How to choose suit colours: a guide for picking the perfect shade

How to choose suit colours: a guide for picking the perfect shade

Suits are evergreen but fashionable pieces that create the most elegant and stylish looks any man can get. A man needs at least two or three of these, but what are the best suit colours? Buying a new suit can be confusing, especially if you are unsure about your desired colours. Although most men believe they only need a particular shade, the reality dictates that there is a suit for every occasion.

Different suit colours for men
When choosing a suit, remember that light colours are casual, while dark ones are formal. Photo: @Mosaic Lille (modified by author)
Source: UGC


Choosing a suitable men's suit colour is as important as selecting the suit itself. Colours relay a powerful and robust message. So, which are the best suit colours?

How to choose suit colours

If you are buying a suit for the first time, it is advisable to choose a dark, solid shade such as charcoal grey, black or navy blue. Also, go for colours that will go hand-in-hand with the appropriate settings in which they are worn and ones that will stand the test of time.

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Here are the factors to consider when choosing the right suit colour for any occasion:

1. Skin tone

Your complexion can influence the type of suit colour to wear. For instance, light-coloured suits are suitable for people with darker skin tones. When you doubt what works for you, choose a healthy contrast between outfit and skin. However, certain shades like grey work well regardless of the skin tone.

2. Occasion

The formality of an occasion can guide your suit colour choice. Light colours are more casual, while dark ones are formal. Also, consider the venue, time of the day and year, and the nature of the event. For instance, a casual cocktail party gives way to more colourful choices like brown and burgundy.

3. The message you want to convey

Different suit colours convey different messages. Black suits are best worn in solemn functions like funerals.

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A display of men suits
Knowing how to create a nice suit, shirt and tie combinations is a matter of style and elegance. Photo: @pinnaxis (modified by author)
Source: UGC

4. Personal style

Your style and taste should be a priority when picking a suit colour. You do not need to wear a colour if it does not match your suit style.

5. How often do you wear it?

Consider how often you will want to wear the suit. For instance, if you intend to wear your suit beyond rare occasions, then navy blue and charcoal grey are the ideal choices. But if you were to own only one suit and you would rarely wear it, then black would be a perfect choice.

What are the 5 colour suits you need?

Men's suits come in various colours, but many people consider other factors, such as personal preference rather than the colour that would match an occasion or skin tone. Before experimenting with different shades, here are some of the best suit colours every man should have. They include:

1. Navy blue suit

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A man wearing navy blue suit
A man is wearing a navy blue suit, white shirt, and blue tie. Photo by Izusek
Source: Getty Images

A navy suit is an absolute must in your suit collection. The shade suits a man who wants to fit in, known for what he can do and not for what he wears. The colour is also straightforward, giving room for customizing.

Blue is a powerful colour that denotes authority and is one of the best professional suit colours. Therefore, you can wear a blue suit to a job interview, when meeting a client, when giving presentations and when you want to appear knowledgeable in your field.

2. Charcoal grey suit

A masculine man wearing a charcoal grey business suit poses on camera
A masculine man wearing a charcoal grey business. Photo by DeanDrobot
Source: Getty Images

A charcoal grey suit is a new favourite among men, is easy to match, and goes well with a shirt and tie of different colours. Its dark tone keeps the elegance level at maximum and gives a perfect option for your everyday navy blue outfit. It is ideal for the younger man and can add more age.

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3. Cambridge grey

Cambridge grey suits
The Cambridge grey suit is perfect for gentlemen who want to stand out on formal and special occasions. Photo: @Hilotherm (modified by author)
Source: UGC

Cambridge grey, also called medium grey, is less formal than navy blue and charcoal grey. It is part of the neutral colour family, making it appropriate in almost any situation. The grey suits make men bold enough to wear shades beyond the standard white shirt and black tie.

4. Black suit

Black suit
A display of a black suit, white shirt and black tie. Photo by Imilian
Source: Getty Images

Black suits are classy and classic, although they have lived through their best times and are now paving the way for more versatile and unique shades and colours. They are ideal for formal occasions, such as an event that requires a tuxedo or a black-tie dress code.

They are currently reserved for solemn events such as funerals. However, it works best for a man with a darker complexion and dark hair. They can also be worn to intimidate or outshine your competition.

5. Light grey suit

Light grey suit
A display of light grey suit, white shirt and blue tie. Photo by Zest_marina
Source: Getty Images

The light grey suit is casual and works well for summer, spring, and fall dressing. The shade also breaks up the monotony of wearing the more usual shades. They also offer a sophisticated and dressy alternative to black suits.

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Light grey suits are great for more laid-back occasions or daytime events. They are also excellent for work, although not for the most severe business meetings. They are also one of the best wedding suit colours.

What are the suit colour rules?

Here are the basic rules to follow to achieve a uniform, matching appearance when wearing a suit:

  • Stick with your solid, single colours
  • Match your shirt and tie
  • Match your tie with your shoes
  • Match your jacket and trousers
  • Always pair your suits and your hair

What colours should match in a suit?

Men in brown suits
Light-coloured suits are suitable for people with darker skin tones. Photo: @Esquire (modified by author)
Source: UGC

Knowing how to create a nice suit, shirt, and tie combination is a matter of style and elegance. Never mix more than three or four colours into one outfit to avoid any mismatch. Here is a table illustrating the suit colour combination for men.

Black or solid greyWhite or light blueSolid colour
BeigeWhiteChecked tie with brown hues
BlueWhiteColourful polka dot
Blue or BlackWhite or BlueSolid colour
Solid greyWhite with sky blue,purple or pink stripesThe exact shade of the shirt's stripes

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When selecting a suit, you must consider more than just the fabric, cut, and fit; you must also consider suit colours. You can never go wrong with navy blue and charcoal grey suits, considered the most versatile suit colours and desirable in many professions. The colours are also timeless and not highly susceptible to trends.

READ ALSO: Most expensive clothing brands in the world published an article about the most expensive clothing brands in the world. For those who have a taste for the finer things in life, nothing quite compares to the feeling of donning costly clothes. From haute couture to exclusive designer labels, these brands continue to redefine what it means to be fashionable and wealthy.

From rare materials to intricate designs, the most luxurious clothing brands in the world offer luxury and exclusivity unmatched in the fashion industry. And the good news is that whatever your budget is, there is a high-end proprietary name that will fit you and your pocket.

Source: Briefly News

Bennett Yates avatar

Bennett Yates (Lifestyle writer) Bennett Yates is a content creator with over five years of working experience in journalism and copywriting. He graduated from the University of Nairobi (2017) with a Bachelor's in Information Technology. In 2023, Bennett finished the AFP course on Digital Investigation Techniques. He started working for Briefly in 2019. You can reach him via email at