Having a minimalist mens wardrobe can be truly life-changing and not to mention, less stressful! If you are looking to simplify your wardrobe, this is a great way to go.
A minimalist wardrobe is all about not following fast fashion trends and making the most of limited wardrobe essentials that you really need. It’s void of any excess, clutter and extravagance, and is simply narrowed down to the essentials.
The key is to own timeless pieces and items that will never go out of style, and those which offer maximum versatility and functionality.
Benefits of A Minimalist Mens Wardrobe
There are numerous benefits of having a minimalist wardrobe for men ranging from saving time and money to decluttered spaces to being able to adopt a sustainable fashion living approach.
Take a look!
More Closet Space and Less Visual Clutter
Most of our closets are often brimming with clothes which can create visual clutter and can simply overwhelm you in terms of what to wear. You may think you have such a great variety of clothes to choose from, but truth be told, half of the items are those that never get worn and are simply collecting dust.
A minimalist wardrobe for men means less visual clutter where you’ll be able to see all items that you own, but more than that, you’ll have more closet space for items that you really need instead of ones that are simply cluttering the space.
Getting Dressed Is Easier and Quicker
How often do you find yourself standing in front of your open closet and just staring at it for what seems like hours because you are unable to decide what to wear? This is a daily dilemma for many men, especially those who are very particular about their sartorial choices, be it for work, daily wear or just in general.
Having a minimalist wardrobe brings great versatility where you can put together so many different outfits with limited clothing options. Moreover, the process of getting dressed becomes easier and quicker and you won’t have to think too much about what to wear.
Every Item Serves A Purpose
Creating a minimalist men’s wardrobe requires you to only keep the essential items and remove all those that you no longer need which were just collecting dust in your wardrobe. Every item serves a purpose which isn’t just great for you, but also for the planet!
A minimalist wardrobe is a wonderful eco-friendly way to minimize waste since you will only get what you need and will wear for sure. Also, you’ll be making intentional decisions so you won’t even regret parting with items that you no longer need.
You Can Get Super Creative and Experimental
You might think that having a minimalist wardrobe would restrict your clothing choices, but it’s actually the opposite. With limited choices, you can get super creative and experimental, mix and match different pieces that you never thought would go together, and put together unique outfits.
Another great advantage of a smaller wardrobe is you can be as minimalist or maximalist with the choices at hand. If you wish to stick to neutrals and basic pairings, you are completely free to do that. On the other hand, if you want to experiment with colors and make a bold statement, you can do that too!
You Save Time and Money
Instead of having to keep up with fast fashion and the ever-changing fashion trends, you only need to fill your wardrobe with staples which is both time and money saving.
From spending less time on deciding what to wear each day to taking less time to organize your wardrobe, it’s a win-win for you! More than that, once you carefully select the clothes required for your lean wardrobe, you don’t have to spend a lot of money on new ones for every occasion.
Minimalist outfits can be quite versatile and multi-purpose, much to most people’s surprise!
How to Build A Minimalist Men’s Wardrobe
Are you ready for an epic wardrobe transformation where less is more and with a few simple steps, you can pave the way towards minimalist fashion?
Here’s how you can do that!
Determine Your Needs
Minimalism for men doesn’t feature a one-for-all formula considering how every man is different and has unique sartorial requirements. So, first things first, when creating a minimalist men’s wardrobe, begin by identifying your needs depending on factors like the weather, your lifestyle, nature of your work, etc.
For instance, if you have a 9-5 job, you will need items that are appropriate for workplace settings, coupled with some casual pieces for informal occasions and weekends. On the other hand, if you work from home, you will need more comfortable loungewear options and a few smart-casual options in case of meetings.
Take Into Account Your Personal Style
Just like every individual has different needs, they also have a unique personal style which you need to consider when opting for minimalist fashion.
Identify your personal style by going through your current wardrobe and finding out what styles, colors, and designs you tend to lead towards more than the others. For instance, do you prefer wearing solids and neutrals more or do you like to have colors and prints in your wardrobe?
Also take into account what kind of clothes make you feel most comfortable because that’s very important when curating a wardrobe for yourself.
Look Through What You Have
You may not realize it, but your wardrobe probably already has quite a few basic pieces and staple clothing items sitting somewhere at the back in the pool of clothes.
Sort through your current wardrobe and go through what you have. If you haven’t decluttered or organized your wardrobe for a long time, perhaps, now’s the time to do that!
A simple way to go about it is to separate your clothes into three different categories: keep, toss, maybe.
The ‘keep’ category should have all those items that you want to keep in your minimalist wardrobe which you know you’ll wear for sure. The ‘toss’ category should include those items you haven’t worn in a long time and aren’t likely to wear again along with those that are worn-out or damaged beyond repair.
In the end, you’ll be left with items that you aren’t really sure of which go in the ‘maybe’ category. Sort through those again and keep what you want for sure, not what you think you might wear.
Keep What Fits
A general rule of thumb to follow for men’s minimal wardrobe is to only keep what fits. When it comes to clothes that are small and don’t fit, it is natural to want to hold on to them in hopes that you will go back to wearing them some day. It is better to donate these clothes and replace them with new ones if needed.
For clothes that are too big, you can either get them altered if they are in really good condition, donate them to local shelters to thrift stores, or recycle them.
Follow the Lean Wardrobe Pyramid
When attempting to build a minimalist wardrobe for men, it can be quite challenging to create the perfect one that has everything you need and is enough to help you make unique style statements.
If you find yourself struggling with the process, perhaps, follow the ‘Lean Wardrobe Pyramid’ model for creating the ideal men’s minimalist wardrobe list. This model entails considering your wardrobe a pyramid which is divided into three levels: base level, middle level and top level.
The base level is your wardrobe’s building block which consists of all the classic essentials that go with each other. It is also the widest section of your wardrobe. The middle level consists of textures, patterns, and colors – mostly seasonal items with limited versatility. The items in this level might not play with each other nicely, but they definitely pair well with the base level items.
Lastly, the top level features occasional wear, standout and experimental items, and compared to the base level, this one consists of the fewest number of clothing items.
Essential Pieces In A Capsule Wardrobe for Men
As mentioned earlier, a minimalist wardrobe comprises a few basic wardrobe essentials that can be paired with each other to create the perfect outfits.
When building such a wardrobe, it can be quite confusing as to what to include and what not to include.
To help you get started on creating your very own men’s minimalist wardrobe, we have rounded up a few essential pieces that you should have in your wardrobe.
These are absolute staple for minimalistic fashion for men considering how they pair so well with so many different clothing items. A couple of Oxford shirts, for instance, are ideal for work, meetings and a range of formal activities. Ideally, you should opt for classic, timeless colors such as white, gray, and navy blue.
Solid colored shirts will go a long way and depending on the occasion, you can pair your choice of the types of shirts with different bottoms and outerwear. The best part about these neutral colors is that you won’t be needing a lot of them given their increased versatility.
A plain white crew neck t-shirt is considered to be the backbone of a minimalist men’s wardrobe considering how it makes the perfect base for any and every casual outfit. You can feature your classic white t-shirt in a number of outfits, but more than that, it’s also ideal for layering on cold days.
Other than white, also include black and other block colors such as gray and brown for more diversity in your minimalist wardrobe.
Start with these neutral colors and avoid anything graphic or too loud in the start. If later you feel like adding a pop of color to your t-shirt collection, you can always do that.
Denim is another wardrobe staple that totally deserves a spot in a men’s capsule wardrobe. Jeans are one of the most useful and versatile clothing items which you can wear both to work, if your workplace dress code allows it, as well as to events like lunches and dinners that have a casual dress code.
Include both light wash and dark wash jeans in your wardrobe so that you can create different outfits which can be dressed up and down depending on where you are going. Learn how to wear black jeans and light blue jeans.
In terms of fit, opt for slim-fit jeans that aren’t too loose nor too tight. For daily wear, you can also opt for baggy jeans, a staple of the Y2K fashion for men.
Sweatpants and Loungepants
For days when you are home and don’t have work or anywhere to go, you will need a pair of comfortable sweatpants or lounge pants that you can casually wear around the house.
These pants come under the casual attire category that only help keep you comfortable, but are also appropriate in case you have to head out to run errands, for instance.
Loungepants are a step above nightwear pajamas and a step below jeans, which makes the perfect casual clothing item.
Apart from jeans, your minimalist wardrobe should also include a couple of chinos for your semi-formal outfits. Chinos are highly associated with 90s fashion for office wear and are often described as the ‘anywhere kind of pants’ given how versatile they are and how you can wear them year round.
Again, opt for neutral colors such as black, navy, gray and brown which will make the perfect choices for work-related events and meetings, dinner dates, and all kinds of smart-casual occasions.
When choosing the right outerwear for men’s minimalist outfits, it all comes down to two key factors: style and weather.
For instance, if you live somewhere cold, you will surely need a warm overcoat, a puffer coat, and a few sweaters. If you live somewhere with neutral weather, you can opt for a denim jacket which was a big part of the 90s male fashion, a trench coat, a hoodie, and a raincoat if it tends to rain a lot.
In terms of style, go with different types of jackets and coats that offer a flattering silhouette and what you think looks best on you and suits your personal style.
A pair of white sneakers and black Oxfords have to be two of the most classic and timeless footwear items that you can make-do with for numerous occasions. However, it’s good to have some diversity to enhance your personal style and also have options to choose from.
For instance, slippers and sandals are a must for daily wear and casual outings, and are ideal for every old or young man’s style. Another must-add footwear item is a pair of black Chelsea boots which are ideal for cold season and offer both functionality and fashion appeal.
If you are big on fitness and love to work out, add a pair of nice, comfortable running shoes.
Tailored Navy Suit
Suits are very important even in a minimalist wardrobe for men because you will be needing one for a range of occasions. While a black colored suit is an all-time classic, switch things up with a well-tailored navy suit.
A navy suit is a timeless choice and is perfect for both weddings and work events. The best part is you can break up your tailored navy suit and use the pants or the coat as separates and pair them with other outfits.
Minimalist men’s wardrobe is simply incomplete without the right accessories such as ties, pocket squares, belts, cufflinks, watches and headwear like caps. What’s great about men’s accessories is that you don’t need to have a lot of them. They are mostly super versatile which allows you to wear them in different ways and pair them with different outfits.
These accessories will help spruce up your wardrobe and also amp up your personal style.
How to Maintain A Minimalist Wardrobe for Men
Creating a minimalist wardrobe is one thing, but maintaining it without derailing is a whole other thing.
Consistency and maintenance can be quite a challenge, however, there are a few things you can do to successfully stick to your minimalist men’s wardrobe.
The basic purpose of having a minimalist wardrobe is to avoid overspending on clothes and other wardrobe essentials. The idea here is to have limited items and get the most out of them by putting your creativity to good use.
As a rule of thumb, make it a point to buy only what you need, or what’s missing from your wardrobe or something that you know for sure you will use to the maximum.
Always Create A Budget for Clothes
When adopting a minimalist clothing lifestyle, always create a budget for clothes and stick to it. To make this even easier, decide on a maximum number of items that works for you according to your sartorial requirements and try to stay within that number.
For instance, if you’ve planned to buy 2 shirts and 1 pants in a given month, don’t go above the planned numbers. Try to get your hands on versatile options and timeless colors so that you can create a number of outfits from your limited options.
Don’t Be Hasty or Impatient
Having to make do with a minimalist wardrobe can tend to be frustrating, but remember that it’s an ongoing process that doesn’t happen overnight.
Don’t be hasty or impatient during this process and allow yourself to move along it at your own pace.
Do A Regular Wardrobe Audit
One thing that most people often struggle with is distinguishing between what they think they will wear and what they actually do wear. This is how one ends up with a wardrobe with items that you are never likely to wear again.
So, to maintain your minimalist wardrobe, do a regular wardrobe audit to remove any item that you no longer like, that no longer fits you, and that is no longer wearable. You can always replace the items you remove with new essentials.
Prioritize Function Over Aesthetics
More often than not, we wear things because they are in fashion or that they are aesthetically pleasing without them serving any real purpose. Minimalist style for men works in the opposite direction – it requires you to focus on function over aesthetics because in this case, functionality is the name of the game!
Make Little Changes
One of the most important things you can do to maintain a minimalist wardrobe for men is to make little changes such as taking good care of clothes so that they last longer, borrowing or buying second hand options instead of buying new, rethinking over every new purchase to ensure that it’s absolutely needed, and reassessing your wardrobe every once in a while to see if you have anything in there that doesn’t fit anymore or no longer matches your personal style.
FAQs – Minimalist Men’s Wardrobe
How many items are in a minimalist wardrobe?
There is no strict rule that determines the specific number of items that are supposed to be in a minimalist wardrobe. This is simply because all items are versatile and transitional, and it all comes down to your personal style and needs.
However, to make things easy, you can stick to a range where the lowest number can be as low as 15 and the highest number can be as high as 50.
How can a man make a minimalist wardrobe?
A man can make a minimalist wardrobe by focusing on four key elements – versatility, quality, appropriateness, and neutrality. The idea here is to have only those items in your wardrobe that you definitely need and get rid of those that you don’t use.
Why should I have a men’s capsule wardrobe?
Simply put, a men’s capsule wardrobe makes life super easy where you certainly won’t find yourself caught up in, or wasting time on sartorial decisions!
You may think that having a minimalist men’s wardrobe might make your fashion style dull and boring, but it’s actually quite the opposite. It will actually foster creativity, freedom to express yourself, and enhance your personal style in ways you never thought you could!