You’ve probably seen mates, families and fashionistas wearing men’s co-ords countless times without knowing what those matching sets are called. In simple terms, a co-ord is a set of clothes, usually consisting of two pieces, made from the same fabric.

Men’s co-ords can be any combination: t-shirt and joggers, hoodie and shorts, cardigan and joggers, jacket and trousers, and so on, so long as they match. Co-ords can be smart, casual, sporty, relaxed, outrageous or anything in between.

The fact is, co-ords make life just that little bit easier. You don’t have to stress about what goes together and what clashes, and your entire outfit is good to go at a second’s notice. Less wardrobe space is required and you look great from every angle. That’s probably why the gents in Love Island loved them so much last summer.

We do co-ords and sets well. Try mixing prints, colours and styles to get more outfit options out of your matching sets as well as styling with co-ordinating accessories for that full head-to-toe look.

Penelope Armstrong (boohooMAN Senior Menswear Designer)

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Celebrities Wearing Matching Sets

Looking around at the celebrity world, how not to mention the bright lemon two-piece co-ord oozing with designer-sportswear appeal that Chris Brown wore in the music video for the song “Do It Again”, his collaboration with Pia Mia? Artists Tyga and Post Malone have taken co-ords to a whole new level with their choice of extravagant fabrics and super bold designs. Post Malone’s ivory two-piece featuring bright red roses is a case of once-seen-never-forgotten.

But co-ords aren’t only for making statements and turning heads. Suits are also co-ords and men have been wearing those for hundreds of years, from the royal court of the 17th century through the industrial revolution and the Victorian era to the modern-day office.

Nowadays though, suits can comprise tailored shorts instead of trousers. American basketball player Lebron James and hip-hop royalty ASAP Rocky have both been seen looking super slick in tailored shorts and matching single-breasted jacket. It seems that there really is a men’s matching set for every occasion.

When to Wear Men’s Co-Ord Sets?

how to wear men's co-ord sets

Whether it’s a date with someone you want to impress, a few drinks with the lads, or a family get-together in a relative’s back garden, there’s a men’s twin set for you. Take a look at these ideas for the men’s co-ords you need in your life.

Playing Sport

how to wear men's co-ord sets

An air text vest and basketball set will help keep you looking and feeling cool while you play sport. Any shorts and t-shirt matching set is just the job if you’re headed to the park for a game of basketball or a kickabout.

Best Co-Ord Sets for Sport

  • Basketball sets
  • Short tracksuit sets

Leisure

how to wear men's co-ord sets

A sleeveless snood and shorts combination is ideal for leisurewear because your arms and legs are free to move about during activity. The optional snood in the neck of your top is a bonus; just pull it up over your mouth and nose when required. 

Short tracksuits and t-shirt and shorts sets will get you to the gym in comfort and style.

Best Co-Ord Sets for Leisure

  • T-shirt and shorts sets
  • T-shirt and joggers sets
  • Short tracksuit sets

Beach Party

how to wear men's co-ord sets

A hot summer’s day, a beach party or a barbecue screams out for a classic shirt and shorts men’s twin set. If there’s the chance of a dip or a water fight, wear a long-sleeve printed shirt with swim shorts so you’re ready for action.

If the occasion calls for a sultry look, wear a cool cotton paisley shirt unbuttoned to reveal your torso. If it’s a casual party where celebration is the name of the game, we suggest bright marble print, or tie-dye t-shirt and shorts sets.

Best Co-Ord Sets for Beach Parties

  • Animal print shirt and shorts sets
  • Bandana print shirt and shorts sets
  • Printed shirt and swim shorts sets

Streetwear

how to wear men's co-ord sets

Men’s coordinates are perfect for streetwear at any time of the year. Choose from sweatshirts and hoodies with shorts or joggers, as well as utility vests or snake print or leopard print cagoules. A coordinated utility vest with shorts is great for a summer concert or festival since you can keep all your valuables in your pockets, nice and close to your body.

Best Streetwear Co-Ord Sets

  • Windbreaker and shorts sets
  • Harrington jacket and shorts sets
  • Utility vest and shorts sets
  • Short tracksuit sets

Smart Casual

how to wear men's co-ord sets

For men’s matching sets that are fit for smart casual, go for a polo shirt and shorts set. Since a polo shirt has a collar, you’ll look more astute than you would in a plain t-shirt, and the colour block patterned shirts are even slicker. Also available are t-shirt and shorts sets featuring the classic houndstooth pattern.

Best Smart Casual Co-Ord Sets

  • Polo and short sets
  • Cardigan and joggers sets

Smarter Occasions

how to wear men's co-ord sets

For a dressier event, opt for a short-sleeve collar shirt in a plain colour, or shorts and a viscose short-sleeve shirt. If you really want to ramp up the fashion stakes with men’s smart co-ords, go for a co-ordinated blazer and trouser suit, or be like Lebron James and ASAP Rocky and wear tailored shorts with a blazer or suit jacket.

Best Co-Ord Sets for Smarter Occasions

  • Revere collar shirt and shorts sets
  • Blazer and suit shorts sets

How to Wear Men’s Co-Ord Sets?

OK, let’s get down to it. Here are our top five tips for pulling off a 2-piece matching set and embracing the trend that is co-ords.

  1. Choose sets in tone-down neutrals or pastels for formal occasions.
  2. Opt for bold prints if the setting calls for a more relaxed dress code.
  3. If you are wearing a printed co-ord, pick solid-coloured sneakers to balance it out.
  4. If you’re wearing a set of shorts and shirt, break it down with a white tee or vest for a subtle effect.
  5. Make sure to round off your co-ord outfit with cool accessories.

1. Choose sets in toned-down neutrals or pastels for formal occasions.

If you want to wear your men’s twin set to a more formal occasion, go for a colour that won’t make you stand out like a sore thumb. That way, you’re just wearing shorts and a shirt, and if you go for a smarter option, you can totally get away with it.

2. Opt for bold prints if the setting calls for a more relaxed dress code.

The great news about men’s matching sets is that you can be as ostentatious as you like. If you feel like it’s your time to make a statement, then go for it with bright colours and prints that can’t fail to make an impression.

3. If you are wearing a printed co-ord, pick solid-coloured sneakers to balance it out.

This is solid gold fashion advice. Balance out a busy aesthetic with the right footwear and there can be no doubt that your men’s co-ord is the trend for this season.

4. If you’re wearing a set of shorts and shirt, break it down with a white tee or vest for a subtle effect.

While unbuttoned shirts are great for the right occasion, sometimes you need to tone it down a bit. Wear a white tee or vest underneath your open shirt and you can still show off your six-pack without showing too much flesh.

5. Make sure to round off your co-ord outfit with cool accessories.

A cross-body bag goes with virtually any twin set. A bucket hat or a bandana and a pair of sunglasses are perfect to wear with men’s shirt and shorts sets. Add your choice of chunky jewellery, a dog tag, a chain or a pendant and your look is complete.

What to Wear with Men’s Co-Ord Sets?

how to wear men's co-ord sets

With men’s co-ords, you will never again stand accused of wearing colours or patterns that don’t go together. But what should you wear with your favourite shirt and shorts matching set? Check out our suggestions below.

Take-Home Message

With a co-ord, when it’s time to head out, you can be ready in a flash, and even if you’re staying in, life is that bit easier. And for the less domesticated men out there, you can wash your men’s co-ords in the same wash since you don’t need to worry about the colours running. It really is a win-win situation.

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