Last updated: August 19, 2021

Cufflinks for men appeared at the beginning of the 17th century and replaced the old ribbons and lace. The first buttons were made of gold or silver and connected to a chain.

To this day, men's jewellery is an important part of giving an appearance that certain something. They give the modern or the classic men's look a variety of possibilities - from the classic suit look, to setting noble and individual accents.




The Best Men's Cufflinks: Our Picks

Buying criteria: What to look for when buying cufflinks for men

To help you find the right cufflinks for your suit or special occasion, we've picked out the key features to make your buying decision easier.

These are the following buying criteria:

  • Material
  • Design
  • Closure types
  • Cleaning
  • Storage

The four criteria will primarily help you find out which cufflinks you really want and are briefly presented below.

Material

The traditional materials are gold and silver, which are still used for cufflinks today. Nevertheless, modern times have expanded the range of materials over the decades and you can buy men's jewellery made from a wide variety of precious metals, fabrics and types of wood.

The selection contains countless options to give your suit a modern, classic, classy or individual accent. For cufflinks, you can choose from stainless steel, titanium, platinum, copper, bronze, sterling silver, gold, metal alloys, silk, wood, leather, mother-of-pearl and textile fabric.

This variety of materials for men's jewellery reveals many possibilities to match the suit depending on the occasion. The precious metals and mother-of-pearl give the suit a classic and refined look and are ideal for special and formal occasions. This is in contrast to other materials such as silk, wood, leather and textile fabrics, which give the suit look a more informal, casual and playful look.

Design

Depending on the material, the design of men's jewellery can be varied. You will often find cufflinks in square, round, rectangular or oblong shapes, especially from the different stainless steel materials. There is also the option to design your own cufflinks to create a personalised look.

Types of fasteners

The cufflink consists of three parts: the motif carrier, the connecting piece and the toggle. The fastener is the toggle, which is divided into the following types:

  • The Wahlschwanz closure is widespread, popular, inexpensive and easy to use. The closure has the shape of an electoral tail, hence the name electoral tail closure.
  • The projectile shutter is shaped like a projectile and has easy handling. The toggle is widely used, popular and inexpensive.
  • The peg or button fasten er is classic, durable and has the design on top on both sides.
  • The link chain link is one of the most traditional styles of cufflinks and consists of two identical fronts and a chain as a link.
  • The ball fastener is very robust with its practical design. The back is a slightly larger ball that connects a chain or curved connector to the front.
  • The dual action cl asp is one of the most modern cufflinks with a contemporary design and has a very good locking ability.
  • The silk knot has two identical knots that is connected with a cord. This fastener is casual and very affordable, but has a short shelf life unlike the other fasteners.

Closure types are to be decided depending on your preference or user-friendliness. If you are more experienced, we recommend the peg, button or ball closure. For gentlemen who are wearing cufflinks for the first time, we recommend the classics with electoral tail clasp or projectile clasp.

Cleaning

For a long lasting use of cufflinks it is recommended to clean them regularly and to store them properly. You can have them professionally cleaned by a jeweller or you can clean them yourself with water, a mild detergent, a toothbrush and a cotton cloth.

Storage

The appropriate place to store cufflinks is in a casket with padding to prevent contact from heat, sunlight or damage to each other's jewellery. You should also avoid humid environments or plastic packaging, as material clouding and oxidation can occur more quickly.

Men's Cufflinks: the most important questions answered

Cufflinks can add classic, sophisticated or playful nuances to your shirt or suit. Here we want to answer the most important questions about cufflinks so that you can combine and wear men's jewellery correctly.

What are cufflinks?

The cufflink is a holder for the shirt on the wrist, the part is also called the cuff. The cufflinks are attached to the holes to fasten the cuff. The cufflink consists of 3 parts, which are responsible for the look and the holder, there one divides between the motive carriers, the connecting piece and the toggle.

The motif holder is the front, which is decorated with motifs, stones or attractive materials or designs. The connecting piece is the middle part that is inserted through the cuff holes and connected to the toggle. The toggle is the fastener from the cufflink that can be rotated 90 degrees to position and fasten the toggle.

The cufflinks are not only used to fasten the cuffs, but are an adornment or accessory to the man's shirt and suit.

What types of cufflinks are there for men?

Cufflinks vary in many different types. A distinction must be made here between:

  • Single cuffs or the sports cuffs, which have 1 to 3 buttons and are often found on regular shirts. With these types, you cannot wear cufflinks. There are at least 9 different types of single cuffs.
  • French cuffs are longer than the single cuffs, are folded once and are always fastened with cufflinks.
  • Special cuffs give the wearer the option of using the convertible square cuff to adorn the shirt with or without cufflinks, depending on the occasion.

When buying cufflinks, it is important to know which shirt will be worn with which cuff in order to match the men's jewellery to the look.

Which cufflinks suit which occasion?

You can wear cufflinks for work, for special occasions or for celebrations. In business, consider what position you are in. If you set the tone, you can wear the men's jewellery as you wish, but silver, gold and mother-of-pearl are recommended here.

For special occasions such as weddings, galas or a ball, cufflinks made of silver, gold, mother-of-pearl, stones or silk can add an extra touch of elegance and style to the outfit.

For informal celebrations, you have the option of styling the look from casual to fancy with the different styles, motifs and materials. Materials such as silk, wood, leather or textile fabric are suitable here.

How do I attach men's cufflinks to my shirt?

First, check whether your shirt is suitable for cufflinks, i.e. whether your shirt has French cuffs. Then put the shirt on and fold the cuff over so that both holes from the cuff are on top of each other. Hold the cuff with the hand where you want to attach the cuff link. With the other hand, attach the cufflink, this may vary depending on the model.

What type of shirt do I wear cufflinks with?

Cufflinks are classically worn with French cuffed shirts. However, you can also attach the men's jewellery to any shirt that has holes to attach the cufflinks, or you can combine them with normal shirt buttons as well.

Styling tips for men's cufflinks: How to achieve the perfect suit look

To make sure your cufflinks match your outfit perfectly, we have tips for you on how to refine your suit look:

  1. The cufflinks with a simple design and neutral colours such as white, black, beige or silver can be combined with anything.
  2. You can also match the cufflinks to one of your garments.
  3. Combining jewellery in the same shade, such as rings, wristwatches, bracelet and tie clip, makes your appearance look more sophisticated right away.
  4. The contrasting combination is also a way of adding that certain something to your suit look. It is advisable to look up colour theory to avoid inappropriate colour combinations.

With these tips, you can style your outfit the way you want and make a personalised statement, depending on the occasion and your preference.

Conclusion

Men's cufflinks can be combined individually for a personalised look with the different types of material, fastening and design. However, for formal occasions, etiquette should be followed to avoid embarrassing or awkward situations.

You should still pay attention to which shirt or suit you combine with the men's jewellery and other accessories to really give your look the polish you want. It is also important to clean and store the cufflinks so that they do not get scratched or lose their shine after a short time.

Sources: Unsplash & 123rf

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