Can Men Wear Shawls?

can men wear shawls

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In short, our answer is a big YES! A shawl is a gorgeous accessory for men to get warm with style.

But since you’ve asked, let’s go deeper into this topic!

Though the feminine form of wearing shawls is more obvious (and common), men who wear these magnificent garments have been here since shawls were first made (and that’s a long time ago!).
Fashion took shawls away from most men’s wardrobes when the classic and more formal 2 or 3-piece suit and look took over. However, people who live in rural villages in the east (and west!) have never heard about this change in fashion trend 😊 so over there, a shawl as a part of a men’s outfit is a very common sight!

Today, men use shawls more freely, as they should, and their variations are endless.

It figures, because shawls are the fastest and most majestic way to get yourself warm, and they are easy to brighten up the dullest look, and style up the most casual outfit!
Check out our blog post on the best men’s shawls in 2023!

black men wearing shawl


Today, fashion also takes shawls to the higher ends regarding the finest fibers, designs, and styles. The designs and styles are endless, and throwing a shawl on your shoulder or wrapping yourself with it, gives a feel and look everyone can appreciate. Men seen on the runways with unique, classic, and authentic garments offer only a glimpse of how inspiring and unforgettable these garments can be. 

Men’s Shawl is a Global Garment

Whether you’ve been traveling around the world or if you happen to come across traditional images, you can see every culture has its way to shawls, then and now.

From the colorful African plaids and the majestic groom’s outfit in India to the most fashionable men you’ll find on ready-to-wears and street fashion, shawls are found to be a natural masculine garment.


What we have learned about men’s shawls by living in Asia

We’ve been living for some years in a few tiny villages across Asia, where the local style amazes us again and again.
If we had asked the Himalayan shepherd: Can men wear shawls? He would look at us as if we had lost it 😊 a shawl is a necessity in local Himalayan villages because the winters there are freezing!

The same holds true for the Thai villagers, but for different reasons:
In Thailand, it is extremely hot and humid, and shawls are often used as an easy-to-wear (very) non-formal skirt for men, as well as a head cover from the fiery sun while working outside, and often as a face cover for dust, mosquitoes, wind, and more. 

Manly or Womanly Garment?

Whether men can wear shawls is a legitimate question since, in modern society, shawls have become more common in their feminine use. Shawls flatter femininity (a lot!), and so many women enjoy its benefits, but that doesn’t make this garment exclusively feminine. 

Shawls can be worn by men just the same, and they can flatter masculinity a lot, but in many cases, the effect is just different. The way women lay the shawl behind their backs on their elbows or shoulders is charming, everyone will agree, but when a man wraps his neck or himself with a shawl, his uniqueness, and nobility shine out.

Couple hug with shawl

How can men wear shawls?

From the old historical and cultural pictures, we see our masculine ancestors in spectacular shawls, which provide warmth and nobility.

As they all look like heroes from the latest movies, with all their fantastic accessories and unique powers, it is only natural to see modern men wearing shawls too!

Men’s fashion is diversified, just like women’s, and the boundaries are getting broader with time. When you look at street fashion pictures, you understand that boundaries are gradually forgotten, and the limits are only there if you choose them to be. Moreover, we do not need to look back for images of men in shawls. Top designers and brands (like Burberry, Louis Vuitton, and Armani, to name a few) are constantly showing us the many ways and styles to wear this magnificent garment.

Shawls of Style

Shawls are the one garment that will provide the fastest change in warmth and style. They were originally made in the old western and eastern cultures as an extra layer of warmth when the cold is unbearable. Naturally, they developed from practical garments to exquisite fashion accessories. 

The huge variations of shawls make them an accessory that can complement or create so many different styles.
Here are (only a few!) of your options:


Shawls flatter! Wearing a shawl on top of your outfit is an excellent freestyle way to warm up and look fantastic. 

The various options and styles make them more precious to every man’s wardrobe. 

You can upgrade your casual urban style with a neutral-colored classic rolled shawl around your neck or throw a colorful shawl on your shoulder; this will give you the right touch of style for the day. 

It is an effortless, refreshing chic shake-up for your casual style.



Folding a classic shawl and wrapping it around the neck will complement your suit and upgrade it to look naturally luxurious.

Wearing it the same way on a wool sweater gives a classic chic of wealth, confidence, and the attitude of a man who knows his worth.

Fashion Statement

Street fashion always tells beautiful stories; when it comes to shawls, you can find the most sophisticated look achieved with the right shawl alone. Even the most simple colored shawl is a garment that can make you look trendy and stand out without effort. Shawls have an exquisite touch of fashion, so prepare to fall in love.

What to watch out for when buying men’s shawls

In 3 words: fake pashmina shawls.

The authentic Pashmina Shawl is one of the most luxurious and majestic types of shawl. However, if you search Amazon for pashmina shawls, you’ll see tons of results for cheap shawls titled: ‘Pashmina shawls’. These are 100% fake, with 0% pashmina, and extremely common worldwide. The label might also inform that those are 100% pashmina, but it’s false.

If you’re into buying a real pashmina shawl, you should 0buy only from a reputable pashmina seller and expect to pay at least 300$. However, if you just want a beautiful men’s shawl and are happy to pay little, these “pashmina shawls” can be a pretty good choice sometimes! They’re usually made out of very soft and nice-to-touch polyester/nylon, and even though they’re not the real thing, in many cases, they’re pretty nice shawls! In my experience, it can be worthwhile, just know it’s not pashmina.

Shawl Types for Men

From the most elegant high-quality to the most basic shawls, all are beautiful, and all will give an extra chic to your outfit.

Here are a few popular types of shawls:

Basic Shawls

“Basic” shawls are simple and beautiful. They’ll look great with pretty much everything and enhance almost every look! The double quotes around “basic” are because basic is a vast category in terms of designs, materials, warmth, quality, and price. But generally, when we say ‘basic men’s shawls’, we talk about plain, plaid, stripes, zigzag, or other simple and popular designs. 

And what about the price? At the lower end of the spectrum, you can buy beautiful basic shawls from retailers like H&M for less than 10$. On the mid-high end of the spectrum, it can go up to 175$ for a Donna Karen plain tie wrap shawl, and as you go up to the high-end, you can expect to invest thousands of dollars for a luxurious and fine “basic” shawl, like this one for example by Loro Piana which is made of exclusive baby cashmere fibers. 

casual shawl with suit

Ethnic Shawls

As you can probably imagine, there are numerous types of ethnic shawls that differ by material, design, quality, and price. While some shawls are mass-manufactured (and are still so beautiful!), some take months (or even years!) to spun and weave by hand and will cost respectively (for example, pashmina shawls!). 

And, of course, a lot goes on in between that range.

Traditional ethnic shawls

Today you can still find hand looms in many houses in remote villages in the Himalayas and the Andes. Despite the technological revolution, tradition is still alive, and the locals have special occasions to work on a new shawl. In these cultures, often, the shawl is made especially for you, with your choice of pattern and colors. You can see magnificent items daily on almost every street around India and Nepal (and probably, Pakistan too, but we haven’t been there). 

The old traditional textures and colors of ethnic shawls make irresistible designs, and it is unbelievable that many of them were made by handloom weaving. 

Ethnic shawls for everyone

The ethnic designs complement many outfits: 

When you travel, it’s the ultimate way to blend in and feel local. 

If you’re a westerner, when you are back in your natural surrounding, wearing it with a casual outfit will give you the nomads’ or hikers’ magical look. 

Those of you who are on a budget can pretty easily find beautiful ethnic shawls at low prices and relatively low-quality wool. However, they can still last for many years (speaking from experience!) and look magical even after they lost their glory long ago. These shawls are easy to find around the touristic areas of Mexico, Nepal, and North India, but of course, you can find them online too.

men sitting with shawl

Branded Shawls

The Branded shawl is a fashion statement in itself! Basically, a branded shawl is a shawl made by a well-known brand that has the logo or the name of the brand on it in a very noticeable way (:

You can see these mainly on the streets of big cities like New York, Paris, Barcelona, London, etc., where fashion is a way of life.

Some common examples of branded shawls are Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Loewe, and many more. 

Medieval Shawl

The medieval style became a current trend that is here to stay, regenerated with every mysterious, cultured movie that affects accessories’ bloom.

One accessory that stands out to give a gracious medieval look is the shawl. Shawls of natural colors and patterns with rustic threads complement the warrior’s knightly look. Adding one of these to your wardrobe will make you look amazingly charming and noble.

stylish men wearing shawl

Wedding Shawl

One of the most exquisite styles for grooms is the traditional Indian wedding outfit. The Indian groom’s suit is luxurious and makes every man look like a beautiful prince from ancient times. With the fascinating patterns, colors, and fabrics, the outfit makes the groom look like he has just emerged from a legend. 

A complimentary shawl is part of the groom’s suit; these are the most magnificent garments you’ll ever see. The embroidery made with silk threads, striking colors, and beautiful patterns makes this luxurious garment a piece of art. 

Traditionally, the groom wears it well arranged on one shoulder or his arm. It is just perfect.

indian groom

Final words

As Shawlovers, we can discuss this issue on and on, but we think the picture is clear by now 😊 Shawls are outstanding garments for men and women worldwide, as they flatter and enhance various styles with much grace.

Choosing might be the difficult part, but since shawls tend to have long longevity, having a few in a man’s wardrobe can give a beautiful easy touch of chic to lift the spirit and the style. 

So don’t hesitate, grab a shawl and enjoy!

can men wear shawls

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