If you are looking to buy just one suit, your first suit, or you need a new multi-purpose suit to update your wardrobe, one of the best options for versatility is a charcoal grey suit. A dark grey suit is easy to accessorise, can be worn for business and semi-formal occasions, and is flattering to most skin tones.
Dark greys and charcoal greys work best as a matte colour. You want to avoid shiny, reflective or overly smooth fabrics as they can make your suit look cheap. A woollen or wool blend suit would be best as the heavier wool fabric will allow for a smooth drape.
You can go for a textured or patterned fabric, but stick to something subtle like a faint pinstripe or check.
How Formal Is A Charcoal Grey Suit?
A charcoal grey suit is a great option for business wear, and makes a modern alternative to the traditional navy suit.
They are also ideal for semi-formal occasions, anything below black-tie, which makes them the perfect go-to suit if you have a lot of weddings to attend. A charcoal grey suit is dark enough to be formal while light enough to be appropriate to wear in the daytime. It is also not as harsh on most men as a black suit.
How Should It Fit?
You will want a dark grey suit to fit you properly as most dark coloured suits tend to add weight. Any wrinkles or pinches when you move because of it being too tight will also be highlighted in a charcoal suit.
What Style Suit?
For versatility and practicality a single-breasted two-button suit is probably the way to go for most people, especially if you plan for this suit to be your only or main one.
If you already have a number of suits for different occasions then you can certainly experiment more with the style of your charcoal grey suit in order to stand out from the crowd.
Other options to consider are double-breasted suit jackets, which can add a bit more formality and elegance, or a three-piece-suit that has a matching waistcoat. A three-piece-suit with a single-breasted jacket is great way to add versatility with your charcoal grey suit as you can choose to wear the waistcoat when you want to look more formal, or omit it and still have a practical single-breasted suit.
What Colour Shirts & Accessories?
Grey is a neutral colour, and because of that most other colours will work well with it. Because it is a neutral shade generally a dark grey works well with most skin tones, though it is still always best practice to try a colour on even if you intend to buy online.
While grey is a neutral shade, what you will need to watch out for is if your grey suit has a colour base to it, as you can get warm greys and cool greys. What this means is some charcoal greys can have a red or brown warmth to them while others look a little more blue-grey.
White shirts go well with a charcoal grey suit, however can look fairly formal. Try not to go too dark with your accessory colours as it may all just blend into each a bit too much but look like you failed to match. Now despite that black can work really well with charcoal suit separates, see more in our article 7 Suit Separates Combinations for Men.
Pastels are a great option for grey suits, as are most patterns.
So, Should You Buy A Charcoal Grey Suit?
If you are looking for a starter-suit or you want to add a versatile suit to your wardrobe then you can’t get much better than a charcoal grey suit. They are perfect as a business suit and ideal for special occasions like weddings and functions. They are also one of the most common suit fabric colours nowadays, so all good suit retailers should carry a good selection of grey suit shades, patterns and styles – check out our list of recommended online suit retailers.
A good charcoal suit should complement most men and be a great investment for many years to come.