Formal Race Day Style Guide For Men

What Do You Wear To The Races?  

A day at the races has traditionally been spent in your finest attire and enjoying the finest of things. Whilst in recent years, smart casual outfits for race day have become more popular. A lot of gentlemen still want to dress in their best. If a full formal men’s outfit for race day is for you, read on…


Model wearing mix and matched men's jacket and men's waistcoat. 

Jamal's Wedding Attire


Men’s Formal Outfits For Race Day

 The men’s formal outfit for race day that comes to mind is the classic men’s 3-piece suit. If you want ideas for men’s suits for race day, SUAVE OWL is the place for you.



To start the process of finding the right race day men’s suit, begin with browsing our men’s suit range. See what calls to you and what your favourites have in common. Do you gravitate toward a classic or contemporary style? Is there a certain colour you find yourself liking? Do you prefer a single-breasted or double-breasted waistcoat?


Model wearing pale blue men's suit 

Wells 3-Piece Suit, SUAVE OWL White Shirt, Plain Twill Tie & Pocket Square Set



Once you have an idea of what kind of suits you like, selecting your suit should be much easier. Your next step, assuming it is possible for you, is trying suits on. Put on a white shirt, we always recommend a SUAVE OWL white shirt, and try on a few suits in your preferred style or colour. Doing this allows you to see how a suit will feel on you and ensure that you’re getting the right one for you. Plus, you may find yourself pleasantly surprised by a suit you weren’t expecting to be. Be sure to try on more than just one suit for this reason too, comparison is essential to making sure you have the right men’s suit for you, even if you do end up going back to the first one!



If you can’t try on suits, be sure to take your measurements and input them into your chosen suit’s size guide. You may not get a full idea for how it looks on you like this, but you’ll have better assurance that it will be the right fit this way.



Model wearing Cody navy blue suit for men. 

Cody 3-Piece Suit, SUAVE OWL White Shirt, Plain Twill Tie & Pocket Square Set


Doing the above will mean you find the suit that is right for you. However, there’s still more that goes into finding the perfect suit for the races. For everything you need to consider for your men’s outfit for the races, read on for styling tips, dos and don’ts, and seasonal advice!


Formal Outfit Tips For Men

 If you’re going to wear a formal outfit for race day, you want to look the very best you can. With these style tips and this advice, you’re sure to feel and look confident.



When it comes to a men’s formal outfit, fit is essential. A suit that is too large will make you look bulky. A suit that is too small will constrict you, not flatter, and make you uncomfortable. The perfect suit fit should hug your figure, but not squeeze it. For more information on finding the perfect suit fit, either visit us in one of our shop locations or read our blog The Ultimate Guide To Men’s Suits.



Never neglect your accessories. The finishing touches can make an outfit. They can be an excellent way to express yourself and shouldn’t be left as an afterthought. Whether you include a bright spot of colour, your favourite accessory, a family heirloom, there’s all manners of ways you can use accessories to personalise an outfit. Don’t let it to the last minute, make your accessories as thoroughly planned as the rest.


Navy blue men's suit jacket paired with men's waistcoat in brown with pink accessories.

Caridi Navy Jacket, Ted Double Breasted Waistcoat, SUAVE OWL Pink Shirt, Plain Twill Tie & Pocket Square Set


Ironing and making sure your outfit is as clean as possible is a must. Having the finest 3-piece men’s suit won’t make a difference if your shirt is creased and stained. A clean outfit, thoroughly ironed, is a necessity to looking your best.



After you put all the effort into your outfit, remember to put the effort into yourself too. Ensure that you are thoroughly groomed. Get a haircut, trim your beard, put on your favourite cologne. All of this will help you feel your best.


Men's suit in black paired with a men's formal shirt in white.

Marco 3-Piece Suit, SUAVE OWL White ShirtPlain Twill Tie & Pocket Square Set


Take these few tips forward with you into planning your outfit for the big day out! 


How To Keep Cool At The Races

The majority of the big horse race meets take place in Spring and Summer. If you’re worried about overheating, take these few tips forward with you to keep you looking and feeling cool throughout the day.



For the warmer months, stick to light colours. Light colours reflect sun rays and ultimately keep you warmer. Plus, they can make for a statement suit. Lighter colours with a lighter material, such as a cotton, linen or wool blend, will make you feel cooler on the hottest of days.


Men's suit in stone with navy accessories on mannequin

HM5 Stone 3-Piece Suit, SUAVE OWL White ShirtPlain Twill Tie & Pocket Square Set


Consider wearing bamboo socks instead of your regular ones. Bamboo is naturally thermally regulating and sweat absorbent. It will keep you feeling comfortable throughout the day and make you feel fresher too!



Consider adding a hat to your ensemble. A lightweight hat will keep the sun from bearing down upon your head and protect you from sunrays. Additionally, they can make a fun style statement. Consider adding a hat from our range to your summer suit for the races ensemble.



Lastly, remember to stock up on sun cream, stay hydrated, and bring a hanky with you to mop your brow! It may seem like small steps and even obvious, but doing all three of these will keep you much more comfortable throughout the day, don’t neglect them!


How To Stay Warm At The Races            

Of course, the weather and warmth are never guaranteed. If you’re attending a horse race in the colder months of the year, or the forecast is not everything you would hope for, here is some advice on men’s outfits for winter horse racing and how to stay warm at the races.


Dark green men's suit worn with formal shirt. 

Caridi Olive 3-Piece Suit, SUAVE OWL White Shirt


For colder days, a suit made of a thicker material in a dark colour is your best option. The thick material will provide further insulation for your comfort and the dark colour will attract sun. You could also add an overcoat to your suit for an additional layer, alongside a stylish statement scarf.



Underneath your suit, consider adding thin thermal layers. A thermal top, socks, or underwear will keep you in warmth and comfort throughout the day without adding bulk. Considering that the right thermal layers shouldn’t be visible with your whole suit, this small change can make a big impact.



Lastly, consider whether rain is a possibility. A neutral-coloured umbrella that matches your outfit, or even a clear poncho or rain mac, could be a lifesaver. It may be bulky to carry it, but you would be happy to be prepared if it is needed! 


Ted suit, brown suit for men, worn with navy accessories by model.

Ted 3-Piece Suit, SUAVE OWL White ShirtPlain Twill Tie & Pocket Square Set



For style guides for specific race days, read Cheltenham Festival - Race Day Style GuideAintree Races - Style Guide For MenGoodwood Racecourse - Race Day Style Guide, and Bath Racecourse - Style Guide.



Follow our InstagramFacebookTwitterPinterest and TikTok for more outfit inspiration. Feel your best on race day and keep it simple yet significant with SUAVE OWL.

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