Every weeknight, bars and restaurants fill up with guys who look like they just zombie-walked out of a cubicle. Don’t be one of them
If you have plans after work, you probably don't have time to run home first, so you're stuck in the same suit from 8 a.m. to midnight. But you don't want to look like a junior analyst at the bar (even if you are one)—and you're not fooling anyone by stuffing your tie in your pocket. So we transformed three of the most common suits in a man's office wardrobe—navy, charcoal, and khaki—into three fresh going-out ensembles just by adding, or losing, a few small things. 1. START WITH A SLIM SUIT... To transform a business suit into a boozing suit, the suit has to fit well to begin with. It needs to be slim for these tricks to work. Suit, $2,095, shirt, $295, and tie, $145, by Ralph Lauren Black Label. Shoes, $995, by Ralph Lauren. Pocket square, $60, by Paul Stuart. Tie bar by The Tie Bar. Watch by Omega. Portfolio by Bally.
...AND SWITCH INTO A POLO You can wear a suit anywhere, as long as you know how to dress it down. And that really is as easy as pulling a polo out of your briefcase or office desk drawer and wearing it untucked. As long as you have a polo that's meant to be untucked, that is. This is not the time for your oversize golf shirt. • Quiet down that pocket square. Just fold it up and shove it back in your breast pocket. • This is where an untucked polo should hit—right below your belt line. • No need for a footwear change. Guys are even wearing wingtips with jeans these days, so you're good. Polo shirt, $155, by Ralph Lauren Black Label Denim.
2. DITCH THE TIE... At the office, keep your jacket buttoned whenever possible. It makes you look professional. And thinner. Suit, $648, by Banana Republic. Shirt, $60, by Zara. Tie, $125, Black Fleece by Brooks Brothers. Shoes, $1,350, by Ralph Lauren. Socks by Pantherella. Pocket square by Michael Bastian. Glasses by Giorgio Armani. Portfolio by Coach.
...AND START LOAFING When wearing a charcoal suit—the most formal of the three suits here—chill out your look by losing the tie and switching to loafers. • Take off the tie and undo two shirt buttons (not just one). • A ribbon belt with a biz suit? Well, it's not a biz suit anymore. • Loafers are even more easygoing without socks. Plus, they're excellent for dancing—just ask Michael Jackson. Belt, $79, by Smart Turnout. Loafers, $860, by Fratelli Rossetti. Pocket square by Brunello Cucinelli.
3. THE SUPERMAN WARDROBE CHANGE If you don't own a khaki business suit, get one. Bonus: You'll get tons of extra mileage from the jacket. Suit, $2,540, by Louis Vuitton. Shirt, $325, and tie, $95, by Ralph Lauren Black Label. Shoes, $850, by Ralph Lauren. Pocket square by The Tie Bar.
Nobody wants to try to pull off a full costume change at the office. But switching from suit pants to jeans is easy. It's the one thing worth smuggling in your briefcase. • Unbutton your collar and loosen your tie a bit. • Your boss isn't at the bar. (If he is, you're at the wrong bar.) So push up your sleeves and have another drink. • And for the love of God, keep your shirt tucked in. Jeans, $225, by AG Adriano Goldschmied. Belt, $475, by Brunello Cucinelli. Watch by Seiko.
THERE'S A PARTY IN YOUR DESK DRAWER You don't have to trade your briefcase for a suitcase. Make a home in one of your desk drawers for a few key things that make all the difference: a polo shirt, loafers, a tie, and, yeah, some deodorant. All stuff you can use without a mirror, a sink, or your boss catching you "getting sexy" in the bathroom. Dolce & Gabbana The One Sport $73 (100 ml) Even after dark, you want a cologne that's light, not heavy. Verb Sculpting Clay $12 No need to totally redo your do. Just a couple of tweaks on your way out. Colgate Wisp $2.39 A toothbrush without water or paste. Pond's Morning Refresh Towelettes $5 Look, sometimes even a gentleman needs a whore's bath. These are a quick way to hit "reset." Old Spice Deodorant $2.39 Because sometimes all-natural can't tame a full day of funk. Scotch Lint Roller $2.99 Get the flakes and other miscellaneous schmutz off your suit. Alexander Wang Lighter $29 Show her she asked the right guy for a light.