The difference it can make to a man's outfit is pretty incredible.
Swap one color for another and you have a completely different look.
However, color goes much further than that.
In fact, a recent study by the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University shows how the color of your clothing can have a direct impact on your self-perception, mood & image.
Many men have a difficult time picking articles of clothing in proper colors. Especially men just getting involved with men's style.
This is unfortunate as color is so much more than black and white. Many men do not realize this and stick with the most bland of colors without experimenting at all.
I am writing this article to inform you, the reader on how colors, shades, tints and tones play a key role in menswear and with each other as well.
Our goal is to inform the modern man how color matters and should be considered when choosing a garment of interest.
Hues & Menswear
It's easy to see how many men perceive hues as a standalone term but it is actually one and the same with color. To define a hue would be to describe it as family of the 12 brightest and purest colors.
This can be broken down even further by adding the categories of primary, secondary and tertiary colors.
The breakdown of each is as follows:
Primary Colors & Men's Clothing
Secondary Colors & Men's Clothing
Consists of combining two primary colors to make different varieties:
- Blue + Red = Violet
- Yellow + Blue = Green
- Red + Yellow = Orange
Tertiary Colors & Men's Clothing
These are the gap-fillers on the color wheel mixing the primary colors with the newly formed secondary colors. This list is extensive but we have provided some examples of how tertiary colors are formed:
- Red + Orange
- Blue + Green
- Red + Violet
One handy reference to review to gain a better understanding of hues is the color wheel.
The color wheel lists out a total of 12 main hues that are considered the most standard.
Most articles of clothing such as a sports jacket using strictly hues are not super common in menswear. These colors tend to be too bright which makes them less versatile.
However, accessories using hues on the color wheel is an excellent option to add that spark to your look and show off your personality.
Tints & Menswear
In it's most simplest term – Taking any hue from the color wheel mentioned above and adding white to it technically creates a tint.
Tints, often referred to as pastels aid in creating entirely new colors depending on the amount of white used to mix with the hue.
Seeing pastels in menswear stores across the country is much more common compared to the brighter varieties of hues.
This is due to tints being softer and more subtle, which pairs really well with foundational colors.
Not only are tints pleasing to the eye, they provide a large variety of clothing options that is just not possible with hues alone.
Tints are much more common in the Spring and Summer months given that they are generally warmer colors.
Two articles of clothing that greatly benefit from tints are cashmere sweaters and polo shirts. Both items can be worn as a transitional piece for when the weather gets slightly cooler or warmer.
Tints are better avoided during the extreme seasonal portions of the year.
Shades & Menswear
If you understand the concept of tints then shades will be a breeze for you to understand.
A shade is technically taking any hue in the color wheel and adding black to it.
Pretty much the polar opposite of tints but just as prominent in the realm of menswear.
Without shades, colors such as navy blue would not be possible. As we all know, navy blue is a menswear staple and quite possibly the most versatile color you can incorporate into your closet.
As with tints, various colors can be created depending how much black is added to a respective hue.
Tones & Menswear
Last but definitely not least are tones.
At its essence, tones are a combination of a tint and shade.
What I mean by this is if you combine black and white together, you will bring forth a new color which makes tones possible.
I am referring to the color grey.
Similar to the tint and shade process, the newly created grey is added to one of the hues on the color wheel to “tone down” the overall color.
Tones are said to be more pleasing to the eye, especially in clothing. Tones are slightly more complex and subtle, translating well to everyday use.
Conclusion – Color Matters In A Man's Wardrobe
It is pretty clear to see how various colors impact each other resulting in many different clothing options for the informed man.
If you take some to learn about the various color combinations that can be created, you will be one step ahead of the game and have a competitive advantage over others.