OK, guys, it’s summertime. That means shorts, sandals, T-shirts and sunglasses, right? Well, not all the time. For many of you out there, you still need to wear a suit, whether it is for work, a night out, or a special occasion. But it’s HOT out, and you are wondering – do I HAVE to wear a tie too? They’re HOT!

Well relax. While suits are actually made to look best with a tie at your neck, and proper dress etiquette would dictate that you should wear that “noose” when you wear a suit, there are some ways to wear that suit jacket without constricting your Adam’s Apple! First, please note that we are not talking about sports jackets, but, rather suit jackets which match the slacks. Second, remember that if you are in a conservative workplace, making a “tieless” statement might not be the best way to impress that business client, prospect, or your boss. So use your judgment.

Make it look deliberate

If you should choose to forego a tie, be sure it looks as if you meant to do it, and not that you tossed it off out of heat and frustration.

  • Wear a less formal suit – a lighter color or fabric would help, or a suit with a less formal collar style. Stay away from your “church and weddings” ensemble!
  • Choose your shirt wisely – wear a less formal shirt than you would with a tie.

Make it neat

  • Be sure that you have the top one or two buttons of your shirt open. No tie = open collar.
  • Watch your shirt collar – be sure it is pressed (maybe even starched) and neat and not floppy or wrinkled. Since the tie isn’t there to keep things under control, be sure that your collar frames your face.

Accessorize for a complete look

  • Be sure your shoes are neat and shined – remember that casual does not mean sloppy.
  • Since the tie is the one accessory that often adds color, try using a pocket square (try some of these folds), a nice watch or a lapel pin to complete the look.

Remember to smile and shine

You don’t want your tieless appearance to imply a lack of caring or attention to yourself or your appearance. Remember that the rest of your hygiene and your self-care regimen is important, too. Be sure to shower daily, use your cologne, maintain a neat haircut (and beard if you have one), brush your teeth, clean your tongue with your TUNG Brush and Gel and put forth your very best. Then go ahead and “try no tie”.