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What are the different dress codes?

What are the different dresscodes?

Tips for choosing an appropriate outfit

Dress codes are dress code guidelines that are followed in certain situations and events. They play an important role in the world of men's fashion and help to choose the right style for different occasions. In this article we present you a selection of different dress codes and give you tips on how to combine them.

The different dress codes at a glance

Formal dress codes

Formal dress codes are reserved for special occasions and events where an elegant and professional style is required. Here are some of the most common formal dress codes:

  • Black Tie: Black tie is one of the most formal dress codes and is often used for evening events, galas and weddings. For this dress code, gentlemen should wear a black tuxedo, white shirt, black bow tie and black leather shoes.
  • White Tie: White tie is considered the highest level of formality and is usually expected at royal events or state banquets. Here, gentlemen should wear a black tailcoat with a white shirt, a white bow tie, a white vest, white trousers and black patent leather shoes.
  • Business Formal: The business formal dress code is common in business environments and requires a neat, professional look. Gentlemen should choose a dark suit, plain shirt, subtle tie, and black or brown leather shoes.


Semi-formal dress codes

Semi-formal dress codes offer a bit more flexibility and are often used for more informal events like cocktail parties or dinners. Here are some semi-formal dress codes you should know:

  • Smart Casual: Smart casual is a versatile dress code that is a mix of dressy and casual. Men can wear a combination of dark jeans or chinos, a shirt or polo shirt, and a light blazer. Leather shoes or dressy sneakers complete the look.
  • Business Casual: Business casual is acceptable in many office environments and offers a more relaxed alternative to the business formal dress code. Men can choose a combination of neat slacks or chinos, a shirt or knit sweater, and a blazer or cardigan. Leather shoes or loafers go well with this dress code.


Casual dress codes

Casual dress codes are meant for informal situations and offer the most freedom in dress choices.

  • Casual: The casual dress code allows for relaxed and casual attire. Men can pair jeans or chinos with a t-shirt, polo shirt or dress shirt. Sneakers, boots or sandals can be well combined with this dress code.

Outfit ideas for different occasions

Formal occasions

Business occasions

Between business and casual

Casual occasions

Frequently asked questions

What does dress code "elegant" mean?

The dress code "elegant" is typically expected at events that have an upscale atmosphere, such as:

  1. Formal evening events: This includes gala dinners, fundraisers, opera visits, or formal balls.
  2. Weddings: Elegant attire may be expected, especially for evening weddings or weddings with a stricter dress code.
  3. Business Events: For important business meetings, conferences or networking events, an elegant dress code may be required.
  4. Receptions: Elegant dress code is often expected at official receptions, for example at embassies or government events.

What does dress code "casual" mean?

As a man, the dress code "casual" usually corresponds to

  • Casual pants: chinos, jeans or corduroy pants are a good choice for a casual look. Choose comfortable pants in an appropriate color.
  • Shirt or Polo Shirt: You can wear an open collar shirt, a polo shirt, or a casual t-shirt. Make sure it is clean and neat.
  • Shoes: wear comfortable shoes such as sneakers, boat shoes or loafers. Avoid flip-flops or worn shoes.
  • Jacket or sweater: depending on the weather, you can add a light jacket, sweater or cardigan to complete your look.
  • Accessories: to complement the casual style, you can wear a wristwatch, baseball cap or sunglasses. However, avoid accessories that are too flashy or formal.