Can You Wear a Suit With Trainers?

Written by Dan | 08/06/2022


Ultimate Guide

It’s a question that men have fiercely debated for the past few years – can you wear trainers with a suit? The answer, as it turns out, is yes… and no. While there are some definite do’s and don’ts when it comes to pairing sneakers with suits, with a little bit of know-how it can actually be a stylish and practical combination.

For instance, you’ll want to avoid wearing pumps with a formal suit jacket or tuxedo. However, if you’re wearing a more casual suit – such as a linen or seersucker – then your favourite sneakers can actually be a great way to add a bit of personality and make a fashion statement.

What to wear with a suit

A suit is a timeless wardrobe staple that every man should own. But what do you wear with a suit? The options can seem endless, but there are really only a few key pieces that you need to complete the look.

A stylish shirt, of course, is essential. A white dress shirt is always a safe bet, but if you want to add a little colour or pattern, consider a striped or checked shirt in a light hue. Short sleeve shirts work well with this look and are a versatile addition to any wardrobe. We talk more in another post about styling short sleeve shirts.

Don’t be afraid to style it up with a T shirt though. Sometimes less is more and the smart casual vibe can set off the classic silhouette of a good suit. Go for a smart designer T shirt to really up your style game.

With these simple pieces, you’ll be ready for anything from a job interview to a summer wedding. But what about trainers? Can they ever have a place in a formal dress code?

How to wear trainers with a suit

It’s a question that has long divided men: can you wear designer trainers with a suit? For some, the answer is an emphatic no. Trainers are for the gym, they argue, or perhaps for a casual weekend look. But, as those who wear suits regularly know, smart leather sneakers can be the perfect complement to a sharp suit. The rules have definitely changed.

A man in the street wearing trainers with a suit


The key is to choose the right style of trainers and to steer clear of any that are too bulky or sporty-looking. A sleek pair of black or navy sneakers is a good option, as are classic white trainers. Something timeless like a pair of adidas Stan Smiths or anything by Polo Ralph Lauren is just the ticket.

And when it comes to choosing the right outfit to go with your sneakers, think simple and streamlined. A tailored suit in a solid colour palette is an obvious choice. A navy suit is much easier to dress down than a black one.

Slim-fitting tapered trousers can really show off your best white sneakers. And don’t forget to pay attention to the small details, like ankle socks and sharp shoelaces.

With a little bit of effort, you can easily pull off the trainer-and-suit look without looking like you’re headed to the gym or that you didn’t have time to change out of your office attire.

What are the benefits of wearing trainers with a suit?

There are many benefits to sporting trainers with a suit. For one, it shows that you’re not afraid to break the mould and dress outside traditional norms. Additionally, it can add a sense of playfulness and fun to an otherwise stuffy outfit. And let’s be honest, we all know that comfort is key when it comes to fashion.

There’s nothing worse than being uncomfortable in your own clothes. But with trainers, you can have the best of both worlds – style and comfort. So next time you’re getting dressed for a big meeting or event, consider stepping out of the box. Mix it up and match your blazer with trendy suede or leather trainers. Your feet will thank you for it, especially during the warmer months!

What are the disadvantages of wearing a suit with trainers?

While there are many advantages to wearing trainers with a suit – comfort, style, and practicality, to name a few – there are also a few disadvantages that are worth considering. One downside is that trainers can make suits look more casual, which may not be ideal for certain formal occasions.

Additionally, trainers can be less comfortable than dress shoes when walking or standing for long periods of time. And finally, trainers tend to be less durable than formal footwear, so they may need to be replaced more often. The options for winter trainers are a bit more limited, so do your research!

However, these disadvantages are relatively minor compared to the many benefits of wearing trainers with a suit. So if you’re looking for a comfortable, stylish, and practical shoe option, trainers are definitely worth considering.

A suited man in trainers sitting on a stool

Tips for wearing trainers with suit trousers

Smart trousers and trainers have long been considered a fashion don’t. However, with the rise of athleisure wear, this once-taboo combination has become increasingly popular.

If you’re looking to rock this trend, there are a few things you should keep in mind. First, if you’re going to be wearing sneakers, choose a pair that are sleek and relatively simple.

Avoid chunky styles or anything with too many embellishments. Second, make sure your trainers are clean and in good condition. This is not the time to break out your well-worn gym shoes.

Finally, consider the overall look you’re going for. Pairing suit trousers with trainers can create a relaxed yet stylish vibe, perfect for casual days at work or weekends spent exploring on the street. Follow these tips and you’ll be rocking the suit-and-sneaker look in no time.

A man in a suit ties his shoelaces

Examples of how to wear sneakers with a suit

It’s no secret that sneakers are having a cool moment. Designers are sending chunky soles down the runway, and celebrities are pairing them with everything from jeans to ball gowns.

But what about when you need to dress up for a semi-formal occasion? Can you still rock your beloved leather kicks to white tie events? The answer is a resounding yes – as long as you pick the right pair and you know how to style them correctly.

Suit trousers and trainers have long been considered a fashion faux pas. However, with athleisure wear becoming so on-trend, this once-taboo combination has become increasingly popular. If you’re looking to rock this trend, there are a few things you should keep in mind:

  1. Go for a contrast: Choose trainers that are in a different colour or material than your suit. This will help to develop a more deliberate look.
  2. Keep it simple: Avoid overly embellished or bright and busy sneakers. Stick to clean lines and classic silhouettes to offset the tailoring.
  3. Pay attention to proportion: Make sure your trainers are in proportion to the rest of your outfit. If you’re wearing a slim-fit suit, opt for sleeker sneaker styles.


Following this advice, you can rock sneakers with a suit like a pro. So go ahead and add a pair of kicks to your next formal outfit – we promise you won’t regret it.


Shop the full range of men’s trainers at Mainline Menswear

What did you think of this post?


Thumbs up review image


Average review image

Not for me!

Thumbs down review image