In Defense of the Turtleneck Sweater for Men

I love sweaters. I own a cardigan and I love wearing it for good measure.

But from time to time, I like to break in a turtleneck. Yes, those horrid little things associated with metrosexuality for a lot of people.

But I contend that turtlenecks are as manly as they can get.

I don’t mean to sound nostalgic, but the 60’s has to be my favorite era. Men—hippies excluded—dressed up like men, but broke free from the conventional norms of the 50’s.

And during the 60’s, turtlenecks were very much prominent. From beatniks to manly movie stars to musicians, turtleneck sweaters were an essentiality when it comes to men’s clothing.

Unfortunately, during the 80’s, they somehow began to lose footing and were replaced by those icky varsity jackets which a lot of ‘bags in the country wear, despite the searing heat.

People were more into fashion instead of style as the years passed by.

Today, turtleneck sweaters are often worn either by women or by hipsters. And when men wear one, they’re often associated as either being metro or gay. Pardon the slang.

Now, what if I told you that you can break in a turtleneck and still be manly? Yes. You can!

All you have to do is to change your mindset. Yes, your mindset is the only factor that’s hindering you—so to speak.

My job is to convince you or persuade you to do so.

Okay, maybe it really is up to you to get and wear one. And honestly, I don’t see much of a problem there.

Below, I shall enumerate some reasons on why you should break in a turtleneck.

  • 007 wore them

Roger Moore as 007 himself.

Yes, Roger Moore. A pinnacle of manliness. Face it—you’ll never come close to being as manly as he is. So, if James Bond wore a turtleneck, why shouldn’t you?

  • Turtlenecks make you look more interesting

For some people, seeing someone in a turtleneck would be weird. But actually, it makes you look rather interesting. People would ask themselves what you do. Are you an artist? A secret agent? A jewel thief? Whatever. Turtlenecks are interesting.

  • They make you look classy

‘Nuff said. Turtlenecks bring a certain flair to your appearance. I don’t think I need to elaborate more.

  • The Beatles also wore turtlenecks
Paul McCartney in a turtleneck underneath a coat.

Paul McCartney in a turtleneck underneath a coat.

Okay, this may be for guys who are more inclined to having that “boyish” look (not everyone has enough testosterone for that chiseled jawline). Paul McCartney pretty much had that boyish charm, so I’m guessing you could pull off something which he had done.

And below, a few pics of men in turtlenecks:

Paul Lynde, comedian from the 70's.

Paul Lynde, comedian from the 70’s.

Bullitt 06

Steve McQueen. These things look best when worn underneath a sport coat or blazer.

Michael Fassbender in X-Men: First Class

Michael Fassbender in X-Men: First Class 


Steve Jobs wearing his trademark mock-turtleneck sweater.

Turtlenecks work best with a side-sweep or side parted hairstyle.

Turtlenecks work best with a side-sweep or side parted hairstyle.

Alright, I’m guessing you’re not yet convinced, but you might want to give the look a shot. If not, you may opt for a cardigan or even a v-neck if that’s still too much for you.

Until next time, classy, stylish and intelligent people.