Worn cleverly, a scarf can be a man’s first line of defense against the cold. But it is not just about being protected from the elements. Scarves can bring flair and dimension to your outfit, and they can be worn as stylishly in rainy weather as they can on windy beach days. In today’s article, we are going to look at some bold ways to wear a scarf.

Why Wear a Men’s Scarf?

Functionality – Scarves do a great job of protecting a man’s neck against the cold. A quality wool scarf can keep your neck warm on a cold New York night, or a light linen scarf can shield your neck from the hot Saharan sun.

Flair – Scarves can complement your ensemble and add pizzazz to an otherwise dull outfit. As long as it doesn’t compromise the look, few will question your choice of a quality scarf. A good rule of thumb is to keep the rest of the ensemble simple to not compete with the scarf for attention.

Types of Scarves for Men

If you are new to the scarf show, it might take some time to get used to the many terms – headscarves, bandana scarves, circle scarves, square scarves, skinny scarves, and so on.

You want your scarves to be rectangular made of a material that suits your specific situation.

Width & Length – Opt for a scarf with a width of 6 to 14 inches and a length of 50 to 90 inches. An average height man should get a scarf at least 60 inches long, and a larger man should opt for one in the 70-inch range.

Material – Scarves are typically made from either cashmere, wool, silk, angora, linen, cotton, or a combination. For wintertime, go for napped fabrics with a soft surface – wool or cashmere are your best bet. If you’re in the market for a warm-weather protective scarf, you can’t go wrong with linen or cotton.

How to Tie a Scarf

tie a scarf

Before we dive into the different knot styles, keep these general rules in mind:

  1. Confidence is everything. Keep it simple – only go for knots you are comfortable with or one that goes with the ensemble.
  2. The length & thickness of a scarf will dictate the knot style options.
  3. A scarf isn’t a tie.
  4. Function before fashion. 

The City Slicker

An easy knot that keeps your scarf fuss-free and clean.

  • Start by folding the scarf in half lengthwise and wrap it around your neck.
  • Put the free ends into the loop of the fold.

The City Slicker knot is practical, as it is easy to adjust if you are on the move. This traditional knot also keeps your scarf secured and in place – at all times. This is especially important if you’re out and about in the city with friends. You can even rock the City Slicker knot with colorful summer scarves. It adds a neat, well-put element to your outfit.

The Sophisticate

This knot captures an imposing balance between graciously put-together and conveniently relaxed. The Sophisticate fits well with winter wear.

  • Wrap the scarf around your neck with one end shorter than the other.
  • Wrap the longer side around your neck once.
  • Leave one end slightly longer than the other to go for a more natural and casual look. (Adjust the length to your preference.)

The Ivy-Leaguer

The go-to choice for a formal outing or if you’d wish to supplement an element of color to the ensemble.

Two variations of the Ivy-Leaguer:

  • Let the scarf drape over your shoulder. 
  • Tuck the scarf into a buttoned jacket/blazer.

This style is perfect when wearing an opera scarf over a suit or dark blazer.

NOTE: The Ivy-Leaguer is contingent on the length of the scarf. Make sure the ends of the scarf don’t extend below the bottom of your suit. 

The Connoisseur

If you are looking for a more sophisticated style, the Connoisseur knot is your best bet.

  • Place the scarf around your neck, making sure that both ends are equal in the front.
  • Take one end and bring it over and then under the other one.
  • Wrap the front end over the back, altering the length to your preference.

If you are planning on rocking this style, silk or knit scarves work best. Like the City Slicker, the Connoisseur is a secure style appropriate choice for a windy day out.

The Jet Setter

This super relaxed style requires no knots or tight wrapping.

  • Gently wrap the scarf around your neck, leaving one end shorter than the other.
  • Throw the longer end of the scarf across your neck and let it drape over your other shoulder.

If the scarf is particularly long, wrap it around your neck once before setting it behind your shoulder. A traveling scarf, the Jet Setter, is one of the most casual styles, and it successfully supports mobility.

The Weekender

A casual knot style, most likely to be seen on Italy or Lyon’s streets, the Weekender is perfect for windy days and city rides in a convertible.

  • Begin with one end in the front, close to your neck, and drape the long end around your neck twice.
  • Tuck both ends into the draped scarf.
  • For intensity, plump-up the knot.


Now that you’ve mastered the art of wearing a scarf, you are officially prepared for whatever this cold world might throw at you. Wearing a scarf is an excellent way to put your personal touch on your ensemble. A quality, handsome scarf need not be an expensive investment and is one of the few simple male articles that can turn a bland look into an eye-catching ensemble.