Bracelets for men are having somewhat of a renaissance, with the likes of Jaden Smith, Spike Lee and Timothée Chalamet all stacking their wrists with them. But before you start braiding friendship bands with your BFF, there are some things you might want to think about.
With that in mind, FashionBeans has pulled together this: the complete guide to men’s bracelets. From cool cuffs to baller bangles and everything in between, these are the styles to use to punch up even the most basic of outfits.
Men’s Bracelets: What To Consider
Like most accessories, men’s jewellery is a personal thing and therefore there is no right or wrong style of bracelet. (Unless, of course, you include a mouldy festival wristband from 2015, which you absolutely shouldn’t.)
Whether you go for a gold bangle or a leather wraparound, the choice should be informed by what you like and the rest of your look. “A classic bracelet is always a great investment,” says Liberty menswear buyer Laura Robertshaw. “Specifically cuff bracelets in gold or silver.”
Alice Made This
The advice when shopping for a bracelet, according to Robertshaw, is the same as when looking for a leather jacket or a pair of boots: “get something that will stand the test of time.”
You should also consider any additional jewellery you regularly wear (matching it to your watch or wedding ring, though this is not essential), and your skin tone. Broadly speaking, gold suits warm skin while cool skin looks better with silver. If you’re unsure which camp you fall into, look at the veins on the underside of your arm. If they’re blue, your skin is cool; if they’re green, you’re warm.
Though a minimal cuff is arguably the easiest entry into men’s jewellery, wrist accessories aren’t limited to magpie-attracting metals. In fact, bracelets come every which way, from leather and rope braided to beaded styles.
By virtue of the more casual nature of the materials, unless you work somewhere where every day is dress-down Friday, brown leather, beaded and rope bracelets should all be saved for the weekend.
Types Of Men’s Bracelets
The most iconic of all gold bracelets is the Cartier love bangle. A pre-Facebook relationship status for famous couples including Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, Ali MacGraw and Steve McQueen, and more recently, Kim and Kanye, it’s credited with changing the way we wear jewellery. As such, a brass or yellow gold bracelet worn by itself on the opposite wrist to your watch will look good whether your shopping trips are spent on Savile Row or queuing at Supreme.
Far from a cheap replacement for gold, silver has the benefit of being the least flashy of all of the metals, and can therefore take being moulded into a seriously chunky style or something a bit tongue-in-cheek without looking naff. Try layering yours with a few beaded or braided bracelets for a laid-back twist that won’t verge on hippie chic.
Alice Made This
The casual cousin to leather bracelets, rope or cord styles are more versatile than they first appear. Try a plain version for something that will sit effortlessly under any sleeve, or amp up the interest with a charm or a talisman to add a further touch of individualism.
With ’80s style going strong (see also: tracksuits, light wash denim and relaxed tailoring), it was only a matter of time before chains got big again. Literally. Call Me By Your Name star and committed magpie Timothée Chalamet has been known to wear a chunky gold chain bracelet. It’s a look that works well largely due to his nonchalant style. Pair these with a suit at your peril, unless you’re okay with being mistaken for a pawnbroker.
There’s something particularly beach-y about beaded bracelets. So much so that everyone will assume you have an interesting travel story to go with them. Which means you should either acquire some tales, pronto, or (in the interest of not looking like an unwashed gap year traveller) balance them out with grown-up pieces like a steel watch. And no puka shells, please.
No longer the preserve of sea-salt-haired surfers, the leather bracelet has been given a refresh in recent years with the likes of Tom Ford, Versace and Saint Laurent all offering up sleek re-workings. A sleek black leather bracelet is the most versatile of the lot, right up there with gold and silver in terms of wearability.
WANT Les Essentiels
Cuff and bangle-style bracelets are a good option if you’re just dipping a toe into the man-jewellery pool. Bright, shiny versions are enough of a statement on their own, or more advanced dressers can opt for something with texture or in a dull metal such as brass which can be layered with other bracelets.
The Best Jewellery Brands For Men’s Bracelets
Organic forms meet sleek design in this Swedish jewellery brand from old friends and co-founders, Jacob Skragge and Fredrik Nathorst. Inspired by everything from egg yolks to the coastline, each men’s bracelet is cast in ethically sourced and recycled sterling silver and gold vermeil by local artisans, before being finished in the brand’s Stockholm studio.
New York-based, Miami-founded jewellery brand Miansai has been keeping the wrists of stylish gentlemen decorated since its inception in 2009. Initially better known for its rope and leather styles, it has now branched out into handsome polished bangles and cuffs that look just as good with a T-shirt as they do peeking out from the cuff of a work shirt.
Launched in 2010, the eponymous jewellery label from Danish designer Maria Black proved such a hit with women that she began designing for men, too. Her deceptively simple styles are thoughtfully handcrafted in London, and while being immensely wearable, a Maria Black bracelet is also incredibly individual. Wear it and expect compliments.
Unsurprising given the name, Oliver Proudlock‘s Serge DeNimes brand began life specialising in denim. Expanding into jewellery, and mimicking the Made In Chelsea star’s own personal aesthetic, here you can find not-remotely-flashy chain bracelets with charms dangling from them.
Alice Made This
If Alice Walsh wasn’t making sleek and sharp jewellery, there’s every chance she would probably be performing brain surgery, such is the precision of her men’s bracelets. A champion of British manufacturing, each piece produced under the Alice Made This name is made with the help of local artisans and engineers using a wide range of methods, from silversmithing to nanotechnology.