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Black is Not Basic: How to Rock an All-Black Outfit

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Regardless of what the year’s trending colours are or what season it is, the simple shade of black is in style year-round and favoured by many, from the stylish to the practical. Black is trustworthy and simple, matches everything, slims the body, hides unsightly stains, and immediately adds an equal amount of elegance and edge to an outfit. Black is undoubtedly the most versatile shade in your wardrobe that can bring you from day to night, no matter the simplicity of the look.

While an all-black look may sound boring initially, there are a million ways to style this kind of classic fashion, whether you’re a jeans and t-shirt person or a structured trousers and boots person or anything in between. Best of all, you never have to worry about any clashing colours. We’ve got all-black outfit ideas that work for both men and women that’ll help anyone go from casual to formal and romantic to edgy. Read on for some monochrome style inspiration.

Is it OK to Wear All Black Outfits?

While it’s great to incorporate a bunch of different colours in your dressing so as to have more variety, sometimes we just want to wear something without worrying if the colour looks good on us or not. 

Luckily, black is a universal shade that looks good on every skin tone, and modern outfits and styles have opened up an entire subcategory for dressing in black all the time and looking good doing so. Additionally, black outfits will never make you feel over or underdressed, so wearing all-black on days when you don’t know what you might end up doing is quite a bit of a lifesaver.

If you’ve never gone fully monochrome with your outfits and are a bit intimidated by its intensity, particularly with such a striking hue, we recommend you incorporate the colour into your go-to style slowly, adding or replacing as you go to ease into the all-black look.

What Matches With All Black?

The wonderful thing about black clothing is that absolutely anything goes with it, making all-black outfits incredibly versatile. That’s why we love dressing up in all-black outfits for days when we need to be in two or more places and don’t want to pack an entire change of clothes, as it works as an easy hack all on its own. 

And like we’ve said before: even if you have two completely different events happening in a day, an all-black ensemble can do you wonders. If you’re running errands all day before an evening event and don’t have the time to get dressed but still want to feel comfortable,opt for a simple black dress for women and a plain black crewneck t-shirt with denim black jeans for men with your favourite pair of sneakers. Or if you’re feeling more fashionable and cool that day, a black pair of utilitarian combat boots for the daytime to keep things practical while still looking good. 

These simple outfits can then be spruced up in the evening by adding a blazer and your smartest shoes and accessories. By bringing along just a couple of layers, you can pull together two completely different outfits without the hassle of heading home to change.

How Do You Wear All-Black Clothes?

You might feel stumped when it comes time to create fresh ways to wear all-black outfits and have something different every time. Here are a couple of simple ways you can wear all-black outfits every day of the week that simultaneously make each one unique to your style while also ensuring you never look like an outfit repeater.

Mix and Match Different Textures of Black Jeans and T-Shirt

With every piece in your outfit being black, a crucial detail to making not just your whole look stand out, but even every article of clothing you have on from your socks to your coat, is to integrate varying fabrics and textures into the ensemble. Doing so has the same concept as mixing contrast prints when styling patterned and colourful clothing: to differentiate the individual elements in the look as well as to make it interesting and energising to observe. 

While wearing two pieces that are similar in texture is easier, it can also make an all-black outfit uninteresting to look at and won’t draw the eye to details in the look that you want people to see. 

One fun example of blending in different textures in all-black look is pairing velvet black trousers with a black ribbed turtleneck and a black denim jacket layer, or conversely, wearing a velvet top with black jeans and replacing the denim with a leather jacket instead. 

These pieces are sure to pull together nicely thanks to their shared colour, while being different enough thanks to their material. This makes all-black outfits easier to differentiate and keeps your style looking more high fashion.

Experiment With Shapes and Silhouettes

When styling all-black outfits, another issue you might be worried about other than looking plain is looking shapeless. Luckily for all of us, black is an incredibly slimming and forgiving hue, so there is no better colour to experiment with when it comes to the fit and look of clothing on your body. 

While textures are one way to make your outfits more multi-dimensional, discovering how clothing drapes over your body, what looks best, and even playing around with different cuts can make all-black looks even more interesting to look at. 

You can go for baggy trousers paired with a more fitting top or vice versa, a full outfit of body-hugging pieces, or a baggier and more relaxed look. Since you won’t need to focus on how colours match, moving your attention to how they fit and complement one another can really make an all-black look shine.

Business Casual Every Day

If you’re in the mood to look smart whatever the day of the week, all-black outfits infused with cool business casual inspiration will always look good. When it comes to styling a smart look without looking like you’re headed to a meeting, it comes down to what accessories or elements are styled with the main pieces. 

A great go-to base for this all-black look is a black suit blazer paired with tailored trousers, wardrobe staples that both men and women should use to their advantage. This base outfit can then be styled with anything you’d like; from a t-shirt to turtleneck with open-toe sandals or platform boots, a loose button down paired with worn trainers or high heels, and absolutely anything else in the world you can think of. 

We think the blazer and matching trouser combo is always going to be a classic and winning look that, when you pull them together with the right pieces, can make you look fresh off the runway even on the most mundane day.

Add a Pop of Colour

If you want to pull together all-black outfits that have a bit of contrast, then adding a hint of another shade can really bring out the drama of the look as a whole. This can be done in a load of different ways, like putting on a coat of bright nail polish, adding white sneakers to the look, styling it with painted jeans, or pairing the look with a statement bag.

While this does create a look that isn’t 100% black, it is definitely a great way to ease yourself into the trend and feel comfortable if you’re a person that enjoys different colours in their outfits. However, this is again a great and easy way to keep that aspect of yourself when you want to try something new and wear all black without having to go all the way.

Make It Fit in With the Season

Two often-heard arguments that many people pull out when it comes to wearing all-black outfits all year is that, firstly, there is no variation in how you look per season and, secondly, that to wear all black is much too dark and hot to wear in the summer. 

As we can already see from the above tips, there are more than a few ways you can make an all-black look your own and wear it according to the weather. 

The colder months allow us more room to experiment with different layers, silhouettes, and textures a lot more than any other season, so to wear all-black can actually allow you to be quite playful and adventurous with your style. 

We’ve seen women throw an oversized coat over a miniskirt or dress with thigh-high boots, giving a lot more life and daringness to a winter outfit. On the other hand, we’ve seen men sport black, loose ripped jeans over black tights for a fashionable monochrome look that still keeps them warm.

When it comes to summertime, avoiding black sounds like the right way to keep from sweating under the sun. However, it’s definitely not something you need to sacrifice for the season, and it all comes down to the fabric you choose to wear. 

A classic black linen dress paired with open-toe shoes is all a girl needs to keep cool, while a cotton shirt paired with chino shorts and sandals is an easy way to wear all black and when the sun is out without sweltering in the heat.

Final Note

Whether you find the idea of wearing all black boring or an intimidating venture, we think that these shouldn’t pull you away from trying a trend that you may love. Black is a classic shade that’s in season all year long and is that rare hue that makes an outfit look understated and striking all at once. No matter where you’re going or what your style is, an all-black look will never let you down.

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Anna Kim

Anna Kim was born and raised in Korea before moving to London at age ten. Surrounding herself with other fashion-lovers and having constantly experimented with her style since childhood, Anna isn’t afraid to stand out in what she’s wearing. Her lifelong adoration for all things fashion and her strong roots where she grew up have allowed her to write and share about anything and everything that’s currently trending in Asia and the rest of the world.

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