Tuxedo vs. Suit for prom: what to wear (2024)

Prom season is one of the most exciting times of the year for high school students. But there’s a certain pressure to pick the right outfit for the big dance. Don’t you know when to wear a tuxedo or a suit? And whether you should wear a bowtie or a tie? Rent or buy? Don’t stress too much about it, because in this blogpost you’ll learn how to become the best-dressed guy of the school. So, sit back, relax and read the answers to all your questions below!

The difference: tuxedo vs. suit

Are you new in the prom game and have no idea what the difference between a tuxedo and a suit is? No biggie, you’re not alone in this – it’s not like you’re wearing it daily. Basically, the difference between a suit and a tuxedo is: satin. Tuxedos have satin on the lapels, buttons, pocket trim, and traditionally also a satin side stripe down the leg of the trousers. Suits don’t have any satin; the jacket, lapel and pants all consist of the same fabric. Tuxedos are worn with white shirts that have either a turndown collar or a wing collar. Suits can be worn with many different types of dress shirts, in a solid color or with a pattern.

Tuxedo vs. Suit for prom: what to wear (1)

On the left, you see a tuxedo, on the right a suit. As you can see, nowadays they don’t differ that much anymore in appearance. But the biggest difference is the moment when you wear a tuxedo. Tuxedos are considered evening wear; for formal events with a black-tie dress code, charity galas and opera nights for example. Suits are worn for all kinds of (semi) formal occasions and can be combined in several ways.

So, tuxedo vs. suit for prom?

Most proms have a black-tie dress code, which means you should wear a tuxedo. In some invitations it is even strictly mentioned that tuxedos should be worn. In that case it’s best to adhere to the dress code. If you want to play it safe with your outfit, a black tuxedo is always a good option, since it’s a classic and timeless look.

Is ‘traditional’ not really something that suits you, but you respect the dress code at the same time? Good news: nowadays there are multiple contemporary options when it comes to tuxedos – there’s so much more on the market now than just old school, black ones. For example, you can wear a tuxedo in a brighter color, like off white, midnight blue or burgundy. Perfect if you like to show some personality. You’ll still meet the dress code while feeling like yourself and standing out from the crowd.

Tuxedo vs. Suit for prom: what to wear (2)

Is it ok to wear a suit to prom?

Unless the invitation says you have to wear a tuxedo (or strictly says black tie is the dress code), you could consider wearing a tuxedo as an option instead of a must. You should be able to choose between a suit and a tuxedo. For less informal proms, pants and a fancy blazer should even be fine. So, it depends on the invitation and dress code whether you can wear a suit to prom or not.

Feeling like yourself and being confident is key, so if you like a suit or a blazer more than a tuxedo, you could wear that. It’s a little more informal and moderner than a tuxedo. Since there are so many options for suits, you have to choose what colour and cut you want. We advise to go for skinny or slim – looking at the latest trends. Of course, black and dark blue suits are the most common, and therefore the safest options. But again, if you like to color a little outside the lines (like we do): wearing a suit to prom, especially with eye-catching prints and/or colors, is a great way to stand out from the crowd while maintaining a stylish look.

Bowtie or tie?

If you decide to wear a tuxedo, a bowtie is a great option to complement it; it’s that traditional look that never goes out of fashion again. Traditionally the bowtie is the one and only right accessory to accompany a tuxedo, so if you want to play it safe and traditional: go for a bowtie if you wear a tux. A big benefit of a bowtie is that it flatters your body, thanks to the big white V you create when your tuxedo or suit jacket is closed. It emphasizes the shoulders and a narrow waist for a muscular look.

Long ties are also popular for prom, since they make your outfit contemporary and a little less formal (like a suit is). So if you choose to wear a suit to prom, a tie would work well, especially a slim tie.

Buy or rent?

In doubt if you should buy or rent a suit or a tux? Renting is of course an option. You’ll be guaranteed to follow the dress code and to have a classic look – but the cost of renting one is pretty high: ranging from $150-$400, which you’ll never see back again. Besides, most renters have old, out-of-style tuxedos, so if you’re going to rent, we advise to do some research on where you go to, to make sure you’ll be able to rent a modern one.

If you’d ask us, we would advise to buy, but not break the bank for the most expensive tuxedo or suit out there. Since you’re probably still a teenager, your body is still growing, so it’s likely that your suit or tuxedo won’t fit anymore in a few years. But fortunately, there are some affordable tuxedo options that look just as good as the most luxury, expensive ones. Some are even cheaper than renting. Of course, the best thing about buying is that you can wear it again to other formal occasions like weddings, birthday parties, graduation parties etc.

Check out our prom collection

Have you made your decision between a tuxedo vs a suit for prom, and want to buy a stylish, affordable tux or suit? Make sure to take a look at our extensive collection prom suits and our tuxedos! We have it all: solid colored & bold printed suits in teenager and men’s sizes, tuxedos in several colors and more – all at a low price.

Have fun, outshine your classmates & party like there’s no tomorrow!

Tuxedo vs. Suit for prom: what to wear (2024)


Do I wear a tux or suit to prom? ›

Suit or Tux

There are no rules on whether you should wear a suit or tuxedo to prom; really, the decision lies on what look you're going for. Suits are modern, easy to accessorize, and can always be reworn on other occasions! Tuxedos are more elegant, characterized by satin details and a classic, vintage appeal.

What can I wear to prom instead of a tux? ›

Classic Prom Suit Ideas

Unless your prom has a black tie dress code (learn more about that here), you'll still look formal enough for prom if you wear the right suit. While everyone else goes big with a tux, a suit can make a low-key, timeless statement. A blue suit (or navy, or grey) is a great base for accessories.

What type of suit should you wear to prom? ›

A prom suit is ideal if you want a smart and modern look on the big night. Choose either a 2- or 3-piece suit (a waistcoat being the third piece), and what colour and cut you want: either skinny, slim or tailored. You can go for colour, texture or even a classic black prom suit, depending on your taste.

When to wear tuxedo vs suit? ›

If you're attending a white or black tie affair, you should show up in a tux. There's a slight bit of wiggle room with black tie dress codes but a tuxedo is the safer bet. A suit is your best choice for anything lower on the formality scale (formal, semi-formal, etc.).

What are guys wearing to prom? ›

Q: Do I need to wear a tuxedo to prom, or is a suit acceptable? A: While a tuxedo is the traditional choice for prom, a well-fitted suit can also be a stylish option for a semi-formal or co*cktail attire event. Consider factors such as personal preference, dress code, and budget when making your decision.

How do you know if its a tux or suit? ›

Easy: Tuxedos are worn with bow ties and suits either with or without a tie. Tuxedos have satin lapels, which can even be from a different shade while suits lapels are made of the same fabric. Tuxedos have also satin buttons while suits have the usual suit buttons, not covered by a piece of satin fabric.

What is not appropriate for prom? ›

o Prom attire should reflect more a formal family occasion (like a wedding) rather than a night on the town or at a dance club. o Dresses that are too revealing, are skin tight or form-fitting, expose midriffs or cleavage, or are too short in length are not appropriate.

What is the dress code for prom? ›

Prom is a formal event and you are expected to wear formal attire. Formal prom attire may be classified as a dress, tuxedo, dress suit, including a tie or bow tie, a dress shirt, which may include a vest or cumme*rbund, and dress shoes. Dresses may be strapless (if they fit properly) or include spaghetti straps.

Do girls wear tuxedos to prom? ›

Keep in mind that you aren't limited to the traditional blazer-and-pants combo. There are options like skirt suits, suits with shorts, cropped jackets, tuxedos, and wide-leg pants as well. If you're going with a date, you can even opt for matching fits if that's your thing.

What do most girls wear to prom? ›

For women, this usually entails wearing a long or short evening gown, co*cktail outfit, or even a jumpsuit with elegant accessories like statement jewelry and high heels.

Is a black suit too formal for prom? ›

Is a black suit OK for prom? A suit or tuxedo in black, blue, or grey is a classic choice and will make you sharp and well-dressed for the occasion. A black suit is a great choice, whatever the event might be. These are some good options if you're searching for outfits for guys that will also be re-wearable.

How can I look prettiest at prom? ›

Let's look at the prom tips you need to know about.
  1. Style Your Hair. ...
  2. Get That 'Glow' ...
  3. Get Your Brows Done. ...
  4. A Bright Smile Is Powerful. ...
  5. Wear A Button-Down While Getting Ready. ...
  6. Prime + Set. ...
  7. Find The Perfect Dress For You. ...
  8. Prom Tips: Final Thoughts.

Should you wear a tux or suit to prom? ›

Most proms have a black-tie dress code, which means you should wear a tuxedo. In some invitations it is even strictly mentioned that tuxedos should be worn. In that case it's best to adhere to the dress code.

When not to wear tuxedo? ›

Regardless of how evening dress code is defined, tuxedos should never be worn in daytime affairs.

Is it acceptable to wear a black suit instead of a tuxedo? ›

Some event holders may frown on you forgoing the tux if they have a specific idea of what black tie is in their minds. But you'll generally be safe going with a classic black or navy blue suit if you see one of two terms on the invitation – black tie optional and black tie preferred.

Why would a girl wear a suit to prom? ›

Wearing a woman's suit to a prom can be a great fit for you, especially if you love being stylish and trendy. Women's suits can be perfectly tailored to meet a variety of body types, and this means that you can add a few good-looking suits to your style closet, for future black tie events.

How far in advance should you get fitted for a tux for prom? ›

It is always advisable to plan ahead and give yourself a few months to select your tuxedo or suit, and any color swatches. Aim to try on your outfit at least two weeks before your event to get the right fit and allow for any necessary adjustments.

What color tux should I wear to prom? ›

Stay away from colorful tuxedos that would clash and instead choose a gray tuxedo. As the saying goes, “Light colors set off dark colors; dark colors set off light ones.” Gray tuxedos are the perfect choice for prom.

Do you wear a suit or tux as a groom? ›

It is very common to see a groom and his groomsmen in suits for weddings. It does, however, depend on the wedding. For more casual weddings, a suit is perfect. If it is a very elegant affair, a tuxedo might be more fitting.


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