The Ultimate Guide to Lapel Pins for Suits

The Ultimate Guide to Lapel Pins for Suits

Lapel pins have become one of the most popular accessories for men's suits. While small in size, they can make a big impact on your appearance. You can find lapel pins available in dozens of colors, shapes, designs and materials. When attached to the front of your suit jacket, they will enhance your outfit and its aesthetics.

Even if you're familiar with pocket squares and tie bars, though, you might be unfamiliar with lapel pins. To learn more about lapel pins and the rule they play in men's formalwear, keep reading.

What Is a Lapel Pin?

Also known as an enamel pin, a lapel pin is a small clip-on accessory that's designed for use in a suit. It's known as a lapel pin because you can clip it onto the front of your jacket's lapel.

All suit jackets have some lapels. They are the folded pieces of material found directly underneath the collar on the front-left and front-right sides of a suit jacket. Some lapels are narrow, whereas others are wide. Regardless, lapels are the two folded pieces of material on the front of a suit jacket. A lapel pin is simply a clip-on accessory that's worn on a suit jacket's lapel.

Why You Should Wear a Lapel Pin

Wearing a lapel pin allows you to break up the color of your suit. Most men prefer matching suits, with their suit trousers featuring the same color as their suit jacket. When wearing a matching suit, though, your outfit will consist of a single color. Fortunately, you can break up the color of your suit by accessorizing it with a lapel pin.

If you're wearing a black suit, you may want to accessorize a bright-colored lapel pin. The combination of bright and dark colors will make your suit "pop." You can always wear a white lapel pin with a black suit. With that said, most bright colors will complement a black suit.

Lapel pins offer an easy way to personalize your suit. They don't just feature basic patterns and colors. Lapel pins are available in a variety of unique designs, such as flags, animals, flowers, crests and more. Using one of these unique lapel pins, you can add a touch of personality to your suit.

It takes little or no time to accessorize your suit with a lapel pin. Whether you own a linen suit, a wool suit or any other type of suit, you can quickly accessorize it with a lapel pin. Unlike a necktie -- which you should still wear by the way -- lapel pins don't require any tying. All they require is clipping. To wear a lapel pin, simply clip it onto the front of one of your suit jacket's two lapels. That's all it takes to wear a lapel pin.

How to Choose a Lapel Pin

Not all lapel pins are made equal. When choosing a lapel pin, consider the material from which it's made. Some lapel pins are made of different materials than others. There are plastic lapel pins, for instance, that are cheaply made and equally inexpensive. Unfortunately, they don't hold very up when worn regularly.

Rather than plastic, stick with a lapel pin made of metal. Metal lapel pins are stronger, more durable and longer-lasting. They won't deform or otherwise sustain damage when worn. Assuming a lapel pin is made of real metal, it will withstand the hands of time for countless years to come.

Common metals in which lapel pins are made include the following:

  • Aluminum
  • Stainless steel
  • Titanium
  • Silver
  • Gold

You should also choose a lapel pin in the right color. As previously mentioned, they are available in a variety of colors. Some lapel pins feature a single color, whereas others feature two or more colors. For an attractive suit outfit, you need to choose the right color.

What color should you choose for a lapel pin? Like with most fashion choices, it's a personal decision that's entirely up to you. With that said, the color of your lapel pin should match -- or flow cohesively with -- the color of your necktie. Most men wear a necktie with their suits. Since your necktie will be near your lapel pin, they feature the same or a similar color.

Lapel pins are available in different sizes. There are small-, medium- and large-sized lapel pins. If your lapel pin is too small, it may go unnoticed, in which case it won't offer any aesthetic value. If it's too big, conversely, it may drown out your suit. For the best possible style, choose a medium-sized lapel pin that it's too small or too big.

Tips on Wearing a Lapel Pin

There are a few things you should know when wearing a lapel pin. For starters, you should generally only wear a single lapel pin. While suit jackets have two lapels, wearing two lapel pins will dilute your suit's aesthetics.

The position of your lapel pin matters. You don't want to wear it too high on your suit jacket, nor do you want to wear it too low. Instead, clip your lapel pin a few inches below your suit jacket's collar on the front-left side. When securing your lapel pin in place, make sure it's positioned horizontally. If it tilts to either the left or right side, adjust it so that it's even and horizontal.

Keep in mind that you should remove your lapel pin before washing your suit jacket. Most types of suits should be dry cleaned. Even if you're going to take your suit to the dry cleaners, however, you should remove your lapel pin from it.

Wearing a lapel pin is an easy and effective way to enhance the appearance of your suit. Not to be confused with a tie bar, it consists of a clip-on accessory that's worn on one of your suit jacket's lapels. Hopefully, this gives you a better understanding of lapel pins and how to wear them.