7 of the Sexiest Things a Man Can Wear

The sexiest thing a man can wear is rugged jeans and a plain white T-shirt, according to an Esquire multiple-choice survey of women staffers at Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, O, and Harper’s Bazaar, followed by a tuxedo, then Marky Mark boxer-briefs, and finally a pair of Italian swim trunks, which remarkably received a still-impressive 3.2% of the vote.

Frankly, we would have guessed no more than 1%.

With our apologies to Esquire, we can think of a few better sexy sartorial statements to include in this multiple choice test that definitely trump tiny Italian swim trunks — although if you’re one of the few who can actually pull off a Speedo, then please don’t let us stand in your way.

Ultimately, sexy is in the eye of the beholder. That said, here’s a short list of men’s clothing that we think only make a guy more handsome.

1. Good jeans

Ripped jeans, distressed denim

Men wearing stylish jeans | @phillippegazarstyle via @menwithstreetstyle

Yes, as the women of Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, O, and Harper’s Bazaar agreed, rugged jeans and a plain white tee are just plain sexy. The combo has all that boy-next-door charm mixed with a devil-may-care, bad-boy edge. But the right pair of denim is crucial for this wardrobe equation to work successfully — and sexily. This is no place for baggy, ill-fitting “dad” jeans. Nor are those skinny, painted-on pants likely going to fit the bill for most of you — unless you really can work a hipster vibe. The best jeans will be ones with an effortlessly lived-in, slightly distressed look that are just fitted enough to show a hint of shape without crossing over into uncomfortable territory.

2. Fitted tee

The perfect T-shirt isn't too hard to find

A fitted T-shirt | iStock.com

As for that plain white tee — the other piece of the sexy jeans-and-T-shirt equation — it should be of the fitted, but not tight variety. And it really doesn’t even have to be white; there’s much to be said for black and gray and even sky-blue cotton shirts. The main thing here is the fit. There is little that ranks higher on the sexy clothing meter than a body-con tee that traces the outline of a muscular physique.

3. Statement watch

man wearing watch and suit

Wearing a statement watch | iStock.com

It’s likely you may have little practical use for a watch with your smartphone serving as your trusted timekeeper no matter where you go. But, that’s not the point. Sexy isn’t a matter of function; it’s a matter of form. And a statement watch has more than a few handsome words to say in addition to telling the hour and the minute. It’s the one piece of versatile “jewelry” that men can wear on a daily basis. From sleek, black-on-black versions to manly metal-link models among so many others, a good watch is even better than a good handshake — not only is it solid and trustworthy, it’s sexy, too. (And, no, those techie Apple watches need not apply here.)

4. Athletic wear

Grey hoodie

Athletic wear | iStock.com

The fact that you hit the gym is sexy as it is, but make sure that your workout clothes live up to the occasion. Skip the ragged wife-beater, the baggy, freebie T-shirt, and those grubby sports shorts that look like they belong in high school gym class, and invest in some true performance wear that will go the extra mile in style. After all, you want to make sure that you’re outfitting that six-pack appropriately. Even if you didn’t just hit the squat rack or run a 10K, the off-duty, athleisure trend is continually on the rise, so don’t be shy to wear those fitted joggers and pullover.

5. Stylish shoes

stylish shoes

A man wearing stylish shoes | JackThreads.com

If you’re not wearing sandals with socks, Crocs, and foot-shaped running shoes (when you’re not running), then congratulations —– you are already steps ahead of the game. But, to really kick up your sexy cred, we urge you to skip the standard-issue sneakers and basic dress shoes and really elevate your shoe selection. Perhaps that means you put on croc-embossed trainers with your jeans, or you wear an uber-sleek pair of wingtips with that business suit.

6. Suit and tie

man wearing tailored suit

A man wearing a suit | iStock.com

Speaking of suits, you don’t have to pull a full James Bond to benefit from the seductive power play of this sartorial standout. Nor do you need a tuxedo to channel the more formal side of your sexy beast. There is something of an innate come-hither appeal that exudes from a man in a suit. Just keep it clean-cut and classic — and don’t go overboard with patterns, prints, or pocket squares.

7. Confidence

Man wearing a tuxedo

A confident man | iStock.com

It’s cliché but it’s true: Donning a confident attitude is way more than half the battle when it comes to flaunting all that hotness that we know you have within you. Your style has to reflect your personality — with a bit of added panache. So, whether you’re dressed up or dressed down, just make sure that you’re rocking it. So, basically, your outfit should make you feel like you could scale Mount Kilimanjaro and headline a concert stage. Remember: Sexy is a state of mind. Rock on.

Follow Rachel on Twitter @rachellw and Instagram @rachellwatkins