You may drool with sartorial envy at the effortless chic of Rachel Zane (Meghan Markle), the impeccably savvy style of Harvey Specter (Gabriel Macht), or the cool confidence of Mike Ross (Patrick J. Adams). But what you lack in high-end designer wear you can make up for.
1. Tailor, Tailor, Tailor
Even without a million-dollar wardrobe, the right fit -- achieved by perfect tailoring -- will take your wardrobe up many notches.
For women: You’ll notice that on every Suits woman, clothes fit perfectly -- not too tight, little if any cleavage, and nothing sheer. Tailoring is a way to show how sexy everything can be without it being revealing.
For men: Harvey takes the Mark Twain saying, “Clothes make the man” to another level. But really, the suit doesn’t make the man, the tailor makes the man. You don’t have to buy the most expensive suit, but it must fit perfectly. Even if you’re not quite a Harvey specimen, a well fitted suit can make any man look good no matter their weight or physique.
2. Accessorize Correctly
The right accessories say “put together” -- too many and the wrong ones are at best, distracting, at worst, scream “bad taste.”
For Women: You’ll notice the Suits women wear minimal accessories -- simple earrings, pearls, a pendant necklace. Take your cue from them and do not wear too much bling. Wear a fine watch, which says something about your orderliness, not to mention style.
For Men: Like the women, it’s important to accessorize with care. Overdoing it with elaborate or bright ties (although Louis has some great paisley samples), patterned shirts, clips, buckles, or Dr. Seuss socks can come across as too playful -- which detracts from your power image. Keep it minimal with an elegant pair of cufflinks, a quality watch, a simple pocket square (if you’re team Harvey, or not if you’re team Mike), and a good leather belt.
3. Get Groomed
Put-together professionals of both genders send a positive message: I’m in control. Can you imagine any Suits character with even one hair out of place?
For women: Cut and blow-dry the locks into a clean shape -- and if you dye or highlight, keep your roots at bay. Wear minimal makeup. A manicure is a must, but steer clear of florid pink or nail art. Wax the upper lip and pluck your eyebrows.
For men: Icky nails can be a deal-breaker so even if it sounds unmanly, getting your nails professionally groomed will give you that Harvey confidence. When it comes to hair, almost any cut will do as long as it’s frequent -- at least every four weeks. Scruff is a no-no, no matter the style -- just check out Harvey, Mike and Louis.
4. Feet First
Quality footwear is important -- you can tell a pair of well-made shoes the second they step into a room. And it goes without saying that shoes should be clean and unscuffed.
For Women: Shoes must be comfortable (nothing says “unprofessional” like wobbly walking) with a bit of height, but not too much -- save the stilettos for the club. Toes are a no-no. If you can pull off red-soled Christian Louboutin pumps like Jessica, go for it.
For Men: Harvey is known to wear $2,000 Tom Ford cap-toed derbies, but you can get a similar look without spending all your mortgage money. Stick with non-distracting footwear -- black wingtips are always a good choice. For something a bit different, try a dress boot -- you’ll be in awe of the added confidence you’ll feel.
5. Color Me Beautiful
When it comes to power dressing, don’t go too over-the-top with colors. Stick with neutrals, using bright shades as accents.
For women: Red is a power color, within limits -- handbags or lipstick. Blue is worn well by nearly everyone, but make sure to find the right shade -- not too light, not too dark!
For Men: Take a page out of Harvey’s book, and stick to the classic business palette of solids, sharkskin, Prince of Wales checks and stripes. Avoid tweeds, flannels, or bold windowpane. Light blue is a weak color in a suit, but emits power in a shirt or tie.
Tip: Fashion rental services let you revive your work-day wardrobe by trying out a trend (hello man-romper!) or test-driving that Prada purse you’ve been craving. Rent and return clothes instead of investing -- it’s like Netflix for your closet.