Unlike women’s clothing, men’s fashion did not undergo any radical change. Men wore Stove-pipe pants during the initial years of the century. The men’s costumes were to be formal, sober and elegant during work hours and otherwise. The basic feature of Victorian men’s clothing was clean and basic lines, the use of dark colour and a detailed work of the costume.
Men also wore corsets and with time, cinching of the waist was replaced by easy-breathing loose jackets. Around 1840 the general trend followed by men as far as clothes were concerned was to wear frock coats which fitted tightly and were up to calf length. Along with the coat, men also wore waistcoats or vests.
These vests could be single or double-breasted. There was a different kind of fashion for morning and evening wear. For the morning purposes, men wore a morning coat with light-coloured trousers and in the evening, a dark coat with trousers was preferred. To complete the dress code, hats were usually worn.
By 1850, men wore shirts with high collars and a bow. The aristocratic class normally wore the top hats while the bowler hats were worn by the working class. During the 1860s men’s fashion underwent a change. The neckties were broader and were to be tied in a bow or looped into a loose knot and tied with a stickpin. Another change that took place was that the frock coats became shorter.
Now, they reached up to the knee length as against the previous ones reaching the calf. Three-piece suits were invented around the 1870s and instantly were a hit among the people. Another change that was brought during this time was in ties. Neckties were four-in-hand and a new type, known as Ascot ties soon became popular.
During the mid-1800, dinner jackets were also used for formal occasions. The Norfolk jacket and woollen breeches came to be used for outdoor activities like shooting. During the winter, men preferred to wear topcoats and overcoats reaching up to the knees along with contrasting velvet or at times fur collars.
By the end of the 1880s, men had started wearing the newly introduced blazers for outdoor activities like sports, sailing, etc. The shoes of the Victorian men had high heels and were narrower at the toes. Men usually kept their hair short and had pointed beards and generous moustaches. Thus, it can be said that men’s clothing was formal and comparatively, few changes were brought in men’s fashion.