The Humble Beanie Is This Winter’s Coolest Accessory For Men, Here’s How To Wear It
An inherently utilitarian accessory, the beanie is fortunately not a difficult item to pull off. The right beanie for men will strike the ideal balance between being cosy and stylish, making for the perfect winter head topper.
The key to pulling off a beanie is thinking of it as an elevated winter wardrobe staple, rather than a style statement in itself. If your beanie is overly baggy, extending several inches past your head, and looks like you’re trying to smuggle something past airport security à la an early 2000s David Beckham, you’re likely doing it wrong.
If you’re feeling a little lost on the beanie front, we’ve got you covered. Here’s everything you need to know about how to wear a beanie for men.
What is a beanie?
A beanie is a brimless knit hat, designed to sit snugly on the wearer’s head and provide warmth during the colder months. Traditionally made of wool, beanies now come in a variety of fabrics like acrylic, cashmere, cotton, and fleece.
Types of beanie styles for men
A failsafe option, the cuffed beanie is a versatile classic, favoured by workmen, athletes, and hip-hop enthusiasts alike. The cuff provides additional warmth and protection to your forehead and ears and should be worn so that the cuff sits about halfway down your ears. Alternatively, if you favour a more relaxed look, a cuffed beanie can be worn higher up to add some bulk around the crown of the head.
Likely the beanie style with the most hipster connotations, the fisherman beanie has become a popular go-to option for the street style crowd. Originally designed for (wait for it…) fishermen, the fisherman beanie features a turned-up cuff and is a shorter style worn above the ears.
Although it doesn’t provide as much warmth as other beanie varieties (due to the ear exposure), the fisherman style ties in well to the workwear-inspired look that’s currently popular within men’s fashion, pairing well with workwear items like chore coats, shirt jackets, and classic work pants.
Careful, this is where the beanie starts to veer into dubious territory. An uncuffed, relaxed style, a slouchy beanie is a definitively casual option, pairing well with streetwear and off-duty attire. The trick to pulling off a slouchy beanie is to exercise restraint with the additional material atop your head; less is definitely more here.
High top beanie
Popular with the streetstyle crowd, the high top beanie differs from its slouchier cousin, with the high top crafted from a firmer material and adding extra height at the crown of the head, rather than slouching downwards.
While traditionally not the manliest of styles, the bobble hat is no longer relegated to children’s wear. To style as a grown man, steer clear of overly pattered, colourful varieties and stick to neutral tones. And definitely don’t opt for anything with more than one bobble.
How to wear a beanie for men
Like any good versatile accessory, a beanie for men can be styled for a myriad of occasions. Here’s some beanie outfit inspiration for (almost) every dress code.
At its essence, the beanie is a casual item, allowing it to work well with both streetwear and weekend looks. Team a cuffed or fisherman beanie with a hoodie, t-shirt and chinos or slim-cut jeans for an easy, pared-back cool weather-appropriate look. Alternatively, pair a neutral slouchy beanie, high top hat or graphic cuffed beanie with streetwear staples like bomber jackets, sneakers, lace-up boots, and graphic sweatshirts for a streetstyle ready look.
Commuters get cold too, with the beanie making for a simple way to protect your head during the cooler months while travelling to and from work or to meetings. For office-appropriate attire, opt for a woollen or cashmere classic cuffed beanie in a neutral colour. Steer clear of all-black outfits to avoid looking like the security detail to a celebrity; black suits work well with grey or navy beanies, while brown and tan suits look smart with camel, tan, red, or burgundy options.
For the ideal smart-casual look, switch out your traditional button-down shirt for a roll neck or turtleneck for a play on textures, or opt for a woollen overcoat in lieu of a suit jacket. If you’re feeling a tad more daring, try styling your office look with a black, beige, or grey bobble beanie.
The practical, utilitarian nature of the beanie goes hand-in-hand with workwear dressing. Either a cuffed or fisherman beanie is best suited to the functional aesthetic, teaming well with work pants, chore coats, shirt jackets, multi-pocket coats, and denim.