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Jewellery for men

HighLifeChannel August 3, 2018

An online high street jewellery retailer has reported a 500 per cent rise in men buying necklaces since the show aired, thanks to two chiselled male contestants wearing them nestled on their bronzed pectorals.

While we’d never recommend aping the sartorial nous of someone whose style is defined by the shade of their bronzer, it raises the question of whether jewellery is acceptable on a man. A wedding band is de rigour, but often men feel uncomfortable about the idea of adorning themselves in trinketry.

While the standard dog tag necklace featured on the show is perhaps an item best left to the military, one need only look around Pitti Uomo, the bi-annual Florentine men’s fashion trade fair that attracts the world’s most flamboyanr peacocks, to note that jewellery forms a big part of some men’s looks.

Historically, men’s jewellery evolved as a signal of aristocratic adornment, as well as a sign of familial bond; signet rings passed from father to son for example. Culturally, the skinhead movement in the 70s and 80s and their knuckle duster rings and heavy duty chains did lasting damage to the idea of jewellery on men.

Perhaps the easiest “way in” isn’t the necklace – too affected and youth-centric – but other trinkets. I have a stylish friend who works in the banking industry who pairs his pin-sharp suits with a cluster of signet rings, discreetly adding a touch of personal (in the truest sense of the world given that jewellery is more imbued with sentiment) style to otherwise corporate attire.

Rings are an entry point into men’s jewellery; discreet, masculine, great for gifting and – at a jeweller like Alex Orso – come with precious stones hidden on the ends or insides so that the special element is kept just for you.

Bracelets are another easy way to explore the world of men’s jewellery; leave the braided, woven, straggled version to the gap year contingent and instead look at something like a neat sterling silver option from Le Gramme,  which is designed to look like cable wire. Minimal, cool and individual; and not a teeth whitening kit or a body bronzer in sight.


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