It was approximately 5,000 years ago when men and women both started wearing extensive amounts of jewelry and though subtly but history did repeat; with growth in men’s jewelry! Today, jewelry has emerged as a crucial player in the growing men’s accessories market.
This expansion is a reflection of the growing social acceptance of men’s jewelry.
Indeed, the opportunity in men’s jewelry has not gone unnoticed by the industry’s biggest brands like Bottega Veneta, Saint Laurent, Versace and Givenchy. Others like Fossil, Zara, Diesel, Tommy Hilfiger, Ted Baker, Simon Carter even market places like Etsy in particular, have made forays into the category in recent years.
15 to 20 years ago, the only men who were wearing jewelry were pretty much rock stars and other musicians. The shift that we gradually started seeing, was probably because of the rise of the metrosexual man and of celebrity culture, with influencers such as David Beckham having a notable impact on the way men dress. Vouching as huge advocates of accessorising and this ultimately trickled down to the consumer.
In recent years, men’s buying habits have also moved well beyond the traditional confines of the category like watches, wedding bands and cufflinks. They are now ready to pull off bracelets, lapel pins, tie pins, earrings and even necklaces.
Today’s men’s newfound passion for wearing jewelry is a means of personal expression. It’s no more a random piece of jewelry but there is a lot more meaning and purpose attached to it. It’s an evoking memory of travel destinations, exotic vacations or adventures, etc.
This passion has been most evident on men’s wrists, as this part of the body was made safe for accessorizing by the watch long ago. However, men today are increasingly buying multiple items to outfit their wrists. Bracelets started with only heavy metallic ones, then it filtered down to leather and silver and very little thin bands, and then elastic bands.
With all the attention to the category, the perception has really changed. Men see jewelry as an extension of their style, like a watch, hence they are willing to pay more for the right pieces.
Styling: A few things to keep in mind
Pulling off men’s jewelry can be tricky and daunting with dilemmas like how to keep things looking masculine, what to pair with what, how much is too much etc.
But right pairing can elevate your look and act as an easy element to amp up your attire.
- So to begin with, invest in a couple of pieces with modern and clean design.
- Opt for a well fit, basic neutral look. You don’t want the elements in your outfit competing for attention.
- Bracelets and cuffs are perfect for adding personality, character and a little understated texture to your look when wearing lightweight tees and vests.
- Layering bracelets of different textures and materials with/ without your classic watch without overdoing it.
- Textured brooch and statement lapel pins are a subtle way to rework your normal look and act like timeless pieces in any gentleman’s wardrobe.
- If you’re feeling brave go for a necklace or earring but they can be more difficult to carry than bracelets and cuffs. So, the key here is to keep things as low key as possible. Get it right, and you bring an otherwise banal outfit up a whole notch.Look for slim to medium width chains and pendants in silver, brass and gold, which you can team with V-neck tees and vests during summer.
But more than anything else, whatever style you choose should look personal, as if they’re subtle extensions of the kind of things you’d find in your wardrobe. It’s all about finding what works for you.
A ceiling well below the women’s market
Though the men’s jewelry market is growing, it will never equal women’s jewelry; men are much, much fussier than women about their jewelry. You need to woo them and convince them it is a safe place. Women are much freer about it.
Nonetheless Men’s jewelry is a lasting trend with growth potential. A sharp upward trend is predicted in 2016.