pink socks is a sharpened look!

Back to the colour wheel

If the colours are opposite eachother, make sure one is worn a few shades lighter. If the colours are next to eachother they will be great together.

Feature image from Pinterest

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