Every man needs at least one blazer in their wardrobe, ideally in navy. From there, guys can begin to expand their sartorial horizons with the introduction of new colours and fabrics.
The great thing about blazers – and subsequently the reason you should all own one – is that they are a perfect piece for turning casual outfits into smart casual outfits. Looking just as good with a pair of jeans or chinos as they do with matching suit pants, the blazer is a truly versatile menswear essential.
There is much to consider when buying a blazer, however, such as colour, fit and fabric, and you also need to determine whether a structured or unstructured blazer will work best for the occasion(s) you’re going to wear it.
Not sure what we mean by that? Read on for a brief rundown of all there is to know before buying a blazer, and then take a look at our selection of the best blazers for men.
The structured blazer is all about the fit: cut super close to the body while maximising shape, helped out with some padding, linings and the inner jacket mechanics. Richer looking, the structured blazer requires quality fabric and engineering best seen to by a tailor or a reputable suit store.
It will normally carry more defined shoulders than an unstructured blazer, feel luxurious to touch and hug the body to enhance the slim fit. At first glance too, the jacket will appear simpler, elegant, with minimal details and doesn’t discriminate against the lapel: peak, shawl and/or notch. Needless to say, it’s a seamless pairing with ties.
The unstructured blazer is for those gents who are maybe more blue-collar or artsy in profession and don’t have the workplace ‘need’ to be traditional. Or, they prefer a relaxed approach to incredible style. These blazers are designed to mould to the body, are relaxed and boast a less rigid shape.
More commonly known as a ‘sports coat’, they still cut sharp on the shoulder and can hug close to the body of the wearer. But, unstructured blazers give a softer, relaxed fit – falling from the shoulder peak fluidly. Stripped bare, the unstructured jacket is just that – unstructured, so the typical inner folds and shapes given to retaining a jacket’s shape, are gone.
Casual details may be added though: front pockets, exposed seams, lack of lining, multiple buttons and sometimes buttons in contrast colour to the jacket fabric itself. Plus, they are more likely to be made from one piece of cloth, so they are thinner, making them great for winter layering or going solo as a light add-on for summer.
Everlane's Italian wool jacket – available in navy, charcoal and black – is the perfect entry-point into the world of blazers. Rocking a classic, single-breasted two-button silhouette and benefitting from a fully recycled breathable inner lining – and, being Everlane, is comfortably affordable – it's just begging to be experimented with.
The New Venture blazer is the perfect piece for urban commuters and hipsters alike, being incredibly minimal in its aesthetic, yet entirely functional. It's lightweight and water-repellent and has a hidden internal pocket to store your phone, while the recycled polyester lining adds a layer of breathability too, keeping you warm without overheating.
This unstructured blazer is made from 100 per cent Italian wool and be had in slim, athletic or standard fits. Bonobos says its perhaps better suited for warmer days, due to the fact it has minimal lining – except for something in the sleeves – but it can easily be dressed up when needed. A truly versatile jacket.
We could, therefore, have chosen pretty much any blazer from the company’s catalogue, but have settled on this green Havana jacket, partly because we just love the colour. However, it has plenty of substance too, such as being made from a silk-linen blend fabric from Italian company Ferla. It’s an unstructured blazer too, so is best suited for spring and summer, with its slim-fit silhouette making it the perfect partner to a pair of tailored chinos.
The Soft Flex Knit Blazer is an interesting piece. Sporting the softness of a sweatshirt but fitting like any other casual jacket, it will still be able to semi-formalise any outfit you put on, while also being a suitably casual piece paired with the likes of shorts and a t-shirt.
The Everyday Blazer is made entirely from wool, making it both breathable and warm at the same time. It's wrinkle-resistant too, so will happily fold up inside a small travel bag, while an interior pocket has been specially designed to gobble up your phone.
That's exemplified perfectly with the Hoop linen blazer. Made from a linen blend fabric that makes it suitable for summer months (and available in either summer-worthy blue or natural colours) it will look great slipped over either a t-shirt or a shirt, and if you ever take it off, the lining will be the talk of the party.
Uniqlo does indeed offer woollen blazers for such formal occasions, but for outright versatility, its the Comfort Jacket you're going to want. Looking every bit the formal blazer, the Comfort Jacket is in fact made from a cotton jersey material that gives it a much more casual edge. It's wrinkle-free qualities mean you'll never have to reach for an iron while quick-drying properties ensure it's fresh to wear every morning.
The main baulk of Hugo Boss’ sports coat range is main from virgin wool, with pure wool and cotton thrown in for good measure. This particular blazer, however, is made from a blend of virgin wool and hemp, not only for its durability but because it will only become softer as time passes. It’s cut to a slim-fit profile and comes partially lined to help with airflow and, due to it being midweight, can provide a touch of warmth on colder days.
We've picked out the Moons Wayfarer blazer, made from wool sourced from the UK's oldest wool mill that has been in operation since 1837. That wool is sent to Portugal where it is made into the blazer by a family-run tailors, and the result is a blazer that can be paired with matching trousers, or teamed with jeans and a t-shirt. Truly versatile.
The Edgar blazer is finished in a light coconut colour, which can either be paired with Orlebar Brown's matching pants, or a pair of light wash denim jeans, white t-shirt and white sneakers, among many other options.
One of the best examples of this ethos lies with this black blazer with gray stripes. Grungey, punky and oh-so alternative, helped in part by a small badge with chain on the left chest pocket, this blazer does certainly lean more towards formal, but will team well with black denim and Chelsea boots too.
The Mill Blazer is a prime example of a well-made unstructured blazer. Made from a combination of cotton and linen, the Mill is available in a multitude of garment-dyed colours, expanding the breadth of your wardrobe. Its unstructured nature certainly leans it towards casual settings, but the classic silhouette and linen material mean it be the perfect formal jacket for summer formal events.
This cotton blazer is made from a blended fabric combining cotton and TENCEL, an environmentally-friendly fibre that is supersoft and allows for improved breathability. It makes it suitable for year-round wear, keeping you warm when its cold and cool when its hot.
The navy herringbone blazer is made from a supersoft blend of lambswool and cashmere, sourced directly from Italy and put together in Canada. The designer’s own butterfly half interior lining is used for extra comfort, while the unpadded shoulders make it wearable all day long. Best of all, it will pair perfectly with suit trousers or dressed down with some denim.
The Grant Wool Blazer is, as the name suggests, made from a woollen blend fabric and cut to a tailored fit to enhance your upper body proportions. You can forget about potentially unsightly sweat stains too, as the underarms are fitted with guards to save you the embarrassment.
Such as this single-breasted blazer in lilac. A perfect pastel colour for summer months, it's not only the ideal accompaniment for weddings and cocktail parties, but weekend drinks and even date night. She'll love the confidence you'll exude in such an uncommon colour.
This slim fit Tweed blazer is presented in a classic British two-tone wool, rocks patch pockets for an authentic look and a notch lapel. Fully lined for extra comfort and warmth, it's a versatile piece that can easily moonlight as both a formal and a casual piece.
The company's Ludlow suit series has been going since 2008, so must be doing something right. Available in both structured and unstructured, guises, it's the latter we particularly love. Made from a woollen/cotton blend from British fabric mill Abraham Moon & Sons, this blazer can be worn in practically any way you can imagine whether it be over a t-shirt in summer or a cashmere sweater in winter. If you'd rather something a little more substantial, it can be in a twill fabric too.
This tailored double-breasted blazer can be had in dark blue or black, and will be the crowning price of any well put-together formal outfit. Made from a virgin wool-cotton blend, it exhibits all the classic qualities of a high-end blazer, including a rear double vent, straight hem and peaked lapels.
The Devetto Jacket is made from a wool-silk-cashmere fabric blend from Italian fabric company Loro Piana. The blend used allows for the Devetto to be incredibly breathable, yet owing to an internal lining, will provide warmth too. Lightweight yet durable, the Devetto will be at home in both casual and formal situations.
The Chay blazer, shown here with the Prince of Wales check and finished in navy is the epitome of modern British sartorial. Cut in a slim fit that hugs the body whether open or done up, its form-flattering tailoring at its finest. The wool-cotton fabric blend is both lightweight and soft, and it’s fully lined, so can offer up some warmth.