Understand Suit Lapel Types and The one you can wear

by - 8:42 PM

What is the difference between notchpeak and shawl lapels? Which one should I go for? Read to find out…

Lapels are one of the most important elements of men formal attire but most men fail to give this proper attention and don’t really know which kind of lapel will best complement their suit looks. If you don’t know what a lapel is then keep reading as we are going to discuss each lapel types shortly. Traditionally, there are three jacket lapel styles which are the Shawl Lapel, Peak Lapel and Notch Lapel.
In this guide we’ll go over all these types of lapels and discuss them one after another. First you must know that none of the jacket lapel types is better than the other; The choice of which one to wear, entirely depends on your need, personal taste and the occasion.

1. Shawl Lapel Tuxedo

The shawl lapel collar which is also well knows as dinner or roll collar, first introduced in Victoria smoking jacket. It is a more formal option than other two (peak and notch lapel), this is the reason you’ll see a shawl lapel suit quite rarely. The shape of this lapel is completely rounded without any points and notches, it start from your collar and go smoothly till the button of your jacket through the covering and making the classic V shape.

Occasion | When To Wear It


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The Shawl collar tuxedo is usually worn in formal events including Prom, wedding, cruise and in Black tie events. Shawl lapel adds a good interest in your personality and changes your look from an average dressed guy to a dapper secret agent. Shawl lapels are highly recommendable for Dinner Suits. If you are considering buying a formal suit, such as an every day suit (not tuxedo) then a shawl collar style should be avoided.
Many people usually get confused about which suit lapel will give them the best look, unfortunately there isn’t any way to pick the best out of all the lapel types since it depends on the occasion as well as the look you want to pull off. Whichever lapel suits you, go with it! But if you want to go with classic and traditional look then shawl collar tuxedo is the perfect choice.


Best For

If you have a slim body and bit longer than average height than shawl lapel tuxedo or suit will compliment your look without a doubt. But if you have rounded face or body and over 38 waist size then a shawl collar is not always a good option because it will not be able to give you the desired look.


2. The Peak Lapel Collar

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Peak lapel tuxedo are also very famous in formal parties and events like Black tie events. The peak lapel tuxedo is also very famous in formal parties and events like Black tie events. It is the only type of lapel that is common in both suits and tuxedo. There are several theories behind the invention of the tuxedo, but one thing is certain – this formal piece originated with classic peak lapels. If you are one of those guys who often get confused when it comes to peak vs notch lapel dinner suits, and don’t know which one will suit you better then here are few quick tips.

Notch lapels suits all body types, but if you have short height then the peak lapels might work best for you.

Asides in Tuxedo, the peak lapels are also common in tailcoat, and both single and double breasted suits since its origin back in 1920.

Peak lapel suits and tuxedos are bit more expensive as it is one of the most challenging tasks in tailoring the suit, it also needs great experience along with variety of skills to construct.



Peaked collar styles are also recommended for formal events like Prom, Black tie, and fancier weddings or business parties. If you are fashion forward guy and you have enough courage to try different things instead of sticking to only one lapel style, then going with peak lapel isn’t a bad option. Again if you are still unsure regarding Shawl vs Peak lapel then try going with the one that looks good on you.


Best For

These kind of lapel are highly recommended for people who have skinny body as well as short men because the peak lapel collar points up near the shoulder of your jacket and this helps remove the attention from the short height by moving eyes upward towards the shoulders, this illusion helps the upper body by widening the chest of the guys with short torso. Also a peak lapel is more formal and always found on double breasted jackets.



3. Notch Lapel Collar

Notched lapels are less formal than the previous two (peak and shawl collar) we have already discussed, these lapels are usually found in modern tuxedo styles that are fairly non-traditional. On the other side notch lapel suits are most common for the individuals who are supposed to wear suits every day at office, it is known as the most common suit lapel. Notched lapel was introduced much later than both shawl and peaked lapels and probably in early 1980’s. Just like the shawl lapel type it starts with your collar and close to shoulders of your jacket.


Both shawl and peaked lapel are perfect to wear with dinner jackets in events such as black tie events. Although notch collar are modern and quite popular but it can still give you a casual look and that’s why it is not usually allowed to wear in black tie affairs. But you can feature a notch lapel in your wedding tuxedo, and any fashion forward parties.


Best For

Notched lapel collar can work well for men of all sizes, if you are slim, then ensure you choose jackets with slim/thin lapels while if you are on the big size ensure you wear a wider notch lapel type. It is most often found in single-breasted suit jackets, blazers and sports coats.



Now I’m sure as you’ve gone through this post you have much more knowledge about the suit lapel types. It is extremely important to remember all the crucial points which we have discussed here and let it guide you when next you are purchasing your next suit. 

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