Men’s Jewelry 101
Of all the areas of men’s fashion, jewelry may have the fewest tied-and-true rules. What works for you will depend on your personal style, gender expression, age, level of professionalism, and so on. The guidelines provided in this article, then, are flexible. Feel free to use what you think is useful and discard the rest.
1. As a general rule, try not to overdo it. While a necklace, bracelet, and earrings wouldn’t be too overwhelming for most women or someone presenting in a feminine or androgynous way, it would generally be considered overpowering or overly gaudy on most men or masculine presenting individuals. If you can pull it off, that’s one thing. However, most guys should only choose one or two pieces of jewelry and integrate them into their outfit or look.
2. When it comes to jewelry, what is considered masculine, attractive, or cool will depend on what the majority of people in your social group consider fashionable. Check out what type of stuff the other guys around you are wearing. If you are older or work in a more professional setting, a nice watch, tie clip, or cufflinks can really tie your look together (as a side note, etsy is a great place to find affordable and unique tie clips and cufflinks). If you are younger or your look is more casual, a leather or hemp bracelet or necklace or a watch with a canvas watch strap can be very fashionable and understated.
3. Necklaces are often a safe bet, although they generally should be worn under the shirt in more formal settings or if they hang too low or are too large. There’s an abundance of religious necklaces designed specifically for men, obviously the typical crosses, but also star davids, mezuzahs, and more. Dog tags, solid chains, and cord necklaces are probably the most common non-religious necklaces for men.
4. Earrings are more up in the air. If you don’t know of any guys in your area with ear piercings, it may be a more risky fashion move. However it may be that every other guy you know has multiple ear piercings, this will totally depend on your personal situation. Simple studs and plugs (which require stretching) are usually considered pretty masculine and fashionable. Again, etsy has a great selection of men’s earrings and is also a great place to get ideas. By the way, don’t worry about that old rule about what ear to wear your earring…these days most guys who wear earrings have both ears pierced.
5. Simplicity is usually best, and one of the major differences between feminine and masculine jewelry. Feminine jewelry as a rule is supposed to stand out, whereas masculine jewelry blends in, complements, and subtly improves one’s entire look. When in doubt, choose something understated and simple.