It’s easy to assume that it’s more fun and exciting for leading ladies to get ready for the red carpet, but there are, in fact, just as many interesting decisions for their male counterparts. Tux or suit? Windsor or half-Windsor knot? Not to mention, the bevy of options for cufflinks. Sure, A-list actresses have their preferred designers (Jennifer Lawrence and Christian Dior Couture or Alicia Vikander and Louis Vuitton), but so do actors. Bradley Cooper leans heavily on Dolce & Gabbana and Rami Malek loves him some Dior.
Even if you aren't making it to the Oscars this Sunday, that doesn't mean you can't look as good as these leading men. We turned to celebrity stylist Ilaria Urbinati, who styles Cooper and Malek as well as Ryan Reynolds (above at the 2017 Golden globes with Blake Lively), Ben Affleck, Donald Glover, and more, on how to get dressed for red carpet-worthy occasions.
Google the Event
"A lot of people don’t know what black tie means," Urbinati says. "I always Google an event beforehand to make sure my guys are as dressy as possible. For the Oscars, all of them are going to be wearing a tux. With press looks, we have a little more creativity, so it’s not always a suit. I like a lot of sweaters, bombers, flannels; it requires more thinking, but it’s just as important to be dressed for casual events, too."
Fit Is Everything
"Fit is the way you can get away with everything else," she says. "When something fits you like a glove, you can wear a beautiful Gucci velvet suit because it’s tame in other ways. Likewise, a classic suit isn’t boring when it is tailored and hugs your body—that means no puddles of fabric at the ankles, no sleeves peeking out of the jacket.”
Use a Tailor
“I almost always taper the pant leg of a suit or tux, hem it, taper the arm (of a jacket or shirt), take the sleeve up, and take in the waist of the jacket and pant," Urbinati says. "Most men should also do this; if you are shorter, I also take in the length of the jacket because a big-sized jacket can drown you."
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"I never use a simple peak lapel tux on my guys," she says. "You can be timeless, but still be special, so I do unique takes on a classic, like a single double-breasted jacket. Some things can definitely be tacky or silly or costume-y, so take risks that are tame. When you look at that photo in fifty years, you want to look like James Dean."
Don't Skimp on the Accessories
"I like using cufflinks, a watch, patent leather shoes, and a bow tie for black tie,” she says. "Match your watch to your cufflinks, don't mix gold and silver, but have fun with the face of the watch dial, like a navy dial is nice with a navy suit. Patent leather shoes are a must. The bow tie can be tricky; you have to make sure the bow tie is proportionate to the face, like if your head is small, then the bow tie should be small, the wider the face, the wider the bow tie, the longer the neck, the longer the bow tie."
Match Your Coloring
“If you have big beautiful blue eyes, play with a blue suit or tux; if you have blondish brown hair, like Bradley, then browns and khakis look great on you," Urbaniti says.