Home Men's Fashion Mastering the Peak Lapel: Your Ultimate Guide to Crushing Formalwear In 2024!

Mastering the Peak Lapel: Your Ultimate Guide to Crushing Formalwear In 2024!

by Cressida meale
Peak Lapel

When it comes to suiting up, the devil’s in the details. And no fact screams, “I’ve got this,” like choosing the right lapel for your suit jacket. Yep, I’m talking about those pieces of fabric that fold back on your chest, serving no real purpose other than to make you look damn good. Today, we’re zeroing in on peak lapels, the boldest of the bunch and a statement choice for those who know how to own a room.

Sure, you’ve got your notch lapels, your everyday warriors, and then there are shawl lapels, those smooth operators usually found on a tux. But what’s the deal with peak lapels? What message are you broadcasting when you sport one of these bad boys? Stick around as we break down the peak lapels when to wear them, and how to pull off the look like a pro.

The Nitty-Gritty on Peak Lapels

Peak Lapel
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You might think a lapel is just a flap of fabric, but it’s the cornerstone of a suit’s character. Sitting below the collar and folding back towards the chest, it’s a detail that defines your vibe. Today, we’re tackling peak lapels, the “all eyes on me” version that elevates your game to a new level of dapper.

What Are Peak Lapels, Anyway?

First things first, what is a lapel? The front section of your jacket folds back on itself, just under the collar. The ‘peak’ in peak lapel isn’t some abstract fashion vocabulary; it’s a literal description. The fabric points upward, creating a peaked appearance injecting gravitas and class into your attire. These guys are the Ivy League of lapels, especially when stacked up against their notch and shawl counterparts.

Rocking The Peak Lapel Suit

Peak Lapel
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Peak lapels are the Navy SEALs in a world full of garden-variety notch lapels. Peak lapels offer that extra zing while the notch is everywhere—thanks to mass production. They sync beautifully with bold patterns like stripes and plaids. Rocking a double-breasted suit? A peak lapel is a match made in heaven. Trust me, peak lapels are the Red Bull for cases that need a shot of audacity.

Peak Lapel Tuxedos: The OG Formalwear

Ever wondered what a classic tux looks like? Think peak lapel. Sure, the shawl lapel tux has its own fun flair, especially when jazzed up with contrasting pants, but the peak lapel is the gold standard for black-tie. Don’t entertain the idea of a notch lapel tuxedo; it’s the sartorial equivalent of sneakers at a wedding. Anyone pushing that on you needs to be more knowledgeable or pulling a fast one.

When to Sport the Peak Lapel

Peak Lapel
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Peak lapels are your weapon of choice when you want to dial up the style meter. Whether you’re attending a wedding tagged as “Cocktail Attire” or “Semi-Formal,” delivering a keynote, or want to own the room, peak lapels are your ticket.

Who Looks Good in a Peak Lapel?

Anyone can rock a peak lapel, but somebody types hit the jackpot with this design. Its elongating effect is magic for those on the shorter or broader side. You’ll appear taller and sleeker. That’s right, a peak lapel is a cheat code for an optical boost.

Where to Cop a Peak Lapel Suit

Peak Lapel
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Here’s the rub. Not all fabrics and styles come in your preferred lapel choice. The solution? Custom suiting. Once a luxury for the one-percenters, made-to-measure suits are now as accessible. You pick the details, and the tailor does the heavy lifting. Given the personalized fit, it’s not just a purchase; it’s an investment in yourself. Trust me, a custom suit gives you more bang for your buck, especially when peak lapels are involved.

So there you have it, the definitive guide to making peak lapels work for you. It’s time to elevate your suiting game, gents.

What Are The Other Types Of Lapels Besides Peak Lapels? 

Great question, and it’s essential to know your options. Besides peak lapels, you’ll encounter two other primary types of lapels: notch and shawl. Let’s break them down:

Notch Lapels

These are your everyday workhorse lapels. The notch lapel is the most common type, usually found in business suits and less formal attire. The notch is where the collar’s bottom meets the lapel’s top at a 75- to 90-degree angle. It’s a versatile choice that takes work to get right. It is ideal for office settings, job interviews, and any event that doesn’t demand a tuxedo.

Shawl Lapels

Welcome to the realm of black-tie events and soirées. Shawl lapels are a continuous curve without a break or notch, lending your tux an air of smoothness and fluidity. This lapel type has an inherently more relaxed, less structured vibe but still shouts elegance. You’ll find it mostly on dinner jackets and tuxedos meant for fancier occasions.

So there you have it. Whether you’re leaning into the gravitas of peak lapels, keeping it classic with a notch, or opting for the sophisticated curve of the shawl, each type sets a different tone for your look. Choose wisely and wear it like you mean it.

What Occasions Are Appropriate For Wearing Peak Lapels? 

Peak lapels have long been associated with a heightened sense of style and formality. While they can turn heads at any gathering, there are specific occasions where rocking a peak lapel will look good and be utterly appropriate. Here’s where you’d want to pull out the big guns:


Whether you’re the groom, the best man, or a stylish guest, a peak lapel suit or tuxedo can elevate your appearance and add a touch of timeless elegance. Perfect for ceremonies that specify a “Cocktail Attire” or “Black Tie” dress code.

Gala Events & Award Ceremonies

A peak lapel tuxedo is the standard-bearer for high-class style if you’re hitting up a gala or attending an award ceremony. You might even consider a tailcoat with peak lapels if it’s a super formal affair.

Business Formal Events

We’re talking high-stakes meetings, charity fundraisers, or any other event where business magnates and industry leaders will be present. A peak lapel suit brings a level of sophistication that says, “I know what I’m about.”

Public Speaking Engagements

Whether you’re delivering a keynote speech or presenting at a high-profile conference, peak lapels can add that extra layer of authority and gravitas you aim for.

Special Night Out

Dinner at a five-star restaurant, a night at the opera, or any situation where the dress code leans more toward martinis than beer—this is your chance to go all out with a peak lapel suit or blazer.

The takeaway? Peak lapels are a go-to choice when the occasion calls for you to step up your game. They’re a clear signal that you’re taking the event seriously and that you know a thing or two about timeless style. So seize those standout moments with a peak lapel; you won’t regret it.

Where Can You Purchase A Peak Lapel Suit?

Good on you for wanting to elevate your wardrobe with a peak lapel suit. Where you pick up this sartorial gem depends on budget, style, and how bespoke you want to go. Let’s break down some options:

High-End Retailers

If you want to invest significantly in a quality piece, check out established stores like Saks Fifth Avenue Nordstrom or even specialized suit shops like Brooks Brothers. You’ll find premium brands offering peak lapel suits in high-quality fabrics.

Designer Boutiques

Brands like Gucci, Armani, and Tom Ford often feature peak lapel styles in their collections. If you’re gunning for designer names and have the wallet to back it up, this is the place to be.

Online Retailers

Websites like Mr Porter, SuitSupply, and ASOS offer a decent selection of peak lapel suits, with options catering to varying budgets. Just remember to factor in time for any alterations you need.

Custom or Made-to-Measure

Consider a custom or made-to-measure option for a suit tailored to your exact measurements. Many cities have tailors who offer this service, or you can go with online services like Indochino or Black Lapel that guide you through the measuring process and then ship the suit to you.

Department Stores

Don’t sleep on classic department stores like Macy’s or JCPenney for more budget-friendly options. While the fabric might not be as luxe, you can often find decently made peak lapel suits that won’t break the bank.

Vintage Shops

A vintage shop could be a goldmine for those looking for something with a bit of character. Peak lapels have been in and out of vogue for decades, and you might find a unique piece that nobody else will have.

So whether you’re looking for something off-the-rack or tailor-made, there are many options for snagging a peak lapel suit. Consider what you’re willing to spend and how you plan to use the case, and you’re well on your way to making a purchase that will step up your fashion game.


Alright, lads, let’s wrap this up. Peak lapels are the secret sauce to turning a good suit into a great one. They bring that extra layer of sophistication and style that can make all the difference. But remember, with great style comes great responsibility. These aren’t for the faint of heart; they’re bold moves demanding confidence. If you’re stepping into a peak lapel, ensure the rest of your ensemble is on point, from the shirt to the shoes. Go custom, especially if you want that killer fit tailored to your body type. You get what you pay for, and investing in a quality peak lapel suit is a move you won’t regret. Now, armed with all this knowledge, go out there and make a statement without saying a word. Cheers!

Photo By Hardini Lestari on Unsplash

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