Men’s style and grooming by Yatan Ahluwalia: Looks and trends for 2021

The comprehensive fashion and grooming guide for men
Clean shaved is the only way to be in the year ahead. Model: Sarvash Kalra (A young entrepreneur and ace cricketer). Sarvash is the epitome of the look and the face of 2021.(Agency: Runway Lifestyle)(Yatan Ahluwalia)
Clean shaved is the only way to be in the year ahead. Model: Sarvash Kalra (A young entrepreneur and ace cricketer). Sarvash is the epitome of the look and the face of 2021.(Agency: Runway Lifestyle)(Yatan Ahluwalia)
Published on Dec 20, 2020 07:11 AM IST
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Hindustan Times | ByYatan Ahluwalia

Decoding the Lead Look

Hair: Short and faded on either side, with neatly-combed medium-length on the centre and top. Trimmed and thick sideburns that slice into the jawline. I recommend this neutral trendy look for both boys and young men.

Brows: All natural and slightly bushy.

Face: Clean shaved – the only way to be in the year ahead.

Skin: Smooth, clean and extremely well-groomed.

Lips: Buffed and fresh.

Body: Lean and defined. Smooth over hairy and slim over bulky.

Others: Illuminating yellow backdrop – one of the years two most sought after colours.

The five main trends of 2021

1.Fitted and structured

An emphasis on a structured fit. The overall silhouette will be slimmer and as close to the skin as possible. Having said that, comfort clothing will define fashion in the new year.

2.Clinical and safe

High collars, closed wrists, ankle-length trouser cuffs and full sleeve lengths for all shirts and tops. Clothes and accessories with anti-bacterial treatments, odour resistance and anti-perspirant properties will become the order of the day.

3.Recycle and reuse

Sustainability as a trend is here to stay. Less is more is fashions strongest trend. This translates into a leaner wardrobe with mixing and matching the same clothes, and accessories to make them look different becoming the acceptable norm.

4.Functional and practical

The year will see an emphasis on clothes and accessories that are both functionaland practical. Expect to see tech-based designs, outer wear with multi-utility pockets, zippers and pouches that fit gadgets and accessories.

5.Durable and economical

Designers and brands have had to change their strategies with the pandemic and the outcomes will be visible and tangible in the new year. Clothes and accessories that give value for money and yet deliver on quality will be the ones that will be able to sustain and survive. As a consumer, you will get affordable and long-lasting options to wear and choose from.

The two colours of the year

1.Ultimate grey

While one would have expected a happier colour to be the colour of the year, trend forecasters around the world have narrowed down on a light pastel shade of grey as the years dominant colour for fashion, architecture and design.

How to wear it: Suits, jackets, jeans and shirts at work and track pants and shorts for casual as well as innerwear (vests, underwear and thermals).

2.Illuminating yellow

To contrast with the dull grey pastel, an illuminating yellow should brighten up the mood. Yellow can be tricky to match with most skin tones, but when done right can lift even the most boring and staid look.

How to wear it: On sportswear, casual jackets, footwear and accessories like watch straps and bags.

The year’s five main garments

1.Full-sleeve shirts

Black & white printed shirt by TISTABENE are structures, fitted, and here to stay
Black & white printed shirt by TISTABENE are structures, fitted, and here to stay

Work and casual shirts will become more structured and fitted. A strong emphasis on short and closed collars as well as shoulders that don’t droop. The year will emphasise on full-sleeve styles with cuffs that fasten tightly. Fashion will be inclined to a more sterile look – the less skin you show, the safer you will be. Printed shirts are back and here to stay – everything from cartoon characters, graphic designs to more traditional Indian motifs and patterns.

2.Skinny jeans

Expect your jeans to become second skin. Plain, slim-fit jeans with no treatments or any weathered or aged look may be worn with vests, T-shirts, full-sleeve shirts and casual or sporty jackets. Ensure they have a snug fit. Choose darker colours to look lean and lighter ones to look fuller. Grey – both charcoal and pastel, are going to be the years denim colour.

3.Trackpants or joggers

The fitted black joggers with ankle cuffs by The Souled Store are comfortable and stylish
The fitted black joggers with ankle cuffs by The Souled Store are comfortable and stylish

Over the last decade, sportswear has become the new casualwear and this trend continues in 2021, with fitted joggers and trackpants taking centerstage. Look out for fabrics that stick close to the body and have an element of stretch in them. Ankle cuffs and drawstring fastening will be the main design features.

4.Sharp business suits

As the overall look will shift to a smart and sharp look, you should wear single or two-button formal jackets (no more three button or double-breasted jackets) over slim and tapered formal trousers. Ensure the suit looks well defined and that’s it is tailor-made to fit on you. Ties are going to be optional in 2021, which means the emphasis will be on the shirt underneath and the lapel of the jacket - which should ideally be both slim and narrow.

5.Biker jackets

Closed biker jacket with a mandarin collar, zippers, anti-odour and anti-germ properties by Turms is versatile and can be worn for everything
Closed biker jacket with a mandarin collar, zippers, anti-odour and anti-germ properties by Turms is versatile and can be worn for everything

Biker jackets refuse to go out of style and for good reason – they are versatile and can be worn for everything from day to evening wear. Most styles will keep you warm in the cold, protected from the wind and even sanitised as some of them will be available with anti-odour and anti-germ coatings. Colours to wear include brown, grey and black.

The three main materials

1.Leather

Accessories in leather – from wristbands to shoes. The year will see a variety of colours (red, blue, green), textures and treatments.Vegan leather, which is fast catching up as a more sustainable and cruelty- free option will gain popularity and take a considerable portion of the market share.

2.Natural fabrics

For comfortable clothes – home and loungewear, daywear and casual and leisurewear. Fabrics made from fruits, plants and natural extracts including hemp, banana, pineapple and apple peals. Also, strong this year: cashmere wool. Fabrics that are soft to touch, light, ventilated and easy to maintain will be used extensively.

3.Copper

For its anti-bacterial and antiseptic properties – this will be the go - to metal of the year, especially for accessories like keychains, spectacles and perhaps soon enough - even jewellery (ear studs, chains, bracelets and belts) for men.

The five main grooming trends for 2021

1.Hair

Mess up paste by Schwarzkopf, which is ideal to create matt and messy hairstyles is perfect for all hair types
Mess up paste by Schwarzkopf, which is ideal to create matt and messy hairstyles is perfect for all hair types

Sharp hairstyles for younger men: The ‘fade’ look will dominate with an assortment of lengths and styles. So, the trick is to go super short on either side and experiment and play around with a variety of lengths and textures for the centre and top. You can flatten, spike, comb back or mess up the centre as long as the sides are extremely short with a faded effect.

Short hair for mature men: Keeping the length even all around will not just be easy, practical and convenient, but will allow men to have a wash-and-wear look that’s fuss-free and easy to maintain. Plus, let’s not forget, a short even length all around – hides flaws such a receding hairline and thinning hair as well.

Use the organic and natural hair masque made with herbs and fruit leaves by Valley View Organic once a week to nourish your scalp and hair
Use the organic and natural hair masque made with herbs and fruit leaves by Valley View Organic once a week to nourish your scalp and hair

Hair Care: Ensure you follow a hair care regime. Besides, oiling once a week and using shampoo and conditioner at least thrice a week, if not daily, I suggest using a hair mask a minimum of once a week for nourishing both the scalp and hair.

2.Brows

Shaped: Trimming and shaping the brows isn’t just for women and can do wonders to lift your face, define the jawline and make you look both younger and smarter. Ensure you trim the length as well - there’s nothing worse than out of place hair that goes over your forehead.

3.Facial hair

The nourishing and soothing shaving range from Bombay Shaving Company
The nourishing and soothing shaving range from Bombay Shaving Company

Clean shaved: About time you went under the razor and removed that beard, moustache or stubble. With an emphasis on a more clinical and sanitised look, the clean shaved look is thankfully back and here to stay. Don’t forget a clean shaved face is trusted more easily, makes you stand out in the crowd and will open doors and opportunities in both your personal and professional life. Pamper yourself with a shaving regime and products that condition your skin.

4.Skin

The effective Himalayan charcoal glow mask by The Body Shop
The effective Himalayan charcoal glow mask by The Body Shop

Skincare: Ensure to follow an effective deep pore cleaning, toning and moisturising weekly routine for your skin. Use as many natural and organic products as possible.

Lips: Ensure the lips look fresh, clean and feel both soft and supple. Use a lip scrub to remove dead or flaky skin and a bee’s wax-based lip balm to remove stains.

5.Body

Lean not mean: Big bulky bodies will give way to lean, well-defined silhouettes with a focus on shape over form. Having said that natural and real bodies are a strong trend for men, which translates into less time in the gym and more time spent running, dancing or swimming.

The author is an image, style and grooming consultant and trainer

From HT Brunch, December 20, 2020

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Wednesday, December 08, 2021